CVS Coupon Policy 2013
Learn how to shop at CVS like a pro. Here is CVS’s coupon policy and how to use the CVS Pharmacy Extra Care Bucks to rock those deals!
UPDATE: Here’s an in-depth post of which coupons you can stack at CVS
CVS Coupon Policy online : CVS stores accept the following types of coupons:
- Manufacturer Coupons (this includes both coupons from newspapers / magazines / other print sources ans well as manufacturer online printable coupons)
- Store Coupons (this includes CVS store coupons found in their weekly fliers, in-store coupon booklets, CRTs and purchase based coupons)
- Competitor Pharmacy Coupons (they do not, however, accept any other type of competitor coupon)
- Extra Care Bucks (called ECBs for short, they are like a Catalina from the grocery store that is printed out at the cash register on the bottom of your receipt)
- NEW: If a coupon is a manufacturer’s coupon, BUT has any other stores logo on it, CVS will not accept it
- Extra Care Bucks (ECBs): It’s a CVS store coupon for a discount of your next purchase order that prints at check out. They print at the bottom of your receipt and can be used “like cash” on almost anything else sold at CVS (excludes gift card purchases, alcohol, prescriptions).
- Extra Care Bucks card: Card that will track your ECB’s and rewards. You must scan this before your transactions to get your ECB’s. Apply for the free Extra Care Bucks card online or in-stores.
- Green Bag Tag: Scan the extracare card, then an item, then the green tag. You can use any re-usable shopping bag, re-use a plastic bag from a previous purchase, or simply carry out your items to qualify for the green bag tag rewards. Anytime you decline a one-time use plastic bag, you will receive a green bag tag™ credit. Look at your receipt. The quantity needed to earn reward will show, and it goes down each time you use it. It starts at 4 and counts down to 1 and then you get an extra buck every time after 1. Then it starts again at 4 and continues. So every 4th visit you can get one free ECB!
- Reinventing Beauty Magazine: This is a is a 99 cent magazine available in the beauty section of most CVS stores. It sometimes comes with CVS and manufacturer coupons. Where else can you find the magazine? by the weekly flyers, with the other magazines, by the cash registers, in the cosmetic aisle. Not all stores seem to carry this magazine.
- Clip Free Coupon: Refers to a month long discount offered that’s deducted automatically at checkout.
- CRT: or Cash register tape is a coupon that prints at the bottom of your receipt or at the Price Scanner. Most commonly called ECB’s.
- Price Scanner (Most commonly called the Magic Coupon Machine): Price scanning machines located at certain stores that serve to check the price of items and also print CVS store coupons when your CVS Extra Care Bucks card is scanned.
- CVS Store coupons: These can be stacked with manufacturer coupons for added savings. Can only use one per transaction.
- CVS $/$$ coupons: These coupons provide a discount once your order reaches a certain value before coupons. For example: you could save $4 when you buy $20 or more. This total is always before any other coupons.
In each weekly circular you will see a certain number of items that may be FREE after ECB (Extra Care Bucks). For example, notice to the right the pens are priced at .99 (your out-of-pocket cost), but when you buy those they will also generate a .99 ECB…that’s essentially FREE after you get your ECB back.
Make sure to print your “ deal scenarios.” before you go into the store. This will help you by having a plan of attack to maximize savings.
View/print the deal scenarios for CVS each week.
Scan the magic CVS coupon machine when you first arrive at CVS - You’ll want to scan your ExtraCare card at the coupon printing machine inside the store. This machine is about 5? tall and is usually right when you walk in. It will print out coupons and even ECBs every now and then!
Are cvs magic coupon scanner coupons manufacturer coupons? NO they are store coupons, so you can “stack” them with manufacturer’s coupons!
Match a coupon with the ECB Deals to get an even sweeter deal! For example: Buy 2 Hair Care products ($5 each), Get a $5 ECB back. Say you have the $3 off coupons that commonly come in the Sunday paper, you will pay $4 out-of-pocket for both products, then you’ll get a $5 ECB. After doing the math, you have just made $1 for your purchase (this is also known as a moneymaker deal)!!
ECB’s: Is the total in the ad before my coupons are calculated or after? The total is before coupons. If a ECB says it will print for $20, then if you purchase $20 in product, but after scanning coupons you only have to pay $10, you will still get your EBC’s! Because EBC’s are calculated before coupons are scanned.
Limits – Make sure to look at the limits of ECB’s - in the picture above there is a limit of one per household. If the limit of the offer is more than one you can buy more than one item in the same transaction and get all of the ECBs you would expect from each offer! Warning: you will save more money by breaking off your transactions and using ECBs from the first transaction on the second and so on. That’s called “rolling”.
Order of handing coupons to the cashier: First hand your ECB card to be scanned, then items to be bought, then CVS dollar off transaction coupons, then CVS store coupons/manufacturer coupons, and finally your ECBs. Last scan your Green Bag Tag (described in the coupon lingo area above).
Use TWO coupons for Buy 1, Get 1 FREE deals - Many items often go on sale for BOGO. CVS will actually let you use two coupons.
BOGO Free CVS sales with BOGO Free Coupons: You CAN use a BOGO manufacturer’s coupon on a BOGO CVS sale, making both items free!
BOGO Free Manufacturer’s coupon: You CANNOT use a BOGO Free manufacturer’s coupon AND a $xx/1 manufacturer’s coupon together for 2 items.
Roll, Baby Roll - When you use your ECB on other deals that generate more ECB this is called “rolling.” Unlike Walgreens, at CVS you can “roll ECBs” meaning you can spend ECBs you received from one offer to buy more of the same.
Make sure to scan your Extra Care Bucks card - ECBs are tied to your Extra Care Bucks card. This means that you can only redeem them when using the Extra Care Bucks card used to earn them.
No roll? You don’t have to use your ECB’s right when you get them. ECBs expire four weeks after the date they were first issued. Make sure to use them before they expire.
Earn more ECB - Earn 2% back with every purchase in-store (get rewards every 3 months) and Earn 1 Extra Buck for every 2 prescriptions purchased in-store.
Rain Checks: Don’t leave the store empty handed if you get there and the item you want is sold out! Ask for a rain check – At cvs rainchecks never expire AND you’ll receive ECB just like the original sale.
Can you get a rain check on cvs cash card deals? CVS’s policy is no rainchecks on Cash Card deals. However, if you ask your manager some may give you a $10 ECB or something other then an actual gift card. YMMV.
Alright, it sounds confusing. I admit it! But shopping at CVS is one of the best ways to get free razors, hair care, cheap diapers, and more. Please leave a comment with any questions!