Thursday, December 1, 2011

How I Plan My Shopping Trips and Some Tips

I just got back from a CVS run and got a great deal on diapers. And it got me thinking that some of you would probably find it helpful if I outlined a little just how I plan my trips to maximize my savings.

The first thing I do when planning my shopping trip is to go to For the Mommas and look at her deal post. I then jot down the items I want to get and the coupons she has listed. I also always skim through the comments because often other readers will leave helpful information about deals and help me save even more.

If I see an item that I thought maybe there was a coupon for that I don't see listed I go to Hot Coupon World and check their coupon database just to double check. Sometimes a coupon will show up there that Shannon at For the Mommas missed.

Today I was trying to figure out if I should do the Pampers diaper deal. It was pretty good but I wanted to make sure that in the next couple of weeks there wouldn't be a better one, so I checked out the next couple of week's ads over at iheartcvs and discovered that although Pampers will be on sale again in a couple of weeks, this is still a better deal. And so, based on that, I decided to go ahead with the Pampers diaper deal I was planning to do.

Once I get my coupons all together, I head to CVS. Once I'm there I always scan my Extra Care card at the little CVS coupon machine that is inside the front door. If you don't know where the machine is in your CVS, please ask someone! You'll get lots of extra savings from the coupons that it prints out!

This is the deal I did this week. By combining manufacturer coupons, CVS coupons and the Spend $30 get a $10 gift card promotion I was able to get diapers for $4.33/pack plus I also got a package of wipes free AND I will get a coupon for a FREE package of Pampers diapers as part of CVS' buy 6 jumbo packs of diapers get the 7th free promotion. Now while $4.33 isn't the absolute best price for a pack of diapers, in my mind at least, it's still good. And the fact that I will get another pack free since this brought my total buy amount to 6 packs and since I also essentially got a package of wipes free, I felt like this was a pretty great deal.

Okay, are you confused yet? Let me try to lay it out more clearly and see if it can make more sense.
Here's what I bought:

3 packages Pampers diapers @ $9.50 ea. ($28.50 total)
1 Puffs tissues @ $0.99
- (needed this to reach a total of $29.40 at which point I qualified for the spend $30 on specific products get a $10 gift card promotion)
1 Pampers wipes @ $2.49
- (this was not included in the buy $30 get a $10 gift card promotion)

Total: $31.98

Here are the coupons I used:

$2.00/2 Pampers diapers coupon
$1.00/1 Pampers diapers coupon
$1.00/1 Pampers wipes coupon
$4.00 off when you buy both diapers and wipes
- (CVS coupon from the coupon machine I mentioned above)
- I was not planning to buy the wipes but since I got the CVS coupon I realized that buying them would actually save me MORE money since I could combine the Pampers manufacturer's coupons with this CVS store coupon. So not only did I essentially get the wipes free, it also saved me some more off my diapers purchase.)

Total after coupons: $23.98

I then qualified for a $10 CVS gift card since I had spent $30 on qualified items. Deduct that from the $23.98 and it's like paying $13.98 for all of the above items.

I hope that you could follow all of that and learn something from it. Basically I wanted to give you some of the resources that I use and help you see how combining various coupons with promotions can really maximize your savings. Here's a recap of what I posted above: Link
* Check out For the Momma's coupon match-ups- I've found her to be the most thorough and the easiest to follow.
* Read the comments on coupon match-up posts. They often are a wealth of information and can help you save even more!
* You can look at future ads at iheartcvs (there is also and iheartriteaid and iheartwags- for Walgreens).
* If there's a product you want to buy that you don't have a coupon for, check Hot Coupon World's database to see if you can find one.
* Combine store and manufacturer coupons as much as possible to save even more.
* Watch for promotions such as the Buy $30 get a $10 gift card and see if you can use them to get items you need to save even more. Remember though, if you DON'T need the items, you really are not saving anything buy spending money to get a $10 gift card!

Do you have any questions about how this works? Any other resources or tips for saving when you shop? Please feel free to leave a comment! I love when you do! :)


  1. I did almost the exact same deal in about the exact same process you did! Sweeet. It's funny, I even had many of the same thoughts you shared as you were doing the process of determining if it was a good deal or not. And I LOVE that $4 off coupon, I got one too. I also got a $1 off Baby Wipes at the same time, which I thought was weird since you could combine them. Did you get that too?

  2. Kathy, that is too funny! Guess we think a lot alike, huh? No, I didn't get the $1 wipes coupon- no fair! :) That would have been a great addition to the deal, that's for sure.


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