Tesco Clubcard devalues Cosmos holiday rewards – what next?

Love Clubcard, don’t collect Avios?  You should be reading our sister site, Shopper Points (www.shopperpoints.co.uk), which covers the latest Clubcard and Nectar offers without any distracting frequent flyer talk!  Why not check it out now?

This is a slightly peripheral post for Head for Points, but in the last few days Cosmos has drastically reduced the value of Tesco Clubcard points if you use them for a holiday.

Historically, you could convert your Clubcard tokens into Cosmos holiday vouchers at 3x face value, with a £300 per person cap.   This was a very good deal, if Cosmos if your ‘thing’.

The deal has now worsened dramatically.  You can now only convert your vouchers at 2x face value.  More drastically for heavy points collectors, the maximum discount you can have per person is just £100.

Tesco Clubcard

Over the last couple of years, the overall value of Tesco Clubcard has been sharply reduced.  If you converted to Avios or Flying Club miles, you won’t have realised it, but it has been going on.

Of course, some of the jumbo deals in the past were just too good to last.  When Motorpoint joined, they were letting you get a discount on a car for 4x the face value of your vouchers, with no cap.  Plenty of heavy collectors got a free car!

Similarly, Virgin Holidays let you redeem at 4x face value with no cap.  Lots of people got a lot of totally free holidays from that.

Most Clubcard deals are now just 3x face value.  It is difficult to see where the real value is these days.  I would suggest:

Goldsmiths still let you buy watches and jewellery at 3x face value with no cap

Safestore (where I have been redeeming recently) gives you 3x face value with no cap

Some of the cruise offers still give 3x face value, with no cap

This post from last year looks at the other travel deals you can get for Clubcard points and whether they are worth a look – the answer was generally ‘no’!

Love Clubcard, don’t collect Avios?  You should be reading our sister site, Shopper Points (www.shopperpoints.co.uk), which covers the latest Clubcard and Nectar offers without any distracting frequent flyer talk!  Why not check it out now?

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Comments

  1. I’ve no experience of them but you can get 4 times the value at Funway Holidays until the end of March with no cap that I could see.

    Intrepid (small group adventure travel) is also 4 times until the end of March although capped at £800.

  2. Sinizter says:

    Any suggestions where I can trade in a watch (such as Rolex or other big brand) bought from Goldsmiths ?

    Also, any idea how much loss on retail I might have to take on a Rolex ?

    • Sideysid says:

      Rolex prices do not fluctuate much (apart from when there’s a price increase by Rolex).

      I would say you would have to be willing to take a 10-20% hit on the watch depending on the desirability of the model e.g. submariner vs Air King on the likes of fleabay.

    • This forum/blog is about frequent flyer community not about making profits.

    • Your best bet would be to work backwards. Start with a reputable second hand jeweller, take him a list of what is on offer at your local Goldsmiths and ask him what has the highest resale value.

      Remember that you could get the same watch duty free for 17% or so under list price, so I reckon you’d be taking at least a 25-30% hit on the list price as a guess, even for a brand new boxed item. Obviously if you want to try ebay or (more sensibly) a reputable watch selling website you would do better.

    • Are you simply trying to convert clubcard points back to cash via a reward redemption, or have you already bought this Rolex?
      If the former, why don’t you just advertise your clubcard rewards on eBay, just make sure you redact the codes in the images. Lots of people aution their vouchers as rewards to be taken, the winning bidder then tells the seller what they want to redeem against. That way there is far more flexibility than being stuck with a watch you might have to take a big loss on.
      Generally, vouchers sell around 1.7 to 2 times their face value.

      • sinizter says:

        I haven’t bought anything yet. It is a route I would like to learn more about, since it does open up a few more options.

        If I feel that I don’t need an Avios conversion this year, I am very tempted to buy a Rolex, use it for a little while with a view to selling on in the future. The annual price increases should help. Being quite a watch fan, it would be lovely to have a Rolex or other big brand for a little while – something I couldn’t really justify paying full value cash for.

