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Massive Blue Bell Recall Of ALL Ice Cream, Frozen Yogurt, Sherbet AND Frozen Snacks

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4 If you have have any Blue Bell ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and/or frozen snacks in your home, note that Blue Bell Ice Cream is voluntarily recalling ALL of these products as they have the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.11If you have purchased these items, Blue Bell is urging you to return them to the place of purchase for a FULL refund. For more information, you can call 1-866-608-3940 or check out the Press Release here.

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Target Coupon Policy Clarification: Item-Level Store Coupons Can Be Used With Threshold Coupons

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Calling all you Target shoppers out there! If you’ve had trouble in the past stacking a threshold Target coupon (for example: $10 off a $50 food purchase) AND item-level store coupons (for example: $1/4 Market Pantry Frozen Fruit or Vegetable Target coupon), then you may be excited to know that Target has made it VERY clear in their updated coupon policy that you can in fact stack these coupons! 🙂 Check out the exact wording below…

If you’re redeeming more than one category/department or storewide coupon, you must meet purchase requirements for each coupon individually. The percent-off coupons will apply to all qualifying items in transaction. No other same category/department or storewide coupon will apply.

Target item-level coupons can be used while using a category/storewide coupon (e.g. $1 off Target coupon for body wash AND a $5 off $15 Target Personal Care purchase). The threshold for the category coupon is based on the retail of the qualified items prior to Manufacturer item-level and Target item-level coupons.

(Thanks, Totally Target!)

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8 Couponing Myths That Are Absolutely Not True

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2There are definitely some couponing misconceptions and myths circulating. You may have even believed a couple of them. Well, I’m here to set the record straight! Here are eight couponing myths—busted!

Myth #1: Generic brands always cost less than name brands, even with coupons.

While it may be true that generic brands are cheaper if you plan to pay the retail value, any extreme couponer knows that doubling up on store sales and manufacturer coupons can make name brands seriously cheaper than generic brands.  For example, let’s say Generic Cereal X retails for $2.50 and Name Brand Cereal Y retails for $4.00.  If the store is offering a buy one, get one (BOGO) special on Cereal Y and you have two $1.00-off coupons for Cereal Y, you’ll only pay $1.00 a box. It takes a little math and patience, but it’s easy to see how savvy shoppers get bargains on name brands.

Myth #2: It takes hours and hours each week to coupon.

Thanks to shows like Extreme Couponing, everyone thinks that couponing needs to be a 40-hour-a-week job. In reality, you can spend as much or little time as you like clipping coupons, organizing them, checking out sales circulars, and making your list. For instance, we always list hot deals at a variety of stores such as Target, Walmart and Walgreens. Even if all you do is clip some coupons and follow our suggestions, you’ll be ahead of the game…and you won’t have to quit your job to save money.

Myth #3: If I coupon, it means I’m admitting I can’t afford groceries.

A lot of people have been brought up under the assumption that couponers must be living hand-to-mouth. Actually, coupon users come from all walks of life and social strata. A well-off lawyer living in a large home may be just as fanatical about couponing as a college student living on a meager income. Using coupons isn’t about declaring poverty; it’s about being a good steward of your wealth.

Myth #4: I have to go to tons of stores to make couponing worth it.

Okay, we admit that you’ll be able to score more freebies and brag-worthy deals if you go to at least three different stores each week. However, we know that’s not always possible. Besides, even if you can reduce your grocery bill by 10% each week, that money will add up. A family that spends $150 a week will save almost $800 a year by adopting a 10% savings rule. That’s not exactly pocket change!

Myth #5: There’s no good place to find coupons except the paper.

Once upon a time, it was a bit challenging to find coupons in places other than the Sunday paper. The Internet has made couponing much simpler. Sites like Coupons.com and RedPlum.com offer printable coupons, as do many brand websites, social media pages and text campaigns. If you’re not finding coupons, you’re not looking hard enough.

Myth #6: Most of the coupons are for stuff I won’t use.

Never say never when it comes to coupons!  We’ve found coupons for everything from milk to fresh produce, and organics to orange juice. Even if you have dietary restrictions, we bet you can find some coupons.

Myth #7: Stores know you use coupons, so they just increase their prices.

We cannot guarantee that no store uses this tactic, but we can assure you that they aren’t making it impossible to save.  It’s estimated that a tiny percent of coupons are ever actually used, so stores know that they probably aren’t going out of business because of couponing enthusiasts.  Besides, most people buy other things without coupons, so the stores figure if they can get you in the door with some good deals, they can encourage you to splurge on other items while you’re there.  Resist the temptation, and you’ll come out on top!

Myth #8: Coupons encourage you to buy too much.

This presumes that you have no free will of your own, which is untrue.  The key to being a responsible couponer is to buy what you need.  If 700 jars of mayo isn’t needed, we’re going to assume you won’t get them just because you can.  On the other hand, if your family goes through 5 bottles of shampoo a month, getting 15 bottles for pennies apiece doesn’t seem like a bad investment at all.

