On October 6, the brand formerly known as Dunkin’ Donuts shook things up by launching a brand-new rewards program. The new plan, Dunkin’ Rewards, replaces Dunkin’s former DD Perks program — and not everyone is thrilled with the change.
Like the last program, Dunkin’ Rewards lets you earn points on purchases at Dunkin’. And unlike DD Perks, Dunkin’ Rewards allows you to redeem points on nearly any menu item — not just drinks. So what’s the issue? Some fans point out that, compared to the old model, the new Dunkin’ Rewards requires you to spend more to earn free stuff. And, you no longer get a birthday freebie.
So, is Dunkin’ Rewards still a good deal? To help you decide whether membership makes sense for you, we’ll explain what happened to DD Perks and break down everything you need to know about the new Dunkin’ Rewards program.
How Dunkin’ Rewards Works
Dunkin’ Rewards is a points-back program that lets you earn points for every dollar you spend at Dunkin’. The program is free to join, and you can start earning points as soon as you sign up.
As a member, you earn 10 points for every $1 spent. As soon as you hit 150 points, you can start redeeming free menu items.
Here’s a complete breakdown of the points needed to unlock free menu items under the new Dunkin’ Rewards program:
- 150 points: An extra espresso shot added to a drink, three-count order of Munchkins Donut Hole Treats or a six-count order of hash browns.
- 250 points: One classic donut.
- 400 points: One small, medium or large hot or iced tea.
- 500 points: One small, medium, or large Hot or Iced Coffee.
- 600 points: One Wake-Up Wrap sandwich or bagel with spread.
- 700 points: One small, medium or large Cold Brew, Cold Brew with Cold Foam, Dunkin’ Refresher or hot or iced espresso drink.
- 800 points: A breakfast sandwich with your choice of meat, egg, cheese and bread (excludes Signature Sandwiches).
- 900 points: A small, medium or large frozen drink or hot or iced Signature Latte.
The Dunkin’ Rewards club also treats you to other perks, including triple points on the day before your birthday, the day of your birthday or the day after your birthday. In addition, the program comes with exclusive offers, discounts and surprises that pop up throughout the year (these include freebies, coupons and boosted point earnings).
Dunkin’ also partners with other entities to save its members money. For example, we recently saw an offer that let Dunkin’ Rewards members merge their accounts with the Shell Fuel Rewards accounts to save 15 cents off per gallon for every five beverages purchased from Dunkin’.
What Changed from the Old DD Perks Program?
As enticing as the Dunkin’ Rewards perk may sound, the revamped loyalty club has many Dunkin’ fans wondering what happened to DD Perks. The new program has several key differences from DD Perks, including:
- Faster Points-Earning Power: Compared to DD Perks, Dunkin’ Rewards lets you earn points nearly twice as fast. Now, you earn 10 points for every $1 spent; previously you earned 5 points for every $1 spent.
- Tiered Rewards System: With DD Perks, you earned a free any-size beverage when you earned 200 points. Dunkin’ Rewards lets you start unlocking free menu items with only 150 points, and unlock higher-value items the more points you earn.
- Food Rewards: While DD Perks points could be used toward free drinks, Dunkin’ Rewards points can be used toward nearly anything on the menu, including food. And because you can redeem more than one reward in the same transaction, if you save up enough points, you could unlock an entire free meal, complete with a drink.
- Boosted Status: Dunkin’ Rewards also has a new feature called “Boosted Status,” which you unlock when you visit 12 times in one month. With Boosted Status, you earn 12 points per $1 spent — a 20 percent increase in points-earning power — for three months.
- Higher Redemption Value: This is the part of Dunkin’ Rewards where many fans of the old system have a problem. With DD Perks, you were able to earn a free beverage, including any premium drink, of any size as soon as you earned 200 points, or spent $40. With the new program, spending $40 will only get you an extra espresso shot or an any-size tea. To unlock a free premium drink, you need to earn 900 points or spend $90, which is more than double what you needed to spend with DD Perks.
- No Dunkin’ Birthday Free Coffee: Unlike DD Perks, Dunkin’ Rewards doesn’t hook you up with a free drink on your birthday. Instead of a Dunkin’ birthday free coffee, you get 3X points-earning power on the day before, of and after your birthday.
Is Dunkin’ Rewards Still a Good Deal?
In a word, yes. Even though it’s harder to earn a free drink and you no longer get a Dunkin’ birthday free coffee, Dunkin’ Rewards still hooks you up with free stuff — including, for the first time ever, free food.
The program is totally free to join and easy to sign up for, so essentially you’re earning free donuts, breakfast sandwiches, drinks and goodies for Dunkin’ purchases you’d be making anyway. And if you were a DD Perks member, you’re automatically enrolled in Dunkin’ Rewards, and your points are transferred over—zero extra steps or fees required.