Pharmacy: $332.05 bills, $1140.72 in savings, 56,105 Optimum Points, 77.5% in savings!
I’m way far behind on posting and I’m sorry. I have SO MANY amazing stories to tell about my past 4 Shoppers Drug Mart experiences…It has been totally crazy. One one trip alone I saved $776.54 while spending only $80.79, Another I got $74.21 in points when my bill was only $75.80 before tax!
I think all 4 of the trips are worthy of their own posts, but what I will do is separate them in this one post…
Trip #1: How Many Sets of Headphones do you Need? $776.54 in savings!
I stopped into the pharmacy not needing anything, just wanting to see what was there. I headed to the back where the usual stash of clearance items were…I did what all consumers do, I looked at the middle shelf and then looked at either the top or the bottom. In the middle was nothing particularly interesting…It was mostly feminine hygiene products on sale (since they are probably moving less stock since the tax drop comes in July 1st)…I picked some up, to give to charity because the price was so good, and they seem to need it frequently. Then I looked down STUFF ANIMAL HEADPHONES for $2 on sale from $35 BOOM!!!! SAVINGS!!! I bought 20 sets. Why 20 sets? Because they are great for Toy Mountain and they are just giving them away! Mind you, it seems my friends are buying up my supply faster than I can get them to charity.
On the same trip I found Pantene Shampoo for $1 per large bottle, which I bought to give to charity, but ended up selling to a friend. Also, a large number of boxes of cereal for $1!! BOOM! SAVINGS!
When I got to the check-out the Cashier was very helpful, but the rest of the customers were a bit panicky for 2 reasons: The first was they had to line up behind me. I always seem to take more time than usual due to the extra work the poor cashiers have to do; the 2nd reason was I was buying up almost all of the good stuff in the store. One woman came in, saw all the head phones I was buying and asked if I had bought them all, since the only reason she had come in was to buy some for her child. I left about 4 or 5 back, just so others could buy them. Another gentleman came in looking for the discounted cereal … He told me he had been in to buy the discounted tuna from the day before ($0.50 a can!) and saw the cereal, he told his disabled roommate about the cereal and she had asked him to come back and buy some for her. I told him to take whatever he needed from my stash. He ended up taking 4 boxes…People shopping right out of my cart!
Trip #2: “So, about your coffee?” – Proactive discounts
Whenever I am at the Beacon Hill Shoppers and I buy something (the story above) I almost always (heck – who am I kidding “always”) stop at my usual Shoppers.
When I had bought the Kicking Horse coffee for $1.25/lb earlier in May I looked at the Kicking Horse coffee that was still on the shelf and saw that some “expired” in early June. So I went and had a look. I found it, set to expire the next day, but it wasn’t on sale or on clearance…So, still high from the $700 in savings from the Beacon Hill trip I went and found the Manager. I told him he had coffee due to expire and could he make me a deal…He offered it to me at $4/lb instead of $17.99 BOOM! SAVINGS! I bought all 5 bags. Is it possible to be swimming in coffee beans because I am starting to swim in coffee beans.
Trip #3: Bonus Points Saturday!
Very often, Shoppers Drug Mart will offer things like spend $75 and get 18,500 points. I value points at $2.10 for 1000 points. There are bonus cash in days where you can get $200 worth of stuff for 95000 points so that is how I treat them. This means for spending $75 you get $38.85 in points, which is pretty good, especially if you are buying stuff on sale.
I stopped in at the Blackburn Hamlet Shoppers. I knew that laundry detergent was 50% off, so worst case scenario I was going to buy 15 bottles of detergent, getting myself $150 worth of detergent for $36.15 (discounting the earned points against the $75 spent)…It got way better than that really quickly.
One thing I am learning is that with the exception of what is in the flyers Shoppers Drug Marts are VERY independently operated (see the next story for details). So, they have tons of “this store only sales” without saying this store only. One thing I do when I am checking out a Shoppers is that I will go through every isle, often without picking anything up before looking at everything. Anyone who has come with me has seen how long this can take. In this case it was super worth it!
