Richard Macrae was given the homemade card for his 30th birthday by a friend as a joke.
But when he presented it in shops, bars, restaurants and cinemas, Mr Macrae was surprised to find many retailers agreed to take money off his purchases.
“People have always given me stick for my hair colour but now I’m going out three nights a week and saving a fortune. The joke’s on them,” said Mr Macrae.
“It comes out with me more than my bank card. My reputation precedes me: once I was asked by a security guard if I was the ‘ginger discount guy’.
“I ask if they do the ginger discount and when they look confused, I slide across my card.
“Usually everyone gets the humour behind it. Some people look confused and wonder if it’s real, which is always a laugh, but most get the joke. I’ve saved a couple of hundred pounds maybe, with money off booze, taxis, food and club entries. Over four years it fairly builds up.”
Mr Macrae, a comic book illustrator, admitted he has had his share of knockbacks.
“It’s been turned down plenty,” he said. “But I’ve also used it as ID and it has worked.
“It opens folk up to a bit of banter back and forth but I never try for any specific amount of discount.
“Any money off is always handy.”
Mr Macrae claims his card is popular with “gingers and non-gingers” alike.
He said: “Once they see it, plenty of folk ask about getting one.
“It’s not even just ginger people. Anyone who’s seen it work always asks for one – beard discount cards, the list goes on and on.”
Rik Gillespie, 30, a barman at Aberdeen’s JamJar pub, said: “I used to serve Richard and his friends regularly. They were good customers and a great laugh. The first time I saw the ginger discount card, I thought it was brilliant and gave him the same discount that we would for students just because it looked so real.”
Another to give a discount was barmaid Kirsty Davidson, 24, of the Illicit Still, who thought Mr Macrae was “a chancer”.
She said: “I thought it was really funny and unique as I had never seen anyone try to use something like that before.
“I gave him 20 per cent food and drink discount as he was also in for food at the time.
“I decided it was all good fun and he was a bit of a chancer.”
A worker at Vue cinema, who did not want to be named, said: “Well, it was funny, a total chancer move, so we decided to stick it through as student discount.”