Rite Aid 101: HOW TO SAVE at Rite Aid

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There are many ways to save money at Rite Aid. Some of the programs are new like the +UP Rewards and some are well established like Single Check Rebates, but any way you cut it, Rite Aid is one of my FAVORITE places to shop! You will be amazed at the savings you can get by just participating in the programs.  This post is SUPER LONG, but I wanted to have one place you could come to get a glimpse of everything you need to know about Rite Aid.

You can see Rite Aid’s COUPON POLICY and how it spells out exactly how to use multiple coupons there.  You have the ability to combine manufacturer coupons along with various store coupons – video values, in-ad coupons, wellness coupons and more.  You will want to become familiar with this well detailed policy!

Rite Aid Wellness Program

The Rite Aid Wellness Program is new this year and you now need to have a wellness card in order to receive most of the sale prices in the flyer.  It is FREE to join and you can even just pick up a card right in the store, but remember to activate it online so you can receive all the additional savings including a $5/$25 Rite Aid coupon and more.  Just have the cashier scan your card before every purchase.

EARN POINTS every time you shop:

  • Earn one point for every dollar spent on non-prescription purchases.
  • Earn 25 points for every prescription you purchase.

These points are accrued each calendar year to earn you REWARDS:
– For every 125 pts (up to 375 pts), get a one time 10% shopping pass.
– For 500 points, get 10% off all non-prescription purchase for the rest of the year and a FREE health screening.
– For 1000 points, get 20% off all non-prescription purchases for the rest of the year.

PLUS, ENJOY EVERYDAY BENEFITS, INCLUDING:

  • Members-only sale pricing throughout the store
  • 10% off Rite Aid Brand products every day
  • 24/7 exclusive access to a pharmacist when you call 1-800-RITEAID

… see more info about exclusions and limitations HERE.

You will also receive a wellness newsletter with articles as well as special wellness printable coupons. You also have access to other online coupons via your account.  Keep an eye on the end of your receipts as wellness coupons will occasionally print out there as well.

You can monitor your rewards level online.  There is no need to enter receipts or anything – every time you scan your wellness card at checkout, you get credit for that purchase.  Once you earn a certain rewards level, you will maintain that level throughout the year.  At the end of the calendar year 12/31/10… your points will re-set to ZERO, but the reward level you earned stays in effect through 2011.  So if you are close to gaining a new level by the end of the year, you may want to make sure your achieve it before your point reset!

HEADS UP:
***The wellness rewards discount is off of regular price.  However, when used with a sale priced item the customer will receive the lower of the discount price or sale price.***
Make sure you are aware of YOUR discount when you are calculating your spend for a buy $$, get $ +UPR or SCR or when using a $/$$ coupon.

Single Check Rebates

Rite Aid’s Single Check Rebate program – or SCR as I will refer to them, is the legacy program at Rite Aid.  It is a traditional rebate program – Buy stuff, submit for a rebate and get money back for the rebate amount – typically a monthly check though there are occasionally gift cars rebates as well.  The reason it is called SINGLE check rebate is that they will only send one check each specified time period (typically a “month”).  So do not request your monthly rebate until you are sure all your purchases have been entered.  Also note that because you can only request one check per month, you are paying the money up front and will have to wait a bit for the return.  If you have not participated in the program, you can sign up HERE.

The SCR program is NOT tied to the wellness program and does NOT require you to use your wellness card to participate – however note that although you can get the SCR without the wellness card, you may not be able to get the sale price without it.

HOW IT WORKS:

There is a monthly Single Check Rebate book available in stores or viewable online with all the SCR’s available for the month.  Some are valid all month long and some only specific weeks.  There are also clear limits (typically 1, but sometimes more) as to how many of one SCR you can submit for per household.  These will also typically be highlighted in the weekly sales flyers when they are on sale as well (though NOT ALWAYS).  Coupons DO NOT affect the amount of rebate you receive.

There are typically 4 types of rebates –

  • Buy ONE particular item and get $$ back.
  • Buy multiples of a certain product or product line, get $$ back. They typically do not need to be purchased on the same receipt, but DO need to be purchased in the specified time period.  A list of participating products will be listed.

  • Buy a combination of products/brands to qualify for $$ back.  Purchases do not need to be made on one receipt, but DO need to be completed in the specified time period.  A list of participating products will be listed.
  • Occasionally you will have rebates that span over many months – these work the same as the above and as soon as you meet all the purchase requirements you can submit for the rebate.

There are times when the stars align that a product may qualify for its own SCR as well as be included in a larger multiple brand SCR as well.  I refer to that as a double dip :).

Make your purchases and SAVE YOUR RECEIPT.

Enter the following information online for each receipt :

you can also choose to submit by mail instead using the rebate form found in the Single Check Rebate Directory.

After you have submitted your receipt information you will see a message stating it will take 2 – 5 business days to confirm your purchase information. You should receive a confirmation email stating when the status has been updated and you can review your SCR status.
If the data is approved, you will see the listing of your qualified SCR items and a tally of your current rebate check.  Make sure you DO NOT REQUEST your check unless it is the end of the rebate period.  You want to keep entering your receipts all month long.  You will also see how much you have purchased contributing towards a larger SCR.

If your data did not qualify – double check your receipt information and ensure the correct product was purchased and re-enter it.  If it still does not pass, then you will need to contact customer service.  SEE the Single Check Rebate FAQ’s HERE.

