Why coupons for free items are better than free samples


I had half an emergency root canal today, and am walking around with one side of my face so swollen it looks like I have a goiter. Nothing was going to get me off the couch — until I realized that I still needed to spend about $6.50 to complete this week’s free gas card offer at CVS.

CVS is right across the street from my house, so I managed to drag myself over there. I bought these three items, which in addition to the three bottles of Tide, two eye drops and some more Dawn dish soap I bought earlier this week, got me up to the $30 in qualifying products to get the $10 gas gift card.

But here’s the beautiful thing: Because these kind of promos count your spending before coupons, I was able to spend just $1.15 tonight and still get the free gas card.

A few months ago, P&G offered coupons on Facebook for a free bottle of any Aussie product and a free bottle of Herbal Essences. I received those coupons in the mail a few weeks ago and have been carrying them in my coupon file, waiting for the most advantageous time to use them. This was it! Each shampoo cost $2.99, so after buying them and the $1 bottle of Dawn, I had completed my $30 worth of products required to get the gas card. But after the two free product coupons and a 50-cents-off Dawn coupon, I only had to pay $1.15 (mostly tax).

This deal at CVS ended tonight, but if you have those same free product coupons, you can use them at Walgreens this week to get $2 Register Rewards for free.

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