Ok, if you know me, you know that I have a coupon/discount/deal for practically everything I buy... I'm lucky that way I guess (though it has more to do with logic than luck) however, even if you don't feel you have any time to clip a coupon or the such... you can take advantage of the easy deals... what are these easy deals... the ones that drugstores offer for FREE... yes... that's right.... FREE... You follow their process, and the only $$$ you are out is tax (now of course, if you're a good deal hunter, you are probably going to combine a coupon in there, and make money, but that's a different post... this post is for the folks who are just starting out and trying to make sense of it all).
So, this week, let's start at CVS. I'm not going to go through the whole CVS101 - because it's been explained on other blogs... if you need a crash course, might I suggest.... CVS101 courtesy of Money Saving Mom to get you going. Basically, CVS is pretty shopper friendly, you don't have to wait for a rebate, the rebate prints back out to you instantly in the store, in the form of "ECB's" or Extra Care Bucks, which are just dollars that can be spent on store purchases... just make sure you have your handy dandy little CVS Extra Care Card. So... back to this week, combining some deals that CVS has for the week, along with what they have as some Monthly deals, here is what even the laziest among you can pick up... (Now please check your circular if you don't live in the Lexington Metro area, there are a couple of random places that get different CVS ads, but most should find this works just fine).
Purchase Always Infinity Pads - They are priced 4.98 this week, when you buy them you get 4.98 back... the advertisement says limit 1, it's actually coming back as 2... so here's how you do that... Your initial investment is $5.28 - that's the price of 1 pack (w/tax) - You get $4.98 printed back, then you buy your second one (you can carry them both up to the register at the same time, and have the cashier split the purchase, provided the line isn't out the door, the cashier won't mind, they are used to this!). Second pack, you use your $4.98 ECB that printed from the first one, and you pay the difference in tax ($0.30) - So far, you've spent $5.58, and you have 2 packs of these (If you have no need for them, I'm sure you know someone who does, or heck, send them to me, lol!) . You also, have ANOTHER $4.98 ECB from CVS... Then you can go back and buy the Well Patch Athritis Patches (3 Count) @ 5.99 each, they are generating 5.99 in ECB's, so you'll buy one, and it will be $6.35, you'll use your $4.98 ECB, and pay the difference ($1.37) and they will give you back $5.99, now you can roll this one 4 more times, each time, you'll now have a $5.99 ECB, and will only be paying tax ($0.35) each time. So, then... you buy Glaceau Vitamin Water, it's 2.29 (plus tax I believe) AND you pick up CVS Brand Vitamin D (because you know you need more Vitamins anyway) It's onsale for $2.99 this month for 100 count (actually it's a 120 Count bottle at my store) and they generate $2.99 back... so the total for these items is $5.28 before tax, so throw in a couple packs of travel tissue (they are by the register, and are 2 for $1... it's cold season, you need something to blow your nose) - That should bring your total up to $6.28 plus tax, and you'll use your $5.99 ECB, and pay the difference, less than a buck... You will also now have $5.28 in ECB's to use) So after all of it, you've spent somewhere in the neighborhood of $7 -$8 bucks (depending on how many times you got the Well Patch), and you have 2 packs of Always Infinity, 1-5 Boxes of Well Patch (great for achy bones), a vitamin water, some vitamins, and a couple travel packs of Tissue... PLUS you have $5.28 to spend again... at this point, you can go crazy and buy yourself something pretty... or... save them for the next deal... See was that so hard????
Now, we can move on to Walgreens.... Walgreen's system is a bit different, their rebates are submitted online or via mail. You can get real $$$ back, or if you put it on a Walgreens Gift Card, they will give you an extra 10%, I recommend this, because, well, it's extra money, and after the first month when you send off for it, you'll get your rebates FASTER. Now Walgreens also has something called, Register Rewards (RR) but I'm not going to talk about them in this post because we're not using them for these... Now you will spend a little more to get yourself started at Walgreens, but after that, you'll be able to re-spend the same money OVER and OVER... So What are you buying... This month, you can pick up Nivea Men's Body Wash, it's FREE after Rebate (FAR), Extreme Energy 2 Pack (FAR), Your Choice of L'Oreal Cleansers (FAR) & Rimmel Lasting Finish Mineral Foundation (FAR) - You simply pay for them, go home, sign into their website, enter a couple things from your receipt, and submit... they will mail you your Gift Card... no UPC's to clip, nuttin... Then that money comes back to you, and you can use it next month for their Freebies.
Now let's move on to Rite Aid... I have to admit, I don't shop Rite Aid as often, so if you really want to know about alot of their deals, check out IHEARTRITEAID for all the scenarios and deals. However I do know that this week, you can buy Crest Whitening Rinse for $3.99 and then use their SCR (Single Check Rebate) to get your $ back...
So... was that so hard? I mean, very minimal effort, and you start the cycle... once you get started, you just keep rolling your "refunded" money back into the store, so you continue to bring home products at little to no cost to yourself... and then... you can use COUPONS to actually make money... but if that overwhelms you, BABY STEPS... start with Free...
And you know those dollars I was pointing out spending at CVS... Check and see if your bank offers a rewards program, I earn points for all the $ I spend through my bank (National City) that I cash in and get CVS gift cards, which takes care of my tax, so then I spend almost nothing out of pocket there too!