Friday, May 09, 2008

CVS + Coupons = Free Money!

I've known about Extra Care Bucks (ECB's) at CVS for years, but never really took advantage of them. I've been dilly-dallying about coupon clipping and CVS shopping for a few months now, but my efforts have finally paid off and I think I'm hooked!

On Saturday, I made some purchases at CVS and actually got more Extra Care Bucks back than I spent in cash by combining coupons. It was a small victory, since I was suprised that one of the deals from last month was still working, or I wouldn't have been so lucky. Today, though, I actually made $.93 and got two toothbrushes for free in less than 5 minutes! Here's how:

CVS this month has a deal this month that if you buy one Colgate 360 toothbrush at $3.99, you get $3.99 in ECB's back. That's like getting a toothbrush for free!

I bought 2 Colgate 360 Toothbrushes at $3.99 each.
I used a coupon for $1 off two Colgate 360 toothbrushes (from the paper).
I then spent $3.99 ECB's and $2.99 ECB's I already had.
The total rang up as $.07, so I handed over some change.
Then, I got $7.98 back in ECB's to use on a future purchase!
So, if you're keeping track...
$7.98 ECB - $6.98 ECB = $1.00 ECB - $.07 out of pocket = $.93 ECB.

I probably could've done even better, but I want to start small. This was just to build my confidence at this little game, but I can tell it may lead to bigger things in the future. Some people just keep rolling over $20 or more of ECB's every time they go to CVS. In fact, I still have an additional $5.98 in ECB's from a prior purchase, plus I have a $3 off $15 coupon. If you sign up for the CVS e-mail, they will automatically send you a $4/$20 coupon!

My only caveat is that I only clip coupons and/or buy things I know we will use. And if for some reason we don't use them, I will donate these new items to a good cause, like a local cooperative ministry.

If you're new to the whole CVS game, here's some instructions on how to get started saving ECB's.

And go check out Money Saving Mom for updated deals at grocery stores, Target, Walgreens, and of course, CVS!


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