Starbucks Coffee Co. yesterday began offering free wireless Internet access in its stores to customers who load at least $5 onto a Starbucks prepaid gift card and register it on the Starbucks Web site, Alisa Martinez, a company spokesperson, tells CardLine. Seattle-based Starbucks also is offering a free beverage to customers who register their cards through July 14. Providing free wireless Internet access and a free beverage to customers who register their gift cards represent the latest perks Starbucks started offering this year as part of a "Tranformation Agenda" to build customer loyalty, Martinez tells CardLine. Earlier this year, Starbucks began giving registered cardholders complimentary flavor syrups and milk alternatives in their drinks, complimentary tall beverages when they buy a pound of whole-bean coffee, and free refills of brewed coffee on the same visit (CardLine, 3/25). Customers must use their Starbucks card to get the benefits, according to the company. Starbucks plans to add other rewards to the cards, Martinez says.

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