Walgreens: Playing the demographics

I was just about ready to give up on Walgreens deals because they never restock their shelves – most likely not out of laziness but for lack of storage space. Seriously, the only sale item they replace from time to time is toothpaste. I’ve been avoiding their Times Square location because, well, those of us who live here go out of our way to avoid the swarms of tourists. However…I had a thought: tourists just want drinks, snacks and maybe a forgotten toiletry item. They’ll probably be well-stocked with everything else, so off I toddled…

Sure enough, the line at the cashier consisted of a dozen tourists buying Coke, Hersheys and razors. However, there were no weekly circulars, no Easy Saver booklets, and no sale tags on the shelves. I wasn’t sure if they’d accept coupons at all, theirs or manufacturer’s. I grabbed a box of Sambucol (free with a printable coupon and their Easy Saver coupon) and a couple of chocolate bars (circular coupon), and gave it a shot. Woohoo, walked out of there with $15.05 of stuff for $1.05. It was like, buy the candy get the cold/flu meds for free. Works for me – I ate the Butterfingers and will be donating the box of homeopathic cold tablets. I’m tempted to ask the manager if the weekly sales prices apply even if they’re not marked, but that might be pushing my luck. As it was, my cashier was one of those dead-behind-the-eyes types, which suited me – it meant she didn’t much care that my coupons made the Sambucol free, which tends to make all NYC cashiers suspicious. Heh, we’re so used to overpaying that it freaks us out when we underpay. Well, at first anyway. Clearly I’ve gotten used to it 🙂

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3 Responses

  1. I work in Soho and the Rite Aid near work is always picked clean when it comes to the sale deals. I guess the Upper East Side is too snooty for sales, because the Rite Aid near my apartment always seems to have the items in stock…even later in the week towards the end of the sale.

  2. Good to know…I’ve figured out that my pain-in-the-ass Rite Aid restocks the shelves late Friday/early Saturday, though they’re a bit selective. They’re good about restocking the food items, but not the other stuff. As much as I hate my local store, I hope they don’t go out of business – they’re the only drug store that fully includes NYC in its national weekly sales, unlike CVS (4-page circular instead of 16-20) or Walgreens (8 pages instead of 16).

  3. I’m beginning to think that just asking for lots of rain checks might drive them crazy enough that they’ll learn to stock up. The up side of that is more time to find more or better coupons. The down side is that some of the coupons will have expired. I read that when one lady asked for a raincheck, the manager even went ahead and printed out the register rebate in advance!

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