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Old 06-01-2018, 12:40 PM   #1
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Gasoline Loyalty Programs -- Analyzed!

This is something I have recently written up after doing a bit of survey work. I suspect many of us already know this implicitly, but here is it all written up, with numbers and stuff to do some actual comparisons. For better or for worse, since all my cars run 91 octane gas, the blurb below does not look at (87 octane) regular gas, but some stations (PetroCanada, for example) offer the same rebates regardless of fuel type.

* * *

In light of our current all-time high gas prices, I have put together the following gas station loyalty program analysis to help my friends identify the best gas loyalty rewards. Bear in mind that as just another typical consumer, I do not actually recommend anyone to remain loyal to any one gas brand unless there is a real, practical reason to do so. Additionally, I do not claim my info or analysis is up-to-date, or even 100% correct. So follow them at your own risk.

Lastly, this analysis is based on my own (91+ octane) gas usage needs. It is somewhat common for gas stations to provide bigger loyalty discounts to their high octane gas customers compared to the regular 87 octane customers. So please bear that in mind as well.

Coles Notes synopsis:

best normal deal: Husky with their myHusky card, for a ~0.82% rebate from their loyalty program

runner up normal deal: Petro-Canada with their PetroPoints + BCAA bonus (plus Save-on-More points), for a ~0.71% rebate

best promotional offer: Shell with a promotional Airmiles offer. The Shell-Airmiles program typically sucks, with only a 0.41% rebate amount. As soon as they offer an Airmiles promotion, however, that jumps to anywhere between a 2.48 - 4.95% rebate amount, and is BY FAR the best gas loyalty rebate program available.

Additionally, look for credit card that offers a minimum of 2% rebate on gas purchases. With current price levels, that roughly translates into an additional discount of 3.4 - 3.6 cents/L. If you don't already have such a card, PM me and I will sent you my Tangerine Orange Key referral code. You can sign up for a Tangerine bank account, obtain their Money-Back Credit Card, and choose "gas" as one of your 2% rebate categories, and voila~! More money stays in your wallet! There are no service charges for the Tangerine account or annual fees for the Tangerine Mastercard. Using a referral code will net both the new applicant and the referral person a $25 - $50 referral bonus.

Detailed Analysis

All calculations below assume a $1.70/L price for 91 octane gas, or $1.50/L for regular (87 octane) gas.

Chevron

Chevron no longer has any loyalty programs available, and that is a shame because other than Shell, I like their 91 gas the best. (They have seemingly switched to 92 gas now.) Of course, their Ultra 94 makes my cars even happier, but 94 gas is $$$, and like I said, they have no loyalty programs available.

Esso

First of all, don't bother with their Aeroplan loyalty program. It sucks -- the rebate amount only comes to a miniscule 0.19% rebate. It's so ridiculously low that I have no idea why they continue to offer it.

With the Esso Extra loyalty program, you get 1 point per dollar spent on "stuff". The "best" reward redemption roughly takes the form of a gas discount card that gives you $0.05/L discount for 200L of fuel (for a total value of $10). This means you need to spend $1500 on fuel to recoup a $10 rebate, giving you a rebate percentage of 0.67%.

Apparently, Esso will also be allowing customers to earn PC Optimum points at Esso stations soon, but there aren't any details yet at the time of this writing, so maybe I will update it as more info is given.

Husky

The myHusky loyalty program gives 1 point per litre of (regular) gas purchased, and 2 points per ltire of 91 octane gas purchased. Their best reward redemption comes in the form of a $5 discount for 715 points, and the discount can be applied right at the pump. Using the assumed gas prices, this means you need to spend $1072.50 on regular gas to claim your $5 discount, resulting in a 0.47% rebate percentage. With 91 octane gas, you spend $607.75 for a rebate percentage of 0.82%. This is already the highest you get under all normal loyalty programs.

Petro-Canada

To get the max out of your Petro-Points card, you need to simultaneously sign up for Petro Points, BCCA membership, the Save-on-More loyalty programs, and link them all under your Petro Points management page. The BCAA membership gets you an extra 20% of (petro) points every time you get gas, and the Save-on-More card gets you some token discounts on grocery purchase. Reward redemption comes in at 1000 pts for $1. The rebate amount roughly works out to be 0.71%.

