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I’m all for miles, points, and loyalty programs, but there is one point program that I will readily admit to never really figuring out, and that is the Plenti program. When this American Express linked program was first announced it sounded like it had some potential as a loyalty program that crossed retail programs, but now over two years later, I’m still left wondering how to use the Plenti points I have randomly picked up along the way before they start to expire on December 31st.
We predominately earned our Plenti points via occasional Macy’s purchases and by paying our monthly AT&T bill, though I know that Exxon and Rite Aid are other popular retailers where folks earn Plenti points. You can even transfer Membership Reward points into Plenti at a 1:1 ratio, though I can’t quite figure out why anyone would want to do that with otherwise valuable Membership Reward points.
As far as I can tell, things have not been trending in the right direction for Plenti in 2017 as AT&T exited their partnership with Plenti on October 31, 2017, and Nationwide, Direct Energy, Enterprise, National, Alamo, Hulu, and the Local Dining program will all exit the Plenti program after December 31, 2017. That is the same date that Plenti points will start expiring, as they expire on 12/31 each year two years after they were earned. This means that any Plenti points earned in the launch year of 2015 that are not already redeemed will expire in a few weeks.
Over the last two years, I have accumulated a whopping 2,700 Plenti points that should be worth about $27 in savings at one of their remaining partner retailers such as Macy’s or Exxon. There just so happens to be a Macy’s order that I would like to place, so I have been trying to use my Plenti points towards that order so that I can save some money and use the points up before they start to go to waste. Then I can presumably forget about the Plenti program entirely having used up my small stash of points.
Earning Plenti points with Macy’s and AT&T by entering my Plenti number has been easy enough, but using them has been a different situation entirely. When I tried to check out at Macys.com I see my Plenti number and points balance, but the little box to use Plenti points remains greyed out below no matter what I put in my cart.
I’ve reached out to the Macy’s Twitter team and exchanged direct messages that have ranged from them getting my shopping cart ID number (that sounded promising), to telling me to call customer service (I thought I was talking to customer service?), to asking if my Plenti account is linked and inquiring how many points I have (info that was in the original request for help). Suffice to say, I have gotten nowhere in figuring out how to un-grey that magical box.
Another option to use up the points is at Exxon, however, reports on Twitter from others seem to indicate a very mixed bag when it comes to redeeming Plenti points at Exxon. Some have no trouble at all, while others report that it never ever works at their local station. Given my luck thus far with Plenti, I’m not holding my breath for an easy transaction at Exxon, though that will likely be my next attempt to use up these points If I can’t get things to work at Macy’s.
I’m very curious to know if the Plenti program has been a part of your savings and reward strategy the last few years, and if so, how you are able to make the program work for you and your family? Of course, if you know the trick to using your Plenti points at Macys.com, then I’d love to hear that, too!
Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.