Saturday, September 26, 2009

9/27 Coupon Highlights

There are some pretty good coupons in this week's paper! Here are the ones that I think are most likely to be useful:

Carnation Evaporated Milk, $.50/2 - Over the next few months, we should see several deals on baking supplies like evaporated milk. I know last year, these were free after coupon during one of Kroger's mega events.

Celestial Seasonings Tea Bags, $1/1 - I used these coupons to get free tea at Walgreens last year; they could come in handy again.

Colgate 360 Toothbrush, $1/1
Colgate Total Enamel Strength or Advanced Toothpaste, $1/1
Walgreens and CVS both have frequent deals on Colgate products, so these could make for free or at-profit toothbrushes or toothpaste.

Halls 20 ct. single bag, $.35/1
Halls Refresh Hard Candy, $.75/1
Halls Refresh Sugar Free are free after Register Rewards this week at Walgreens, so you'll come out ahead with these coupons.

Hershey's Special Dark bag or Extra Dark bar or bag, 3.5 oz.+, $1/1 - These coupons could get you free or cheap candy during either pre- or post-Halloween sales.

Schick Disposable Razors, $1/1 - CVS has Schick 2-ct. disposable razors in the travel section for $.99, so free after coupon

Lea & Perrins Thick Classic Worcestershire Sauce, $2/1 - If this goes on sale, these high-value coupons could make it cheap or free.

Crest Premium Paste 4.1 oz.+, $1/1 - CVS has quite a few ECB deals on Crest, so it could be free or better after coupon and ECB.

Oral-B Pulsar, CrossAction, Advantage Toothbrushes, $.75/1 - Advantage toothbrushes are free after Register Rewards this week at Walgreens, so you'll make a $.75 profit with these coupons.

Tide, $1/1 - If you're low on laundry detergent or are brand-loyal to Tide, this is a good week to use these coupons and get it at CVS. Otherwise, you can use these coupons to get travel-size detergent at stores like Target for free.

Vicks, $1/1 - Last year, I used these coupons to get free cough drops at Walgreens; the Vicks cough drops found near the front registers are priced at $.80-.90, so they were free after coupons.

If you want to see a full list of tomorrow's coupons, go here.

Note: Not all coupon inserts are created equal - there are regional differences in the selection and wording of some coupons. Typically the bigger cities' newspapers get the "best" coupons. I get the Chicago Tribune because the coupons are much, much better than the ones in our local paper. Also, if your paper publishes an early Sunday edition on Saturday, it will probably have the same coupons in it, and will be a little cheaper at most stores. Or, if you're really just interested in a few coupons, you might want to check out a coupon clipping service like The Coupon Clippers (see my post here or the link in my sidebar), where you can pick and choose your coupons and get multiples of the things you really want.

Walgreens Highlights - 9/27 to 10/3

Wow, what a great week at Walgreens! There are tons of deals this week! If you are new to shopping at Walgreens, you'll probably want to check out my post here, which explains how the system works and how to use it to get the most for your money.

Emergen-C Booster 2pk., 2.5 oz. each @ $3.49, get $3.49 in RR = FREE after RR

Oral-B Advantage 1-2-3 Toothbrush @ $3, get $3 in RR
Use $.75 coupon from 9/27 insert
Pay $2, get $3 in RR = $.75 profit after coupon and RR

Robitussin DM to Go, 2pk. @ $2.49, get $2.49 in RR = FREE after RR

Vaseline Sheer Infusion Lotion, 6.8 oz.@ $6.99, get $6.99 in RR
Use $1.50 printable coupon
Pay $5.49, get $6.99 in RR = $1.50 profit after coupon and RR

ChapStick Fresh Effects, .15 oz. @ $2.99, get $2.99 in RR = FREE after RR

Gillette Fusion MVP Manual or Power Razor System @ $8.99, get $6 RR
Use $4/1 coupon from 9/27 insert
Pay $4.99, get $6 RR = $1.01 profit after coupon and RR

Dentek 55 yd. floss or 35 ct. floss picks @ $2, get $2 RR
Use $1/1 printable coupon
Pay $1, get $2 RR = $1 profit after coupon and RR

Theraflu @ 2/$8, get $4 RR
Use (2) $2 printable coupons and $2 store coupon from the Healthy Savings booklet (one coupon will take off $2 for each bottle you buy)
Pay $0, get $4 RR = $4 profit after coupons and RR
**Note: There was another Theraflu deal a few weeks ago, so some people (like me) may have already printed your limit of the Theraflu coupons. However, you can still get 2 for free just by using the Healthy Savings book coupons.

