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Why are CVS Extra bucks such a pain...??

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by spima3, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. spima3

    spima3 DIS Veteran

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    After reading so many posts here about CVS, I applied for the Extra Care card and find it a real pain to deal with.

    About two months ago, I bought something that was suppose to give me $5.00 extra bucks. When I tried to use them with a later purchase, the kid told me they only became available every 3 months. OK, fine.
    Then when I picked up some after Xmas stuff earlier this month, the receipt has $4.00 in Extra bucks from a purchase that day as available and expires in Feb. Never saw the original $5.00 one from two months ago.
    When I go to CVS.com, it shows $1.50 extra bucks available. ????
    I haven't been to the store since the XMas clearance.
    I am not understanding this at all. EXACTLY how do the extra bucks work?
    when are they available? how do you know when you have them to use? and how do you use them? do I need to take my last receipt in to get them?

    This has become so annoying, it certainly doesn't seem worth the aggravation.TIA
    lori
     
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  3. mannasn

    mannasn Punk rock mama<br><font color=green>Thinks Toad Sw

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    I don't understand the CVS extra bucks AT ALL, either. Subbing to this thread so maybe I can figure out, too. :)
     
  4. neatokimmo

    neatokimmo DIS Veteran

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    ECBS are just coupons for CVS. You keep them from your receipts and redeem them.

    You can mix and match coupons. There are several out there now.

    Tonight I did the Pepsi deal. $22 of Pepsi and Chips and I used a $4 off of $20 CVS coupon. I got a $10 ECB instantly. I used that $10 ECB to buy 5 men's deodorants (I also used another $4 off $20 coupon) and paid $6 something out of pocket. That earned me a $19.95 ECB.

    I've invested about $27 in starting up my ECBs again so this week doesn't seem like a really good deal. But check out my trip later on this week:

    Check One
    2 dove deodorants 3.98
    1 pack of gum - $.50 (or something cheap like that)
    20 soy joy bars
    -$4 off of $20 coupon
    -$20 coupons for soy joy
    ---------------------less than 50 cents out of pocket
    I now have 19.95 from the deodorant and a $20 ECB from the Soy Joy bars. If I didn't need the Dove, I would pick an item that was $4 even and not worry about the gum.

    Check Two
    20 dawn dish washing detergents 19.90
    1 puff box .99
    2 dove deodorants $3.99
    6 bags of M&Ms 10.46
    -------------------------
    35.34 - $5 off $30 CVS coupon - $10 in dawn coupons - $19.95 ECB = .39
    I now have a $5 ECB (from the Dawn & Puffs) a $9 (from the M&Ms) and a $20 left over from the Soy Joy bars.

    So now I have $34 in ECBS that I can spend on anything. Does that help at all?
     
  5. LadyyRedd

    LadyyRedd <font color=red>Someone stole my toothpaste/Chapst

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    As far as the $5 one that never showed, you could've picked up the wrong product. You have to be very careful to get EXACTLY what the ECB will print for. For example, if the ad says Buy Crest Pro-Health and get $2 ECB and you buy Crest Pro-Health NIGHT by accident, you won't get the ECB. If it says to buy the 6.4 oz tube and you buy the 4.6 oz tube, you won't get it. Always check to make sure it printed on your receipt, if not, figure out why and have them fix it in the store. Believe me, all of us have, at one time, purchased the wrong item and had to return it.

    The one that the cashier was talking about every 3 months is the one for quarterly spending.

    Kimya
     
  6. maggiew

    maggiew If she hates to be wet, then how does the survive

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    There are 2 types of ECB. You get one kind every quarter of the year based on the amount of money you spent that quarter. The other kind you get when you buy a product that is advertised to give you ECB. You should get this second kind immediately after your purchase at the bottom of your receipt. You can turn around and use those immediately. If you do not get them on the bottom of your receipt when you think you should, ask the cashier immediately about it. You can check to make sure that you bought the correct item, etc. If you did buy the right thing, then the store manager will do something to make it right - either give you a gift card for the correct amount or ring up a product that will generate the ECB, etc.

    Once you figure out the whole ECB thing, it is VERY easy!!

    Maggie
     
  7. DisNeeFans

    DisNeeFans Mouseketeer

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    Certain sales have a limit of how much or what item qualifies for ECBs.
    Example Pepsi deal-Buy $20 worth of Pepsi products receive $10 ECBs. These would be printed on the bottom of receipt after qualified purchase and can be redeemed right away like a coupon on a next purchase of anything in the store.

    Another way of getting ECBs is quarterly, depends on how much money you actually spend in the store you get 2% back. To redeem these ECBs they will either print on your reciept when you purchase something at the store when Quarter is up or you can print them from on-line and then bring print out to store to redeem on any purchase in store.

    *Either way you get them they are used like a coupon.
     
