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Saving With Target Circle: What You Need To Know About The Rewards Program Before Your Next Target Run

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May 4 2022, Published 9:55 p.m. ET

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It’s safe to say that over the years, Target has evolved from a mere retailer to a brand experience, immersing guests in an atmosphere that’s unlike other big box retailers of its kind. While this may sound a bit extravagant to describe a retail store, Target loyalists would beg to differ – especially Target Circle members. With a wide selection of in-house brands catering to unique styles and aesthetics, plus exclusive collaborations with some of the most sought after brands of the day, Target has just about perfected its recipe for the ultimate shopping experience – while rewarding customers in the process.

Thanks to this recipe for success, Target has found a way of taking over the senses upon arrival. All of the sudden you find yourself in a clean, bright space and any shopping list you once had in mind has gone out the window. Overtaken by the Target effect, you’ve stepped into a vortex pausing all time and responsibilities – a period of time that can only be described as "running errands." It’s true that for many of us, running errands that include a Target stop were innocent in intention but wound up dangerous in execution (speaking for your bank account here). What started as a simple Target run for toothpaste has morphed into a new pair of slippers, set of dishes and a planter for your succulent that will inevitably die shortly after potting. If this describes your recent Target receipt, chances are you could use a tip or two on how to save when shopping at Target – which is why you should absolutely join the free reward program, Target Circle.

What Is Target Circle?

Target Circle was introduced in 2019 as a replacement for Target’s previous savings program, Cartwheel. Similar to Cartwheel, Target Circle features storewide savings for customers, however, Target Circle takes these savings to a more personal level by not only rewarding customers for their purchases (1% of all total purchases back!) but also by creating what could be thought of as a savings profile. Essentially, Target Circle takes note of your purchases and then caters Target Circle offers for those shopping habits. For example, if you frequently purchase hair products from brand Not Your Mother’s, Target Circle could generate an exclusive 10% off coupon for Not Your Mother’s products – just for you. You and your bestie could make a Target run together and both receive savings offers tailored to items in your basket, not theirs. In addition to designing savings offers around your purchases, Target Circle also generates "votes" that you can use towards non-profits and programs committed to your community. So, if you’re a pet lover, your hair care purchases could generate a vote that you can cast in the Target app and online towards your local animal shelter. That’s what’s called a win-win.

How Does Target Circle Work?

Reaping the benefits of becoming a Target Circle member is easy. Target Circle members receive 1% of their total back on eligible purchases made using a non-RedCard form of payment. In addition, members also enjoy a birthday offer, receive bonuses for more savings and can help their community in the process through a unique voting program. Regardless of how active of a Target customer you are, becoming a Target Circle member is a no-brainer.

Is Target Circle Free?

Yes! Target Circle is free to join and requires no membership fee of any kind. Target’s loyalty program is truly one of a kind for its personalized savings offers and commitment to bettering the communities that Target directly impacts. Simply sign up for free and start earning money back and tailored members-only offers.

How To Sign Up For Target Circle

You can sign up for Target Circle in a few ways – all of which are free and simple. Here’s how you can start racking up savings.

  • Enter your phone number on the keypad at checkout the next time you shop in store
  • Sign up online here
  • Download the Target app (highly recommend) and sign up under the account tab in-app

Is Target Circle The Same As A RedCard?

Target Circle and Target’s RedCard are two separate tools available to Target customers. Target Circle differs from the RedCard in that it is a free loyalty program open to all customers and does not require banking information. Additionally, Target Circle is not a form of payment, rather a supplemental tool that can be enjoyed by customers to earn rewards on their purchases.

Do You Need A RedCard To Earn Target Circle Offers?

No, you do not need to be a RedCard holder to qualify for earnings rewards. If you are already a RedCard holder, you will continue to receive 5% off your total eligible purchases and receive special offers. If you are looking to save more but do not want to open a credit card, you still have options to save (outside of Circle).

Target RedCard is available in two forms: debit and credit. Acquiring the Target credit RedCard follows the same process of approval as traditional credit cards and is based on individual financial and credit qualification factors. Target debit RedCard, however, is different in that it is synced to a checking account but does not provide credit for purchases. So, if you plan to use a debit card on your next Target run, signing up for a debit RedCard is definitely worth considering. Otherwise you can continue to receive 1% earnings rewards through the loyalty program.

What Are Target Circle Bonuses?

Target Circle bonuses are the cherry on top of all the savings offered through the program. Bonuses are personalized offers that allow members to earn extra earnings rewards on qualifying purchases. To check to see if you have any bonus offers available or to learn more about your current bonus offers, sign in to your Target Circle dashboard online or under account in-app.

Do Target Circle Earnings Rewards Expire?

As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. Unfortunately, if you have not redeemed any of your Target Circle earnings rewards within a year, they expire. You can either redeem during every purchase (if earnings rewards are available) or wait until they add up – either way, use them before you lose them!

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