Monday, October 30, 2006

Red Cards

You will be offered a Red Card.

Now, this should come as no surprise. Most stores these days have cards of one sort or another.

No, this is not a club card. It is not a freebie that you swipe for extra sales. All our sales are for everybody.

It is a credit card. Actually, it is two credit cards.

The first is just the Red Card. You can only use it at Target. It’s easier to get, but has higher rates.

The second is the Target Visa. You can use it anywhere, and has lower rates and a higher credit limit. Obviously, you need better credit for this one.

But worry not! If you apply for the Target Visa and are not approved, we’ll see if you’re approved for the Red Card, and you’ll get that one.

(Rates vary by state and by how good your credit is, by the way.)

For every dollar you spend at Target using the card (and every $2 you spend elsewhere, if you have the Target Visa), you’ll get a point. When you’ve accumulated 1000 points, you get a coupon in the mail for 10% off your purchase.

Also, you have the option of signing up for Take Charge of Education, which donates 1% of your purchases at Target (and ½% of your purchases elsewhere) to the school of your choice, K-12.

So, how do you apply? You tell me you want to. I scan a credit agreement and your driver’s license (state ID, military ID, and passport are ok too, but that’s it). The card reader asks you some questions, and then the computer scans the big scary database to see if you qualify. You’ll probably get approved right away, in which case you’ll be given a temporary card and a coupon for 10% off one purchase; you’ll probably use that right away, since that’s usually why people sign up in the first place. Your permanent card will come in the mail in a week or two. When it does, you'll also get a code so you can save 10% off a purchase at

If you’re not approved right away, you’ll be told that you’ll have to wait. That means we have to do more checking. Sometimes you’ll get approved, and your card and 10% coupon will come in the mail. Sometimes you won’t, and you’ll get an explanation of why.

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