More than 46 million people are on the SNAP program in the United States or some other type of public food assistance program.
Studies show that approximately 21.7 million American homes use food stamps, which translates to roughly 20% of households in each state.
Food stamps are part of the federal government assistance program referred to as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
SNAP was set up to benefit low-income earners through an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.
But, does Target accept EBT?
Does Target Accept EBT?
Yes, Target now accepts EBT card payments at all of its outlets.
Shoppers can now use their EBT cards to acquire SNAP-eligible items at any Target store.
You can only buy eligible products and must use alternative means to pay for surplus items in the order.
Most Target stores use the WIC/EBT labels to mark items that can be bought with an EBT card.
However, you cannot shop via Target’s mobile app using your EBT card as the payment method.
If you must shop via Target App, you will need to find an alternate means of payment.
What Is Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT)?
Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) is a payment method for low-income individuals and families via a plastic card, similar to a debit or credit card, featuring a magnetic strip and security PIN.
It functions based on the SNAP mandate to support US citizens experiencing financial difficulties.
The card functions just like a debit card.
A cardholder can use it at any SNAP authorized outlet.
Nonetheless, you can only use it to buy groceries and some other select goods.
The program allows eligible cardholders to spend a pre-agreed allowance at accepting store outlets.
The cards were first issued in 2004 in all US states to help reduce the cost of groceries and consequently provide some financial relief for low-income earners.
It’s important to note that not all stores accept the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.
What Is Target’s EBT Return Policy?
Target offers a standard 90-day return time frame unless otherwise indicated.
It provides consumers with a chance to return products that are not satisfactory.
Target can issue your refund directly for your EBT card or offer an identical product instead.
Note that it’s against federal law for retailers to give cash refunds to customers on goods paid through EBT.
However, you must produce the original receipt before a refund can be provided.
The receipt must accompany the goods for you to get the total refundable amount.
Eligible Products To Purchase With An EBT Card At Target
Target boasts a great line of products that includes numerous healthy SNAP-eligible foods and grocery packages including:
1. Primary Plant Products:
- Wheat bread
2. Fruits And Vegetables
3. Dairy Products:
4. Flesh Foods:
- Canned legumes
- Soy milk
- Peanut butter
7. Snack Foods
8. Non-Alcoholic Beverages
In addition to SNAP, other programs use EBT for payment while still others are still being tested.
They include the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and the Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF).
Nursing mothers already enrolled in a WIC program can use their EBT cards to acquire specific infant products such as supplementary baby foods, formula, cereals, fruits, vegetables, and meat focusing on the baby’s development.
Mothers can also get iron supplements with EBT cards throughout their nursing journey.
It’s crucial to remember you can only use the amount allocated to you on the EBT card.
If your shopping exceeds the SNAP-specified balance, you’ll need to foot the difference through alternative means.
What Can’t Your EBT Card Get You At Target?
Beneficiaries of the WIC and SNAP programs are not allowed to buy non-food items with an EBT card.
You’ll also need to pay for most energy drinks out of your own pocket.
Nonetheless, you may be permitted to include Red Bull in your EBT-sponsored shopping list on certain occasions.
Here’s a list of items not included in the EBT payment method list:
1. Alcoholic Beverages:
- Recreational marijuana
3. Prescribed And OTC Medicines
6. Live Animals except for fresh fish from the water, slaughtered animals awaiting pick-up, and shellfish
7. Hot Foods At The Time Of Purchase
8. Pet Foods
9. Non-Food Products:
- Paper products
- Cleaning supplies
- Hygiene items
- Lottery tickets
- Firearms and ammunition
Can You Use EBT Payment At A Target-Based Starbucks?
Given that Starbucks is categorized as a luxury or non-essential brand, it’s not SNAP-approved.
Therefore, Starbucks doesn’t accept payment via EBT cards at any of their company-owned outlets.
Nevertheless, Starbucks accepts payments from EBT cardholders at some of its accredited stores found in grocery and retail stores.
With more than 6,300 certified stores in the country, you can use your EBT card to pay for a Starbucks coffee and cake at a store like Target.
Here are some SNAP-eligible products that you can buy at a Starbucks-accredited store:
- Instant coffee
- Coffee beans
- Pumpkin bread
- Ground coffee
- Cold beverages
- Soft drinks
- Energy drinks
Normally, any product that contains a nutrition label, apart from hot beverages and foods, is SNAP-approved.
Avoid buying hot food that is already prepared and meant to be consumed within the outlet.
You could end up paying for the items using your own money.
Can You Be Penalized For Buying Unapproved Products With EBT?
You may wonder about the consequences of trying to purchase unauthorized products using your EBT card.
Your case will be assigned to your state’s welfare agency.
They will investigate if you violated the law and then penalize you accordingly.
For the first time offenders:
- You will be expected to pay back the illegally used amount in full to DTA.
For second-time offenders:
- You will be expected to pay back the illegally used amount in full to DTA. You’ll also not be eligible for an EBT allowance for two months.
For third-time offenders:
- You will be expected to pay back the illegally used amount in full to DTA. You’ll also be disqualified permanently from the program.
Will You Still Use EBT In Your Local Target Mini-Stores?
Target has teamed up with numerous reputable brands in a bid to make their customers’ shopping experience as seamless as possible.
Typically, you can’t use your EBT card to buy CVS medicine, Apple goodies, or Starbucks coffee.
However, there are specific SNAP packages that allow beneficiaries to pay for coffee and cake at approved Starbucks outlets within Target.
How Many Target Stores Allow Shoppers To Pay With EBT Cards?
