Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Drug Store Shopping

O.k. something I just learned that I love passing around!
Most of the drug store chains will PAY YOU TO SHOP THERE.
I swear to god... I didn't know how it worked either and was skeptical, but after reading books and blogs, etc... and trying it for myself.... it's AMAZING.

Here is how it works.

All of the drug stores require you to sign up for their little discount card... it's the future baby - get used to it. They need to track your purchase electronically, and these little cards let them do that and much more for their marketing/consumer teams.

In return, you get awesome sale discounts AND REWARDS.

Each drug store has a different policy so it's worthwhile going to their website and reading about it so you fully understand how it works. I will use Rite Aid as my example as that's what's across the street and what I use the most.

I mentioned in my previous post how I had a B1G1 Free coupon for Special K and then one of my fave blogs told me Rite Aid was having a B1G1 Free sale on Special K - so I was super psyched because I was able to PRINT 2 of these coupons, which meant 4 FREE BOXES OF CEREAL!

So, I went over and got my stuff and then looked at the bottom of my receipt and saw that for each box of cereal I had "bought" Rite Aid gave me $1 to spend on a food item the next time I went in. So, not only did I get 4 free boxes of cereal - I got $4 to spend on a return trip.
(consequently, I went back and got 2 more boxes of Special K the same week using my FREE $4 and they were still B1G1 -so I spent like, .50 at the end of the day for 6 boxes of cereal.

Seriously, how can you beat that?

The money they gave me was in the form of an Up Reward. If you look at their website or browse their flyer you will see that they often mention up rewards. If you buy a certain item (regardless of whether you use a coupon or not) the store will give you a credit to use within a certain time frame to come back and buy something else.

Most of the time it's 1 or 2 dollars in up rewards (FOR EACH ITEM YOU GET - so if you get multiples of that item, you get multiple credits)
Once I bought my hubby one bottle of cold medicine and got $4 in up rewards which I was able to use the next time I went in.

I read a book written by a couponing mom that said you should do as much shopping as you possibly can at drug stores because between sales and the fact that they take manufacturers coupons, and give you reward money, you save tons of money. Now I see her point and am all about it.

You have to know how these rewards work in order to take advantage, because they certainly aren't pointing out to you that you have free money on the bottom of your receipt... so that's why I say go to the stores website and read about their reward program so that you know if your favorite store offers one.

Depending on how hard core you want to be, you can shop around and make multiple shopping trips to different grocery stores, drug stores, etc... and use up your coupon stash while doing it and end up paying almost nothing for everything you buy. It takes some adjusting and discipline, but it can be done. For those of us who just want to save some extra money every week - start out by just matching coupons to sales at ONE STORE.
See how you do with your stash of coupons and the sales flyer - use the blogs and do your shopping and tell me that it isn't addicting knowing how much money you AREN'T spending!

By the way... the way coupons work is that the manufacturer pays back the retailer- so it's not like you are "screwing" the retailer out of money - they will still get paid for the item you are buying, only it's the manufacturer that is paying them, not you.

Another good experience I had using Rewards was at a CVS on a super fancy spin brush that costs like, $23 - I had a $10 coupon making it $13 and then the store gave me a $13 credit to spend in the store. So, I bought my spin brush for $13 and then turned right back around in the store and bought another $13 worth of stuff that I didn't have to pay for!

I hope this info helps you understand the rewards a little better. I know it's annoying to have all those cards on your keychain - but it's worth it. And if you really don't want to carry your card, you might be able to sign up and then use your phone number every time you go in versus carrying that card with you all the time. (I do this at Rite Aid)

Happy Wednesday!

1 comment:

  1. If you have an iPhone download the Cardstar App and you can store all of your reward cards there. It's my favorite App because all you do is upload the rewards card number and that produces a bar code that you can just pull up and show each time you go to that store. I've had luck with every reward program I participate in!