You can find my favorite CVS matchups here. If you are new to coupons then CVS is a good place to start. They have good deals and an easy to understand coupon policy. Just read through the information below and you will be on your way in no time.
CVS Coupon Policy
You can view the CVS Coupon Policy here.
Become a CVS Advisor
CVS has an Advisor Panel that you can sign up for and occasionally they will send you a survey to complete. The surveys are typically pretty short and they usually reward you with a high dollar ECB (see below). I’ve gotten them for as much as $10 before. It is definitely worth it to sign up.
CVS Beauty Club
Make sure you sign up for the CVS Beauty Club because they will automatically give you a coupon for 10% off any beauty purchase as well as a $5 ECB every time you accumulate $50 worth of beauty product purchases (tracked via your card). They also send you a $3 ECB on your birthday.
Extra Care Bucks
I used to never shop at CVS because I thought the prices were so high, but then I started paying attention to the ECBs, my coupons and the store ad. It is now my favorite place to shop! It seems complicated at first, but you will get the hang of it pretty quickly after learning about their Extra Care Bucks Program.
If you do not already have a CVS card then be sure to sign up for one at your nearest store. It only takes a few minutes to fill out the form. After you get your card go and register on the CVS internet site. Click up in the top right corner where it says “Extra Care” and enter your new card number there. You will soon start getting ECB coupons in your email box and occasionally in your postal mail.
Extra Care Bucks are referred to as “ECBs”. They are the reward coupons that print at the register. They are earned by purchasing certain items during their promotional periods. Some promotional periods only last the length of the ad, but others go the entire month. CVS also has a machine in the store where you can scan your card and get various types of ECBs. ECBs are like cash that you can use at CVS. They can be used for just about any product other than tobacco, prescriptions and liquor. ECBs are tied to the card that generated them. You cannot use an ECB that belongs to someone else unless you happen to have their card.
The most popular ECBs are the ones that give you a certain amount off your next purchase. However, you can get an ECB in the form of a product coupon and those shouldn’t be overlooked because they are what is known as a “store coupon”. This means it can be combined with a manufacturer’s coupon for the same item for even bigger savings. For example, you might scan your card and get an ECB for $1.00 off Vaseline lotion. If you happened to have a manufacturer’s coupon for $1.00 of this same lotion then you could put them together for $2.00 off. Now let’s say you had a third ECB for $3.00 off your next purchase. You could put ALL THREE items together and save $5.00 off the purchase of this lotion, BUT CVS allows only 1 Manufacturer’s and 1 Store Coupon per Item. In this case you would throw in what is known as a “filler” item. A filler item is simply a very cheap item to satisfy the limit of an equal number of coupons per item. So if you tossed in a 50 cent candy bar in the above scenario then you would still save an extra $2.50 off the purchase of the lotion in addition to the $1.00 store coupon and $1.00 ECB. Hopefully that makes sense!
You can roll your ECB coupons onto other items that also generate ECBs and drastically reduce or eliminate any out of pocket spending. However, some ECB offers will have a limit on how many times they can be rolled on the same item and still produce another ECB. If this is the case then it will be stated on your receipt. Sometimes an ECB offer will require you to purchase a certain amount of an item or combination of items in order to produce the coupon at the register. In this scenario you can still come back and purchase more later because your purchases are tracked. Again, it will show at the bottom of your receipt.
One really nice thing about CVS is that every quarter they actually PAY you 2% back (in ECBs) of the total amount you spend there during that period. You will also get $1.00 in ECBs for every 2 prescriptions you have filled online or in their store. You can track your totals on their website after registering your card there.