Here is a list of things that were on sale at this location only that I bought, in some cases only one flavour was on sale:
Coffee cream 473ml, usually $2.49 on sale for $0.49 (for my work, I use milk) BOOM! – SAVINGS!
Starbucks 340g packages usually $12.99 on sale for $2.99 and $3.99 BOOM! – SAVINGS!
Kicking Horse Coffee usually $17.99/lb on sales for $5.99/lb BOOM! – SAVINGS!
Potato Thins and Triscuits usually $3.49 on sale for $0.99 BOOM! – SAVINGS!
Cadbury Mini chocolate bars usually $6.49 on sale for $3.00 (come visit my office!) BOOM! – SAVINGS!
Oceanspray Cranberry juice usually $5.49 on sale for $0.99 BOOM! – SAVINGS!
The deals were so good on coffee, I started texting friends to see if they wanted me to pick some up. Note, none of this was clearance, they just marked the prices down. The coffee is good until sometime in 2016!!!
I don’t know why it was like that, but it was. What is weird is that is was very specific. For the Kicking Horse it was only Smart Ass that was on sale and for the cranberry juice it was only the clear stuff.
I ended up getting $333.49 worth of stuff for $133.26 and picked up $41.51 in points!
Trip #4: Double Coupons = DOUBLE HAPPINESS!
If had a dime for every time someone said “Oh you like saving money? Have you ever seen Extreme Couponing?” I would have a crap load of dimes.
The difference between Canada and the US is the level of competition among retailers so they have to do all sorts of crazy loyalty points and multiplying of coupons and stuff like that. This doesn’t happen in Canada so people have to grind out deals like me…
I get reward e-mails from Shoppers. they sent me an e-mail on Sunday, after just earning 18500 points and the email said if I went in on Monday and spent $75 I would get another 18500 points. I didn’t need anything (obviously) but figured I would check it out anyways.
I walk into my usual one and they have 150 cups Folgers ground coffee for $4.99 instead of $11.99. I ask my usual cashier if it is all Shoppers that have this sale or just theirs, she said it was all of them. Since there was nothing else I wanted, and I didn’t need coffee, I went to the Beacon Hill one. At Beacon Hill they were offering the same coffee for $12.49 at the end of the isle and $11.99 in the isle. Either way, I wasn’t impressed, or buying it.
I realized I had two coupons loaded on my Optimum card, buy $75 and get 18500 and buy $75 and get 16000 points. I figured they would honour the 16000 point one, but not both, since it was like double dipping.
I drove back to my usual Shoppers and cleared out the Folgers, they only had 7 tins (and sadly for them they forgot to charge me for one, and I only noticed when I go home)…This only gets me to $29.95, so I need to find more stuff. Before I list off what I bought, they obviously honoured both coupons. So after the in-store points I got 35252 points in one trip. That is worth $74.21. My bill was only $75.80 before tax…So I got $182.38 for the equivalent of $1.59+$5.45 in tax!!!! BOOM SAVINGS!
This is what I got for $7.04: 7 tins for Folgers, 4 litres of milk, 3 large packs of good toilet paper, 4 jugs of Tide and 4 Vim Spray bottles BOOM!!!! SAVINGS!!!!!!
I’ve bought so much stuff, my coworkers have started buying it off of me at the prices that I am finding. Which is totally cool with me! I love passing along the savings!
From the title, about cashiers hating me. I sometimes show the cashiers how much I am saving. I realized after doing it that showing someone that you have saved probably more than they make in a week probably isn’t making me any friends. The cashier at my usual Shoppers has started looking with me too, as the receipt comes of the machine. She finds it impressive when I save $80…I find savings that low disappointing! 🙂
If you do the math below: (money spent – credits)/(total goods + taxes not paid on stuff bought) you see that I have only spent the equivalent of 18.7% on the stuff I have gotten from Shoppers! BOOM! SAVINGS!
Non-prescription pharmacy spending 2015: $1267.48
Pharmacy savings 2015: $3987.79
Optimum Points: 88874 ($186.63)