Saturday, October 17, 2009

Bargain Shopping - CVS

We've discussed how to take part in the single rebate check program that Rite Aid offers. I want to make a quick correction to that first Rite Aid post. Rite Aid does not have a membership card. You only have to sign up for the rebate program online. When you buy your rebate items, just save the receipt and enter the receipt number online. Sorry, but I got my store cards all mixed up!
Anyways, let's talk about how to take advantage of the Extra Bucks program offered by CVS.
With CVS, you do have to get a member extra care card to participate in the extra bucks program. Fill out the form at the front register in the store the next time you drop by. The card looks like this:The CVS Extra Care program is a little different from the Rite Aid rebate program. CVS offers "extra bucks" on certain items each week. To find out what items are being offered with extra bucks, you have to check the weekly circular.
To view the weekly circular on the CVS website, click on THIS LINK.

When you look through the circular, you are looking for extra bucks offers.The offers will look something like the Vaseline Sheer Infusion item offered in clipping of the circular:The extra bucks offer will say "you pay 7.99 with card" and then there will be a line right underneath. Below the line, it will say "extra bucks reward 7.00." Then you see a red or yellow box with three rounded corners that says "it's like getting it for 0.99 after extra bucks!"

Here are some more examples:Sometimes the extra bucks will completely cover the price of the item and it will say "it's like getting it for FREE after extra bucks!" I couldn't find any examples of those in the circular I used, but definitely keep your eye out for those.Usually though, the extra bucks will just give you a discount on the item. How much of a discount varies from item to item and week to week. Some items are more worth it than others.

Another important thing to pay attention to when looking at these ads is the number of each item you are allowed to purchase to get an extra bucks reward. Listed in small print at the bottom of each extra bucks offer it will say "extra Buck offer limit of 5 per household with card." It could be "2 per household" or "1 per household." but that means that if I can get $10 back in extra bucks and there is a limit of 3 per household, then I can actually get $30 back by purchasing three of the items. Here's an entire page of the circular with extra bucks offers. Look at the bottom of each red square to see the limit per household (click to enlarge):Do you think you can spot an extra bucks offer in the ad now?

I recommend that you look through the weekly circular once a week. The circulars go from Sunday through Saturday, so it's best to try and get items earlier in the week before they all run out.

Select which items you think you need or which contain the best extra bucks offers.

Go to CVS, find the items you want, and puchase them using your extra bucks card.

DO NOT THROW OUT YOUR RECEIPT. When you purchase extra bucks items, at the bottom of your receipt you will have an "Extra Care Coupon" that looks like this:All of the extra bucks that you purchased will show up in a series of coupons at the bottom of the receipt. Tear or cut them off of the bottom of your receipt and save them for the next time you go to CVS for more extra bucks offers. Keep them in your wallet or in an envelope in your purse.

Use your extra bucks receipt clippings to purchase your new extra bucks offers. You are basically rolling over money. You buy an extra bucks item using extra bucks and you get even more extra bucks for your next purchase. In this way, you rarely ever have to spend any of your own money. For example - using these three extra bucks coupons, I could purchase $4.39 worth of items for free the next time I go to CVS. If I use these receipts to purchase other extra bucks items, then I rarely ever have to use my own money.The offers differ from week to week. Some weeks you might only get $5 in extra bucks, other weeks you could potentially get $40 in extra bucks.

You can even buy one or two items at a time and then use the extra bucks from those items to purchase other extra bucks items right there at the register. All in one trip. I've watched my mother-in-law do this. It's somewhat mind-boggling. I think she purchased 10 items total by purchasing only 2 or three at a time and then using the extra bucks to purchase the other items. Then she only paid about a 25 cents total in actual money. Everything else was paid in extra bucks. Pretty crazy!

If you purchase items every week, you constantly rollover extra bucks and can get all sorts of goodies without ever spending much of your own money. I recommend taking a calculator into the store with you. It helps you to figure out how many items you can purchase with the extra bucks that you already have. Then the calculator can help you figure out how many items you can purchase with the extra bucks you just got from the purchase you just made with those extra bucks.

If I'm not making any sense, you can always go HERE for the CVS Overview & FAQs.

P.S. I'm sure some of this is a little confusing. I'm not sure I'm explaining it all that well - but if you are my sister-in-law ;) , then I can always show you in person or you can ask mom the next time you see her. Let me know!

P.P.S. Mom - did I miss anything important?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Your comments make my day!!