Friday, January 24, 2014

Making money at CVS

When I started this blog I briefly mentioned that I coupon, but I said I'd leave that to the pros. Well today (and maybe every once in a while) I'll show you why you should be couponing too. I made $4.15 by buying all the stuff you see in the picture below. Yes, made money!

Let me show you how...

First, you need to sign up for a CVS Extra Care rewards card. You can easily do that online or in the store. My husband and I each have our own so that we can take advantage of more deals if there is a limit like one offer per card.

Second, start looking through the Smart Source (SS), P&G (PG), and Red Plum (RP) coupon inserts in the Sunday paper. You can save the most money if you have multiple copies of each insert so ask your friends and family for their coupons. I've found that four copies is the perfect amount for my couponing needs. I don't even subscribe to the paper. I work at a university and get mine from the machines for free!

Third, take advantage of CVS coupons from the magic coupon machine. There is a machine near the entrance of each store and you simply scan your card and it will spit out CVS coupons that can be stacked on top of manufacturer coupons.

Look how happy it makes granny! Image source here.
You can also create an account with your CVS card online and then you can simply check your rewards on the website. I recommend doing both.

Fourth, stack a manufacturer coupon with a CVS coupon on top of a deal that's offering Extra Care Bucks that week. Extra Care Bucks are basically like a gift card to CVS that you can use the next time you're there.

Here is how I made $4.15 on all of those items:

My husband did the deodorant transaction on his card. CVS was offering $6 ECB for $12 spent on certain items.

Buy 6 Speed Sticks  = $11.94 which will trigger the $6 ECB
Use 4 B1G1 free Speed Stick coupons from the 1/19 SS (this means Smart Source insert)
Pay $5.97 and get $6 back in ECB = FREE and a moneymaker!
I made even more money because the magic coupon machine spit out a $2 off $8 deodorant purchase
Plus, we used an ECB from a previous CVS visit
The total was $1.52. We have a $6 ECB that we can spend next time we're at CVS, so we made $4.48.

I did the second transaction on my card since the $6 ECB on $12 purchase is only allowed once this week. By using my card we were able to get another $6 ECB.

Buy 4 Colgate toothpastes = $12
Use 4 $1 coupons from the 1/19 SS = now $8
Pay $8 and get $6 back in ECB. That's $2 for four, or .50 each!
However, the magic coupon machine spit out a $2 off $12 toothpaste purchase plus I used some ECB rewards as well.

Dish soap which was on sale for $0.99.
Use the $0.25/1 Palmolive Dish Liquid coupon found in the 1/19 SS
Plus, use the $0.25/1 CVS coupon printing from the magic coupon machine
Final cost $0.49!

So I paid $6.33 and earned $6 in ECB. Between the two transactions I earned $4.15.

Once you start shopping at CVS on a regular basis, you'll have ECB rewards that you can use as well.

Figuring out these transactions and how to save the most money can be tricky so let the pros do the work for you. I simply google "CVS deals 1/19" (or whatever week you're looking for... next week will be 1/26) and a lot of blogs should pull up. I check out several to make sure I have all my bases covered. Here are the ones I used this week:

Hip 2 Save
Coupon Katie
Deal Seeking Mom
The Krazy Coupon Lady

This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are a ton of great couponing sites that tell you exactly how to do it (many cover other stores like Walgreens, Target, etc.) The hardest part will be finding multiple copies of the Sunday paper coupon inserts.

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