Over 79K Minnesotans claim $100 reward in latest COVID-19 vaccine incentive push

Over 79,000 newly vaccinated Minnesotans signed up for the state’s $100 Visa gift card offer, Gov. Tim Walz’s office announced Monday. 

People who got the COVID-19 vaccine between July 29 and Aug. 22 were eligible for the $100 gift card. The program ended on Sunday. 

The 79,810 people who submitted a request for the $100 reward was over four times as many as claimed prizes during the state’s incentive program in June. Nearly 80% of the requests came from Minnesotans under the age of 50, according to Walz’s office. 

Minnesota is currently averaging 4,955 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine daily, compared 2,675 one month ago. To date, 70.9% of people 16 and older have at least one dose of the vaccine and 66.8% are fully vaccinated. 

Minnesota will end up paying out almost $8 million during the latest round of vaccine rewards. Walz initially budgeted $2.5 million for the program, but a legislative panel approved an additional $13.8 million midway through.