        Thanks for the tip, but that route is something I would prefer to avoid. You are not protected against chargebacks via Paypal, at all. I have been stung even with signed for delivery receipt.

  3. marmaliser says:

    Cosmos was an excellent deal a many years ago with 4x and no cap. Dubai and Cyprus all on vouchers :) . Motorpoint was at least 5 years ago !! just sold our “Free” car

    • Just curious, did you get close to your original clubcard value back on the sale? If so then it really was almost free.

  4. I always found Cosmos to be grossly overpriced when using Club Card vouchers. I could never find a way to gain real value, it was hundreds of pounds cheaper to book the holiday individually.
    I find Goldsmiths to be the best non-Avios redemption method.

    • Yeah, a lot of negative feedback from disgruntled customers on that. I find the feedbacks are definitely worth spending the time going through, especially redemption experiences, and you’ll see certain options such as car hire, airport parking and hotels redemptions often also have similar tales to tell.

    • I too have enjoyed redeeming Clubcard against Goldsmiths during their 4x rewards, mainly for their Mont Blanc range, but its now a year (and it didn’t reoccur this Christmas) since the last bonus 4x. My general perception is that bonus opportunities at Tesco CC are reducing, and that these reductions/devaluations will now become common place. The lack of an Avios bonus in quite some time, seems to me a case and point.

  5. Tesco Gift Cards can still be found on the Rewards page under Entertainment of all places. £25 and £50 values. I was one of the lucky ones last January with £1350 for 53000~ MR points

    • Sorry the above comment was meant for the

      “How to get Waitrose vouchers from Amex Membership Rewards points”

    • Thanks, how weird!

      I should have ordered more last year. I bottled it and ‘only’ asked for £550 which I thought would cover a new iPad. I could have ordered £10k+ if I’d wanted so it was difficult to know where to compromise! I thought if I went too crazy I would get nothing at all.

      • Please post if you see anything similar appearing in the future! Sounds like it was a fab deal at the time…

  6. The best redemtpions for clubcard are RAC membership, the ferries and channel tunnel, Goldsmiths (esp when on offer) and some of the holiday options like Al Fresco or Siblu. At the moment I’m turning over loads of points (through 3V cards, Tesco credit card etc) to redeem with Topps Tiles at 3 x value.

    • I have brought my wifes RAC membership in the past with CC vouchers (got a better deal this year with insurer). I use £20 of Tesco CC annually to do a day trip to france on eurotunnel. It works for me as nobody has to directly pay which would reduce the benefit of cheap wine we are actually buying. I think its down to perception of value and real life requirements at the time.

      Free car sounds very interesting. wasn’t even in the game then. surely if the limit is 30k points per month (£300) it would have taken a while to get enough points for a car. at least a years worth of max points (5k value?)

      :)

      • The 30k limit did not exist then.

      • Absolutely! Am already thinking of combining 3x redemption for Le Shuttle and 3x redemption for Siblu, take a week’s holiday somewhere in france and relax, before loading up with ‘produce’ to bring back to blighty for the next several months! :-)

        • A saturday daytrip in December is £60 return (£20 of CC vouchers).

          Eurotunnel actually changd their rules last year so you can do a daytrip over 2 days and still get the day price. next year we will go over the night before and stay in a cheap IHG property on points, start early and make it home before dark (never happened in the past!)

          :o)

          • Very interesting will – thanks for the top. In your experience is the cash and CC reward price always the same?
            I’ll have to see if there is a hotel nearby to use my HHonors on…..

          • you find the trip you want and then cost it up before getting the voucher (via email now) and then calling up to book. it used to be painfully complicated but its all much quicker.

            it goes up each year (from my experience) so might have to use £21 of CC vouchers this year. you dont get change so worth trying to get a number for the out and the return that divides by 3 😉

            the prices vary but you can see all that on the website. there are certainly some IHG hotels in calais. just means I get a bit more of my weekend back so I dont mind using the points.

