We provide a guide to shopping at Jumbo in Colombia with tips to save money. Jumbo is one of the leading grocery stores in Colombia and is similar to Target in the U.S.
Jumbo is a large supermarket chain that also sells appliances, electronics, televisions, computers, clothes, home furnishings, kitchen items, and many other things.
We previously provide a guide to shopping at Exito and several readers asked for a guide to shopping at Jumbo.
If you shop frequently at Jumbo you should sign up for their Puntos (points) program. This is a frequent shopper program where you accumulate points for each purchase. These points can be used to purchase items in the future. However, to sign up you need a cedula.
Jumbo frequently has sales on groceries. Also, this chain frequently has sales on appliances, TVs and other electronics, which are similar to the sales at Exito. Also, if you are furnishing a place, make sure to check out the sales at both Jumbo and Exito.
History of Jumbo
Jumbo used to be named Carrefour in Colombia. France-based Carrefour sold all of its stores in Colombia to Chile-based Cencosud in 2012.
Cencosud initially founded Jumbo in 1976. And these hyper-marts started out only in Chile. But in 1982 the company expanded to Argentina. And in 2012 it expanded to Colombia with the acquisition of Carrefour.
Jumbo now reportedly has 40 stores in Chile, 16 in Argentina and over 30 in Colombia. In Colombia it reported has stores in Bogotá (10), Antioquia (5), Cali (3), Barranquilla (3), Bucaramanga (2), Cartagena (2), Pereira (2) and additional stores in Tunja, Yopal, Popayá, Valledupar, Neiva, Santa Marta, Floridablanca and Barrancabermeja.
Jumbo in Medellín and Nearby
This chain has five stores in the Medellín and the nearby area:
- El Pobaldo – Santafé mall
- La Candelaria (El Centro) – Premium Plaza mall
- Laureles-Estadio – LA 65
The hyper-mart stores in this chain are very large. But don’t expect to find as big of a selection of groceries at these stores as you will find in the big grocery stores in the U.S.
How to Sign Up for Puntos
If you shop frequently at at this chain you should sign up for Jumbo’s puntos (points) program known as Puntos Cencosud. Puntos Cencosud is a frequent shopper program where you accumulate points for each purchase. You can use these points to purchase items in the future.
To sign up for Puntos Cencosud you just need a Colombian cedula ID. You can sign up at any of their stores. And they will want to see your ID and you will need to provide them with other information like your address and phone number.
Also, if you have a cedula you can register for Puntos Cencosud online. Choose the Registrarse button at the top right of the screen to register.
Puntos Cencosud is essentially like getting 1.1 percent cash back on your purchase that you can use for future purchases. With the program you get 1.1 punto for every 100 pesos in purchases. And 1 punto is worth 1 peso. So, 10,000 puntos = 10,000 pesos.
In addition, there are some items in the Jumbo stores that you receive double or even triple points for purchases.
How to Save Money and Time at Jumbo
Here are four tips to save money and time when shopping at at this chain:
- Make sure to sign up with the Puntos Cencosud (points) program. This points program is essentially like getting 1 percent cash back on your purchases. I have saved hundreds of dollars over the past eight years using the Puntos program at Jumbo.
- Shop the sales. Jumbo frequently has sales. With these sales you can typically save at least 20 to 50 percent on some grocery items and sometimes even more. The sales are posted on tags in the aisles in the stores. Also, with the frequent sales you can save money on electronics, TVs, computers, clothing and home furnishing items.
- Check out the sales on the Jumbo website. The company frequently advertises sales on its website, particularly for electronics and appliances. And you can frequently see TVs advertised for over 50 percent off.
- Shop during the day on weekdays. Jumbo stores like Exito stores tend to have slow cashiers. So, the wait to checkout can be extremely long when a store is busy and the lines are long. In my experience, these big stores tend to be busiest after work on weekdays (after 5pm) and on the days before holidays or on holidays. So, if you shop during the day on a weekday when most people are at work the lines will be the shortest.
The Bottom Line: A Guide to Shopping in Jumbo – Colombia’s Target
When I first moved to Medellín, I did most of my grocery shopping at Exito or Jumbo stores. This was very convenient, as these large stores have a big selection. And I could generally do all my grocery shopping in one place. Also, when furnishing my first apartment I bought some appliances at this store.
But after living in Medellín for a while and getting married, we started also shopping at Tiendas D1, Justo y Bueno, PriceSmart and Makro, which all have lower grocery prices on average than Exito or Jumbo.
In our guide to grocery shopping in Medellín, we showed that it is possible to save over 30 percent compared to the prices Jumbo or Exito by shopping at these discount grocery stores.
But we also still sometimes shop at Exito or Jumbo, as it is convenient with the big selection at these stores. But we shop less at Jumbo now than we used to as we currently live in Sabaneta, which doesn’t have a store. The nearest to where we live is in Envigado.
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