Monday, September 5, 2011

Join the CVS Gift Card Challenge @ Simply CVS

The Simply CVS, CVS Gift Card Challenge

Two years ago, I earned a $10 CVS gift card on Gather and challenged myself to see how far I could make it go beginning with no extra bucks.  I brought home over $700 in merchandise and had $34+ in Extra Bucks left over.  I recorded each week’s shopping trip on Gather and put up a final post which included an index to my 17 weeks of CVS shopping.  Earlier this year I gave FrugalMom a $25 and challenged her to see how far she could make it go ($400+ total), and recently gave Amanda, from Saving Myself Silly, one and challenged her.  Now I am taking on one of my own and asking you to join me.

My $50 CVS Gift Card Challenge

Beginning the week of September 4 I will be doing a “Beginner’s $50 CVS Gift Card Challenge.”  I will use a $50 CVS Gift Card I earned on Swag Bucks, a brand new CVS Extra Care Card and no extra bucks on hand.  I hope to show how a brand new CVS shopper can stretch $50 at CVS with
Extra Buck deals, CVS coupons and manufacturer coupons. 

For this challenge I will focus on the best of the Extra Buck deals.  Items that I cannot personally use I will pass on to friends, family members or charities.  I will try to see how far this $50 can go, not with extreme couponing, but with simple, small shopping trips each week.  I will try and incorporate CVSing tips as I go along.

I do not expect to be able to make this $50 gift card challenge to go as far as my $10 one for several reasons.  First, I now have to pay tax when paying with extra bucks, which I did not when I began my $10 challenge.  The deals also are fewer with smaller limits than they were at that time and coupons seem to be smaller value.  I also used to get a lot of CVS $4/20 coupons and I do not expect them now.  Also, starting with a new card I will not be getting the large number of scanner coupons at CVS for the first several weeks.

Join Me with Your Own Challenge

I would like to invite you to join me in the challenge with a challenge of your own.  You don’t have to do a $50 gift card, you can choose any amount: $5, $10, $25, $100.  It doesn’t even have to be in the form of a gift card and you don’t need to have the full amount of money in hand at the beginning of the challenge—just keep track of total spent until you reach your challenge amount.  And if you are already in the middle of your own challenge, as I know some of you are, just continue on in that one.

Steps of the Challenge
  • Choose an amount for your challenge fund.  If you have a gift card or can get one fine, if not, that is fine, too.
  • Keep track of your shopping trip totals.  Amount Spent Amount Saved (noted on your receipt) Balance Left in Your Challenge Fund
  • If you would like, keep a tally of your products purchased (example: 12 shampoos, 3 body washes, etc) as FrugalMom did in her $25 Simply CVS Gift Card Challenge.
  • Share with us here at Simply CVS.  I will put up my challenge post each week and will include a linky for those of you with a blog or some other form of online posting source to add a link to your weekly Challenge post.  If you do not have a link you can give us your weekly totals in a comment—you may share the details of your trip or just the totals, whichever you would like.

This CVS Gift Card Challenge will end when I run out of my $50.  At that time I will post my final tally of products purchased and my savings total and ask you for yours (for those who are done) and we will add them all up and see how much we have collectively spend and saved.  Then I will begin a new $50 CVS Gift Card Challenge—with a different theme (like rolling extra bucks from week to week or groceries) and we will begin again [those of you with a balance in your challenge fund can carry on with that one].

Earn CVS Gift Cards Online

If you haven't worked on earning free CVS gift cards online now would be a great time.  Click the banner below and you can read how I earn them from a few different sources along with free Paypal to help with my CVS shopping.  If you'd like to learn how to earn more Swagbucks towards your prizes check out the Index to the Swag Bucks 101 Series of posts.


Patrice said...

I just started on a $10 gift card this week, so I will use that to begin my challenge! Fun!!!

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Grrreat, Patrice!! I am excited to have lots of us join in together and do this. Thanks for getting on board.

Anonymous said...

I remember talking to you and reading your post from your cvs group on gather.

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

How neat, Anon. I miss Gather. I stop in and look around now and again to see what all my friends are up to, but not daily. Simply CVS has taken so much of my online time and then some that I don't have time for it now like I did.

It is because of Gather that I started Simply CVS. I started the CVS group there and was encouraged to step out on my own and thus Simply CVS was born.

Brian and Amy Yohe said...

Yeah! Thanks for the invite. You mentioned the idea of a CVS gift card challenge early in the summer, and I jumped right in. My total so far: $24.98 spent, $145.28 saved, 85% saved. I have 2 cents left on my gift card and a $5 ECB. Sounds like it's time to wrap that one up and jump in on a new one! :))

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Great job, Amy on your first one. Perfect time to start another.

Pat said...

I started a few weeks ago and I encourage anyone thinking about trying this out to give it a try.

You will learn so much and even beter, end up with a lot of nice products for very little out of pocket costs!

Unknown said...

Ya I can do this! I haven't spent anything since Saturday and only have $1.99 in ECBs. I think I'll do $50 as well and just do the best ECB deals using that fifty.

I'll have to keep my husbands clearance obsession separate! Lol.

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Pat is doing an amazing job on hers. I'll be having her share with us in the near future some tips she has. Of course her $5/25's that seem to be multiplying haven't hurt. lol I'm thinking about sneaking in and trading cards with her in the dark of the night :-).

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Hailey, your husband needs $50 of his own to do his clearance :-). It would be interesting to see how much he saves just on his clearance finds. Will enjoy seeing how you do on the challenge, too.

Dee said...

Count me in for this. I can only do a $20 gift card and $13 in ECB. I will see where these take me. By the way thanks for the info on swagbucks. I took the 30 day info from your post and have over 1600 swagbucks in 30 days.
My long-term goal is to earn a $50 CVS gift card.

Unknown said...

He'd spend it all in one day. Lol

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Great, Dee, welcome aboard. So glad to hear about the Swagbucks!! I recently discovered if I am stuck on not winning a second or third time for the day to switch browsers--works almost every time.

-Carol said...

I'm in for the $50 challenge. :)

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Great, Carol. I think this will really be fun doing it all together.

Jen said...

I'm in! I got a $25 gift card yesterday. I'm excited to see how far I can stretch it!

Cheryl @ Simply Shoeboxes said...

Great timing to get it, Jenny! Best wishes on lots of savings.