Friday, December 12

CVS Extra Bucks: Clarification Part 2

Welcome back.

The correct answer to yesterday's post is "C".

The coupons that print out for random products you do not purchase (see "A") are wasted paper and I throw these away (unless they are for a free product- which my sister sometimes gets but I never do).

The $10 off of $50 purchase is too much to be spending at CVS so I thow those away as well. More helpful are the $4 off $20 purchase or the $5 off of $15 purchase but I rarely get those now days.

The CVS extra bucks that I often rave about can be found in exhibit "C". I remember the first time I got a extra buck back in 2005 it was for $1 and I thought it was random that they were giving me free money. Was I a novice back then, or what? CVS puts out weekly circulars as well as monthly circulars (both can be found at their circular stand near the front door) that list all products that qualify for extra bucks that month or week.

The free products (meaning you get the same amount of $$ in bonus bucks as the amount you spend on the product) are not always easy to find. Blogs like help point them out for you so you know what to look for in the circulars.

The way to take advantage of extra bucks and not let the bonus bucks take advantage of you is as follows:

1) When you buy products that are free, use coupons. If a product is $8 and you get $8 back in extra bucks. But say you have a $2 coupon. You will spend $6 and still get $8 bonus bucks back! Incredible, right?

2) Only use your extra bucks to buy products A) you were going to buy anyway or B) that are also free items therefore giving you even more extra bucks.

3) Let's say there are 3 free items one week. Don't buy them all at once! Then you'll end up with a large investment on products you don't need and a large amount of extra bucks that you need to spend in one month! Instead buy the items one at a time (the cheapest first) and keep using the extra bucks you get back to pay for the next item. This lowers your investment and keeps you with a reasonable amount of extra bucks. I know it's slightly embarrasing for you and annoying for the cashier - this is why I am thankful my CVS has a self check-out.

4) This is important and you'll understand why once you get the system (it may seem confusing if you still haven't experimented with extra bucks). I was once told by a CVS cashier that you can't use your extra bucks if the product you are buying is less than the amount of extra bucks you want to use. So you have $4.99 in extra bucks and the product you want to buy costs $4.60- it's a no-go. Their system won't let you lose money. However, I was also told that the product needs to be more than the extra bucks value BEFORE taxes. So you have $5.00 in extra bucks and the product you want costs $4.99. It turns out the cashier was wrong. I've been using a self-checkout which counts taxes as the total (so in my example above the total would be more than the $5 extra bucks). This will save you time trying to find the cheapest item CVS sells (which by the way is travel cough drops or travel Q-tips for .50- what a rip off. Better value is the CVS enviornmental toliet paper at .89 but ouch!).

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