Angry shoppers have pledged to boycott the upmarket supermarket
WAITROSE has sparked outraged by curbing its free newspaper offer for loyal customers – just days after cutting back on its complimentary hot drinks deal.
Furious customers have taken to Twitter and threatened to boycott the upmarket supermarket after it revealed plans to double the minimum spend required to get a free tabloid or broadsheet.
From 1 November, shoppers with a loyalty card will have to spend £10 – a swift increase from the current £5 – to qualify for the offer.
An email announcing the newspaper change was sent to MyWaitrose cardholders on Monday.
It said: “From 1 November 2016, the minimum spend to receive money off your shopping with selected newspapers from Monday to Friday will be £10.
“It will remain at £10 at weekends as it is now.”
The store concluded the letter by thanking shoppers “for your understanding”.
Mark Phillips took to social media and wrote: “Dear @waitrose your £5 newspaper offer keeps me coming to your store most days. Doubling it to £10 I’m afraid won’t bother #change it back.”
Twitter user Bryan RS commented: “’Why not be honest? The newspaper offer isn’t ‘changing’. It’s getting worse. Spin like this makes you look like Tesco.”
Mathew Ellarby added: “@waitrose £10 for free newspaper and min spend for daily coffee think time to go back to Tesco for clubcard points #RIPmywaitrose.”
A spokesman for Waitrose said: “Like any business, we regularly review promotions to ensure we balance providing value for our customers with a return on our investment.
“We are still the only supermarket where if you buy a selected newspaper, you will receive money off the rest of your shopping.”
Waitrose has already annoyed its customers this week after saying they will have to buy something before being able to pour themselves a free cup of coffee or tea.
The trial, rolled out across eight stores, was sparked by the supermarket examining the offer to ensure the benefit is being used “as it was originally intended”.
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The spokesperson added: “A free tea or coffee is our way to thank customers for shopping with us.
“We are carrying out a trial in eight branches where we will be making a small change.
“We’ll simply be asking myWaitrose members in these shops to make a purchase before collecting their free coffee at the checkout.”