When my home town Kroger store recently opened a gasoline station, I tried out their discounted fuel. Not knowing exactly how the program worked, I simply asked for the biggest discount, which turned out to be $0.50 a gallon. With my 18 gallon purchase, I saved $9! Needless to say, I like this program! To learn how to maximize my savings each month, I grabbed a brochure.
Based on that brochure, here are the basics of the Kroger point program:
- You get a point for every dollar you spend in the grocery store.
- There is no limit to the number of points you can earn.
- You get $0.10 per gallon for every 100 points, but a maximum of 1000 points ($1/gallon discount) can be redeemed at one fill up.
- Fuel discounts apply to a maximum of 35 gallons of fuel, per vehicle, per purchase.
- You can carry unused points to the end of the following month in which they were earned, but, once you are into the next month, those points must be used for a separate fill-up.
- You can choose not to use your points when purchasing gasoline.
Clear as mud? Bear with me…my tips are extremely simple and I only have two of them.
1. Don’t spend extra on groceries in order to get a bigger gasoline discount…that is what Kroger hopes you will do. A $100 grocery purchase will save you ten cents per gallon at the pump – a whopping $2 savings if you need 20 gallons of gasoline. You can save far more than $2 by comparison shopping, watching for sales and clipping coupons.
2. Take your biggest discount when your fuel tank is nearly empty. Why? Those 500 points (for example) will save you $10 dollars if you buy 20 gallons of gasoline, but only $5 if you buy 10 gallons. I like $10 better than $5, don’t you?
I realize there are nuances to this program that I did not address, but I believe if you buy your groceries wherever you get the best price, then wait until your tank is nearly empty before redeeming your points, you will maximize your savings.
Readers: do you have other tips on how to maximize your Kroger (or any other store) points at the gas pump?