Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Great Summer Grocery Makeover- Week 4

I'm still running a little behind- Dad had another bleeding episode and this weekend was crazy.

The last week for my coworker Kim, we went over CVS policies, as they are a bit different than Walgreens. CVS Extra Care Bucks don't expire as quickly as Walgreens Register Rewards, and they are used like cash. Because of that, I can buy a single item, and use multiple ECBs plus a coupon for it without any trouble. We flipped through Target's website and looked at their coupons. Did you know that you can stack a Target coupon, say for Pampers, with a manufacturer's coupon from the Sunday insert? Because of this, Target often has quite of list of things you can get for free, in particular personal care items.

Kim and her mom decided to hit Target, and practice some deal-seeking there this week. For everything in their basket, they paid only $0.18 out of pocket. On the way out the door, she saw someone had left some change on the floor, $0.31. Technically, after finding this, they made money that trip. Cool, huh?

I asked Kim what advice she would give a newbie trying to learn how to coupon. She has one piece of advice:

"Start with only one store." In the beginning, she tried to work deals at multiple stores, and often felt overwhelmed, and like she messed up a few deals, making her out of pocket more than she expected. By deciding to just concentrate on Walgreens, she learned the ins and outs over a few weeks, and smoothed out the bumps before moving on to Target this week.

I myself only started with Kroger and then slowly worked my way up to being able to hit 8 stores in one Saturday when I was really stockpiling.

Overall, Kim was able to reduce her budget by at least 70% for groceries. After an initial investment at Walgreens, she is still rolling her Register Rewards to the tune of about $75 per week. That means nothing out of pocket! What a great student!

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