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Couponing at Walgreens

by Megan

Last week I posted a few couponing tips, and I got a great response. Some of you were interested in learning more, and since I had an excellent couponing trip this week, I thought I’d go a little more in-depth about how I do it.

This is what I bought this week:

And this is how much I paid (including a Glade spray that is not pictured): $1.13

And here is how I did it:

I started off at Walgreens, which is one of my favorite stores for couponing. You do not need a special rewards card there.

Every week Walgreens has certain items that, when you buy them, give you “register rewards.” These are slips of paper good for a certain amount that you can use on anything in the store.

As you walk around the store, you will see tags on the shelves that tell you which items will give you a register reward that week, but you should already know what the best deals are by doing your homework and coming prepared, knowing what to buy.
The Suave shampoos and conditioners were on sale for $1 each, and when you bought two Suave products, you would receive a register reward for $2, essentially making those items free.
The Infusium shampoo and conditioner were on sale for $4.99 each, and I had a coupon for $1 off one of them, plus they printed out a register reward for $3. So I got the shampoo for 99 cents, after using the coupon, and after the register reward. I bought the conditioner separate to get another register reward. That one was $4.99, plus the register reward of $3, so it’s as if I paid $1.99- a great deal since they are usually $7-8 dollars when not on sale!
The Colgate toothbrush was on sale for $1.99, and I had a coupon for $1 off, making it $.99.
The Carmex chapstick was on sale for 2 for $3. I had two coupons for 30 cents off, making the total $2.40 for both, and I received a register reward for $2, making them 20 cents each.
The Velveeta boxes were $3.49 each, and I had a Walgreens coupon for $1 off two of them. Plus I had two manufacturer coupons for $1 off each, so I got $3 off total. I paid $3.98 for both, or $1.99 a box.
My first transaction:
Suave shampoo- $1
Suave conditioner- $1
Infusium shampoo- $3.99 (after $1 coupon)
Colgate toothbrush- $0.99 (after $1 coupon)
Carmex chapstick- $2.40 (for both, after two 30 cent coupons)
Velveeta boxes- $3.98 (for both, after three $1 coupons)
Total: $13.36 + 1.14 tax = $14.50
I had a $10 register reward from the last time I shopped there, so that brought my total down to $4.50 out of my pocket.
From this transaction I received a $2 register reward from Suave, $3 from Infusium, and $2 from Carmex.
My second transaction:

Suave shampoo- $1
Suave conditioner- $1
Infusium conditioner- $4.99

Total: 6.99 + .66 tax = $7.65

I used my $2 Carmex register reward toward my second transaction, bringing my out of pocket cost down to $5.65.

From this transaction I received a $2 register reward from Suave, and $3 from Infusium. If I had used either the Suave or Infusium register reward from my first transaction, I wouldn’t have received a second one. You can only use different register rewards to pay for items that cause register rewards to print.

So I spent a total of $10.15 out of my pocket, and I walked away with $10 worth of register rewards (essentially gift certificates) to use next time I shop there, making my total cost 15 cents!

Important things to remember about Walgreens register rewards:

1. You can only get one RR of a kind per transaction, which is why I split up the Suave and Infusium into two transactions.
2. You cannot get a RR if you use the same RR to pay for those products, which is why I didn’t use my first Suave and Infusium RRs on my second transaction.
3. You have to use the entire amount at once, and your total must exceed the amount of the coupon. So I could not have used my $10 RR to get something that cost $9.99 for free. I could, however, use it on an item that cost $10.01, and only pay 1 cent, plus tax. You always pay tax on the entire amount, before coupons.
4. Walgreens does not allow you to have more coupons than items, so if (for example) I was only buying the Velveeta boxes with a RR, I would have to buy a “filler” item, because I was already using a coupon for both boxes, and a RR counts as a manufacturer coupon, so I would need to buy three items to use it, or forfeit one of my coupons.
5. The RRs expire within about two weeks, so you have to go regularly and use them. If you can, it’s best to use your RRs on items that will print more RRs, so you can keep getting items for free, but worst case scenario, I just get something that I need and start over again the next week, actually purchasing my items. ;)

As for the other items in the picture…

At CVS I got the protein bar free with a coupon (the coupon was good for one free bar). The nail polish was 99 cents, and I had a coupon for $1 off Wet & Wild, so it was free. The children’s Advil was buy 1, get 1 50% off, and I had two coupons for $1.50 off each. So the Advil cost $2.37 each, making the second one only $1.18, making the total $3.55. With my coupons, the total was brought down to 55 cents. Ready for this? My tax came to 43 cents! So my total at CVS was 98 cents.

I also went to Target and got a Glade spray for free. It was $2.99, but I had a $2 off manufacturer coupon, and a $1 off Target coupon, so it was free.

So if you made it this far, that is how I got all the items in the picture for a grand total of $1.13!

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Angie Hales September 14, 2012 - 12:22pm

Thx for sharing this. I’ve wanted to try couponing but never understood exactly what to look for. I think I can handle this method.

Meredith Hilton September 14, 2012 - 12:36pm

pretty impressive! i’ve never tried walgreens before, but maybe i should check it out :)

Evani Gatsby September 17, 2012 - 6:40pm

Ah great breakdown! I need to find time to coupon!

Cynthia September 19, 2012 - 10:02pm

AHHH! That gives me a headache to work out but it is so worth it! Do you have a storage going?

Cynthia September 19, 2012 - 10:02pm

AHHH! That gives me a headache to work out but it is so worth it! Do you have a storage going?

A Proverbs 31 Wife September 21, 2012 - 5:34pm

That is an awesome way to save money! Now… they just need to make the natural/organic products easier to coupon lol