Halls Refresh Sugar Free Drops, 20 ct. @ $1, get $1 RR = FREE after RR

Herbal Essences Hair Care @ $2.99, get $2 RR
Use $1 coupon from 8/23 or 9/13 insert
Pay $1.99, get $2 RR = FREE after coupon and RR

Tip: First, do the deals that yield a profit. The Theraflu is a great one to start with, since you can potentially get a $4 RR without spending anything out of pocket. Then use those RR to buy other items that generate RR, and it will reduce (or possibly eliminate) or out-of-pocket expense! For example, if you can still print the Theraflu coupons, you could do this:

Transaction #1
2 Theraflu @ 2/$8
Minus 2 printables (-$4) and store coupon (-$4)
Pay tax, get $4 RR

Transaction #2
1 Oral-B @ $3
1 Dentek @ $2
1 Halls @ $1
Minus $.75 Oral-B coupon, $1 Dentek coupon, and $4 RR from transaction #1
Pay $.25 + tax, get $6 RR ($3 from Oral-B, $2 from Dentek, and $1 from Halls)

Then, just keep on using those RR to get as much shampoo, floss, Halls, toothbrushes, etc., as you need!

CVS Highlights - 9/27 to 10/3

It's not the most outstanding week at CVS, (especially compared to Walgreens - oh my gosh!) but there are some good deals. If you are new to CVS shopping, you'll probably want to check out my post here, which explains how to get the most for your money at CVS.

3-day sale (Sun., Mon., and Tues. only)
Vaseline Sheer Infusion Body Lotion @ $7.99, get $7 ECB, Limit 1
Use $1.50 printable coupon here or here, or $1.50 coupon from 8/2 insert (although the insert coupon expires on Sunday, so use it the first day, unless your CVS accepts expired coupons)
Pay $6.49, get $7 in ECB; final cost = $.49 profit after coupon and ECB

Week-long deals:
Selected P&G products - Buy $25 worth, get $10 ECB, Limit 1
Deal includes Tide @ $6 and Dawn at $1. Personally, I probably won't do this deal, but if you need laundry detergent or are brand-loyal to Tide (I know a lot of people are), this is a pretty good deal. I'm pretty sure this is the lowest price I've ever seen on this particular brand.

Potential deal:
Buy 4 Tide @ $6 and 1 Dawn @ $1 = $25
Use (4) $1/1 Tide from 8/30 P&G or 9/27 P&G inserts and a $.25/1 Dawn, also from either of those inserts
Pay $20.75, get back $10 ECB; final cost = $10.75 for 4 bottles of Tide and 1 Dawn, or a little over $2 each after coupons and ECB

Mom's Best Naturals Oatmeal @ $1
Use $.75/1 printable coupon (you will have to answer a brief questionnaire)
Final cost = $.25 after coupon

Gillette Fusion Razor @ $9.99, get $5
Use $4/1 coupon from 9/27 insert
Pay $5.99 and get $5 ECB; final cost = $.99 after coupon and ECB
**Note: I only recommend this deal if you don't have a Walgreens nearby. You can actually make a profit on them at Walgreens this week, so I plan on using my coupons there instead.

