Canadian Tire money
(CTM) is a loyalty program
by Canadian Tire
. It consists of coupons, issued by the
company, which resemble real currency
(although the coupons are considerably smaller than Bank of Canada notes), and can be used as scrip in Canadian Tire stores, but is not considered a
are printed on paper similar to real Canadian currency
, and were jointly produced
by two of the country’s long established security printers, British
American Banknote Company (BABN) and Canadian Bank Note Company
(CBN). Some privately owned businesses (in Canada) accept CTM as
payment (see history below), since the owners of many such
businesses shop at Canadian Tire.
History and dynamics
CTM was introduced in 1957, and was inspired by Muriel Billes, the
wife of Canadian Tire's co-founder and first president, A.J. Billes
, as a response to the promotional
giveaways that many gas companies offered at the time. It was only available
at Canadian Tire gas bars, but was so successful that in 1961 it
was extended to the retail stores as well, and has become the most
successful loyalty program in
Canadian retail history.
The print on the 'notes'
officially refers to them as cash bonus
Canadian Tire "Money" is given out for purchases paid for by cash
or debit, based on the pre-tax total, excluding labour and shop
supplies costs. Customers can use Canadian Tire Money to buy
anything in the store. (Older CTM coupons state that they are
redeemable at Canadian Tire stores and gas
; however, CTM coupons produced during at least the
last 15 years lack this wording and are therefore redeemable in the
The "Money" can also be used to cover the sales tax
on the purchases, since it is accepted
as cash after the taxes are calculated. Also, even if a purchase
was made entirely in CTM, it is also considered as a cash purchase
and more CTM will be calculated and paid out.
Ontario the Retail Sales Tax law and Bulletins stated that
the "coupon must be reimbursed by the franchisee".
submitting them to other merchants, the merchants were in essence
breaking Ontario law when they failed to include the discount in
the value of the goods being calculated for being taxed. Some
merchants were accepting CTM as a discount, but then were not
calculating and remitting the sales taxes, as required by law, and
then were getting fined for the practice.
For this reason, among others, another loyalty programme provided
in the 1960s, S&H Green
, was terminated within the province.
In 1958, five different denominations (composed of 5-cents,
10-cents, 25-cents, 50-cents, and $1) were issued. The revision of
1962 included the introduction of four lower values (1 to 4 cents),
and 12 higher denominations, including 35 and 60 cents. A sequence
of six denominations was introduced in 1985 including the 3-cents,
5-cents, 10-cents, 25-cents, 40-cents, 50-cents, and $1.A $2 note
was added in 1989, and the 3 cents was dropped in 1991.
CTM coupons are currently produced in 5-cent, 10-cent, 25-cent,
50-cent, one-dollar, and two-dollar denominations. In addition,
Canadian Tire Money can be earned electronically on Canadian Tire
and the Canadian Tire Options
. The latter can be used wherever MasterCard
is accepted and earns Canadian Tire
Money no matter where it is used to make a purchase, anywhere in
the world. CTM is treated as real currency by the franchise and can
not be directly exchanged for real Canadian currency for customers.
If an item bought with Canadian Tire Money is returned the customer
receives either Canadian Tire Money back or is given the amount on
a gift card.
Facts and Figures
late 2004 in Moncton, New Brunswick, several customers at a Canadian Imperial Bank of
Commerce ATM were
dispensed a total of 11 bills of Canadian Tire money instead of
real bills. They were compensated by the bank.
- Contrary to popular belief in the United States and other countries outside Canada, the man on the
"money" is not Canada's first Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald; he is actually a fictional
creation named Sandy McTire.
- Canadian Tire money is the main topic of the
song "La Chute du huard" (Loonie's fall) by Quebec singer
Mononc' Serge, the lyrics claiming it
is more stable and a better investment than the Canadian
- Culturally, Canadian Tire money is sometimes referenced by
comedians: perhaps as a national version of "Monopoly money",
perhaps invoking a pejorative comparison of the value of Canadian
dollars against U.S. dollars , or perhaps as a misunderstood exotic
element of Canadian society (cf. Ron James' comedic reference to
the person depicted on the bill as "our king"). In the 2009
Trailer Park Boys movie,
"Countdown to Liquor Day" Jim Lahey offers Julian $700 in Canadian
Tire money for his trailer.
- Canadian Tire money used to be a form of payment allowed for
use by sellers on the Canadian version of the online auction site
- In the mid 1990s, a man in Germany was caught with up to
$11,000,000 in counterfeit Canadian Tire money. It was recovered
before he left for Canada to redeem it. An Armenian man from the
country of Georgia also had similar ideas about counterfeit scrip,
and was caught with over 45 million in counterfeit coupons.
- Canadian Tire's return policy states that customers must return
the issued CTM along with returned product. If not, the store will
deduct the amount off the return. .