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It seems every major store or restaurant has its own loyalty card these days. In exchange for information on every single one of your transactions you get discounts, vouchers or cashback. That’s decent enough incentive to deal with all of the resultant plastic in your wallet or purse. Frustrating as a fat wallet is, even more frustrating is coming to pay, digging through your cards and finding you don’t have the right card with you. Surely there’s an app for that by now? There is.
Stocard is a pretty straightforward – and pleasingly free – app for Android and iOS that lets you add details for a wide range of loyalty cards, ensuring you never miss out on eBucks, Pick n Pay Smart Shopper, Woolworths Rewards, Clicks points or any other store rewards ever again.
Download the app, open it, and you’re immediately prompted to add a card. If it’s one with a barcode – like a Smart Shopper Card – you can use your phone’s camera to scan it. If, like ours, the barcode is a little worn you can also manually input the number. Once you’ve added a few cards they can be arranged in Stocard by name, personal preference or frequency of use.
For each card you can also add images or notes, the former being useful for things like SAA Voyager where the expiry date is important. And if, like the Doppio Zero loyalty card, the card you want to add isn’t in the (pretty comprehensive) list Stocard offers, you can manually add it yourself.
When you need to use a card, simply tap on it in Stocard and the number and an accompanying barcode will be displayed on your device’s screen that can be scanned by any barcode reader.
Understandably, given the security risks, Stocard won’t let you add bank cards or debit-like gift cards that have a CVV number on the reverse, but they’re not the ones weighing down our wallets, so we won’t hold that against it. It will let you add vouchers, coupons or other offers on a separate tab next to the one where your cards are stored, though, which makes it substantially more likely we’ll actually use them.
Remember to save bucks
Once you’ve added a couple of cards Stocard will ask you if you’d like to back up your information. This is great should you happen to switch phones or want to use Stocard on another device like a tablet. You can either sign in to Stocard with credentials from one of your social media accounts, or create an account with an email address.
Stocard even tries to help with that other nuisance of loyalty cards: forgetting to use them. If you let it, the app will display a notification that’ll take you to the appropriate card when it detects you’re in a particular store. We’re a little reluctant to give over that sort of location access, particularly in light of what GPS use does to battery life, but it’s a thoughtful and sensible feature nevertheless.
Given how easy Stocard makes it to participate in loyalty programmes we’re even considering signing up to those we’ve always declined simply because we didn’t want another card to carry. Of course, that’s going to mean more post, which is a burden all of its own. Perhaps one day the app will let you receive vouchers and coupons direct from retailers. We can hope, right?
Please note that while the app may be free, the data required to download and use it is not. You can buy data bundles from Vodacom Online.