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Target Circle vs. Target RedCard: What’s the difference?

A smartphone displaying the Target logo next to a Target shopping bag

Is there anyone who doesn’t love Target? From cute home decor items to adorable holiday decorations, baby clothes, and tech (and don’t get us started about the fantastic deals in the Bullseye Playground), there’s a reason this retail giant is so popular.

If you’re a frequent Target shopper, you’ve probably heard about Target Circle and Target RedCard, Target’s two membership programs. While both programs are useful, they each have unique benefits, and understanding the differences is key for getting the most out of your Target shopping experience.

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What is Target Circle?

If you’re a coupon user, Target Circle might be a worthwhile program for you. Target Circle is free to join and easy to sign up–all you need is a Target account. As a Target Circle member, you’ll receive customized coupons based on your shopping habits, which you can redeem using the Target app. But that’s not all–here are some of the other benefits that come with a Target Circle membership.

  • 1% back on earnings: What if you could earn money just by shopping at Target? While this may sound too good to be true, with a Target Circle membership, you really can! While many credit cards allow shoppers to earn cashback, Target Circle is unique because it’s simply a free program that allows shoppers to earn 1% back on in-store purchases (You can keep track of your earnings in the Target app).
  • Access to exclusive deals. Target Circle members also receive access to exclusive savings. If you frequently use coupons, you probably already know that most coupon booklets are hit and miss. While you usually find a couple relevant or helpful ones, many aren’t very useful. One of the best perks of a Target Circle membership is that you’ll receive personalized coupons based on your shopping habits. You’ll also be able to shop exclusive Target partnerships that aren’t available to non-Circle members. For example, Target Circle members can shop with UltaMate rewards for exclusive savings on high quality beauty products.
  • Birthday perks. Is your birthday coming up? Be sure to sign up for a Target Circle membership so you can enjoy 5% earnings on a purchase during your birthday month.
  • Teacher and student discounts. Finally, with a Target Circle account, you’ll get access to Target student and teacher discounts. If you’re a college student or teacher, buying needed school supplies each year can really take a toll on your finances, so be sure to take advantage of a Target Circle membership to help you cut costs.

What is Target RedCard?

A Target RedCard, unlike a Target Circle membership, is an actual credit card that allows card owners to have access to exclusive perks. Some of these perks are pretty substantial and can be a game-changer for frequent Target shoppers. Let’s take a look at the benefits of a Target RedCard.

  • No fees. Wary of credit cards because of the fees? Unlike other credit cards on the market, Target RedCard does not require any monthly or annual fees. It’s free to open at any time and free to use.
  • Extra return time. Do you like having extra time to think about your purchases before deciding whether or not to return them? One of the best perks of having a Target RedCard is that you’ll have extra time to do your Target returns. Target RedCard holders enjoy an extra 30 days on top of the usual 90 day returns that other customers enjoy. This can be an especially useful perk during the busy holidays if you can’t find the time to make it to the store!
  • RedCard exclusives. Target RedCard holders get access to exclusive deals that even Target Circle members don’t have. If you are a serious Target shopper, you might want to consider the Target RedCard just for the deals!

Target Circle vs. Target RedCard

As you can see, Target Circle and the Target RedCard are not the same thing. While both offer access to exclusive Target perks, Target RedCard is a credit card with substantial cash back benefits, while Target Circle is a loyalty program that’s especially useful for people who enjoy finding deals.

Regardless of which Target program you go with, be sure to shop with the Mulberry browser extension to find the best product protection plans for your purchases. And, if you're buying multiple products, consider choosing Mulberry Unlimited to protect all your purchases under one convenient plan.

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Kim Miller

About the author

Kim Miller is the Head of Marketing at Mulberry. She is passionate about building products and brands that make consumers happy, save them money and make their lives easier. Have an innovative idea for Mulberry you'd like to share? Give her a shout! She'd love to chat about anything from fintech and UX to gardening and antiquing.

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