Whether you're getting ready to graduate high school or just starting up university, one of the perks (besides an education) is that you can usually qualify for all kinds of student discounts. And some of the best student deals come from SPC. If you're wondering, SPC stands for "Student Price Card" – since the card gives you special prices and discounts at different stores and restaurants, just for being a student.
They release a new discount card just for students every single year, and the 2019/20 card is out now. Each SPC card costs $10, but it might be one of the most worthwhile investments you can make as a student (you know, besides all those textbooks you need to buy). That one card lasts for an entire year and gives you access to more than 450 discounts – so it could save you money every time you shop or go out to eat.
To help you figure out if you qualify for SPC (and if buying one is the right choice for you), we put together this little guide. It covers the cost of a card, which stores accept SPC and even how you can score a FREE one!
How much is an SPC Card?
This year, SPC offers two kinds of cards: physical and digital. Both get you the exact same deals and cost $10 – but it's up to you whether you want to carry your SPC card on your phone or in your wallet. If you want an actual card, make sure you pick one up in-person at stores like Bentley, Call It Spring or Shoppers Drug Mart. A complete list of retailers that sell the cards is available on the SPC website.
You can also buy a digital SPC card online. Just enter your province and shell out the $10. To access your new membership from your phone (or another smart device), download the free SPC Card App from the App Store or Google Play. You can also use the app to store your student ID and see personalized deals.
Whichever kind of card you buy, you have between now and July 31, 2020 to benefit from SPC's deals. SPC memberships are non-refundable. They also don't replace lost or stolen cards, so make sure you hang on to yours! All your personal information is kept private, so you're safe even if you do misplace your card.
Can university students use the SPC Card?
Obviously, SPC is for students. You can buy and use a card if you're in elementary, middle, junior or high school or attending a university or college – regardless of your age. However, any cardholders who are 16 years of age or older may be asked to show a valid student ID to qualify for discounts (so it's a good idea to carry yours with you). And no, your parents, partner or friends can't use it on your behalf.
What stores accept SPC?
Honestly, so many stores accept SPC that there's no way I could keep track of them all. You can save money on things like pizza, oil changes, makeup, school supplies, new clothes and even hotels or plane tickets. A full list of this year's SPC deals is available on their website. Everything is divided into categories, but hundreds of discounts are still a LOT to scroll through – so here are some notable ones:
- Dualens: 20% off eyeglasses and sunglasses
- Levi's Jeans: 15% off regular-price and sale items
- MAC Cosmetics: 15% off online orders
- Papa John's Pizza: 25% off a regular-price pizza on Mondays and Tuesdays
- Samsung: 20% off a screen repair service (in-store only)
Select campus bookstores (mostly in Ontario and Alberta) will even let you use SPC for discounts on books and other supplies. And don't even get me started on how many gym membership deals there are ...
How do you register an SPC Card?
Once you have your card, it's a good idea to register it online. While you don't need to do this to get the discounts, creating a profile with SPC helps them figure out where you shop and what things you like – so they can send you catered offers. You can sign up online using your email, Google account or Facebook profile. Then, just fill out a quick form (with your birthdate, gender and other personal information), and you're set.
Can you use the SPC Card online?
You bet! This isn't an option everywhere, but some stores let you enter your SPC Card number as a promo code at checkout, while some have a specific field for your to enter your SPC info. In some cases, a website will only allow you to check out using SPC or another rewards program (or coupon code), so choose carefully.
How can I get a free SPC card?
Occasionally, SPC partners with different businesses and schools to give away FREE cards. Their latest collaboration is with CIBC. You can check out the SPC x CIBC page for full details, but here's the gist of it. If you open a CIBC Smart for Students account, they'll throw in a FREE card, as well as a $60 bonus. If you already bank with CIBC, check here to see if you qualify for a free SPC membership.