  7. the £300 per quarter limit wasn’t in place in those days.

    • whats the most anyone you have heard anyone managed to collect in a CC statement before there was an enforced limit?!

      • harsh

        I guess these people were collecting hundreds or even thousands per statement?!

  8. Lady London says:

    Compared with converting to Avios even at standard Avios conversion rates I calculated I need at least a 3x booster rate just to equal what converting them to Avios instead is worth. My valuation of Avios also did not take into account the relative extra flexibility to Avios bookings particularly as a BA Gold cardholder. So until the booster rate offers x4 rather than x3, I might just about look at Goldsmiths but that’s pretty much the only booster spend I would look at.

    I’ve had a couple of survey requests through recently that basically asked why do you buy at Tesco. One of them even asked me to give the three reasons I buy at Tesco so I said 1) Clubcard 2) Clubcard 3) Clubcard. This is truly the only reason I ever shop at Tesco. It’s clear they have been trying to reduce the cost of Clubcard so I hope they got the message.

    • if there wasnt CC where would you shop tho. sainsburys for nectar? I dont know of a better scheme. that and a large tesco is under 5 minutes walk from my flat

  9. I agree that voucher redemption value depends on what is available at the time, what bonus and what is required at the time for you personally. I’ve never tried to make money out of my vouchers (no Rolex ideas here), and have only in the last year (thanks to HfP) become far more picky about my redemptions with them (ie no general transfers to Avios, though in the past it was my main source). Every few months now I’ll go through and see what, if anything, has changed and what is best value, then make a list (including value and whether email or snailmail redemption) so I know what I can act on quickly if the mood hits. Got 10 Odeon tickets at £2.50 each back in Aug which was good value – about to use the last. Some days out at 3-4x are good value too, and since I like La Tasca, I might be visiting them sometime soon. Of course an Avios transfer bonus would trump a lot, but not all, and I’d still keep some vouchers for future use. As for quality and devaluations, I also rate the feedback and based on that, Cosmos wasn’t really an option for me. Hopefulyl it’s just a one-off for now.

    • The problem with the restaurant redemptions is that all the chains involved offer very good deals anyway, such as codes to quote at bill time offering 2-4-1 deals or other discounts. So when you compare CC at full price to cash at this reduced price you’re really getting x2 value at best.
      Odean is a good one though.

      • Good point re restaurant specials. I used a vouchers to take us and another family to Bekonscot – they also don’t allow the family entry special when paying with Tesco vouchers, but it only meant paying a couple of quid more with vouchers hence at 4x still represented very good value, while other days out, not so much.

  10. At the risk of a slating, I recently uses some clubcard points for a yearly magazine subscription!!

  11. pazza2000 says:

    I’m a sucker for an occasional 4x Prezzo redemption. Best of the (Clubcard) bunch imo.

  12. Funway might be 4 times the value till March, but is not uncapped in the sense that you can only pay for up to 50% of the holiday

  13. El collectico says:

    In response to the person interested in cashing in vouchers against a Rolex I have a few suggestions.

    I’d reccomend they try and get a watch that is in high demand, the current must have model is the GMT black/blue, quite scarce so your possible return should be quite high. Failing that if you are getting it for yourself, get what you like as you may not be able to accrue that ammount of points again. I think they are going to limit large point coupons as they must’ve taken a battering.

    Secondly, to get enough points to get a Rolex (cheapest gents is about 5200!) you must have taken ‘advantage’ of many promotions and probably several cards. I must caution you that any redemption over 300 pounds is now sent to ‘large claims team’ which then fully audits how the points were earned. I know this because I lost out on a watch as it took three weeks for coupon to come and I was crapping one! If you’re happy you’ve earned them correctly, fire away. Do remember that you are only supposed to use one coupon per order too.

    PS, A few years ago I got a Rolex Submariner, paid fully with coupon. They were £3450, list is £5200 now so they do go up and after wearing this I’d still at least get my money back. Good luck.