FREE WHOLE FOODS
Ready to finish up learning how to shop CVS using coupons? (You can do this!) First you'll want to read through these posts if you haven't already:
- 15 Days of Pinching Pennies at the Drug Stores (Day 1)
- 15 Days of Pinching Pennies at the Drug Stores (Day 2): How to Save at CVS
- 15 Days of Pinching Pennies at the Drug Stores (Day 3): What Is a CVS “ECB”?
- Updated list of CVS savings currently available
I got a great question last night asking about whether or not it's really worth using shopping CVS for their ECB deals, and thought it was so worth discussing, so here goes:
“I’m still trying to figure out how I’ll know what to buy. It seems that you have to buy things you don’t necessarily need to get the ECB’s. Is that what you post with your deals at CVS weekly posts? So a newbie like me should just follow those scenarios and buy what you say until I pick it up on my own? Sorry. I really want to do this, but I don’t want to spend money on items I don’t need. I understand donation items too, but is it worth it for what I’m actually going to need and use?”
Here was my response:
I (completely!) understand! The thing that I’ve figured out over the years is that there’s a basic cycle to shopping at the drug stores, so if I can get on their sales cycle to purchase things (deodorant, shampoo, paper products, toothpaste, etc), I end up with everything I need for just a few dollars over the course of several months. It is easier in the beginning to follow the scenarios (I think?) and then once you get the hang of out to roll your ECBs you can venture out for different items. BUT the trick to the drug stores is to really snag the deals that are next to nothing with ECBs, so some weeks you get things you may not use (I only get those if they’re free or just way too good a deal not to donate), and then roll those into more deals the following week.
As with all stores, the drug stores have a certain cycle to their sales, and if you can change your shopping so that you the ads based on their sales cycles, you will save a ton of money. Drug store shopping isn't for everyone, but if you've got a little energy to put into it, I promise you can save hundreds, of not thousands of dollars!
Okie dokie ~ here are a few more tips to help you make sure you've learned just about everything about how to shop at CVS with coupons:
1. Watch for additional monthly CVS ECB offers.
Just like weekly Extra Care Bucks offers, CVS offers monthly ECB offers that work exactly the same way as weekly ECB sales, however they're available for an entire month.
2. CVS will give you Quarterly ECBs depending on how often you shop CVS.
CVS Quarterly ECBs are earned each quarter, including approximately 2% cash back on most CVS purchases. To qualify for these savings, you must spend at least $25 at CVS in a given quarter, and your CVS Quarterly ECBs will printout once each quarter while shopping.
3. CVS offers additional ECBs when you fill a prescription.
In addition to Quarterly ECBs based on your purchases in a given quarter, you'll also earn ECBs every time you fill a prescription at CVS. For every 2 prescriptions filled at CVS, you'll get $1 in ECBs.
4. CVS gives Beauty Club Points when you purchase participating products.
In addition to CVS ECBs and Quarterly Rewards, earn CVS beauty Club points when you shop. To get those savings, sign up for the CVS Beauty Club and link your CVS Extra Care Card to your Beauty Club account. For every $50 you spend on beauty products at CVS, you'll get $5 in ECBs! Items included are things like hair care and accessories, skin care, cosmetics, etc.
5. CVS offers Rain Checks.
If you get to CVS and they're out of a product (including ECB offers), request a rain check. Then purchase the item when it's back in stock and your cashier will manually print the ECB savings when the item is back in stock. Rain checks do not expire at CVS.
So there you have it ~ just about everything you can learn about CVS'ing, hopefully covered for you! Next week will start working on Rite Aid (they have some incredible deals there too!), which hopefully will help you pinch a few more pennies out of your grocery budget. Let me know what other tips, suggestions, or questions you have in the comments section – I love hearing from you!