Wednesday, December 22, 2010

CVS Shopper Personalities ~ #3 The Continual Shopper & Organization Tips

There are basically five types of CVSers.  Today I'll introduce you to the Continual Shopper.  Each deal seeker needs to decide at which shopping level they would like to start and at which level they eventually want to reach.  If you are new to CVSing I recommend starting as a Casual CVSer to become familiar with
the basics of CVS shopping and then move up a step at a time.

Meet Continual CVSer

Continual CVSer has seen what savings can be had by shopping at CVS and wants to increase that savings by investing a little more time incorporating more coupons and rain checks into their shopping experience.  With this comes the need for a little more organization.  If you are ready to become a Continual CVSer:
  • You need to move on from the envelope to an accordion coupon file.  I like the check file found at office supply stores because it is a little larger than the coupon file and easier to get into.  But it is a little pricier than the coupon files you can find at dollar stores.
    • The accordion files usually have 12 dividers.  Suggestions for labeling the dividers are:  weekly list, Extra Buck Card, gift card (another lesson will deal with the benefit of gift cards), extra bucks, CVS printed coupons (from the machine or register—file with soonest to expire on top), other CVS coupons, manufacturer coupons (to use this week), Rain Checks w/extra bucks, Rain Checks—food, Rain Checks—beauty, Rain Checks—health, Rain Checks—misc.
    • Often there are 13 slots though there are only 12 tabs—you can use the last slot to slip any new CVS coupons and your receipts into until you have time later to sort thru them and file them properly.
  • Find the ad online, pick up one in the store or in the Sunday paper and scan it two or three times.  You’ll be surprised how often you will miss something the first time.
  • Circle any deals you see you are interested in as you go thru the ad if you are using a paper ad.
  • Make a list of what you want with the page number noted and file.  Or just carry the ad and page thru it as you shop—make it as simple as you’d like.  I sometimes note the page numbers of circled items on the front page of the ad.  This is especially helpful for asking for a rain check on an out-of-stock item.
  • Notice any notes that indicate “coupon in today’s paper.”  If you got the paper and you see this sign by something you have circled look for the coupon in the inserts that came in your paper.  Clip the coupons and file them.
  • When you shop, if CVS is out of an item you wanted to purchase, ask for a rain check.  They never expire and you can even earn any extra bucks offered.  File the rain checks away with any coupons you have for it and check each week when you shop to see if the stock has been replenished.  If your coupon expires before they are restocked you can hang onto the rain check until another coupon comes out for it if you’d like.  When you check out just give the product and the rain check to the cashier and they will adjust the price when ringing it up and if an extra buck is due they will print it for you after you pay for the transaction.  (See Chapter 6 in the CVS 101 link above for Rain Check details.)
  • If your store has a self-scanner, scan your card before you shop to see if you receive any coupons good on your purchases for that day.  You may have to scan it more than once.  You can either scan it until it says “no more coupons” or until two coupons print out for CVS products—these always print last.  File any that you do not use the day in which they print.
  • When shopping you have two choices when it comes to the extra bucks earned. One:  you can make numerous transactions buying the item that gives the least amount of extra bucks first.  Use the extra bucks earned from transaction one on the items in transaction two and repeat this until all the items with extra bucks you want have been purchased.  This is how you will spend the least out of pocket cash.  Then you can either save all those extra bucks for next week’s extra buck deals, or you can spend some or all of them on needed items you see on sale. TWO: Check out only once and save all the extra bucks earned until next week’s sales.  You will save a little less but will also spend less time.
  • If you find this is not too time consuming and would like to save even more perhaps you’d like to look into becoming a Committed CVSer. 
If you are a Continual CVSer you may enjoy reading over the Tips and Tricks posts to learn even more ways to enhance your weekly CVS shopping trips.

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

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