Lately I’ve been talking to some people about the deals I get shopping at drugstores. Other than picking up a prescription, I had never shopped at a drugstore before last January.
I believe it has been the most important element of being able to lower our monthly house/food budget. I didn’t realize how those trips to run out and get something we ran out of (razors, shaving cream, shampoo), were costing us so much money! I just never thought to buy these things in advance, mainly because I never thought of them at all (especially my husband’s razors).
So, if you are overwhelmed at the thought of coupons for all your food, etc., I suggest starting with health and beauty and seeing how that impacts your budget. I bet you’ll be so motivated that it will spill over to the food and before you know it, you will become a coupon aficionado!
Start by collecting any coupons you might use and even some you don’t think you would use. In the beginning, I collected all the coupons, even things I wasn’t sure about because there might be a deal and I could try something new. Use the Sunday inserts, and print off coupons using the computer. Ask your family and friends if they use the coupon inserts and pass them to you if they don’t. It’s helpful to get 2 or more of the coupons.
Then check the sale flyer for things you’d like and check sites like Money Saving Mom for drugstore deals. They will list the sales and any coupons that match, plus let you know if there are store promotions or rebates to go with the sales. You can print coupons from links they give, too.
Here’s an example from this week’s sales I did on Monday. These sales are good through Sunday.
3 pkgs. clearanced mechanical pencils, .99 each – $1/1 store coupon = $1.97/3
4 clearance composition books, .99 each = $3.96 (needed for school)
3 J&J Baby oil and
2 J&J Baby powder, $2.99 each – (5) $1/1 mfc and IP coupons = $9.95 (qualifies for $10 SCR when you buy 5 items- meaning they are FREE!)
1 bath pouf, $1.99
1 bounty towel, $1.50 -$1/1 mfc (manufacturer coupon) = .50
1 sauve professionals shampoo, $1.99 ($1 SCR)
2 Crest spinbrush heads, BOGO @ $8.99 = $8.99/2
– $5/$25 Rite Aid coupon (printed from computer)
– $25 Rite Aid gift card (here’s the deal I did to get this)
= .34 oop (out of pocket) and will get $11 SCR!
AND, from 9/13 to 10/17 Rite Aid is running a Fall Gift of Savings Program: buy $100 during the period and get a $20 gift certificate (you can also buy less and get smaller certificates). And this is BEFORE coupons and any rebates, so you’re not actually spending $100. As you enter your receipts (easy online) they will tally it for you and they say “everything with some exclusions” is included. The exclusions seem to be prescriptions, gift cards, tobacco, etc. so all the normal purchases should work.
So, the total from above (before coupons) towards the Gift of Savings is $37.34, of which I paid .34 AND am getting $11.00 back in a rebate check at the end of the month.
Did you know that the Rite Aid rebates come as a check?
See what I mean? There are real savings possibilities at the drugstores. It’s pretty cool.
Since they did away with their Easy Saver Catalog and rebates, I have not found the savings I did before at Walgreens. Now I go maybe about once a month if I see a particularly good deal.
And I always try to do two transactions so I don’t have to take any Register Rewards (RRs) home. They expire after two weeks and I don’t want to have to go in if the deals aren’t worth it.
This was a good enough deal to get me to stop by:
Murine Ear Wax Removal kit (one of those things I wouldn’t have bought, but I think will be good to have around, since they’re giving it away) = $6
= $6 (+$6 RRs)
4 Lindsay olives, .99 with in-ad coupon – (2) $1/2 Internet Printables (IP)= $1.96/2
2 Quattro Titanium refills, BOGO @ 10.99 – (2) $4/1 mfc = $2.99/2
1 clearance beanie baby, $1.25
=$6.20 – $6 RRs
= .20 oop
So, the razor refills were a super deal and the reason I stopped by. I just planned a deal that would get me the free item by turning around and using the RR for things I was going to buy anyway.
So, go forth and tackle the drugstores!
This post is linked at Frugal Fridays.