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Guide to the Discovery Islands

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Quadra Island map

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Islander Benefits - shop local Quadra Island, Cortes Island

Get Your Card | Special Offers | FAQs

Islander Benefits Frequently Asked Questions

• What is 'Shop Local'?

Shop Local promotes the practice of spending money in our local community for good and services available here. Of every dollar spent in a small town or on a small island 45¢ of it stays within the community; helping provide employment, keep small shops open offering unique services & products and generally keeping a community vibrant and livable.Islander Benefits

The Quadra Island Shop Local campaign is an open campaign that any one or any business is welcome to participate in and promote as they wish. For more details and for some of the free resources available visit the Quadra Island Shop Local web page here>

• How does Islander Benefits work?

Islander Benefits is a local, Discovery Islands wide 'rewards' or 'loyalty' program that offers members discounts and deals from participating local businesses. Membership to the Islander Benefits program is open to annual subscribers of the Discovery Islander.

The Discovery Islander will continue to be delivered directly to all mailboxes on Quadra, Cortes, Read and the Outer Discovery Islands as it always has been, free of charge. However, there will now be a price of $1.25 per copy at the news-stands and readers who receive it via Canada Post in their mailbox will be requested to make a voluntary annual subscription payment of $30 ($26 for the DI, $0.75 for the card plus $3.25 HST).

On payment of their voluntary subscription to the Discovery Islander each household will receive an Islander Benefits card (to a maximum of two per household) for that calendar year.

The Islander Benefits card will feature the ‘Shop Local’ logo, promoting the umbrella campaign, reminding residents to support local businesses with their purchasing choices.

The rest is up to the DI’s advertisers to use the program to their advantage. For example: it could be used for a special offer available only to Islander Benefits cardholders; it could be used to measure the effectiveness of a certain promotion; Islander Benefits will facilitate an easy way to offer a ‘locals discount’ or even a slightly better discount to card holders. Let the ideas flow!

There will hopefully be many innovative ways to get the most out of this program but the bottom-line is that it promotes a buy local ethic within the community, facilitates a way to encourage and administer a voluntary subscription program for the D.I. while also providing additional value for those that take part.

• How does my business take part?

It's easy, if you'd like to support the Shop Local campaign by joining the Islander Benefits program start by identifying a special offer you would like to promote. If you are an exisiting or new regular advertiser with the Discovery Islander then simply contact us by email with the details of your promotion.

Your special offer will then be included on the online list of specials as well as featured in the Discovery Islander's display ad promoting the program.

There is no charge for exisiting or new DI advertisers but if you're not a DI advertiser then there is a cost of $150 for the calendar year for the above advertising.

• My business is a regular advertiser in the DI, am I expected to subscribe too?

No definitely not! Your commitment to the DI is already clear and by choosing to market your products and services to your customers through the Discovery Islander you are already supporting our local free press. I'll continue to call it a 'free' press because no one is required to pay for it at all.

All that is being suggested is purely on voluntary terms.

• Is Islander Benefits only for advertisers in the DI?

No not at all. The Islander Benefits program and all aspects of the 'Shop Local' campaign are freely available to any business. There are graphics and other support available here at the Shop Local Quadra web page which anyone is welcome to download, print, post or use in any way in their own marketing, at their own cost.

There certainly are perks to being a DI advertiser such as free listing of Islander Benefits specials on this web site and in the DI print & online editions but the overall idea is community support and sustainability. We're all in this together.

Some Other Related DI FAQs

• If you need to reduce costs why don’t you change the paper to newsprint?

The Discovery Islander has always been printed on Quadra Island by a local printer. Not only is that fundamental to the paper’s ethic of supporting local businesses but it is by far and away the most economical and convenient way to print the DI.

• Why not by-pass Canada Post & put the DI on the store shelves & cafés?

Delivery by Canada Post is a significant cost. However this direct distribution is a major part of the service for the DI’s advertisers. It also ensures a stable circulation number that can be planned and budgeted around. I think it is preferable to maintain or improve the level of service advertisers and readers have come to expect rather than to reduce service.

There's another important point - The DI always goes through the Heriot Bay post office. This is a pretty small outlet and in an age when rural services like post offices are being frequently cut the business that the DI brings to V0P 1H0 is extremely important to the case for keeping it open. It would take an additional 30 letters a year to be mailed by every P.O. box-holder in Heriot Bay to make up the difference!

• Advertising already pays for the DI why would readers pay for it?

To date that has been exactly the model the DI has operated under. Ads pay for the production and distribution of the paper and the readers receive it free of charge. However, ad revenue has simply not kept pace with rising costs. The Discovery Islands are a small market and short of looking to competing Campbell River businesses for advertising the obvious course of action is to charge for the service the DI provides.
The Vancouver Sun which publishes province-wide and attracts huge advertising accounts charges for each copy, as do all major newspapers.

• Why not just go online?

Every edition and recent back issues are always available on the internet at and have been for a dozen years or more. But I just can’t see the internet replacing the feel and value of a hard, paper copy and neither do most of the readers who responded to the survey. I’ll do all I can to continue the DI in printed form.



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