In the end, it’s up to you to decide how and when to coupon.  Just make sure you base your decisions on fact, not fiction.

(Thanks Krazy Coupon Lady)

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5 Ways to Deal with Empty Shelves

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Empty ShelvesAs a couponer and frequent shopper, you’re bound to encounter empty and cleared shelves. Unfortunately, stores do run out of stock, and some couponers abuse the system by overbuying, but these are not things that we can control. So what can you do? Focus on what you can control and make it work!

1. Don’t be part of the problem

Don’t get twenty of one coupon and then clear a shelf of a product when you get to the store. Learn about special ordering. Take the initiative to speak with your local store management about the option of ordering product specifically for you. Don’t take twenty coupon booklets, unload the blinkie machine, pocket the whole tearpad of coupons, or take off every single peelie. If there are only two products left on the shelf, it’s okay to buy both if you need them. This does not constitute shelf-clearing.

2. Don’t be a victim

Don’t waltz into the store on the 6th day of the sale and then cry a river when the shelf is empty of the sale priced items. In fact, even if it’s the first day of the sale and there is an empty shelf, take matters into your own hands. Find the next store and see if they have any stock. Consider calling ahead to the store to ask them about their stock before you spend your day driving around.

3. Make it work

I know many of us live in an area with lots of couponers, making it sometimes difficult to find items in stock in some store locations. I know many of us are working parents without the luxury of kid-free shopping time. I know money is tight and we can sometimes get desperate to get all the deals because we need them so badly.

We’re not alone in our situations.

When you see a couponer buying a cartload of all the last groceries in the store, or when you feel, for whatever reason, someone is doing something in the coupon world that is adversely affecting others, you have two choices:

1. Get angry. Complain, feel discouraged. Maybe even quit trying. You could even give them a dirty look and judge them from afar.

2. Get over it and make it work!

  • Even if it’s hard, shop sooner. Go the first day of the sale or the day new shipments come in.
  • If you live in a hub of coupon activity, drive to a less popular store or price match sale prices at Target or Walmart. Find your niche!
  • Special order, special order, special order! If you’re buying in large quantities, always special order.
  • Be in command of your situation! Talk to your local store manager nicely.  Express your concern and ask if he or she has any suggestions or options for you.
  • Help others around you learn to coupon shop the right way. Teach your friends about special ordering and building a stockpile slowly.
  • Remember that it’s not the last sale of the century! Shampoo will be under $0.50 a bottle again—and soon!  Don’t worry about getting a full year supply all in one shopping trip. The best way to build a stockpile is adding just a handful of items a week.
  • Expand your repertoire of stores. Think outside the obvious box.
  • If a store is out of a product, get a rain check. A rain check is a slip of paper that you can get from a store when they are out of an item that is on sale. The slip of paper allows you to come back when they have the item back in stock to purchase it for the sale price.

4. Be part of the solution

Becoming a Coupon Lady or Gent is all about climbing into the driver’s seat in life and supporting and uplifting your friends, neighbors and fellow shoppers!

Stores don’t want to run out of products.  They make money when they sell products, so help your stores know what to order in! Call your local store manager and set a time to talk with him or her. Share your frustrations and discuss what you can do to solve the problem. Ask about special ordering, and help your manager know what’s going to sell out before it does. Be part of the solution!

5. Focus on what you can control

Do not spend your time obsessing about the actions of others. Instead, focus on what you can control and make it work! If you’re worried about the way cashiers are being treated, go out of your way to be polite. If you’re worried about a shelf being cleared and special ordering isn’t an option, go early and go often to get what your family needs.

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Remove the Guilt by Special Ordering Large Quantities

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woman on phone laptopI used to feel a sense of guilt whenever I’d take a huge chunk of a certain product from the shelves. Now I special order an item I plan on buying in large quantities!

If you’ll be buying more than 10 of an item, consider calling the store and placing a special order. The store will order in the amount you would like, and you can pick it up and pay for it when it comes in. Simply follow these steps for successful special ordering:

1. Determine the number of products you would like to buy, and make sure to have the right amount of coupons you’ll need.
2. Call or visit the store to set up a special order. Request to speak with a manager, preferably the freight manager. State that you want to special order __ number of products, and specify the applicable size and flavor/variety you would like. You’ll want to call the day before or the day the sale starts so you’ll have enough time to get the products in.
3. The manager will take down your name and number and give you the probable delivery day. Make sure you also write down the manager’s name and the stated day.
4. When you go to the store, go to customer service and let them know you’re there to pick up your special order. Once you have your items, you can check out like you normally would.

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Don’t Pay for These 6 Items!

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5If you’ve been couponing for a while now, then you know that there are certain items that you never have to pay for. Why? Because you can get them for free with coupons! Here are six items you can feel confident about getting gratis!

1. Trial sizes

When coupons do not exclude trial/travel size items, you can usually get them free! Look for the section in your store that has small bins or baskets with trial-sized versions of products priced around $1.00. If your coupon value exceeds the price of the item, the cashier will usually need to adjust the price of the coupon down to meet the product’s cost.

