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Unveiling Chipotle’s Sneaky Rewards Program Changes

Chipotle is changing its rewards program: What You Need to Know

If you’re a loyal Chipotle customer and a member of their rewards program, you may have noticed some changes recently. Known for its generous rewards program, Chipotle has quietly made adjustments to its rewards point terms, affecting how customers can earn and redeem points for free meals. In this article, we’ll dive into the details of these changes and explain what they mean for you as a Chipotle Rewards member.

The Background: Chipotle’s Rewards Program

Chipotle introduced its rewards program in March 2019, and since then, it has become immensely popular, with more than 28 million people enrolled in the program. The program offers a variety of perks, including members-only deals, promotions, and even free food. Initially, members were rewarded with free chips and guacamole after their first purchase, surprise birthday rewards, and the ability to earn points for every dollar spent.

The Unannounced Changes

However, Chipotle recently made an adjustment to its rewards points policy without any formal announcement. The change includes an increase in the number of points needed to redeem a free entree, such as a burrito, bowl, salad or taco order. Previously, members could redeem 1,400 points, the equivalent of $140 in spending, for a free meal. But now Chipotle has raised the redemption threshold to 1,625 points, requiring customers to spend $162.50 to earn a free meal. This represents a significant 16% increase in the number of points required.

The reason: inflation and rising costs

According to Chipotle, the reason for these changes is inflation and the increased cost of real ingredients. The company has faced several price increases over the past year, with two separate 4% increases. In response to rising costs, Chipotle has adjusted the point values for menu items in the Chipotle Rewards Exchange. While this change may be disappointing to loyal customers, it is a necessary step for the company to maintain profitability and continue to provide quality ingredients.

Impact on Chipotle Rewards members

If you’re a frequent Chipotle diner and a member of their rewards program, you’ll need to adjust your expectations and strategy for earning free meals. The increased redemption threshold means you’ll need to earn more points before you can enjoy a free burrito, bowl, salad, or taco order. This change may require you to spend more money at Chipotle to earn the same rewards as before.

Maximize your rewards

While the changes to Chipotle’s rewards program may seem daunting, there are still ways to make the most of your membership. Here are some tips to help you maximize your rewards:

  1. Keep track of your points: Stay aware of your point balance and track your progress toward the new redemption threshold. This will help you plan your visits and spending accordingly.
  2. Take advantage of promotions: Chipotle often offers special promotions and deals exclusively for Rewards members. Keep an eye out for these opportunities to earn bonus points or enjoy discounted meals.
  3. Use your rewards wisely: With the increased redemption threshold, it’s important to make your free meal count. Consider ordering items that are slightly more expensive to get the most value out of your reward.
  4. Explore other benefits: Chipotle’s rewards program still offers members-only deals and surprise birthday rewards, so be sure to take advantage of these benefits even though the redemption threshold has been raised.

Bottom Line

Chipotle’s recent changes to its rewards program may have gone unnoticed by many customers. The increased redemption threshold means that you’ll need to accumulate more points to earn a free meal. However, understanding the reasons behind these changes and implementing strategies to maximize your rewards can help you continue to enjoy the benefits of being a Chipotle Rewards member. Stay informed, make informed choices, and enjoy your Chipotle experience while being mindful of the rewards program adjustments.


Why hasn’t Chipotle announced the changes to their rewards program?

Chipotle made adjustments to its rewards program without a formal announcement, possibly to avoid drawing attention to the increase in the redemption threshold.

How much did the redemption threshold for free meals increase?

Chipotle raised the redemption threshold from 1,400 points to 1,625 points, a 16% increase in the number of points required to earn a free meal.

Why did Chipotle raise the redemption threshold?

According to Chipotle, the increase in the redemption threshold is a result of inflation and the rising cost of real ingredients, which forced the company to adjust the point values for menu items.

What does this mean for loyal Chipotle customers?

Loyal customers will need to earn more points before redeeming a free burrito, bowl, salad or taco order. This may require them to spend more money at Chipotle to receive the same rewards as before.

Can I still enjoy other benefits of the rewards program?

Yes, despite the increased redemption threshold, Chipotle’s Rewards Program still offers members-only deals, surprise birthday rewards, and other exclusive promotions for members to take advantage of.

How can I maximize my rewards in light of these changes?

To get the most out of your membership, keep track of your points, take advantage of promotions, use your rewards wisely by choosing slightly more expensive items, and explore other rewards program benefits.

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