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Sunday, November 24, 2013

CVS black Friday extrabucks run

As many of you know, around Thanksgiving, CVS puts a ton of items into free after extrabucks mode, e.g., buy something for $5 and get $5 in extrabucks back.

I did my run this morning for all the free stuff.  It's an annual tradition for me and I find a lot of amusement in it. Note: Your CVS may have different items for free after extrabucks (FAE) than mine.

In Boston, this year is a highly efficient run, which means that you will have almost zero dollars out of pocket* if you do it correctly.  Your instructions, based on my local CVS ads, are below.  You'll need a copy of the ad to follow this email.  The FAE items are on pages 2,3 and the back cover.

The target price is $12.99, which means that the most expensive item on offer for FAE is $12.99.  We'll call it $13 for the sake of simplicity.  All items you purchase must be bought in lots of $13, so you can use the EB from the previous lot for the next lot.  At the end, you should have about $13 in EB, which equals your input.  Here is the order in which I'd recommend shopping:

1) Buy the glucose reader for $12.99 and receive an EB coupon for $12.99
2) Use the above coupon to buy Rescue and Mycratine and get your EBs
3) Use those EB to buy the Probiotics and both Starbucks cans
4) Use those EB to buy Advil, Total Home, Anti-Diarrhea stuff, toothbrush and Somnapure
5) Use those EB to buy everything else, which total about $13

*Okay, here's the difficult part.  Not every CVS has every product.  So the instructions may not maintain their integrity if your CVS is missing a couple.  Thus, you should be prepared to change things around on the fly to minimize your out of pocket (OOP) costs.  For instance, my CVS didn't have some of the medical stuff, meaning that my $13 target price didn't work.  So my target price became the next highest item, the Rescue at $7.79.  Using that as the target, each lot ended up being about $8 and I ended up with my last lot being $5, so I also bought the $3 toothpaste, which gives back $2.50 in EB.  In total, my OOP came out to just over a dollar, which includes the extra $.50 for the toothpaste.

What you'll need to bring: 

A pen and scrap paper to redo calculations and lots if your CVS is out of any items.
Several copies of the circular, since you will mark up multiples as you rejigger your lots
A sharpie to cross out items, since ballpoint pen ink doesn't show up well

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