2. Oral Care

Toothpaste and toothbrushes are free just about every month at the national drugstores (CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens), usually via rewards and coupons. Floss is often free when $1.00/1 coupons come out, as is Nivea lip balm when a sale is paired with a $3.00/2 coupon. Gum and mints are frequently super cheap or free too.

3. Glucose meters

Often free after rewards or rebates. If you don’t need one, these are great for donating to nursing homes. Keep a lookout for coupons to pair with the sale to make it a moneymaker.

4. Printer paper

Several times a year, office supply stores like Staples offer free-after-rebate reams of printer paper. As a plus, these rebates are usually done online so there’s no need to mail in UPCs or receipts. Pens are also a good example (such as the Bic $1.00/1 coupon that gets you a free package at Walmart), as are greeting cards.

5. Personal care

Watch for feminine pads and liners, nail files, mini first aid kits and single use heat wraps. In the winter, look for free-after-rewards cold medicine. Watch for allergy medicine in the spring.

6. Samples

Not only are these free, they often come with a coupon to use on your next purchase. Favorites include shampoo/conditioner, single serve food (granola bars, cereal, crackers, gum), feminine products, lotion, laundry detergent/fabric softener, artificial sweeteners and perfume/cologne.

(Thanks and Photo Credit The Krazy Coupon Lady!)

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Walgreens: Updated Coupon Policy

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4Walgreens recently updated their Coupon Policy with some new wording and changes. And these honestly aren’t the best changes for us couponers… well, at least in my opinion. Here are the biggest changes to make note of:

Rule #7 Walgreens will not accept coupons that exceed the selling price of an item and no cash back is ever provided in exchange for any coupons. – So it sounds like they will no longer adjust coupons down that exceed the value of an item OR even accept them.

Rule #9For offers when multiple items are purchased and additional items are free (buy 1 get 1 free; buy 2 get 1 free, etc.), the number of coupons applied to that offer cannot exceed the number of items required in the “buy” portion of the offer. – This means that you can no longer use two manufacturer coupons on a buy 1 get 1 FREE sale. 🙁

* Check out the full Coupon Policy here.

What are your thoughts on these changes?

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Drugstores: Better Deals than You Thought !

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save at drugstoresRite Aid, Walgreens, CVS…all drugstores that I always used to avoid shopping at for essentials. Before becoming a couponer, I assumed the prices found at these stores were always high. Fortunately (and surprisingly) that’s not the case! There happen to be mega deals at drugstores if you possess the know-how. Here are a few tips that may just change your retail life!

Moneymakers: Want a store to pay you to take products off their shelves? Get ready to cozy up to your neighborhood CVS, Rite Aid, or Walgreens! Pair the rock bottom sale prices with a coupon, participate in drugstore reward programs, and take advantage of rebate offers to earn more back than what you paid out of pocket. The three major drugstores mentioned above are known for their “free” products each month — where you pay “X” amount for a product and get that same “X” amount back in reward printouts for your next shopping trip. When you add a coupon into the mix, you’ll be gaining more than you spend!

Reward Programs: Make a qualifying purchase and receive a reward printout when you pay through Rite Aid’s +UP Rewards, CVS’ Extra Bucks, and Walgreens’ Register Rewards. Each store does have its own ins and outs as to how their rewards are redeemed and what limits they impose, so check out the specifics with Rite Aid 101CVS 101, and Walgreens 101 for the breakdown on how to maximize your savings!

Working with Limits: Most drugstores have limits on how many sale items a customer can buy or have limited stock on hand because they’re not a grocery store. Instead of getting discouraged, remember that the best way to build a stockpile is slowly, often adding a handful of extra items a week. Shop at the beginning of the sale week, and if a store is out of an item, make sure to get a rain check!

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CVS 101: How to Shop at CVS

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CVS LogoCVS offers great Extra Bucks deals, an amazing rain check policy, and even a magic coupon machine. How could you not want to shop here all the time? Read on to learn how to coupon at CVS!

CVS Extracare Card

cvs extracare cardFirst, you’ll need to sign up for an ExtraCare card.  It’s easy to sign up for a CVS ExtraCare card either at the store or at CVS.com. You may even be eligible for a $4 off $20 purchase coupon just for signing up online! The card is completely free. With every purchase you make at CVS, your cashier will scan your ExtraCare card, which will qualify you for all the discounted pricing and, most importantly, the ExtraBucks offers! You’ll also earn 2% back on all your CVS and CVS.com. You’ll want to hold on to this card; if you lose it, you won’t be able to get some of the CVS coupons I’ll explain below.