Accu-Chek Aviva Diabetes Monitoring System @ $14.99, get $5 ECB
Use $10/1 coupon from 8/23 insert
Pay $4.99 and get $5 ECB; final cost = -$.01 after coupon and ECB
**Note: Even though you may not need a glucose meter, it can be good to buy this because it bumps your pre-coupon total up if you need to use a purchase-based coupon like $5 off $25 (like this printable one you can get for taking a flu quiz). It ends up being free after coupons and ECB, but you still get almost $15 credit toward the $25 you need to use the coupon.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Coupon Questions to Ask Your Store

Coupon policies can vary widely from store to store, and knowing the policies at your particular store can be very helpful so you can better plan and know what to expect. If you ask, you might be able to get a copy of the store's coupon policy at the customer service desk. And, here are some questions you can ask at your store so you can get the most for our money:
  • Does your store double or triple coupons? If so, up to what value do they double/triple? Is there a limit on the number of like coupons or total coupons that can be doubled/tripled per transaction? Does the store always double/triple coupons, or is it just on certain days of the week or during special promotions?
  • Does your store accept expired coupons? How far out from the expiration date will expired coupons be accepted?
  • Does your store accept internet-printed coupons? Is there a limit on the number of internet coupons that will be accepted per transaction? Is there a limit on the dollar amount or percent-of-value coupons that will be accepted?
  • Does your store issue store coupons that can be combined with manufacturer coupons? Many stores, including CVS, Walgreens, Target, and Meijer do this, and it can make for some amazing deals.
  • Does your store accept more than one like store coupon per transaction? The registers at some stores (such as CVS and Target) are sometimes set to not accept more than one of the same store coupon per transaction. It may vary from chain to chain (and even from store to store within chains) whether or not multiples will be accepted.

$5 off $25 purchase at CVS

Go here to print a coupon for $5 off a $25 minimum purchase at CVS. You'll have to take a short quiz about the flu and flu shots, and you'll be able to print the coupon at the end. Remember - these coupons are based on your total before using any other coupons. So, if you have $25 worth of items that are free after ECB and/or coupons, the $5/25 coupon basically lets you get $5 worth of other things that you need for free (I usually use this overage to get groceries, which is one of the reasons our monthly grocery bill is so low).

Note: While it may be possible to print more than one of these coupons per computer, all coupons printed from one computer will have the same unique code on them. If more than one coupon with the same code is redeemed, the register will beep and tell the cashier that the coupon has already been used.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

New Cellfire Coupons!

Cellfire released some new e-coupons this week. Go here or check out the widget in my sidebar to add them to your store loyalty card. These coupons should work at most Kroger and Safeway affiliate stores.

Several of these coupons match up with current manufacturer coupons and/or work well with Kroger's mega event that is still going on: $1/2 Pillsbury Grands, $.40/1 Betty Crocker potatoes, $1/1 Nature Valley Nut Clusters, and $.60/2 Old El Paso products, for a start. There are also coupons for yogurt, other Pillsbury products, Hamburger Helper, General Mills, and Green Giant veggies, among other things.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Jewel - Great Kellogg's/Keebler Deal (possible $5 profit! + $70 Dell coupon code)

Starting tomorrow, Jewel will be running a Kellogg's and Keebler sale that will end up being pretty sweet after coupons and the Kellogg's Fuel for School rebate. Select Kellogg's/Keebler items will be on sale for $1.50 when you buy them in multiples of ten. Participating items include:

Kellogg's cereal, selected varieties (picture shows Frosted Flakes, Rice Krispies, Apple Jacks, and Frosted Mini-Wheats)
Keebler Wheatables, Toasteds, or All-Bran Crackers, 8-10 oz.
Keebler Cracker Packs, 10.4-10.9 oz.
Kellogg's Cinnabon Bars, 7.8 oz. (6 ct. boxes are pictured)
Kellogg's Pop-Tarts, 21-22 oz. (12 ct. boxes are pictured)
Keebler Fudge Shoppe or E.L. Fudge Cookies, 8.5-12.5 oz., selected varieties
Kellogg's Special K Snack Crackers
Kellogg's Nutri-Grain Bars, 6.3-10.4 oz., selected varieties
Kellogg's Rice Krispies Treats, 6.2 oz., selected varieties

