Ohh Chipotle, here we are again. At this point, Chipotle is more in the business of making headlines than they are making food that people actually want to eat — which is why they’ve found yet another way to incentivize customers who are willing to brave the food-borne illness scares that continue to haunt the chain. Currently debuting in just three cities — Phoenix, Arizona; Kansas City, Kansas; and Columbus, Ohio — Chipotle is launching their new customer loyalty program ahead of its national roll-out in 2019.
Customers in the initial three markets will receive free chips and guac with their first Chipotle rewards order, and all members of the rewards program can expect to receive 15 points for every $1 spent through online orders but just 10 points for every $1 spent in-store. It seems Chipotle is really trying to push their app-ordering system. As of now, there doesn’t seem to be any plans to value menu-items at different point-values, instead, once a customer hits 1,250 points — achieved by spending about $83 online and $125 in-store — they can redeem a free entree.
Although this is much more comprehensive, it isn’t Chipotle’s first stab at a frequent-customer incentive. Chiptopia, Chipotle’s punch-card utilizing rewards program came and went without much splash. Still, loyalty programs seem to be working for brands like Starbucks and McDonald’s. If anything, this move brings Chipotle a step closer to admitting that they are essentially just like the fast-food companies they pretend to be the antidote to.