ExtraBucks

extrabucks receipts ExtraBucks are very similar to Rite Aid +Up Rewards. ExtraBucks are checkout coupons which print on the bottom of your receipt when you make a qualifying purchase. ExtraBucks promotions are advertised in the CVS weekly ad and, of course, in the deals posted at SavingWithCandy.com.  Here’s an example of how we’ll write up an ExtraBucks deal:ExtraBucks

Vicks NyQuil, 12 oz $6.00
Buy 1, Receive $3.00 ExtraBucks, Limit 2
Use $1.00/1 Vicks Product from PG 10/2
Pay $5.00, Receive $3.00 ExtraBucks
Final Price: $2.00

This particular ExtraBucks deal required that we purchase NyQuil in order to earn a $3.00 ExtraBucks coupon at the bottom of our receipt. To make the deal even better, we use a manufacturer coupon on our purchase. After we pay for the Nyquil, we can look at our receipt and see the $3.00 ExtraBucks which we may use on a future purchase.

Limits: ExtraBucks deals have limits, which are associated with your ExtraCare card. In the above Nyquil example, the limit is two. This means that we can only do two Nyquil ExtraBucks promotions during the entire week’s sale. Even if you shop at multiple stores, you will not be allowed more than two $3.00 Extra Bucks from Nyquil.

CVS often runs ExtraBucks promos such as ”Spend $15 on participating candy, Receive $5 ExtraBucks.” It’s important to note that the $15 minimum purchase requirement is the subtotal reached before customer uses any coupons. If you purchase 5 bags of candy at $3.00 each, you may use manufacturer coupons (and even previously received Extra Bucks) to reduce the amount you must pay, and you will still receive your $5.00 ExtraBucks. One cool thing about the ExtraBucks program being tied to your ExtraCare card is that if you purchase $7 of candy on Monday and then $8 of candy on Thursday, you will receive the ExtraBucks at the bottom of Thursday’s receipt. Your card tracks and totals your purchases for you.

Rolling ExtraBucks. You may use ExtraBucks to pay for other items also participating in ExtraBucks promos, and your new ExtraBucks will still print. You can lower your out-of-pocket by rolling your ExtraBucks and doing multiple transactions. Or, since the promo limits aren’t “per transaction,” you may simply purchase all of your items in one transaction, and every ExtraBucks will print, one after the other, at the bottom of your receipt. I like to take my long receipt home, cut it up, put it in my coupon binder, and use it the next week.

When redeeming ExtraBucks, be aware that if you redeem a $2.00 ExtraBucks on a $0.99 order, you will forfeit the additional $1.01 value. (Other drugstores’ registers will reject the reward coupon if its value exceeds the subtotal. CVS computers will accept the coupon and adjust it down, so be careful that you don’t waste those hard-earned bucks!)

Extracare Coupon Center

cvs coupon centerThe ExtraCare Coupon Center, otherwise known as the Magic Coupon Machine, can be found inside your local CVS store. It also doubles as a price-scanner. Locate the machine at your store and make a habit of scanning your ExtraCare card every time you shop! In fact, it’s even a good idea to scan your card more than once!  You will receive coupons from the machine just for doing so! Each week we’ll post about the coupons that have been reported to be printing. Coupons vary by customer, so you may get the coupons we told you about, or you may get something even better!

cvs rain check back

cvs rain check front

Rain Checks

CVS has the best rain check system of all the drugstores! If you find that a product which was part of an ExtraBucks promotion is out of stock, simply let your cashier know and he will write you up a rain check.

Irish Spring Body Wash $2.99, sale price
Buy 1, Receive $2.00 ExtraBucks, Limit 1

If you found the above product out of stock, the customer service representative would write your rain check for the $2.99 sale price, and indicate that it is to earn $2.00 ExtraBucks. This means that you can save the rain check, and next time the product is back in stock, you can return to the store to purchase it for only $2.99, and the associate will “force print” your ExtraBucks rewards. CVS rain checks do not have expiration dates, and you can use manufacturer & store coupons in addition to your rain check on the purchase of the item(s). If the product that is out of stock was part of a limited promo (in the case of the Irish Spring, the limit was one), the rain check will be written for the purchase of only one body wash. You will not be able to use the rain check to buy multiple body washes for the promotional price.

CVS Beauty Club

cvs_beautyclubAnother great way to earn rewards for things you are already purchasing, is to sign up for the ExtraCare Beauty Club. For every $50.00 you spend on qualifying Beauty items at CVS (pre-coupon), you will earn $5.00 ExtraBucks, which can be applied to future CVS store purchases, just like the ExtraBucks you earn from weekly promotions. You’ll also receive $3.00 ExtraBucks on your birthday (if you add your birthdate to your online profile).

To join for free, simply visit the CVS Beauty Club website and link your registration to your existing ExtraCare account. You can also sign up in-store with an enrollment certificate. Currently, CVS is offering a 10% shopping pass when you enroll. Note that your qualifying purchases may take up to 48 hours to apply to your account, so if you don’t see them reflected in your Beauty Club balance right away, check again in a couple of days. Print your rewards from your online account or scan your ExtraCare card in the store to receive a printout.