  8. spima3

    spima3 DIS Veteran

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    Sorry, but not at all. :)

    I understand you buy things and get ECBS. What I am saying is that the first time I should have gotten $5. Kid told me that they would become available in 3 months. Never got them that I know of.

    Just recently I purchase some hair care stuff. Buy two and get $4 ESBS. Got them immediately, no waiting for three months. ???

    When I went to the CVS website to see if the original $5 was there, it shows I only have $1.50 in ECBS, yet my receipt is showing $4 available. The transaction for the $4 was a couple of weeks ago, I have not been there since, yet the website is saying there is only $1.50 available.
    So by my calculations I should have $9 ECBS, yet I only have a receipt showing $4 and the website is showing $1.50.

    How do I know what I have available at any given time? Are they availabe immediately? do you have to wait? are they only shown on the receipts? do you need the receipts to cash them in?

    lori
     
  9. spima3

    spima3 DIS Veteran

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    Well, while I was responding I see a few more posts that explain it better. I know the first $5.00 was valid. I even asked the kid about it, and he said yes it was the right item.
    I didn't look at the receipt, so since I tossed that receipt I lost the $5 ?

    So if you are getting ECBS for items, they will show up on the bottom of the receipt at time of purchase, and you have to keep that receipt in order to redeem them?
    And the website ECBS are for what? the quarterlies?
    And what the kids were telling me at the store is basically wrong. Nice.
     
  10. LadyyRedd

    LadyyRedd <font color=red>Someone stole my toothpaste/Chapst

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    Just because you asked the cashier and he said yes, he may have been wrong. Since you said it was a "kid", he may not have read the ad correctly. If that happens again, ask for the manager so you can correct the situation.

    I would say you are probably out the $5, especially since it was 2 months ago. But you could return the item without a receipt and get a store credit to use later on something else.

    Yes, they will show up on the bottom of your receipt for the weekly and monthly advertised deals.
    What he told you wasn't exactly wrong, but it was only part of it. The quarterly ECB you earn prints out every 3 months, but the weekly/monthly deals print immediately on the bottom of the receipt and you can use them immediately.

    Kimya
     
  11. PolyHereWeCome

    PolyHereWeCome DIS Veteran

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    Unless you spend a lot at CVS, or until you become a loyal CVS shopper, I'd just forget about the 2% quarterly extra care buck promotion. Most quarters, I get maybe a 50 cent extra care bucks coupon or a dollar (most I ever got was $1.50), but that's because I shop elsewhere when I find CVS's prices higher than competitors. CVS sales can be streaky, so I may buy a lot for a few weeks, get ECBs and then find myself struggling to use the extra care bucks before they expire. That's when I buy milk and orange juice.

    I never go to cvs.com to check my account or do anything. I do make sure to doublecheck my receipt and the ECBs at the bottom before I leave the store, because you do have to be very careful to buy exactly what's covered. I also make a point of clipping off the ECB paper coupons and putting them in an envelope with my other coupons (or I'd definitely throw them away with the receipt). They are dated and not sure if you can call CVS to have them reset (I've never done that).

    Focus on the weekly sales advertised in the circular, and buy things you'd normally buy (or donate to someone who can use) that will return an extra care bucks coupon. Many of us have gotten into the sport of minimizing the money we spend out of pocket and maximizing purchases that generate extra care bucks. If you are really into couponing, follow the CVS threads for matching manufacturers' and CVS coupons with sales, and that'll in many cases lead to getting products for free (or better than free).:wizard:
     
  12. DisNeeFans

    DisNeeFans Mouseketeer

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    I'm not quite sure if you call the 800 # if they could retrieve the ECBs you threw away for you, tell them your new at this and that you got misleading info from an employee. I'm not really an expert maybe someone else knows.

    What I do after I get my receipt is check it and make sure the correct ECBs print out, and then I immediately tear them off and put them in an envelope I have in my purse so that I always have them together and on hand for my next CVS trip.

    The ECB's that you seen on-line are from last Quarter, you must have spent $75.00 and received 2% of that which is $1.50. like I said before they should print next time you go into the store and purchase something or you can print them from the site and use it right away.

    I sure hope all this makes sense, I have been CVSing for about a month and I can't even tell you how much I have saved and the items I have stocked up on. This board sure has helped me save a bundle and are some of the nicest ppl around to help :)
     
  13. HayGan

    HayGan We could all use some pixie dust now and then :)<b

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    In order to use ECBs you actually have a coupon in your hand. ECBs now print at the bottom of your receipt following a qualifying purchase. They are individual coupons that print on your receipt but have dotted lines that seperate them. You likely last shopped at CVS before last quarters ECBs were issued. If they are showing $1.50 available then there is a link right next to it that you can click on to print it at home. Or it will likely print when you go in and make your next purchase.

    With your $5 one, I hate to say it but I would say that they aren't likely to be recovered. I would just start new with your $4 one.
     
