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Consumers Not Sold On New Plenti Rewards Cards

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – It may look like an easier way to earn those "rewards points" while you're shopping, but there are some potential issues to consider before you get a Plenti Card.

If you're like most shoppers, when you get to the store, you automatically check to see if you have a rewards card you can use. But what if there was one card you could use at multiple locations? Would that make life easier?

You may have seen the commercials for Plenti. It's the new rewards card that you can use at one store, or Plenti partner, and earn points for another.

What makes the Plenti card different from other rewards cards is how you use it. Sign up at one store, says Rite Aid or Macy's, then earn points that you can cash in at another partner, like Exxon or Mobile or online in the shopping section of the Plenti website.

"I think it's a marketing tool and really not a customer loyalty tool yet," said Elaine Luther at the Point Park University Business School, "because the benefits are more for the people providing it than it is for the person shopping."

The number of actual Plenti partners seems short, although you can use your points on the Plenti website. But rewards cards are supposed to be easy. There are steps you have to take to sign up for Plenti and redeem your points.

"I'm not really impressed with it," said Mary Alioto of Gibsonia. "I'm not going out of my way."

"I'm not sure I understand all about it," said Phyllis Johnson of Emsworth. "I know Macy's supports it and Rite Aid supports it, but I haven't seen any benefit from it."

The Plenti card is a product of American Express, but you don't need an Amex card to use it. Once you get the card, you register online. You can plan ahead and go to the Plenti online market to get or redeem your points.

"Today, I went to Macy's and I bought Clinique makeup because I know I'm not going to be returning that," said one shopper. "It was only a couple of dollars, $4, so it paid for the tax."

The number of Plenti partners could expand and the card is free. It may be too soon to determine if it's a rewards card or a loyalty card.

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