Qualifying Beauty purchases include items from the following categories: Cosmetics, Ethnic Hair Care, Fragrances, Hair Accessories, Hair Appliances, Hair Care, Hair Color, Hosiery, Healthy Skin Care and Skin Care. Excludes items from Trial & Travel, gift cards and prescriptions. Some items known to not count include: Razors, shaving cream, deodorant, some men’s body wash, and sunscreen.

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Walgreens 101: How to Shop at Walgreens

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Walgreens logo 2Walgreens can be an overwhelming place to shop with coupons, but once you understand how to do so correctly, you’ll have a hard time staying away from this store!

Before attempting any deals at Walgreens, you must be a member of the Balance Rewards Program. You must have a Balance Rewards account to receive any Walgreens sale prices or Balance Rewards Points. If you have not yet signed up for the program, do so in a Walgreens store or sign up online. Every time you check out, be sure to swipe your card or enter the phone number that is attached to your Balance Rewards account.

Walgreens In-Ad Coupons

walgreens in ad couponsWalgreens store coupons are found in the weekly Walgreens ad released every Sunday. You can find this ad in the Sunday paper or near the front of your local Walgreens store. Any coupon found in the Walgreens weekly ad may be used in addition to a manufacturer coupon on the purchase of a single item. This is called “stacking” and is specifically allowed by the Walgreens Coupon Policy, which reads:

When purchasing a single item, Walgreens accepts one manufacturer coupon and applicable Walgreens coupon(s) for the purchase of a single item. . .

Walgreens in-ad coupons nearly always state a limit on the number of products you may purchase using the coupon. If a Walgreens in-ad coupon entitles you to purchase iced tea at the discounted price of two for $1.00 and states, “Limit 4″, you may purchase up to four iced teas at the price of $0.50 each. If you wish to purchase more than the limit states on the coupon, break your items into two separate transactions. Your store has the right to limit the number of items you purchase, so please remember to consult your local management. Please be courteous to other shoppers eager to get the same great deal!

When stacking a Walgreens coupon with a manufacturer coupon at Walgreens, it is important to remember to hand the cashier your manufacturer coupons first, followed by store coupons. Truthfully, it really only matters when you’re shopping with Buy One, Get One coupons, but I like to stay in the habit of doing it this way so I never forget.

Halls Cough Drops $1.39, regular price
In-Ad Coupon: Halls Cough Drops $0.99 each, limit 4
B1G1 Free Halls Cough Drops manufacturer coupon

If you hand the in-ad coupon first, here’s how the transaction will go:

Buy 2 Halls Cough Drops $1.39
The in-ad coupon makes them $0.99 each (savings $0.80)
Then use BOGO Free manufacturer coupon (savings $0.99)
Final Price: $0.49 each, when you buy 2

If you use the manufacturer coupon first, it will go like this:

Buy 2 Halls Cough Drops $1.39
Use BOGO Free Manufacturer coupon (subtracts $1.39)
Then use in-ad coupon (savings $0.80)
Final Price: $0.29 each, when you buy 2

When you present the manufacturer coupon first, the full retail price of the “free” item will be subtracted from your total. If you present the in-ad coupon first, the products will be discounted first and your BOGO coupon will deduct only the lesser price from your total. So, it’s manufacturer coupons first, in-ad coupons second and then Register Rewards last.

Register Rewards

Walgreens-Register-RewardsWalgreens has a promotional checkout-coupon program much like the Catalina “Your Bucks” programs you may be familiar with from your local grocery store. At Walgreens, these rewards are called Register Rewards. A Register Reward (sometimes abbreviated as RR) is a long, receipt-like coupon that prints after you make a qualifying purchase. Flip through your Walgreens ad and look for products which state that you will “receive register reward” with purchase. After purchasing the advertised item, you will receive a Register Reward to use on your next purchase. It is basically a coupon that prints at checkout and it is good on almost anything in the store on a future shopping trip. It’s important to reiterate that the savings you receive will not be on the product you’re buying but on a future purchase.

Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief 360 Toothpaste, 4 oz $4.99
Buy 1, Receive $3.00 Register Reward, Limit 1
Use $1.00/1 – Colgate Sensitive Pro-Relief Toothpaste – (colgate.com)
Pay $3.99, Receive $3.00 Register Reward
Final Price:  $0.99

Register Rewards are typically good for “$X off your next in store purchase”. They usually expire two weeks from the date they printed.

