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I know, I know. Nobody likes shopping at Walmart. It’s busy and crowded, and sometimes the hassle just isn’t worth it. Despite these things, however, Walmart not only offers some of the lowest prices, but has policies in place to make those prices even lower than they already are. I admit that even I avoid shopping at Walmart when I can, but other people don’t always have a choice because let’s face it, there’s a Walmart in nearly every town. So in all fairness to those out there that shop at what many consider to be the most dreaded store in America, here are tips to maximize your savings with couponing at Walmart.
Update: As of 6/9/16 Walmart has discontinued ad price matching at select stores in lieu of offering lower prices. Stores will have signage if price matching is no longer available. Price matching to Walmart.com is still available.
What some people may not realize is that Walmart will price match competitor’s ads, both in-store and online. And if you forgot the print ad, the cashier can look it up for you. When price matching Walmart will only accept advertisements that list a specific price for the item and the item must be identical to what Walmart sells and has in stock. This includes Percentage Off and Buy One Get One Free promotions – these promotions must list a specific price for the item. They will not accept closeout ads, private brand price matching, receive a gift card with purchase promotion, Walmart Marketplace or auctions, or instant rebates. You can find Walmart’s price matching policy online here.
Walmart will accept manufacturer coupons including circular and online coupons. The coupons must state “manufacturer coupon”, be legible, have a valid expiration date and remit address for the manufacturer, and have a scannable barcode. They will accept circular coupons for free items, but will not accept online coupons for free items that do not require a purchase.
Since Walmart does not offer it’s own store coupons, it will accept competitor’s coupons! These also include competitor’s catalina coupons. Coupons must have a specific price and catalina coupons must state “manufacturer coupon.” They will not accept coupons for a specific price or percentage off the entire purchase, a specific price off at a specific retailer, percentage off coupons, or double or triple value coupons.
Walmart will only allow 1 coupon per item. This means that you cannot use both a competitor coupon and a manufacturer coupon on the same item. However, to get the best deals you can still stack a price match with a manufacturer or competitor coupon plus any potential rebates. It is also important to know that the corporate coupon policy states that “Store Managers have the final decision in taking care of the customer.” This means that any and all coupon acceptance is at the discretion of the manager. Be aware that the register will beep and require supervisor verification for the following instances:
- 4 or more like coupons per transaction.
- A coupon of $5 and over.
- $50 or more in coupons in one transaction.
- Coupons totaling a percentage off of the total sale.
Walmart is one of the only stores that actually allows coupon overage! This means that if you purchase a product for $.75 and use a $1 coupon, Walmart will actually pay you the $.25 overage amount or apply it to the balance of your transaction. Ka-ching! And in case you’re a little skeptical of this, the corporate coupon policy explicitly states, “If coupon value exceeds the price of the item, the excess may be given to the customer as cash or applied toward the basket purchase.”
Savings Catcher App
Walmart has their Savings Catcher App that can help you to score the best current price whenever you shop at the store. Simply upload your Walmart receipt into the app and the app will search for local store’s prices to ensure that you have received the best price possible. If a lower price is found elsewhere, you get the difference in the form of a Walmart eGift card. You can upload up to 7 Walmart receipts per week and earn back up to $600 a year.
If a sale item is out of stock, customer service will issue a rain check for that item. Not only that, but they will call you when it is back in stock. They will not issue rain checks for price matching, items specified as “while supplies last” or “limited quantities”, or items that are not carried at that particular store. Read more about rain checks here.
If you find Walmart has lowered the price of the item, you can return to the store within 7 days for a price adjustment. This does not apply to clearance or deep discounts like Black Friday.
Walmart’s Coupon Policy and Other information
It is important to know a store’s coupon policy. You can view Walmart’s policy here. I highly recommend that you visit the Walmart page at KCL to get an even more in-depth view about couponing at Walmart.