Walmart has finally caved. The big-box behemoth recently updated its policy on accepting manufacturer coupons. The move will make Walmart more competitive with other discount chains, like Target, Dollar General and BJs, which already accept manufacturer coupons, allow coupon stacking and have stepped up their sales campaigns.
The trend has spread to such high-end retailers as Lord & Taylor, Macy's and more. Walmart also recently began offering free in-store pickup of items purchased online, another trend that has rapidly spread to many major merchants.
Here are the coupon policies for Walmart and its major competitors, along with a few tips on getting the most out of your coupons. All stores listed allow coupon stacking (see tip No. 1 below for details).
1. Walmart accepts: Manufacturers' coupons, valid Internet printable coupons (IPs) that include "Manufacturers' Coupon," an expiration date and scannable bar code on the face of the coupon, competitors' coupons that specify a specific product for a certain price, soft drink container caps, and Catalina coupons (the coupons printed at the register) from competitors' stores.
2. Target accepts: One manufacturer coupon combined with one Target coupon for the same item, Super Target coupons, if the store carries the item, and IP coupons
3. Dollar General accepts: Manufacturer coupons,Dollar General store coupons, and IP coupons.
4. BJ's accepts: Manufacturer coupons, and BJ's members-only coupons.
5. Kmart accepts: Manufacturer coupons, Kmart Savings coupons, Kmart store coupons, and printable coupons.
1. Stacking: This is the practice of combining a manufacturer coupon and a store coupon for multiple savings. Not all stores allow this practice, so check before you plunk down your purchases. It also helps to first hand the cashier your manufacturer coupon followed by the store coupon.
2. Go For BOGOs " These buy-one-get-one-free coupons allow you to, as the name suggests, receive the second item of a product for free, effectively cutting the price in half.
3. Use Mobile Coupons: Modern technology has invaded the coupon world with mobile coupons you can access from your your smartphone, allowing the cashier to either scan the barcode or input the code numbers at check out. CouponSherpa.com created a highly popular mobile coupon app, which includes an easy-to-access directory of store coupons in alphabetical order so on-the-go shoppers never miss out on a single offer.
4. Combine Coupons With Discount Gift Cards: Discount gift cards can be used for just about anything these days, from gas to groceries. You'll find ready access to these cards at such websites as GiftCardGranny.com and for popular stores like Kohls, Target, Home Depot and many more. With savings ranging from five percent to 20-percent off a purchase, using discount gift cards is a smart way to stretch your dollar and enjoy deeper discounts especially when combined with coupons and other store promotions or sales.
5. IP Coupons: Printable online coupon sites allow you to print free coupons for the same products found in your Sunday newspaper's circulars...and more. Offers are added frequently, they're available nationally, and can be printed immediately. Merchants don't accept copied coupons, so you must print them out individually.