Thursday, August 11, 2016

Reward Program CheckUp

Time for Thrifty Thursday ... I'm a fan of fitness programs that PAY me for simply stepping. It isn't a lot, but it doesn't require much on my part either. I'm going to be exercising anyway! I just link up my Fitbit and then pop in every once in a while to see what I've earned. I ended up checking in with all three of my current programs this past week or so ...

**Walgreens - Balance Rewards**
It's that time of year ... in addition to any back to school shopping, incoming 7th graders need updates to their immunizations. Normally I'd go to our pediatrician, but he was unavailable ... what to do? Walgreens to the rescue! We just walked-in, got the couple shots, and were done. They also do a donation to a child in need, and it added 200 points to my balance rewards. I hadn't peeked at my Walgreen's balance rewards for a while, so I did ...


You can link your Fitbit (or some other apps) to Walgreens to earn balance rewards points. There is a cap of $2 per month for activity (walking/running), but it does add up. I glanced at my balance page and saw I was also  getting points for my daily weigh-ins (my Fitbit Alta scale, auto connected to my account). Additionally, I have made some purchases at Walgreens, paying special attention to their points back specials (5000 points if you spend $20, or points back on certain products. Watch emails and ads for offers). It adds up! $60 in rewards. I had fun with a little shopping spree, basically free!


**PACT**

PACT is another program I rarely check in with. When I started, I committed to seven days a week for workouts and meal tracking. But I like having a little cushion. Sometimes I'll have a rest day, where I don't get in a workout (or 10k in steps), or I forget to log food. For quite a while now, I cut my Pact back to four days for both exercise and eating (tracking on MFP) as barring sickness or vacation, I'll get that in no problem.

I'm not sure what prompted me to look at my pact last week. I noticed I had not received my workout credit for Monday or Tuesday (Aug1,2). I checked, and it said everything was synced up. Hmmmm. I submitted a ticket, and received a response that "there have been Fitbit integration issues" this week and that they were working on it. I really wish they had given users a heads up about that! Our options were to use alternate tracking (but I don't want to keep my iphone in my pocket during Zumba!) or to take a break or to submit a ticket for each day exercise didn't log in error. Quite the pain! So instead of my usual four gym workouts, I only got credit for one (even though I hit 10k all seven days that week) and I just put myself on break this week ... then I guess I'll check back in to see if it's been fixed (they mentioned an app update). I usually earn about $1 a week with Pact ... if I hadn't have caught this though, I would have been charged $20! I'm sure Pact would have made it right, but not without a lot of rigamarole. There is that bit of risk with Pact, you can end up paying out!


**Achievemint **
I joined up with Achievemint when they first started up a few years ago. I have earned several cash rewards from them. I used to recommend them to everyone who had a Fitbit (or other tracker/app they link with). It's easy. Just link and forget about it. Just check in every once in a while. You can sign up for email updates too. Then there were some struggles getting payments (it would take a while, but I got them) and a waiting list to even sign up ... so I stopped recommending the program, because people couldn't sign up even if they wanted to. They initiated a "threshold" and said participants couldn't earn rewards anymore, after a certain amount (that was fair, I figured that was how they would let new members on). Recently though, they opened it up again, both to new enrollments and to existing members ... everyone could start earning again. And I have! Earned and redeemed another reward. Thanks Achievemint! It takes a little longer now for the points to add up, but they do. I even got a bonus 300 points for filling out a PokemonGo survey a week or so ago! So SIGN UP if you haven't already!

... and have a happy Thrifty Thursday! Keep stepping!
And yes, I miss FitStudio!

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