Monday, January 18, 2010

Walgreens 101

Before I begin posting deals from Walgreens, I wanted to give you a little info on the following:

Register Rewards (RR)
Each week Walgreens offers "rewards" for purchasing certain items. When you purchase the item(s) listing a RR, a coupon for the advertised RR amount will print at checkout. Only 1 RR per item will print in a single transaction. Which means you can purchase 2 or more RR deals in a single transaction, but it has to be separate deals. Unlike regular Manufacturer coupons, RR are not coupons for the item purchased, but rather a discount on your next purchase. Now it gets a little tricky. RR do not "roll" into the same deal over again. For example: Last week Colgate was on sale for $2.99 with a $2 RR. You can not use the $2 RR that printed to purchase more Colgate. This would prevent another RR from printing. You also don't want to use it on another deal by the same manufacturer. The key is to learn how to "roll" register rewards into other deals to minimize your out of pocket, but I'll get to that a little later.

Manufacturer's Coupons and Walgreens Coupons
Walgreens will accept one Manufacturer's coupon along with one Walgreens coupon per item. We call this "stacking" coupons. This makes for some pretty sweet deals especially when paired with a RR deal. Walgreens coupons are often found in the following:

1. Walgreens Sales Flyers - each week you find Walgreens coupons in their sales flyer that we refer to as "in ad" coupons

2. Instant Value Coupons (IVC) - These are found in their monthly coupon books that can be picked up in the front of the store in the sales flyer rack.

3. Diabetes & You magazine and the Children's Activity Book - These also contain IVC. The Diabetes & You magazine is published every 3-4 months and can be picked for free in the pharmacy section of the store (usually in a magazine rack). The Children's Activity Book only comes out once a year, I believe, and sells for $.99. Both usually contain high dollar coupons that can be used over and over again.

Filler Items
I will refer to "filler items" often when posting my Walgreens scenarios each week. This is because the register will not accept more coupons than items. So be sure to count the Manufacturer's coupons and RR that you are going to use prior to checking out. For example last week I purchased the Colgate for $2.99. I used a $.75 Manufacturer's coupon along with a $2 RR I earned from the previous week, but in order for me to use that RR I had to have another item. I usually try to purchase something very cheap such as a holiday clearance item...pencils usually cost just pennies, or find something that you can always use that is on sale for a really good price. Tomato sauce will often be on sale for $.39 or chicken broth for $.69. These are good items to have in your pantry anyway.
Please Note: The Walgreens coupons do not count toward your coupon total.

Handing Over Your Coupons
Yes, there is even a method for this. In order to make sure the register accepts all your coupons, you should hand them in the following order. Manufacturer's coupons, Walgreens coupons, and then RR.

Rolling RR
Here's an example from last week's sale on how to roll your RR to minimize your out of pocket and take advantage of multiple deals:

Transaction 1:
Colgate $2.99
Chicken Broth (filler item) $.69 (used in ad coupon)
Manufacturer's Coupon (MQ) -$.75
RR from previous Week -$2.00
$.93 + tax out of pocket
Received a $2.00 RR from purchasing the Colgate

Transaction 2:
Thermacare $2.49
Chicken Broth (filler item) $.69 (used in ad coupon)
Manufacturer's Coupon (MQ) -$1.00
RR from Colgate deal -$2.00
$.18 + tax out of pocket
Received a $2.50 RR for purchasing the Thermacare

Transaction 3:
Colgate $2.99
Chicken Broth (filler item) $.69 (used in ad coupon)
Manufacturer's Coupon (MQ) -$.75
RR from Thermacare deal -$2.50
$.43 + tax out of pocket
Received a $2.00 RR for purchasing the Colgate

That about sums it up! Don't worry if it looks a little overwhelming at first, I'll be here posting scenarios every week.

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