  14. spima3

    spima3 DIS Veteran

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    I think I "get it" now. Verify item, check receipt, keep receipt to use ECBS.

    Another problem I recently had, was to shop on Sat evening. All of the items for the next weeks ads were already up. Wasn't "exactly" sure which items were the reward items without the sale tickets so didn't get anything. Very annoyed with that as well. Does this happen often as well?
    Also, there are often limits on the amount, yet I sometimes can't even find one reward item to purchase; seems the stock is very low. Are there certain things that should be purchased sooner rather than later? I don't want to have to keep track of rainchecks.

    lori
     
  15. LadyyRedd

    LadyyRedd <font color=red>Someone stole my toothpaste/Chapst

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    If you have a limited number of CVS stores near you, shop as early in the week as possible. I know of some that only have 1 store near them. I'm lucky in that I have about 10 of them within a 5 mile radius of my house, with about 8 more within a 30 minute radius, including the one up the street from my office, so I often don't do my shopping until Saturday, which is the end of the sale week.

    Kimya
     
  16. neatokimmo

    neatokimmo DIS Veteran

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    Things run out quickly, that is why you'll see a lot of us going on Sunday when the new ad comes out. Tonight the freebie deodorant had space for 100 of them but only 10 were there. I have seen people buy one and roll the ECB into the next one and have 5 transactions so they'll be able to get the limit before CVS runs out but have very little out of pocket.
     
  17. delmar411

    delmar411 DIS Veteran

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    All things should be purchased sooner in the week or immediately after their truck arrives. I know the truck schedule at all 10 of my closest CVS. Only need to use that info when I'm ISO of a hot item that I can get as a moneymaker.

    Many times you won't be able to find the item you are looking for at all. It just happens like that on occasion. You can get a rain check for the sale price but it is very much YMMV on whether you can get a rain check for the ECB as well.

    You do need to clip all your coupons though and make sure to note the expiration date. ECBs normally expire 1month from printing and everything else within 2weeks.

    It's pretty easy to keep them organized if you have a spot in your wallet or purse for them. I have 4 cards now. Up from only 2 last year. It can be slightly time consuming when you've got a bunch of split orders but it's worth it.
     
  18. maggiew

    maggiew If she hates to be wet, then how does the survive

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    My store seems to take down the old signage and post the new signs around 12 noon on Saturday. The old deals are still good, though. The new deals become available sometime between 12 and 6. One of my stores has a price scanner, so I go there and scan the price to see if next weeks deals are up yet.

    I usually bring my own ad with me to the store - especially if I go on Saturday. Because there usually isn't any left in the store! Sometimes they have a few clipped somewhere and hanging in the aisles, though. I also print out a list of what I am interested in getting. I just take the post in the OP and copy and paste the lines I want. I also have some "backup" items listed incase they are out of what I want.

    If they are having an item that is Free after ECB (like the Speed Stick deoderant this week), you want to shop early in the week or you might miss those. Other deals (like spend $15 in Maybelline, get $5 ECB), you can wait until the end of the week. They usually don't run out of Maybelline!

    There are items that I sometimes can't get. I never got those energy drinks (6 hour) that were free after ECB. I don't think any of the stores near me got them in?? I also haven't been able to find any of the diabetes monitors. I've only ever found 1 Nova Max, none of the Contours or Breeze. I just think, oh well, look at all of the stuff I am getting for free!

    As others have said, its best to tear the ECB off the bottom of your receipt and put them in an envelope or something in your purse. That way you won't lose them. You will get individual ECB for each deal - you don't get one big lump ECB. (The only slight exception to this is if you are able to buy more than 1 of the SAME deal, those will all print as a lump sum. For example, I bought all 5 Speed Sticks at once and got a $19.95 ECB).

    Maggie
     
  19. TBAKER215

    TBAKER215 Mouseketeer

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    20 dawn dish washing detergents 19.90

    How long does that many last?
     
  20. Sarah'sMomfrom PA

    Sarah'sMomfrom PA Welcomed Guest<br><font color=red>Mutters about dr

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    The CVS Customer Services 800# will no longer re-instate any unused ECB's--I had two good ones (over $4.00) which expired before I had a chance to use them (actually, I forgot about them) and the Customer Service rep told me that their policy changed in July, 2007 and they no longer can re-issue unused ECB in their system. The girl was really nasty and I asked to speak to a supervisor who was even nastier. I never was notifed of a change in the ECB program even though they email me all the time with $5.00 off a $20.00 purchase. I may write into the actual CVS headquarters and complain that this policy changed and no one knew that it did including the manager of my CVS store who told me to call to have the ECB re-issued.
     
  21. paysensmom

    paysensmom DIS Veteran

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    Hi everyone!!
    I have been "lurking" for awhile on the whole CVS thing. I think I get it pretty well, but where would I get the coupons you all talk about? The 4/20 and so on?
    Thank you so much!!
    Heather
     

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