Calling all students: 4 ways to get to free fast

May 18, 2023

Hey students, we see you. You’re working hard and striving towards good results—and the same can be true for your finances. Did you know you could be getting rewarded for your everyday banking and spending? You deserve it. We’ll let you in on the ultimate hack to get to free stuff fast: it’s earning PC Optimum™ points¹ every time you load the fridge with groceries, fill your gas tank, or pay the wi-fi bill. You can then redeem² the points you’ve earned on your everyday banking and essentials toward free stuff at participating stores. What does free look like for you? Maybe it’s a guilt-free re-up on your 12-step skincare routine, a new outfit to complete your wardrobe refresh, or the latest game for the console you also redeemed points towards purchasing. We’ll show you how.

Sign up for a bank account that rewards you for your everyday banking and spending.

Have you met the no monthly fee PC Money™ Account? It’s an everyday bank account that earns you up to 10 PC Optimum™ points on every dollar you spend in-store and online, when you shop¹. You’ll also earn points on the banking you’re already doing every month, like paying your bills³ and setting up payroll direct deposit⁴.

Curious about how it works? It’s easy, just sign up! Once you’re approved, you’ll get a welcome email that directs you to fund your account so you can start shopping and watch your points take off. There might even be a welcome bonus that you’re eligible for to give you a head start!

You can also earn up to 5,000 points per month³ when you pay your bills from your PC Money™ Account. What’s more, if you’re a working student, you can earn points for getting paid! You’ll earn up to 5,000 points every month⁴ when you set up your payroll direct deposit with your PC Money™ Account. Setting up payroll direct deposit also happens to be the best way to keep your account regularly funded. Crucial! As soon as you have 10,000 PC Optimum™ points, you can redeem² for up to $10 worth of free stuff at any participating store or online at (opens in a new window)External link, (opens in a new window)External link and PC Express™ (opens in a new window)External link websites. Every 10,000 points is worth $10 in free stuff.

Sign up for the PC Money™ Account here (opens in a new window)External link.

Build your credit history and earn rewards.

You might have heard about the benefits of having a credit card (opens in a new window)External link like the flexibility to buy now and pay later. It can also help you learn to build your credit history, a crucial step to the world of financial adulting. But one benefit of having a credit card that you might not have thought of is the rewards⁵ it can earn you. Apply for a PC® Mastercard® and use it to pay for your everyday essentials like groceries, gas, and beauty products. You’ll earn up to 30 PC Optimum™ points for every dollar you spend at participating grocery stores, up to 45 points⁶ for every dollar you spend at Shoppers Drug Mart® and Pharmaprix®, at least 3c/L in PC Optimum™ points when you fuel up at Esso™ and Mobil™ stations, and 10 points for every dollar you spend everywhere else. You can use your PC® Mastercard® outside of participating stores to pay for wish list items, like concert tickets or a pass to the new Pilates studio in your neighbourhood. There’s no limit to the number of points you can earn. You can then redeem those points² you’ve earned toward, you guessed it, free stuff at participating stores (remember, every 10,000 points is worth $10).  And with no annual fee, you can use the money you save every year towards more ‘treat yourself’ moments.

Sign up for the PC® Mastercard® here (opens in a new window)External link.

Redeem your points to treat yourself.

Speaking of treating yourself, now that you’ve got your PC Money™ Account and your PC® Mastercard®, you’re on your way to getting to free stuff fast. Now it’s time to decide what to do with all those points. You can redeem them towards groceries², gas, fuel and car wash rewards⁷ at Esso™, or essentials at Shoppers Drug Mart®. Get creative with how you redeem your points — try a home refresh by adding to your plant family, getting décor items in our stores, or refresh your fits with the latest styles at Joe Fresh®. Need more ideas on how to redeem your points? We’ve got ‘em.

Track your finances on the go with the PC Financial® app.

Now that you’re earning points with your PC Money™ Account and your PC® Mastercard®, you’ll want to track your points balance to see how many points you have to redeem. That’s where the PC Financial® app comes in clutch! Use it to keep an eye on your finances—the Insights tool helps you track your spending by category and makes it easy to budget. In the app, you can also sign up for e-statements to help you go paperless, load your personalized offers to maximize your points earning potential, add your PC Financial® card to your mobile wallet to earn points on the go, and more.

Download the PC Financial® app here (opens in a new window)External link.

Now look at you—making money moves like it’s no big deal and earning points towards free stuff. Congratulations on entering your money savvy era!

General information not about PC Financial® products is provided for your reference and interest only. The above content is intended only to provide a summary and general overview on matters of interest and is not a substitute for and should not be construed as the advice of an experienced professional. PC Financial® does not guarantee the currency, accuracy, applicability or completeness of this content.