There are quite a few coupons for these items. Check out the widget in my left sidebar for $1/1 printable coupons for Cinnabon bars and a $.55/1 coupon for Keebler sandwich crackers. There are also printable coupons here for $1.50/2 Frosted Mini Wheats and here for $.55/1 Pop-Tarts. Recent inserts have also had coupons that are good for this deal: $2/2 Kellogg's products with fiber (8/30 insert), $.75/1 Cinnabon bars (8/16 insert), $.55/1 Pop-Tarts (9/13 insert), and $1/2 for numerous products in the 8/2 insert, including cereal, Pop-Tarts, Keebler cookies and crackers, and Nutri-Grain bars. Remember that with printables, you can most likely print 2 coupons per computer by hitting the back button on your browser.
Depending on what you buy and what coupons you have, you could potentially make a $5 profit! Assuming you actually need/want these products, the best scenarios would include only coupons that take off $1 per item: the $2/2 Kellogg's and $1/1 Cinnabon.

Buy 10 Cinnabon and/or cereal and/or Pop-Tarts with fiber @ $1.50 = $15
Use a combination of coupons to take $1 off each box (let's say 3 $2/2 and 2 $1/1 Cinnabon)
Pay $5 out of pocket.
Submit receipt and UPC's for Kellogg's Fuel for School mail-in rebate and get back $10, for a profit of $5!

If you don't have enough of these particular coupons, or prefer to buy different items, you can still get everything for free or at a profit as long as you use coupons that take at least $.50 off each item.

The Fuel for School rebate was in the 8/2 insert, and it is also available here. You get back $10 for buying 10 participating items. To get the online form, go to the lower left corner of the page and click where it says "$80 in savings." You will have to create an account on the Kellogg's website, and then you should be able to download the form. Note: the 2 different rebate forms (insert vs. online) are mailed to different addresses, which makes them different offers, so you should be able to do them each once. Also, there were actually even more Fuel for School rebates this year, and the qualifying items were slightly different for some of them, so it's probably a good idea to check your form(s) before buying.

And, if you will be in the market for a new laptop soon, the deal is even better - in addition to the $10 rebate check, you will also get a $70 coupon code good toward the purchase of select Inspiron and Mini Studio laptops.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

My $1.81 shopping trip!

I stopped at CVS and Ultra Foods (a relatively small Chicagoland chain) Saturday night, and I got everything pictured here for a total of $1.81! I was pretty happy!

My total at Ultra was $.71! I got:

2 loaves Wonder Bread @ $.88 = $1.76 ($.33 each after coupons)
6 Pillsbury Grands biscuits @ $1 = $6 (all free after coupons)
Pre-coupon total = $7.76
Minus (2) $.55/1 Wonder Bread, (3) $1/2 Pillsbury refrigerated biscuits printable coupon, and store coupon for $3 off when you buy 6 participating Pillsbury products
Final cost = $.71

My total at CVS was $1.10, which was actually just tax:

2 packs diapers @ 2/$12.99 = $12.99
2 milk @ $1.99 = $3.98
3 Dry Idea deodorant @ $2.99 = $8.97
1 Colgate @ $2.99 = $2.99
1 Kleenex @ $.96 = $.96
2 Jack Link's @ $5.99 B1G1 = $5.99
Pre-coupon total = $35.88

Coupons I used:
(3) $2/1 Dry Idea printable coupons (no longer available - I printed these a few months ago)
$1/1 Colgate Total Advanced (9/13 insert)
$1/1 Colgate Total CVS store coupon (from in-store scanner)
$1/1 Kleenex with lotion CVS store coupon (also from scanner)
Free Jack Link's coupon (from 8/28 issue of All You magazine)
$4 off $20 purchase (CVS store coupon from a booklet I got in the pharmacy)
I also paid with $16.98 in ECB and $1.10 (all tax) on a gift card .
I got back $7 in ECB - $2 from the milk, $2 from Colgate, and $3 from Dry Idea (I went on Sat. night, so ECB deals from both this week's and last week's ad were effective).

