CVS 101

CVS was one of the first stores I shopped at for deals and continues to be my favorite to this day!  CVS shopping requires an Extra Care Card!  You can apply for a card by asking your cashier for the form to fill out.  You will receive your card immediately.  You can also sign up online.  Your card will arrive in a week or so by US mail.

Here is a bit of CVS Strategy and CVS Lingo:

  • Extra Care Bucks (ECB)  These are “coupons” that print out at the end of your receipts that can be used just like money in the store to purchase anything (no gift cards, stamps, prescriptions, or other excluded items).  You will receive the ECB, or Extra Care Bucks, when you purchase items from the ad that state “buy x, get y in ECB”.  You will receive ECB based on the item price or number regardless of coupon usage.  You don’t have to purchase all of the items in one transaction to get the ECB, as they will be kept track of on the bottom of your receipt.
  • Price Scanner:  This is a machine in the store that scans product bar codes and reads the price.  You can scan your Extra Care Card to receive printed coupons.  You can scan multiple times until the machine gives you a message to stop.
  • Green Bag Tag: Attach this to your fabric bag and take it along with you.  Each time your bag, you’ll receive a credit.  After four scans, a $1 ECB will print out.
  • Limit or Offer Limit: Once  you reach your limit on the sale item, you will not receive Extra Bucks for your purchase.  Some items with limits and no extra bucks will only be available at the sale price for the number of items indicated.
  • CVS Rainchecks:  CVS offers rainchecks for items on sale in the flyer unless otherwise indicated.  CVS Rainchecks do not expire.

CVS shopping strategy involves using coupons to lower your out-of-pocket while earning extra bucks.  The goal of a seasoned CVSer is to spend less than they get back in Extra Care Bucks – creating a “money-maker” scenario.  Here are some additional tips for shopping at CVS:

  • Combining a CVS store coupon and a manufacturer’s coupon is permitted on items.
  • CVS does not give overage on manufacturer’s coupons.  They will be adjusted down to the price of the item.
  • Some CVS stores begin their new week’s ad on Saturdays.
  • Some CVS stores accept expired store coupons and/or Extra Bucks.  Make sure to ask about your store’s policy.
  • Extra Care Bucks can only be used on the card that they were earned on.  They are non-transferrable.
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