Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Ideas on How to Use $/$$ CVS Coupons ~ CVS 101 Series

CVS dollar off total dollar amount of purchase coupons ($/$$) can be very helpful in increasing your savings at CVS.  But if you are just beginning or just don't have many extra bucks in hand it is often best to pass the large ones up if you need to have little out of pocket cash.  If you have the money
to invest, it is good to use them combined with extra buck deals to build your extra buck supply for future rolling into other extra bucks deals for less out of pocket.  The strategies at CVS are many and you have to find what works for you.

A reader asked how to use a $5/40 when she didn't have many extra bucks.  As long as you have the cash to put out this is the basic strategy.  Do each step until you reach the total needed (in this case $40).  You can choose to mix the steps up depending on your own needs.

1)  Look thru the current extra bucks deal list with coupon match-ups.  Find the deals that give you the greatest return  of extra bucks per purchase price (example:  pick items that have a low net cost after extra bucks--such as pay $4.99 get $4.00 back) and choose what is useful for your family.  Add them to your list and total the sale price (before any coupons--remember, the total purchase is your sub-total BEFORE coupon usuage).
2)  Look thru the list again and choose any items you are in need of or would like to add to your stockpile that is a good deal.  Add to your list and total once again adding this to your total in step one.
3)  Throw in any free after coupon items you have.  Save any coupons you gather that will net you free products at CVS until near expiration so you have a supply when you get these types of $/$$ coupons.  Total all your items again.
4)  Look thru the general sale items for good deals on items you can use and find coupons to match (you can always look thru the printable coupon sites (SmartSource, RedPlum, Coupons) to see what is currently available).  Add the total of these to the above total.
5)  Pull out your supply of Rain Checks and add some to your list and total once again.
6)  If you are close but still not quite there (especially if you are at $35) just throw in any other items you need because even if you are $7 short you will essentially be getting that $7 for $2 because by throwing it in you can use the $5 coupon.  I often do this with food items to help on the grocery budget or on items that rarely are close to free.

Remember, the total is before coupons.  But once in a while I have read of managers insisting it is after coupons--so you could run into that, but it is rare.

If you don't have much cash to put out it is best to ignore these coupons until you have a supply of extra bucks or free coupons built up.

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Disclosure: Links in this post may be Simply CVS affiliate partners or personal referral links.


dot said...

Thanks so much for these lessons. I can now see how bad I screwed up last week.

Julie said...

I have a question that is sort of related, since I am trying to figure out a scenario to use my $4/$20! The other day I bought a Nivea body wash and my receipt said
Nivea, Spend 15, Get 5 EB
Amount Toward this Reward 4.99
Amount Needed To Earn Reward 10.01

Does this mean that the deal can be cumulative over multiple transactions over the week? So if I go back in and buy 10.01 in Nivea, will it print the EB?

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

You are welcome, Dot. There are so many ways to save at CVS. And even when we feel we "screwed" up, we still saved a bunch. And believe me, it won't be your last time to feel that way. :-)

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Julie, almost ALL weekly extra buck deals do work that way (they have changed the monthly deals it seems). So, yes, it should print out the extra buck if you spend another $10.01.

Once a deal was limit 3 and I didn't know it but it showed if I bought just a few more dollars I'd get $5 more. I carried my ad and my receipt with me in case it didn't print out. That time there were great B1G1 coupons and CVS coupons so I combined them and did the deal all three times--adding it up from one transaction to the next because of the coupons I had.

Cris said...

Today I used the twitter coupon to get a 8-pack bounty basic for .50 (paid with gift card) since everything else I used to get to $20 was free or money maker!

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Great job, Cris! That's the way to do it. Took me a long time to figure out how to use them the best way. I always thought I had to use them on extra buck items to increase my extra bucks. Actually, I consider that I applied mine this week to the 3 little critters I got for the Christmas shoe box gifts since they added up to about $4.

Anonymous said...

Question i have cvs coupon save $10 with purchase of $50 can i use it for bogo? Is it considered the other 1 as purchased since the other 1 is free?

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Anon, I am sorry I am just NOW seeing this question. I am so sorry. As long as your sub-total, before tax and before other coupons are used, equals $50 you can use the $10 off of $50 coupon--the bogo would not affect it.

Anonymous said...

Can you use a $/$$ off for shampoo and combine it with a $/$$ off coupon for any transaction?

Sarah said...

Normally you can't. But double check the fine print on the actual coupons you have, if it doesn't exclude it (like it normally does) you can.

Normally you can use a $/# for shampoo, say a $3 off any 2 with a $/$$, just not two $/$$, even if one is for a specific category.

Hope that makes sense and helps!

Unknown said...

I have a buy one get one free coupon but the ad says buy one get one free how does this coupon work??

Unknown said...

I have a buy one get one free coupon the ad says buy one get one half off how does that work??

Sarah said...

Assuming the BOGO coupons are manufactures, on the BOGO deals it should come out to free, and on the BOGO1/2 it depends how the clerk keys in the price, usually it's on the lower priced item, so the 1/2 price one, so that sale doesn't really help much when you have the coupon. ~Sarah for Simply CVS