Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Couponing for Charity: Black Friday's freebies & money makers

It's been a little over a year since I began working the deals at Walgreen's and CVS; so I am by no means a pro. Before, I had no idea you could get so much for free and even "make money" on some deals with coupons. Since I began my Couponing for Chairty mission in March, I have been posting weekly about how to score the best freebies, many of which I donate to a variety of local charities. To see my donating totals for the past two months alone, click here.

Though I don't usually get Black Friday fever, I will be shopping at CVS and Walgreen's this Friday to get 45 free items--many which are money makers! Woo hoo! This is like the Super Bowl of Couponing! The best part is that you have more time to get these deals, as they are good Thursday through Saturday (11/25-27). But don't wait too long because the shelves could be empty. If you're new to shopping these stores, first check out Coupon Mommie's tips for Walgreen's and CVS.

If you're going to pick just one store, I'd suggest CVS. You can get 25 items for free and make $7.30 in overage! CVS rewards are good for a month and you don't have to worry about coupon to product ratio. I then compare the match-ups of three bloggers. Sometimes they're different since coupons, prices, and deals can vary by region.

Southern Savers (extensive list)
Coupon Katie (local & paired down)


The idea is to spend as little OOP (out of pocket) as possible without irritating the clerk with a ton of transactions. Go to the back of the line if necessary. I'll be starting with $8 ECB from a previous trip. I've rounded most of these up for simplicity. I'm getting the max number of products allowed. If I'm under for any reason, I'll throw in an extra Reese's to each transaction. Here's my plan for CVS:

Transaction #1:
  • 1 Gillette Odor Shield Deodorant ($4, get $4ECB, use $2 MC =$2MM)
  • 2 Colgate Sensitive Toothpastes ($4, get $4, use 2 $1 MC=$2MM)
  • Use $8ECB from previous trips
Total Due: just tax
ECBs earned: $12

Transaction #2:
  • 1 Eucerin lotion ($7, get $7ECB, use $1 MC=$1MM)
  • 2 Herbal Essences shampoo ($4, get $4ECB, use $1/2 MC=$1MM)
  • Use $12 ECB from transaction #1
Total Due: $1 plus tax
ECBs earned: $15

Transaction #3:
  • 2 Listerine pocketpaks ($3, get $3ECB, use $1/2 MC = $1MM)
  • 1 Carmex lip balm ($1, get $1ECB, use $.30 MC = $.30MM)
  • 1 Philips in-ear headphones ($7, get $7ECB=FREE)
  • 1 Advil PM 4ct ($1, get $1ECB=FREE)
  • 1 Excedrin 8ct ($1, get $1ECB=FREE)
  • 1 Reese's Singles 1.4-2oz ($.79, get $.79)
  • Use $15 ECBs from transaction #2
Total Due: $.50 plus tax
ECBs earned: $16.79

Transaction #4:
  • 1 L.A. Looks Styling Gel ($3, get $3ECB=FREE)
  • 2 Renpure shampoos ($5, get $5ECB=FREE)
  • 4 Reese's singles ($.79, get $.79=FREE)
  • 5 Mars king size assorted ($1.60, get $1.60=FREE)
  • 1 Bioluxe trial size shampoo ($1.99; free with coupon you must register for by 11/24)
  • 1 Minute Clinic hand sanitizer wipes (free at the Minute Clinic with coupon found here)
  • Use $16.79 from transaction #3
Total Due: $7.37 plus tax
ECBs for next time: $24.16

I'll probably pick and choose my goods at Walgreen's more carefully because their rewards are good for only two weeks and it's more of a puzzle getting the coupon to product ratio correct. I'll have to go through my coupons to make sure I have what I need to make each item truly free or a money maker and make sure they are goods charities really want. Their good deals on Kleenex and Huggies will make it worth my while. The list of freebies includes:

  • Soft drinks
  • Advil
  • Oral B toothbrush
  • Gum eez Flossers
  • Colgate toothpaste
  • Crest toothpaste
  • Scunci hair bands
  • Secret body splash
  • Old Spice body spray
  • Dial for Men body wash
  • Nivea for Men shave gel
  • Olay body wash
  • Bic razors
  • Centrum Silver vitamins
  • Thermacare heat wraps
  • Robitussin to go
  • Fiber One fruit tablets
  • Planters nuts
  • Gillette skin care
  • Just for Men shampoo & conditioner

I'll post the specific deals I got later on. Nothing ever goes truly as planned. Let me know if you go and how your experience was. It can be a lot of fun and highly addictive!

Thank you to the group of Knoxville Money Saving Momma Bloggers that have teamed up to bring you lots of great posts this holiday season: Coupon Katie, Coupon Mommie, Couponing in Critical Times,Coupons Are Money, Frugalissa Finds, Frugally Farming Family,Knoxmoms.com, Knoxville Mamabelle,Knoxville on a Dime, Sharing Savings with You.

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