SNAP is the most common form of EBT and is accepted at all 1,900+ Target stores.
Nevertheless, WIC only works at approved Target Superstores since they stock a wider variety of SNAP-eligible products and groceries.
Contact your local Target store and enquire if they accept EBT payments.
Alternatively, you can search online for other stores offering the service.
Does Target.com Accept EBT Payments?
Target does not accept EBT card payments when you shop online—whether on their website or via the Target App.
The card also can’t be used for curbside pickup or delivery.
It simply means that your EBT card is only viable when used in person at a physical Target store.
Not to worry, though, since Target has very many stores spread across the country.
You’re thus more likely to find one nearby.
However, if you must shop at Target.com, draw out cash from your EBT card at your local ATM.
Purchase a gift card with the cash and use that for your online shopping with Target, which is a lot of unnecessary work.
Here are the various payment methods you can use to buy goods at Target.com:
- Typical debit and credit cards
- Target’s credit card (Target Red Card)
- Gift cards
- Target’s eGift Cards, normal Gift Cards, and mobile Gift Cards
- Alipay (only at approved outlets)
Nonetheless, this inconvenience may not last long.
Reports from credible sources suggest that Target will soon open up the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) payments to online shoppers in the United States.
If the nation’s second-largest grocery retailer follows in the footsteps of giants Amazon, Walmart, etc., it could win more low-income customers.
Target is the second-largest grocery retailer in the U.S. In 2020, the retail giant’s overall sales amounted to $92.4 billion with 20% being grocery sales.
The company is looking to expand grocery sales by providing families with unlimited access to their stores and allowing them to shop seamlessly without discriminating on the payment method.
Target will use Shipt (their delivery arm) for service delivery once it starts accepting EBT card payments.
The service will also include curbside pickups and drive-ups.
Accepting EBT payments at their online store could fill a huge gap in Target’s e-commerce strategy.
It would allow customers who formerly felt ‘‘left-out’’ to shop at Target instead of opting for competitors.
The move could enhance customer loyalty and even help the giant retailer sell other goods.
How Can You Make Online Purchases At Target With EBT As Payment?
The only way you can use your EBT card to buy at Target.com is through Instacart, since Target does not accept online payments by EBT cards.
Instacart accepts EBT card payments in all American states except Alaska, Montana, and Louisiana.
You can buy groceries and other assorted products from Target via Instacart.
If you want your Instacart goods to be delivered, Target requires that you spend at least $35.
You must also pay $3.99 for non-Express members.
How To Use EBT On Target Instacart
Download the Instacart App and sign up for an account to access Target Instacart services.
Enter your EBT card to make purchases.
Note that stores are categorized according to themes.
Use the search bar to pick your items.
Check your shopping cart at the bottom.
Proceed to checkout after completing your shopping.
Ensure you’ve reached the $35 minimum.
Using Your EBT Card To Pay For Goods At Target
Here is how to effectively use your EBT card for payments at Target.
Once you arrive at the checkout counter, separate your SNAP-approved goods from regular ones.
Load the checkout as the cashier processes.
The cashier will first process the EBT-eligible items.
Pay either by swiping your EBT card using the magnetic strip or by inserting your card in the slot and keying the PIN.
You’ll pay for other items on your shopping list by other means.
Ensure you review processed items to pay only for eligible products with EBT.
Step by step guide on using your EBT card at the cashier’s checkout:
- Take your goods to the checkout counter.
- Separate regular items from EBT-approved ones
- The cashier swipes your EBT card over the Point of Sale terminal
- Key in your secret PIN code—you should enter the PIN by yourself.
- The cashier provides you with the payable amount
- The cashier hands you the transaction receipt with all the details.
Can You Use The EBT Card For Payment At Self-Checkout?
Yes, Target allows you to pay with your EBT card at self-checkout.
You don’t have to separate your goods since the computer automatically applies the EBT deduction on approved items as each product is scanned.
Self-checkout is actually easier than being served at a regular checkout counter.
However, it’s prudent to check and ensure you pay only for authorized goods with EBT.
Step by step guide on using your EBT card at self-checkout:
- Pick your products
- Move your shopping to the checkout counter
- Separate EBT-eligible products from regular items (though not necessary)
- Scan your goods on the
- Scan your items on the till machine
- Swipe your EBT card over the Point of Scale
- Key in your PIN code and press “enter”
- Enter the correct amount payable and press “OK”
A printed receipt will pop up once the transaction is completed.
The receipt contains the transaction details, name and address of the outlet, and the remaining EBT balance.
Can You Use Your EBT Card To Pay For Delivery And Curbside Pickup?
Yes, you can pay for delivery and curbside pickup fees with your EBT card.
For instance, if your shopping amount is less than $35, the curbside pickup fee will be $3.99. Ensure your card contains a sufficient balance to cover the extra expenses.
Are Cashiers Aware Of Your EBT Benefits?
Yes, Target ensures that each cashier is provided with an updated WIC register to ascertain customer identity and allocated benefits.
Your identity must be verified before payment to serve your interests fully.
EBT-approved products also have noticeable labels to differentiate them from others.
It’s important to note that Target encourages an inclusivity code throughout its operations to equally serve customers from all backgrounds.
Does Target Offer Cashback After Using EBT Payment At Their Store?
Yes, they do.
However, you must carry your debit card to the store for the cashback transaction to be successful.
Can Someone Else Shop With Your EBT Card At Target Stores?
Your EBT card can only be used by other family members who are included in your case.
Provided they know your set PIN code, someone else can shop for you if you’ve registered them as an authorized representative.