Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Extreme Couponing: I Succeeded!

If you didn't read part 1 here it is if you want to catch up.

Ok so, I decided to give this extreme couponing another try. I was determined not to let it conquer me and I'm happy to report that it didn't. I won. Well, I'd say I probably came in more around 2nd or 3rd place. I still felt a little flustered, it took a little longer than I wanted, and I still have the feeling that I can do better. That's just motivation to give it another go though right?

On to the loot.....

CVS Shopping Trip: 3.21.11


Here are my stats for this shopping trip....

Product Value: $49.71
Total Savings (Coupons/Promotions): $34.28
Total Cash Out of Pocket: $15.43
Extra Care Bucks Earned to spend later: $16.98 (basically I earned $1.55)

Here's how I did it....

I used http://www.southernsavers.com/ to create my shopping list. They link printable coupons, tell you where to find clippable coupons and even give you different scenarios to try. It's time consuming at this point, but I can see how it will eventually get easier and take a lot less thought.

Side note: I brought my husband with me who also had a CVS card which was beneficial because they limit certain amounts of deals to one or two per card like the Allegra deal I'm about to share with you. Consider that card stolen...and yeah not sure if that's kosher or not? Oh well, the CVS employees all seemed to be into the extreme couponing thing and were even giving us tips so I don't think they mind. End of side note.

First you go in and scan your card(s) at the coupon station in CVS. It prints off several coupons to use on your shopping trip (supposedly you can do this twice but it never works for me). This will be the first point of confusion as an inexperienced coupon shopper. Stick to your plan my head tells me, this is where mistakes are made! But I didn't and it worked out alright.

Then you find your items....

  • 2 boxes of Allegra: $6.99 (plus I used a $2.00 coupon on both) - buying this gave me $6.99 in ECB each for a total of 13.98
  • 2 Reach Flosses: $1.00 (plus I had a $1.00 coupon on both) - FREE
  • Alaway Eye Itch Relief: $12.99 (plus I had a $4.00 coupon) - earned $3.00 ECB
  • Clear Care Contact Solution: $8.19 (plus I had $1.50 coupon)
  • Starbucks Frapp: $1.99 (Coupon printed at store for $1.00)
  • CVS Green Tag: $1.00 (This gives me $1 ECB for every 4 times I use my reusable bag instead of plastic, yay future savings!)
After all that rang up I used $15.00 ECB that I had earned my last shopping trip and paid the rest in cash.

The lesson I learned this shopping trip is that I need to do multiple transactions to reduce the actual amount of cash that I have to give in the end. Here's what I should have done and this is without using my previous $15.00 in ECB.

Transaction 1:
  • 1 Allegra (limit one per card) - $6.99 minus $2.00 coupon - $4.99
  • 2 Reach Flosses - $1.00 coupon off each - FREE
  • 1 Starbucks Frapp - $1.99 minus $1.00 coupon - $0.99
Total: $4.99 before tax
ECB earned: $6.99

Transaction 2:
  • 1 Alaway Eye Itch - $12.99 minus $4.00 coupon - $8.99
Total: $9.98 before tax use $6.99 ECB from Transaction 1 and $3.00 in cash
ECB earned: $3.00

Transaction 3:
  • 1 Allegra - $6.99 minus $2.00 coupon - $4.99
Total: $4.99 before tax pay $3.00 ECB from Transaction 2 and $0.99 in cash
ECB earned: $6.99

Transaction 4:
  • 1 Clear Care Contact Solution - $8.19 minus $1.50 coupon - $6.69
  • 1 Green Bag Tag - $0.99
Total: $7.48 before tax pay $6.99 ECB from Transaction 3 and $0.49

TOTAL CASH OUT OF POCKET: $9.47 before tax

We'll see if I get my nerve up to do the multi transaction thing next time....it's obviously a lot better in the savings department. Agh. Why didn't I think of this before! Oh well, this coupon thing is going to take some time to learn. I'm sure all of your heads are spinning now. Go take some Tylenol and then get to couponing!


  1. nice! i am proud of you! i went shopping today as well, CVS and walgreens! walgreens has A GREAT deal out there.... if you buy any almay cosmetic item, you get 5 dollars register reward back. right now all almay cosmetics are 30% off. so i purchased almay makeup remover which was 4.19. then i used the walgreens "2.00 off any almay cosmetic item" which can be found in their "spring book" when you walk in. paid 2.19 out of pocket plus tax... and got back 5 dollars! i did this 5 times! plus its stuff i will use.... you must check it out!

  2. I am SO impressed! Now I feel like I should hop on this bandwagon! Speaking of which, last night we were watching TV and saw a commercial for a new show called "Extreme Couponing" - I think on TLC. The preview shows a woman with something like $600 in groceries for less than $10 in cash! We literally paused the TV and looked at each other, haha. I'm definitely going to set it up - keep an eye out for it!

  3. You're a rock start! Definitely earned a coupon gold medal today.

  4. Darn - that was rock star..not rock start. It's been one of those days.

  5. Great deals hun!! I use Southern Savers too and I am seriously saving SO much money. I'm having a hard time getting into the Walgreens/CVS/Rite Aid deals but I know I need to - they have great stuff!!

    I am also OBSESSED with Hip2Save.com - head over if you haven't already - she is AWESOME!! :)

    Hope you are having a good week!


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