Rolling Register Rewards

  • Register Rewards have a limit: You can earn one Register Reward per offer per transaction. If toothpaste is producing a $3.00 Register Reward, and you want to buy two of them, you’ll must separate your order into two transactions. If you purchase both toothpastes in one shopping order, you will only receive one $3.00 Register Reward. If you purchase one toothpaste, receive a $3.00 Register Reward, then purchase a second toothpaste in a second transaction and receive another $3.00 Register Reward.  Please remember that stores have the right to limit the quantity of promotional items which you purchase. Some stores may also limit the number of transactions you can do in one day. Be respectful and abide by all policies.
  • Register Rewards do not “roll”. If you follow our instructions and separate your two toothpastes from the above example into two transactions, do not use the $3.00 Register Reward produced from the purchase of toothpaste #1 to offset your payment of toothpaste #2. If you do, you will not receive a second $3.00 Register Reward for the purchase of toothpaste #2.
  • In other words, when you hope to earn a Register Reward in any given transaction, don’t use a Register Reward as payment that was earned from the same product or brand as the Register Reward you hope to earn.
  • To maximize Register Reward savings, you have two options.
Alternate between different products.  Continuing with the toothpaste example: If, in addition to purchasing toothpaste, you also want to purchase body lotion, which is producing a $2.00 Register Reward, you could do the following:
Buy 1 Colgate Toothpaste $4.99
Use $1.00/1 manufacturer coupon
Pay: $3.99, Receive $3.00 Register Reward
Buy 1 Nivea Lotion $8.99
Use $3.00/1 manufacturer coupon
Use $3.00 Register Reward from Colgate
Pay: $2.99, Receive $2.00 Register Reward
Buy 1 Colgate Toothpaste $4.99
Use $1.00/1 manufacturer coupon
Use $2.00 Register Reward from Nivea

Pay: 1.99, Receive $3.00 Register Reward

lather, rinse, repeat. . .

If you receive a Register Reward generated by the purchase of product X, you cannot use it to buy a second product  X if you want another Register Reward to print. The best way to get around this is to find two different products that trigger a similar value Register Reward and alternate buying those items in separate transactions. Pay for product Y using the Register Reward from product X, then use the Register Reward from product Y to pay for your second product X and so on.   (Now go ahead, reread this paragraph a few times until it clicks!) 

Roll week-to-week.  I like to use as little brain power as possible, so I prefer to roll my Register Rewards from week to week. This means that during my very first shopping trip to Walgreens as a “coupon virgin,” I paid quite a bit out of my pocket, probably about $30.00. But I walked out with a wallet full of $24.00 in Register Rewards, which I saved for the next week. Then, during Week Two, I used all my Register Rewards from Week One and didn’t have to worry about any conflicts.

Balance Rewards Points

Each week, Walgreens offers Balance Rewards Points with qualifying purchases. Check the weekly ad and the sale tags in the stores to find products that are generating Balance Rewards Points.

To Earn Points

Purchase qualifying products and earn Points! It’s a simple as that! Be sure to scan your card or enter your phone number at checkout to earn Points.

You can earn multiple Points in a single transaction. Certain items, such as soda or bottled water, do have a limit listed in the ad. Other than that, there is not a limit on how many times you can receive Points from the same promotion.

Manufacturer coupons and Register Rewards do not interfere with any Points earned. In other words, you will still earn Points when using manufacturer coupons and Register Rewards. The monthly Walgreens Savings Book coupons are the exception to this rule. They do count against your total. If you are doing a “Spend X amount of dollars, Receive X amount of Points” promotion, you need to meet the specified total before manufacturer coupons but after the monthly Walgreens coupons.

Your Balance Rewards card does not keep track of purchases. If you need to spend a certain dollar amount to receive Points, you need to reach that dollar amount in a single transaction.

At the end of your transaction, the Balance Rewards Points you earned will show up on your receipt right away! If they don’t, call Walgreens Customer Service, and they will credit the Points to your account.

To Redeem Points

Once you reach at least 1,000 Points on your card, you can redeem them. 1,000 Points equal a $1.00 reward. 40,000 Points equal a $50.00 reward. It is advantageous to save your Points so you get more bang for your buck!

(1) 1,000 Points = $1.00
(2) 2,000 Points = $2.00
(3) 3,000 Points = $3.00
(4) 5,000 Points = $5.00
(5) 10,000 Points = $10.00
(6) 18,000 Points = $20.00
(7) 30,000 Points = $35.00
(8) 40,000 Points = $50.00

To redeem Points, follow the prompts on the debit card pad or ask your cashier.

If you are using your Balance Rewards Points reward dollars as payment in a transaction, you cannot earn additional Points. In other words, Points cannot be earned when you are paying with Points. However, you still can earn Register Rewards even if you pay with Points.

As long as you shop at Walgreens and use your card at least once every six months, your Points will not expire for three years.

You cannot redeem or earn Points on purchases of: dairy, stamps, prescriptions, alcohol, tobacco, phone cards, lottery tickets, charitable donations, transportation passes, or money orders.

To read more, access the full Balance Rewards Terms and Conditions or read Walgreens’ Balance Rewards Q&A.

Summary

  • You will not earn Points in a transaction in which you redeem Points.
  • You will earn Points in a transaction in which you use Register Rewards as payment.
  • You will earn Register Rewards in a transaction in which you redeem Points.

Monthly Savings Book1

Another great way to save at Walgreens is by using the monthly coupon booklet found near the front of the store by the weekly ads. You don’t need to clip these. If you are buying two of the same item and there is a coupon for it, simply show it to the cashier and she will scan it once. If you bought two items, it will apply the coupon two times. These are store coupons and can be used in conjunction with manufacturer coupons to maximize savings.