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Ultra Foods - Great deal on Pillsbury/Betty Crocker!

Through Wednesday, Ultra Foods (a Chicagoland grocery store chain) is running a General Mills promotion where you get $3 off your order when you buy 6 participating products. The $3 coupon is a store coupon, which means you can also use manufacturer coupons in addition to that (I checked with customer service at our store, and they said they were indeed doing it that way).

The best deals I saw in this promotion were the Pillsbury Grands biscuits and the Betty Crocker pouch potatoes:

Buy 6 Pillsbury Grands @ $1 = $6
Use (3) $1/2 printable coupons (you will need to sign up for the Pillsbury e-newsletter if you haven't already, or sign in if you have)
Use $3 store coupon (on pg. 3 of the ad; also found on tearpads in stores)
Final cost = Free + tax

Buy 6 Betty Crocker Pouch Potatoes @ $.79 = $4.74
Use (6) $.40/1 or $.25/1 coupons from 9/13 insert
Use $3 store coupon (on pg. 3 of the ad; also found on tearpads in stores)
Final cost = -$.66 to $.24 for 6 (depending on what coupons you have)

You can also mix & match the products, which you may want to do, depending on what you need or what coupons you have. And, if your order will create overage (like if you buy 6 potato pouches with 6 coupons), make sure you have something else in your order that will absorb the overage, or you'll probably have problems at check-out.

Also, in case you are only an occasional Ultra shopper (like me), many stores are now restricting their use. There was a sign at the register last night that said they now only accept coupons up to 30 days after the expiration date. I don't shop there very often, so I'm not sure how recent the change is, but it might require a shift in shopping strategy if you're used to using any and all expireds there.

Menards - Freebies & Almost-Free Laundry Detergent

Deals from Menards' Fall Catalog:

Reusable Shopping bag
@ $.98- $.98 rebate = FREE after rebate
Limit 10 bags per household

Tomcat 8-ct. bait blocks or 4-ct. glue traps
@ $2.49 - $1.50 rebate = $.99 final cost
Limit 2 packs per household

3006 10 oz. Elastomeric Ultra Sealant
@ $2.99 - $2 rebate = $.99 final cost
Limit 6 tubes per household

4-pk. window & door caulk
@ $4.79 - $3 rebate = $1.79 final cost
Limit (3) 4-pks. per household

Deals from Menards' 9-20 weekly ad:

4-pk. glue mouse traps
@ $2 - $2 rebate = FREE after rebate
Limit (2) 4-pks. per household

14" Plastic Mud Pan @ $4 - $4 rebate = FREE after rebate
Limit 4 pans per household

Elastomeric Blacktop Crack Filler @ $3.50 - $3.50 rebate = FREE after rebate
Limit 4 tubes per household

Arm & Hammer Laundry Detergent FREE after rebate when you buy (1) 1 lb. box of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda @ $.75. Final cost = $.75 for 1 baking soda and 1 bottle of laundry detergent

All Natural Cleaners (all purpose, degreaser, glass, or tub & tile) @ $1.50 - $1 rebate = $.50 final cost
Limit 4 cleaners per household

Maximus Sealant (10 oz.) @ $4.49 = $2.50 rebate = $1.99 final cost
Limit 3 tubes per household

There are some additional things to be aware of concerning Menards rebates. For items that are simply free after rebate, you are required to also purchase $10 of products that are not free after rebate. However, you should be able to count items that have rebates but are not free toward that $10. If you don't want or need anything else, you could also get a $10 gift card to meet that purchase requirement. Most (maybe all?) Menards also accept competitor coupons, so if you have a coupon for money off your next order at another hardware store such as Home Depot or Lowe's, you could use that to get an even better deal.

Unless otherwise noted, all rebates are submitted directly to Menards, not to each individual manufacturer, so you can submit everything all at once. Also, the rebate will come in the form of a merchandise check, which is good only at Menard's. However, you can "roll" your Menards gift checks, meaning that you can use your merchandise check from one week to purchase the items for another week. By doing this, you will minimize your out-of-pocket expenses.