Friday, May 2, 2008

Why I love CVS

If you have a CVS drug store near you and you don’t have a free CVS card in your wallet, you are doing yourself a great disservice. You can get LOTS of free stuff at this store.This morning I went to CVS and purchased the above items. Regular retail is $42.73. I paid $16.78 by taking advantage of sales and using 6 coupons from my local paper totaling $25 ($1 for each of the dental products and $20 off the One Touch). No, I don’t have diabetes, it will go to charity. Upon paying $16.78, I got $20.74 back in coupons for my next purchase (yes, you read that right – I got coupons back for more than I paid).

The key is to take advantage of the CVS “Extra Bucks” program (or for those in the know, “ECB”). What this means is that when you purchase a product eligible for Extra Bucks, upon paying for the item and showing your CVS card, an instant coupon will print out for dollars off your next purchase. Additionally, you get other quarterly cash back incentives. When I go to CVS, I only purchase items that are eligible for Extra Bucks.

With my new coupons in hand, I reached in to my cart and pulled out some more items as you can see below:

My total was $22.99 (retail: $26.25). For these items, I paid using my $20.74 of extra care bucks and gave the cashier and additional $2.25 in cash. Upon receiving my receipt, I got coupons for $21.76 towards my next shopping trip.

Yes, today I paid a total of $19.03 and have $21.76 to use towards my next shopping trip. It literally pays to shop at CVS!

Below are the ECBs I took advantage of today:

- Aquafresh toothpaste: Pay $2.99 (or if you have a $1 off coupon, $1.99) – get a $2.99 coupon back
- Colgate 360 toothbrush: Pay $3.99 ($2.99 with a $1 coupon) – get a $3.99 coupon
- CVS non-drowsy allergy relief: Pay $3.99 – get a $3.99 coupon
- Adidas Action 3 deodorant: Pay $3.79 – get a $3.79 coupon
- Bic Soleil Razor or cartridges: Pay $4.99 (or $3.99 with a $2 coupon) – get a $3 coupon

You may wonder how a store can stay in business with so many people using coupons and rebates. But that’s the thing – the general population doesn’t take the time to take advantage of coupons and rebates, so these deals are reserved for the smart shoppers who choose to take advantage of them.

Your local CVS store has both a weekly and a monthly flyer that outlines their ECB and other sale items (the flyer is also in the newspaper, so you can make a shopping list before you go). If you really want to maximize your savings, buy your local newspaper each week for the coupons, pick up the monthly flyer in the store and use a report such as The Grocery Game or Coupon Mom which will match up what coupons are available for each product.

Happy bargain-hunting!

Note: When you get your CVS Extra Bucks coupons, they have an expiration date and you must use them by the expiration date. You also also must present your CVS card to the cashier when using the coupons (this prevents coupon fraud).

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