Coupon Policies

How do you know what coupons a particular store takes? The answer lies in the store's coupon policy. Coupon policies are great tools for shoppers to know exactly where stores stand on what kinds of coupons they will accept.

Here are links to the most current coupon policies available at the time of this writing.





Wal-Mart revises coupon policy again to exclude general "$5 off your next order" Catalinas

Well, that didn't last long!

Wal-Mart revised their coupon policy again this week. It now excludes general "$ off your next order" Catalinas (as well as Walgreens Register Rewards):

We DO NOT accept the following coupons:
Checkout Coupons
- Dollars/cents off the entire basket purchase
- Percentage of the entire basket purchase

They DO still accept Checkout Coupons ("Catalinas") printed at competitors' registers for dollars/cents off a specific item.

Game-changer for Wal-Mart?

Wal-Mart posted an updated coupon policy this week, and it's heating up the coupon blogosphere. Why? The information in the policy is so coupon-friendly that it could likely become a game-changer for Wal-Mart.

While Wal-Mart has always matched advertised prices in other area stores' flyers, they've upped the ante with the new coupon policy, which not only allows for acceptance of some competitors' coupons (think Dominick's Super Coupons and Walgreens store coupons!) as well as competitors' Catalina coupons. And, keep reading... there's an even more surprising stipulation addressed as well.

From the new policy:

We gladly accept the following coupons:

Competitors’ coupons that feature a specific item for a specified price, for example, $2.99 (photo shows a store coupon for Rice Krispies with another store's logo on it)

Checkout coupons (also called “Catalinas”) that are printed at our competitors’ registers, have “Manufacturer Coupon” with specific requirements printed on them, a valid remit address for the manufacturer, valid expiration date, and a scannable bar code (photo shows a general "Save $2.00" Catalina)

Halloween and summer clearance finds around town

Over the past 24 hours I've spotted some great post-Halloween sales and summer clearance bargains around town that I thought I'd share! Last night we stopped at the Algonquin Meijer and found that Halloween costumes, decorations and housewares were already marked 75% off! That's a pretty nice, quick drop in price the day after Halloween -- typically things go 50% right away and take about another week to drop into the better-bargain range.

We picked up some Halloween costumes for next year at good prices -- Woody from Toy Story for one of my boys ($6.24, down from $24.99,) a "Graveyard Fairy" for my teenager (not quite sure what it IS, but she liked it! And, at $8.74 down from $34.99, it was hard to complain) and, on my husband's insistence, Daphne from Scooby Doo for me. (Also $8.74, with its Day-Glo orange wig and pink go-go boots, it was hard to resist... but the real question is, if I go as Daphne, will he be my Fred?)

Dominick's drops prices below Wal-Mart, while Wal-Mart raises prices to two-year high

Grocery prices are in the news yet again. Over the past two days, two new stories caught my eye: Crain's Chicago Business' "Dominick's discount program adds ammo in price war" and Bloomberg's "Wal-Mart's Prices Rise to Highest in Almost Two Years."

A few excerpts from both:

Dominick's new digital discount program has an aim other than saving customers cash. It could be the grocer's most powerful weapon yet in a brutal pricing war with its mass-merchant and club-store rivals. And the grocer is willing to trade profits on some items if it means winning back a place in shoppers' carts... Dominick's program, dubbed Just for U, offers shoppers personalized savings on items they've purchased in the past...

Guess who's raising grocery prices NOW?

The state of the grocery industry just continues to get more and more interesting. Over the past few weeks, I've been sharing articles about some traditional supermarkets and retailers believing the key to future financial success is to be "more like Wal-Mart," touting everyday-low-prices versus employing high/low sales cycles.

Well, today's edition of Daily Finance has this story... "Wal-Mart Quietly Raises Prices."

According to the article, Wal-Mart has been increasing prices 6% across the board over the past six weeks, with some products' prices taking increasing as high as 60%..! Some highlights:

"For instance, the price of a 32-ounce bottle of Windex household cleaner jumped 50%, a 12-ounce box of Quaker Oats instant grits climbed 65% and a 50-ounce container of Tide detergent rose by more than 50%.

Supermarkets vs. Supercenters: A must-read!

In my Super-Couponing classes, I'm often asked the question whether it's easier just to shop at an "everyday low price" supercenter vs. a "more expensive" supermarket with coupons to get the same savings. If you've used coupons for any length of time, you know that you'll actually get much better savings at the "more expensive" supermarkets by following the sales and matching them with coupons.