Thursday, July 23, 2009

CVS 101

If you want to jump on board the coupon wagon, you have to know about CVS. CVS is where the best deals are had. Since the first of the year, I have saved $1056 at CVS with only spending around $60. And, I am just a casual couponer. There are others way more serious about it than I.

The coming week would would be a great week to get started with CVS Extra Bucks deals. They are having a sale on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday only that has many school supply items that will be free with Extra Bucks. You can find the deals starting tomorrow by clicking HERE.

Here is an example of one of this weeks deals.

My goal here is to give you a brief overview on how to get started without overloading you. We shall see! It does become quite overwhelming .

First, get your CVS ExtraCare card.

You can sign up online but, you'll have to wait to get your card through the mail. If you want to start with this weeks deals, just go in the store, tell the cashier that you want to sign up for an Extra Care Card. It will only take a few minutes and your card will be ready to use immediately.

next, earn EB (Extrabucks)

How do I earn Extra Bucks Rewards?

* Earn 2% back with every purchase in-store and online at
* Earn 1 Extra Buck for every 2 prescriptions purchased in-store and
online at

How do I get my Extra Bucks Rewards?

* Every 3 months your Extra Bucks will print on your store register receipt, or
visit to print your Extra Bucks.
* Spend your Extra Bucks at any CVS/pharmacy or online at the next time
you shop!

But, the big savings are found by getting EB trhough the weekly and monthly promotions. You can find the weekly circulars at
EB are earned through promotions, such as “Buy XX, receive $YY in eb.” The EB print at the end of your receipt on the trip that you buy the qualifying items - clip them and keep them as carefully as you would cash.

♥ The required amount to receive the eb is calculated before coupons.
♥ You do not have to buy all the products for that particular promotion in the same transaction or at the same store.
♥ eb coupons can be used to purchase nearly anything in the store. (excluding prescriptions, alcohol, tobacco, and Gift Cards)
♥ you cannot get change back when you spend your eb's. they can be entered as less than their face value (if your cashier knows how), for example if your total comes to $1.97 and you have an eb for $1.99 that you would like to use, and you don't mind losing 2 cents
♥ eb coupons expire 4 weeks from the date they are printed.

You can also get items free by combining coupons with deals.

For Example- Colgate toothpaste is 1.99 with 1.00 EB making it .99 cents. But, by combining that deal with a 1.00 off coupon, the item is free. And occasionally, you will come across a deal where toothpaste is 1.99 with 1.99 EB back and then, use a 1.00 off coupon and this my friend, is what we call a MM (or money maker).

And because of these sort of deals, the following is an overview of CVS' coupon policy.

CVS accepts manufacturer's coupons, including ip (internet printable) coupons. CVS also issues their own store-specific coupons. you can get these by email or printed out at the end of your receipt (these are referred to as CRT's - cash register tape).

Both EB and CRT coupons are linked to your CVS account, which means you cannot use them without the same CVS card that earned them. It used to be that we could share email coupons, but recently that has been changing a bit. It seems most of the item coupons (like $1 off gatorade) can still be used with any extracare card. however the $$/$$ coupons (like $3 off $15 or more purchase) will beep and the cashier will receive a message that the coupon was not issued to your card.

The CVS coupon policy allows for the use of one manufacturer and one CVS coupon on the same item. often a very good deal can be had when you combine a CVS item coupon and/or a manufacturer's coupon on an item that gives back eb's.

Hopefully, this will be enough info to start you off. The best way to really figure the system out is to just try a small purchase.