¹Earn at least 5 PC Optimum™ points per dollar on qualifying purchases with your PC Money™ Account, wherever your card is accepted. Earn 10 PC Optimum™ points (5 regular PC Optimum™ points plus a bonus of 5 PC Optimum™ points) per dollar on qualifying purchases at participating Loblaw banner stores, Shoppers Drug Mart® stores, Joe Fresh® stores, and Esso™ and Mobil™ stations in Canada. Bill payments, electronic funds transfers, account fees and interest are not qualifying purchases for the purpose of earning PC Optimum™ points. PC Optimum™ points will be deducted for any credits or returns. President's Choice Bank reserves the right to cancel, change or extend regular and bonus points earning rates at any time. Account must be in good standing at time of qualifying transaction and awarding of points.

²Minimum redemption is 10,000 PC Optimum™ points (worth $10 in rewards) and in increments of 10,000 points thereafter at participating stores where President’s Choice® products are sold. Some redemption restrictions apply; visit for details, participating stores and full loyalty terms and conditions.

³Earn a bonus of 1,000 PC Optimum™ points for each of up to five bill payments of $50 or more to unique payees, per calendar month, made using a valid PC Money™ Account. Bonus points will be awarded to your PC Optimum™ account within 2-3 weeks of a successful bill payment.

⁴Earn a monthly bonus of up to 5,000 PC Optimum™ points when you deposit funds to your PC Money™ Account using automatic payroll or pension direct deposits. Payroll or pension deposits totaling between $1,500 and $2,999 within a calendar month will earn a bonus of 2,000 PC Optimum™ points, and deposits totaling greater than $2,999 will earn an additional bonus of 3,000 PC Optimum™ points, for a maximum monthly bonus of 5,000 PC Optimum™ points. Limited to one bonus per customer, per month, even if you have multiple PC Money™ Accounts. The classification of a direct deposit as a payroll or pension direct deposit is determined solely by President’s Choice Bank. Interac e-Transfer® services, electronic funds transfers, and other forms of deposits or transfers to your account do not count towards this bonus. Bonus points will be awarded to your PC Optimum™ account within 2-7 business days of when you meet the minimum direct deposit amount(s).

⁵Earn a minimum of 10 PC Optimum™ points per dollar on all of your purchases charged to the credit card. Any bonus PC Optimum™ points offers available to all PC Financial® Mastercard® customers are calculated based on the regular earnings rate of 10 PC Optimum™ points per dollar spent. This offer may be terminated or changed at any time.

⁶All PC Optimum™ members earn 15 points per dollar on eligible purchases at Shoppers Drug Mart® and Pharmaprix®. When you use your PC Financial® Mastercard® you will earn additional points per dollar: 10 points per dollar for PC Financial® Mastercard® cardholders; 20 points per dollar for PC Financial® World Mastercard® cardholders; and 30 points per dollar for PC Financial® World Elite Mastercard® cardholders.

⁷Limit of one redemption per PC Optimum™ account per day. 10 cents off per litre fuel redemption option valid at Esso™ stations across Canada. Car wash redemption option available at participating Esso™ stations with car wash facilities where advertised. Only redeemable at points level specified in a single transaction. 10 cents off per litre valid on actual number of litres fueled, to a maximum of 40 litres per redemption transaction, or a single car wash depending on the redemption option selected. Limit of one redemption per PC Optimum™ account per calendar day at participating Esso™ stations (in accordance with President’s Choice Services Inc.’s official records). A valid PC Optimum™ card, PC Money™ Account card or President's Choice Financial® Mastercard® must be used as part of the payment transaction in order for PC Optimum™ points to be redeemed on fuel or car wash purchases, as applicable. Car wash options available for redemption are subject to availability and do not include coin operated car washes. Car wash codes can only be used at the station where the reward was issued unless otherwise specified in writing at the time of redemption and may be subject to expiration timelines. Redemption not available using manual card number entry, phone number entry, or the Esso and Mobil™ app. For fuel redemption, taxes payable on full purchase price before application of reward. Points are not redeemable for cash or credit. We are not obligated to award or redeem points based on errors or misprints. PC Optimum™ redemption is not available at Mobil™ stations.

PC Optimum™, PC®, President’s Choice®, PC Financial®, President’s Choice Financial® PC Money™ and the PC® Logo are trademarks of Loblaws Inc., used under license.

Mastercard® is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated, used under license.

PC Financial® Mastercard® and PC Money™ Account are provided by President’s Choice Bank.

Esso™ is a trademark of Imperial Oil Limited. Imperial Oil, licensee. Speedpass+ is a trademark of Exxon Mobil Corporation or one of its subsidiaries. Imperial Oil, licensee.

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