Shell Airmiles

The normal Airmiles earn rate is pretty abysmal at 1 mile per 15L of gas purchased. A $10 discount on "stuff" is received in exchange for 95 (cash) miles. This means you spend $1211.25 on gas to obtain a 0.41% rebate. Abysmal, I'm telling you.

But things change as soon Airmiles offer one of their frequent miles multiplier promotional offer. Typically, the promotional offer gives 10 - 20x the regular Airmiles on a minimum of 25L purchases. With a 10x multiplier, than means you get a 2.48% rebate. With a 15x multiplier (which is the current promotional offer), the rebate amount jumps to 3.72%. With a 20x multiplier, the rebate amount jumps a stratospheric 4.95% rebate!!!

Bear in mind that on top of the gasoline loyalty program offer, you can still obtain whatever rebate your credit card gives you for some additional savings. As mentioned earlier, my Tangerine Mastercard gives me an extra 2% rebate. A few credit cards on the market (Scotia Momentum Visa Infinite and CIBC Dividend Visa Infinite, for example) give as much as 4% rebate on fuel purchases.
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Last edited by Traum; 06-01-2018 at 01:19 PM.
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Old 06-01-2018, 12:53 PM   #2
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We do Shell Airmiles. Recently they offered a 100 air miles bonus if you filled up 4 times (25L minimum in a month). 95 miles = $10 off at the pump so that was easy money. Promotion ended May 31st, 2018.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:07 PM   #3
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The one you're missing is Mobil/Superstore Gas Bar, if you happen to shop at Superstore or Shoppers.

With the PC Optimum card, you earn 3.5c back per liter of gas, with a PC Financial Mastercard another 3.5c, and you still get PC Optimum points on top of that.

If you do shop at Superstore and Shoppers, it's the best cash back that you'll see as it can be directly redeemed for groceries and such.

Mobil gas is Esso gas.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:08 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TouringTeg View Post
We do Shell Airmiles. Recently they offered a 100 air miles bonus if you filled up 4 times (25L minimum in a month). 95 miles = $10 off at the pump so that was easy money. Promotion ended May 31st, 2018.
Petro Canada has recently offered something similar as well, and Husky is currently offering a 2x, 3x, 4x bonus points promotion. From the look of it (without delving into an actual numerical comparison), I think the Shell Airmiles promo is still the best, but that Husky offer looks pretty sweet as well if you can fill up often enough.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:17 PM   #5
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If you bank with RBC you can get 3 cents off a liter at Petrocan plus 20% bonus Petropoints and 20% bonus RBC points. All you have to do link your Petropoints card with any RBC debit/credit card and then just use your RBC card. Don't even need to take your Petropoints card out of your wallet.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roastpuff View Post
The one you're missing is Mobil/Superstore Gas Bar, if you happen to shop at Superstore or Shoppers.

With the PC Optimum card, you earn 3.5c back per liter of gas, with a PC Financial Mastercard another 3.5c, and you still get PC Optimum points on top of that.

If you do shop at Superstore and Shoppers, it's the best cash back that you'll see as it can be directly redeemed for groceries and such.

Mobil gas is Esso gas.
Yeah, I didn't look into Mobil / Superstore gas because my cars seem to hate Esso gas. (With Esso 91 gas), the engines always seem to run coarser and not as willing to rev. The one time when I datalogged it, the engine was knocking noticeable more than it does with Petro Canada, Chevron, or Shell. So I didn't bother.

The Esso info shown above was only gleaned from Esso's website, so it wasn't that hard to put it together.
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Old 06-01-2018, 01:37 PM   #7
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Also bear in mind that at current price levels, a 2% rebate (say, from your credit card) roughly translates into a 3.4 - 3.6/L discount/rebate. So with the RBC debit/credit cards filling up at Petro Canada, or with PCF Mastercard fill up at Mobil / Superstore, that amounts to roughly 2% rebate. If gas prices continue to remain higher than ~$1.50/L, the percentage-based payment options will be more favourable than the /L discounts options. If prices drop below the $1.50/L mark, however, the /L payment options may become more attractive, but it is still difficult to beat the 4% rebate options.

In the original post, I specifically separated the loyalty program discounts from the payment discounts becuase I wanted to consider them separately. On the payment side, I think the current best deal is the 4% rebate you get from certain credit cards (Scotia Momentum Infinite and CIBC Dividend Visa Infinite).
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