A Guide to Using Target Circle For Canadians


Don't let the title fool you, this guide will work for anyone who wants to learn how to use the Target Circle app to earn and save while shopping at Target.

Where the Canadian part comes into play is the fact that Target left Canada back in 2015 and is no longer operating in our country. But just because they left does not mean we Canadians stopped shopping with them! There's online shopping for Canadians (where unfortunately we pay extremely high amounts of taxes on) and I am willing to bet that every Canadian car returning from the US/Canadian border has at least one Target bag in their trunk. 

I am going to show you how to use the Target Circle app in store to earn 1% on every purchase, which you can redeem at any time to save a little on your final bill. The app also posts a number of in store savings that you can apply to your app and the savings will be calculated upon check out. And you can also scan and see if the item is cheaper online, at which time you can show the cashier and get the cheaper amount. All of this will apply to anyone who shops at Target. 

The information that will be specific to Canadians is introducing them to this app, since we don't have a Target anymore it's likely you've never even heard of the app and, this is the big one, how to get the app on your phone in the first place! That is a little more difficult given that it's an US app and not available in most Canadian app stores. 

Looking at the history in my Target app, I started using Target Circle to track my purchases and save last October (I won't tell you how many purchases I've made since then because it's rather embarrassing 😆) I remember the day well. I had taken my youngest son and his friend to Buffalo to head to a Bills football game. We stopped at the Orchard Park Target to stock up on Bills clothing before heading to the stadium and I just happened to read the instore display about Target Circle. I connected to their Wifi (travel tip for Canadians that all Targets offer free Wifi), downloaded the app and started scanning everything that went into our cart. We managed to save 20% on our Bills hats and sweaters and I earned $1.00 to use towards a future purchase. It was so easy! 

I'm hooked on using the app! I love that I can save a little money on my purchases and that I can view all the sales in the app before I even head to the border. I also love that it keeps a history of my purchases. On shopping trips when my kids are not with me, I can just look at my history and remember which flavour of Pop Tarts it is that they like (Brown Sugar Cinnamon for the record) 

Downloading the Target App for Canadians

A Guide to Using Target Circle For Canadians

This is the part that's just for my fellow Canadians. Downloading the app can be tricky and the steps are different depending on which type of phone you have. I know this because I started using with a Huawei phone and recently just went back to iPhone. 

Android phone - Surprisingly, this was the easiest to download. While in the US, connect to Wifi (in Target, airport, hotel, etc) and search "Target" in your Google Play app (your app store) It's as simple as that. They just need you in the US to be able to download US apps. 

iPhone - Connecting to Wifi in the US won't help you. I know, I tried. It's not about your physical location, it's the location set up in your iTunes account. What you need to do is have as separate iTunes account that is set to the US (this LINK provides the steps). Then you log into your US iTunes and download the Target App.

You don't need to remain on the US iTunes. One you've downloaded the app you can log back into your regular iTunes account. I wish there was an easier way but I just haven't found it. If you need help ask a youngster in your life or you can email me and I can try to assist. 

Once you have the app, create an account with your email address and you are ready to shop! 

*If you rather not download another app, you can still sign up on the website circle.target.com and while in store, use the free Wifi and sign in on your webpage (using IE/Safari/Chrome) to access your personal barcode during check out.  

Ok so let's get into how to use. The two main benefits to using the Target Circle app is the 1% earnings on all of your purchases and being able to access hundreds of deals only accessible through the app.

Before Shopping

A Guide to Using Target Circle For Canadians

Now that you've got that app, let's start using it! Here's an image of the app's home page. You can set your "My Store" and view the weekly flyer to see what deals are in store. My favourite place to start before shopping is the "Target Circle Offers" Here you will find anywhere from 5%-20% off everyday items. All you need to do is "Save Offer" and the savings will automatically be calculated at checkout. 

While shopping 

A Guide to Using Target Circle For Canadians

Staying connect to that free Wifi, open the app and at the very top you will see a scan icon. Open that up and hit "allow access to camera" now you're in the Scanner section. I find the easiest thing to do is scan every item as you place it in your cart. It will pop up telling you the name of the item and the price. A few times I've scanned and it said the item was on sale!

In one of those instances, it scanned up to say the item was significantly cheaper online.

A Guide to Using Target Circle For Canadians

We bought one of the Hunter x Target cooler backpacks and when I scanned it, it showed that it was 50% off online! In store they were only offering $10 off. See the little black i icon that says Price Match Policy? Well I clicked that and read that they will honor the cheaper online price. All I did was take a screenshot to show the cashier and she put in a price override and we got our cooler! 

Time to Check Out

While the cashier is checking you out they will ask if you're a Target Circle member. Now you can say yes! On your app, click the wallet icon to bring up your unique barcode. The cashier will scan and all those discounts and savings codes will do their work. Then you earn 1% of your total bill back to be used on a future visit! 

If you have money already accumulated and want to apply it on your next visit, in your wallet it will show your Target Circle earnings. Click the word "Apply" and it will be deducted from your next Target shopping trip. 

The app keeps a history of every purchase you make which is great when you can't remember which sugary cereal your kids wanted you to pick up again 😀

Target Circle is a well laid out app that's quite easy to use. You scan, you save. That's about it. Whenever I go cross border shopping, Target is always my first stop for household items, clothing and grocery. I get to save on each trip and now you can, too!