Paperless Digital Coupons

walgreens paperless couponsVisit Walgreens.com from your computer or from the Walgreens app to find digital coupons. If you are not logged in, you will need to sign in with your username and password. Click on the “Clip” button on each desired coupon to add it to your account. Up to 100 coupons can be clipped to your account at one time. After clipping, buy the products that correspond with the coupons. Be sure you have scanned your Balance Rewards card or input your phone number at checkout. The coupon will automatically deduct from your total. Each paperless coupon can only be redeemed one time.

Paperless coupons are manufacturer coupons. Each one can be stacked with a Walgreens in-ad coupon or a Walgreens coupon from the monthly savings book. Each paperless coupon cannot be stacked with another physical manufacturer coupon on a single item.

Coupon-to-Product Ratio

The cash register at Walgreens will not allow the cashier to accept more manufacturer coupons than total products purchased. Register Rewards used as payment are considered manufacturer coupons. If you are purchasing five items and using five manufacturer coupons and a Register Reward, the cash register will make an angry beep and reject the sixth coupon. The cashier will not be able to override this action, so you, as the consumer need to know how to troubleshoot the problem! A Register Reward is recognized by the computer system as a manufacturer coupon. Each manufacturer coupon contains a barcode, and the register matches each manufacturer coupon with one of the products in the shopping order.  When the cashier attempts to scan the sixth coupon in the above example, the register cannot find a correlating product and rejects the coupon.

To solve this dilemma, you may purchase what we call a “filler” item. A filler item is any inexpensive product in the store that you add to your purchase so the register will accept that extra sixth coupon.  This might be a small candy caramel ($0.39) or pencil ($0.05) near the register or, my personal favorite, an extra copy of the Sunday paper. It doesn’t matter what the product is or even what it costs.  You just need to ensure that you have at least as many items as manufacturer coupons and Register Rewards used to pay. Here’s the equation: total number of Register Rewards + total number of manufacturer coupons cannot exceed total number of products purchased.  Got it?

Right now, couponing at Walgreens may seem about as easy as doing long division, but I promise it isn’t as bad as you think!

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Couponing Tip: Rain Checks

The links in the post below may contain affiliate links. Read the full disclosure.

rain check2 Rain Check: a slip of paper that you can get from a store when they are out of an item that is on sale. The slip of paper allows you to come back when they have the item back in stock to purchase it for the sale price.

Rain Check policies will vary by store, so make sure you check each store’s rules before using them. Some stores have an expiration date on the rain check and others (like CVS) don’t. Also, some stores will put a maximum quantity amount per item.

Rain Check pointers:

  • Make sure that the coupons you are using on the item you need a rain check for won’t expire before the store gets the items back in stock. No use going through the trouble–just to have expired coupons!
  • Most stores allow you to use a rain check at a different location of the same store (a Walgreens should honor a rain check written at another Walgreens 5 miles away). Rain checks are not redeemable at a different store (you cannot get a rain check from Rite Aid and then redeem it at Walmart 5 weeks later).
  • You cannot get a rain check on Clearance Prices.
  • When redeeming your rain check, be courteous of the checker and let them know you will be using one–BEFORE they start to ring you up. They are going to need to manually enter in the amount.

rain-checks

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Rite Aid 101: How to Shop at Rite Aid

The links in the post below may contain affiliate links. Read the full disclosure.

rite aid wellness 2In many ways Rite Aid’s rewards program and coupon policy outdoes its competitors.  If you’re on the fence, wondering whether it’s time you mastered the art of shopping at Rite Aid, take my advice and don’t delay another day. With every week that goes by, you’re missing out on more and more bargains!

Wellness+ Card

Sign up for the free Rite Aid Wellness+ card at RiteAid.com. Each time you shop, use your phone number or hand your Wellness+ card to the cashier.  In addition to special savings, using the Wellness+ card will qualify you to receive +Up Rewards (more info below) and save you an additional 10% on Rite Aid brand products everyday.

In-Ad Coupons

rite-aid-in-ad-couponsRite Aid in-ad coupons can be found in the weekly sales circular in the Sunday paper and near the entrance of your local Rite Aid store.  These are store coupons with the sequence RC49 preceding the numerals under the barcode.  Rite Aid coupon policy calls these “Rite Aid Manufacturer Coupons”.  (It’s like a coupon contradiction: Is it a Rite Aid store coupon or a manufacturer coupon?)  Rest assured these are store coupons.

Video Values

rite-aid-video-valuesRite Aid Video Values, otherwise known as Adperk coupons, are short commercial videos (aprox 0:30-3:00 min) that you may watch at RiteAid.Adperk.com.  After watching each video, enter the security code and sign into your account, and a corresponding coupon will be added to your rewards account. To print, click on the “Rewards” tab and select the coupons you’d like. You can print immediately after watching or save until the middle of the following month.

