This is a tribute post to Chipotle’s Summer Reward program that was held over the summer of 2016 (1 July to 30 September) in the States. From my knowledge, Chipotle never ran this same Summer Reward program again. And this is probably why…
Back in in 2016, Chipotle just couldn’t shake off all their bad publicity (alleged food poisoning to insider trading to cocaine possession just to name a few off the top of my head). An effort to reclaim part of the market, they introduced the Chiptopia Summer Rewards program.
Chiptopia in a nutshell:
Between 1 July to 30 September, every time we purchased a Chipotle meal $6+, we made sure our Rewards Card got scanned at check out. The more we ate, the bigger the prize.
As you can see, the ultimate prize was to get the “Catering for 20” valued at $240. And to get that, we had to buy a total of 27 meals (approx. $8 per meal x 27 = $216).
Between the two of us, Jon and I ate Chipotle nine times a month for three months. We thought “this will be easy” since we could share one for lunch or dinner on those nine days of the month. We marked it in our calendars to make sure we hit nine a month. This my friends, is what people that have too much time on their hands do for kicks.
The Chipotle Reality
We eventually got to the point where we shuddered at the thought of having to eat Chipotle but guess what? By then, our hard work had paid off. On 30 September, we hit the “Hot Bonus Rewards” status and got the catering for 20 people. Yay.
Now, we didn’t really have that many friends when we lived in New York so instead of throwing a party to share our reward, we claimed the “The Big Spread” catering package so I could just make freezer meals out of everything.
We hiked our way out of Manhattan to claim the prize because the city stores didn’t offer the Big Spread catering packages.
When we got home and unpacked everything, it dawned on me that we had A LOT of food. Not only did we get the food, we got the serving stands, utensils, fire burners, napkins, bowls – even the matches to light the fire burners!
I was absolutely blown away with just how much food was included. After Jon and I quickly had a taco each, I quickly separated everything into food container and bags and popped them into the freezer.
The items that needed to be eaten immediately, like the chips and guacamole, we devoured as much as we could before surrendering, and offering the other large bag of chips and bowl of guac to a neighbor who has four teenagers.
I made 24 meals out of one tray of the rice, meats, vegetables, and black beans. The brown rice, shredded cheese, and pinto beans were used in other meals. We had a freezer full of Chipotle that lasted us approx. four more months.
Did other people do the same thing as us? Possibly. And if they did, it doesn’t make much business sense for Chipotle to offer the same Rewards program again… which is probably why that haven’t.
Now that we live in Abu Dhabi and decent Mexican meal is hard to find.. I only dream of stuffing my face with a Chipotle burrito bowl…