Shaw's deal aims to stretch shoppers' tax rebates
Shaw's Supermarkets Inc. plans to offer bonuses to customers who bring their economic stimulus, or tax rebate, checks to one of the West Bridgewater chain's 201 New England stores.
Customers can redeem their checks for Shaw's gift cards in $300 increments, and Shaw's will add an extra $30 to each card, the chain said. Customers who have their rebates deposited electronically can also participate in the program.
With the US economy slowing down, a recent Globe story noted that many retailers are scrambling to offer discounts and deals as a way to tap into some of the estimated $105.7 billion that the federal government is distributing to tax payers in the form of economic stimulus payments, or tax rebates.
The tax rebate, part of federal efforts to boost the economy, will put $600 in the pockets of most individual tax filers, $1,200 for many couples who file jointly, and an extra $300 per child for families.
According to Shaw's, recent data show that nearly 10 percent of disposable personal income is spent on food, and food prices are predicted to increase 3.5 percent to 4.5 percent this year as commodity and energy prices continue to rise.
For that reason, Shaw's says its new program will come in handy for many shoppers.
Here's how the program works: Customers should bring their government-issued economic stimulus or tax refund checks, along with government-issued identification, to customer service counters at their local Shaw's stores between May 2 and July 31 to purchase store gift cards in $300 increments, Shaw's said.
Each $300 gift card will be loaded with an additional $30, to bring each gift card total to $330, and customers will be able to purchase less than the total amount of their check in $300 increments, Shaw's said.
Customers who do not have a hard copy of their government-issued checks may still take advantage of this offer with cash, a credit or a debit card, by showing proof that their economic stimulus or tax refund check was deposited in their bank account, Shaw's said.
The program is limited to one offer per household with a limit of $1,200, Shaw's added.
About a dozen stores in the Shaw's chain use the Star Market name; the offer is good at both Shaw's and Star Market stores, a Shaw's spokeswoman said.
Since 2006, Shaw's has been owned by Supervalu Inc., a Minnesota company that operates nearly 2,500 grocery stores; Supervalu is offering the tax rebate program at all its US stores, including Shaw's and Star Market.
To see Supervalu's press release on the offer, which also applies to Shaw's, click here.
(By Chris Reidy, Globe staff)