Tuesday, August 2, 2011

How To Shop at Walgreens

Walgreens is probably the most confusing drug stores to shop in, but they also have really good deals!  I avoided Walgreens for awhile after I started couponing, but now I LOVE to go there and take advantage of their sales!

Here's what you need to know:

Register Rewards (or RR)- Register Rewards are Walgreen's coupons that print after buying select products that are usually advertised in the weekly ad.  A common Walgreen's ad would look something like this: Colgate toothpaste $2.50, get $1RR.  You don't get $1 off of the toothpaste, instead you get $1 toward your next purchase.

How many coupons can I use?- You can use one manufacturer coupon and one Walgreen's coupon on one item.  Walgreens has a monthly coupon book that is usually available on the shelf where they keep their ads.  An example scenario would be: Bic Razors $5, use $3 manufacturer coupon AND $1 Walgreens coupon.

How do I use my Register Rewards?- Your register rewards can be used on ANY item in the store, and act as a coupon.  This is where it gets tricky.  Bear with me.

1.You have to have as many items as you have manufacturer coupons AND Register Rewards.  So if you are buying toothpaste and mouthwash, and want to use a $1 Colgate coupon and $2 Listerine coupon, you would have to purchase a third item to use the register reward.  (I try to find an item that costs less than 50 cents to use).  The RR can be MORE than the third item, but there has to be at least one item for each coupon and RR.

2. If you bought an item that has a RR, and you buy that same item with the RR you just received, you will NOT get a new RR, even if it is advertised.  If you bought an item that has a RR, and you buy a different item with the RR from the previous item, it WILL print a RR if advertised.

Scenario1 (the wrong way): Buy Crayola at $2, pay $2, get $2 RR.  Buy another Crayola at $2, pay zero, use the Crayola $2 RR to pay, do not get another RR.  Saving is over.

Scenario 2 (the right way): Buy Crayola at $2, pay $2, get $2 RR.  Buy Hair Clips at $2, use the Crayola $2 RR, pay zero, get $2 RR for Hair Clips.  Buy another Crayola at $2, use the Hair Clips $2 RR, pay zero, get $2 RR for Crayola.  Keep going!  (Some stores limit you to one RR per item per visit, to keep people from just doing transaction after transaction until the shelves are empty.  Avoid this by buying 1 of each item on Sunday, repeating on Monday, etc, or by shopping at 2 different stores.)

You can use RR from the previous week on items from the next week.  I try to have a few RR from my last purchase to use on my next week's shopping trip.  It keeps out of pocket costs down.  Just don't let them expire! 

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