Video Values coupons are store coupons, but, confusingly enough, they have “Manufacturer Coupon” printed across the top.  But don’t worry; Rite Aid specifically separates these coupons in their coupon policy.  The important piece of information to look for on these coupons is the numeral sequence RC49 beneath the coupon’s barcode.

Video Values coupons are meant to be printed and redeemed once.  Multiple copies or sharing of Video Values coupons is against the Rite Aid policy.

+Up Rewards

rite-aid-up-rewards

+UP Rewards are like coupons that are valid on a future shopping order.  Look for +Up Reward deals when browsing through the Rite Aid sales circular or viewing the weekly deals on SavingWithCandy.com.  Purchase the participating product with your Wellness+ card, hand over all your coupons, pay for the shopping order and receive the +Up Reward! +Up Rewards are automatically loaded to your Wellness+ card unless you opt to have them print at the bottom of your Rite Aid receipts. I would recommend opting to print the +Up Rewards. Your cashier can do this for you at checkout. Just tell your cashier that you’d like to opt out of the Load2Card +Up Rewards and you’d like to receive printed +Up Rewards, and they can change it in the system.

Rite Aid’s +Up Rewards typically have limits. These limits are stated in the weekly ads and on sale tags of a qualifying product.  Please remember that Rite Aid reserves the right to limit quantities, but even if they don’t, it’s important  to be courteous to your fellow shoppers by leaving some product for everyone else.  Sometimes +Up Reward will carry a limit; often the limit will be two. Here’s an example:

The product: Colgate Sensitive Toothpaste $3.50
The promo: Buy 1, Receive $3.50 +Up Reward, Limit 2

Buy 2 Colgate Sensitive Toothpaste $3.50
Use two $1.00/1 Colgate manufacturer coupons
Pay: $5.00, Receive two $3.50 +Up Rewards
Final Price: $2.00 Moneymaker!

Even though the cashier didn’t open his til and hand you two crisp $1.00 bills, you’re receiving +Up Rewards, which hold a value greater than the $5.00 you paid for the entire shopping order.  We call this a moneymaker!  In the above example, you can also see that we redeemed a manufacturer coupon against the toothpastes, and we still received the full value +Up Reward.  You may redeem both manufacturer and store coupons against these products without affecting the value of the +Up Reward. Sometimes you can even get your out-of-pocket total down to nearly zero, and the +Up Rewards still print right out!

+Up Rewards may be redeemed on any item in the store, even a gallon of milk (exclusions include prescriptions, tobacco, alcohol, and lottery tickets).  Multiple +Up Rewards can be redeemed in one shopping order as long as the total value of +Up Rewards does not make the subtotal drop below zero.  +Up Rewards generally will “roll”, meaning that if you use a +Up Reward which printed after the purchase of Colgate Toothpaste to buy another toothpaste, you’ll still get another +Up Reward.  BUT, there is no need to “roll” these +Up Rewards since Rite Aid’s computer system will print multiple rewards on one receipt. You can purchase both toothpastes in one transaction and receive two +Up Rewards.

A +Up Reward can be redeemed starting at 6:00 a.m. on the day after it was earned. It will expire 14 days after it was issued.

Stacking Coupons

The Rite Aid coupon policy allows the customer to use more than one coupon per item as long as the total of the coupons is equal to or less than the price of the product, before sales tax.  The best part about stacking coupons at Rite Aid is that you are allowed to use three (yes, three!) coupons per item!  Here’s a quote straight from the policy:

No more than:

  • one “48” Rite Aid Valuable coupon,
  • one “49” Rite Aid Manufacturer coupon, and
  • one “5” Manufacturer coupon can be used on a single item. 

Now you see why it’s important to look at the first numerals along the barcode on your coupon!  You can use these numerals to determine how many coupons can be redeemed against one item!  And, if you can believe it, this gets even better!  You can also redeem +Up Rewards and use a coupon such as $5 off $20 purchase!

LIMITS: Rite Aid isn’t throwing money at us like the lottery. They do impose some limits for shoppers to work around. Rite Aid limits shoppers to no more than four identical coupons in one shopping order. Quantities allowed are up to the store manager’s sole discretion.

Buy One, Get One Free Coupons

Shoppers used to be able to stack a BOGO coupon with a BOGO sale at Rite Aid in order to get two products for free.  Rite Aid’s updated policy no longer allows this practice.  In regards to BOGO coupons specifically, the policy states,

. . . only one coupon can be used for each pair of items purchased. A customer can use one “cents off” coupon in conjunction with the item they are purchasing on a Buy One Get One Free promotion (or with a Buy One Get One Free coupon), although the value of the cents off coupon cannot exceed the selling price of the item.

Buy 2 Special K Cereal $5.00
Buy 1, Get 1 Free store promotion
Use 1 $1.00/1 manufacturer coupon
Final Price: $2.00 each, when you buy 2

It would have been great to have been able to use two manufacturer coupons, or to have used a BOGO manufacturer coupon, but since the policy specifically prohibits this, we will be happy to use one manufacturer coupon for every two items when they are part of a BOGO sale.

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