AT THE END OF THE REBATE PERIOD (month) you can request your rebate check – AFTER all your receipts have been entered and cleared.  You will then receive a check in approximately 2-3 weeks.  BEWARE – it is literally a little pink postcard that could easily be lost as junk mail (I will be back with a pic…)

If your store is out of stock – do not worry, you can get Rainchecks that will be honored for all rebate offers during any promotional rebate period. Rainchecks must be used within 30 days of issuance to purchase the product on rebate and qualify for the rebate. Your receipt must state “Raincheck” under the participating rebate product item to qualify for rebate. See how to process rainchecks HERE.  Make sure the cashier knows how to ring it as a RAINCHECK.

I love the SCR program as it is a check you can cash (or occasionally there is a Rite Aid giftcard or prepaid Visa card). However, keep in mind that the money will be tied up for about a month if you are continuing to enter receipts.  Because the SCR program does not require you to mail in the receipt, that also leaves you eligible to submit for manufacturer rebates as well.

+UP Rewards

The +UP Reward Program is relatively new and is linked to your wellness card.  If you do not scan your wellness card at checkout, you WILL NOT receive the +UP Rewards.


+UP Rewards (+UPR) are Rite Aids version of CVS’s ExtraCareBucks and Walgreen’s RegisterRewards. The weekly flyer, as well as tags in the store, will identify which products will result in a +UPR at purchase.  (Occasionally we will see unadvertised +UPRs)  As you can see the above example, Colgate was on sale for $3.50 and will produce a $3.50 +UPR to use on your next purchase.  Coupons will not affect the +UPR you receive.  Therefore in this example, you could use a $1/1 Colgate coupon to pay $2.50, then get a $3.50 +UPR :).

Sometimes there is a +UPR that requires you to purchase multiple items or a specific $$ value of a brand.  These typically require you to complete those purchases in the same transaction, HOWEVER there have been occasions where you have not had to and the +UPR would print when the requirements are reached in the given time period.  The $$ spend is also calculated pre-coupon.

Keep in mind this is a NEW PROGRAM and as such there are changes and flukes in the system regularly.  I will try to keep this section updated as the program progresses.  Sometimes there are limits on the number of +UPR and sometimes not – but be sure to look for clear limits in the flyer.

So now you have all these register tapes with miles and miles of +UPR’s – LOL!  So what do you do with them?  The +UPR is essentially a coupon that will be at the end of your receipt for use on a future trip.  They are treated as “cash” and can be used to pay for future purchases.

IMPORTANT THINGS TO KNOW about using +UPR’s :

They cannot be used on prescriptions, prescription co-pays, cigarettes, alcohol, gift cards, online purchases, lottery tickets, licenses, money orders, money transfers, prepaid cards, stamps, other mail services and items prohibited by law.

You can use as many +UPR’s as you want in any given transaction to cover the purchase amount (NOT TAX).  A +UPR cannot be adjusted down if the price is less – for example, you could NOT use a $2 +UPR to pay for a $1.99 item.  Overage is against Rite Aid policies.  Also, you need to know that once a +UPR is scanned, even if it is not accepted, it can never be scanned again.  SO, make sure you know how much you owe BEFORE tax before you hand over a +UPR.

Video Values

Each month, Rite Aid releases Video Values coupons which are store coupons earned by watching a series of advertising videos through Ad Perk.  Register for Rite Aid Video Values HERE.  All of the videos are available for viewing during the current month and typically expire the following month.  After you watch a specific number of videos you earn a BONUS $/$$ (used to be $5/$25, though lately has been $4/$20 or $3/$30).

Video Values coupons CAN be used in addition to a manufacturing coupon per Rite Aid’s Coupon Policy.  They are single use coupons coded to be used one per person per wellness account.  So even if your mom is not using hers and gives it to you, YOU CANNOT use it with your wellness account.

You do not need to print out all the coupons once you complete the videos, BUT you need to ensure you have watched the videos prior to month end or the coupon will not be available to you.  They are grouped by category or you can just view them all.  I recommend watching them all since even though you may not normally buy a product, you may if it ends up being FREE after coupons the following month.

Other Seasonal Programs

In addition to all of the above – as if we need more savings – Rite Aid has seasonal Gift Of Savings promotions which reward you with a Rite Aid giftcard for purchases over a larger time period. These typically happen around back-to-school and the holidays and give you up to $20 back when you purchase $100 in products.

SUMMARY:

As you can see there are LOADS of ways to save money at Rite Aid.  It is as clear as mud now – right?  Each week I post the best deals and coupon match-ups and will spell out all of the various ways you can save.  Some weeks you may have an item that has a SCR, +UPR, video values coupon or in-ad coupon, manufacturer coupon and manufacturer mail-in-rebate.  That is when I squeal and shout WOO HOO!!  I hope as you become familiar with all these programs you will come to love Rite Aid as much as I do.

SOURCE: RiteAid.com, various customer service inquiries and personal experience.

Comments

  1. Thanks for this awesome post. I linked you!

  2. Lynn, your explanation is so clear and easy to follow, it should be required reading for all R-A shoppers, and some of their sales associates could benefit too. After using your weekly posts on R-A for several months, our savings have increased greatly! Thank you!

    One point that I did not see above, but that tripped me up at the store last week, occured when I did not take into account the wellness+ 20% off regular price (Gold level) when buying several items to get to a $15 threshold for a $5 +up reward. They totaled $18 but rang up $14.40, so did not get the $5 off; would have gotten a different combination to make it work. Live and learn!

    • Thank you! I did note it briefly under ***The wellness rewards discount is off of regular price. However, when used with a sale priced item the customer will receive the lower of the discount price or sale price.*** BUT I will also call out the watch out for scenarios or buying threshold. I have gotten bitten by that on a number of occasions as well.

  3. Lynn, I’m noticing that alot of the current matchups have the “monthly +UPR” (i.e the Stax potato chips). How is that different than a regular +UPR?
    TIA

  4. Lynn, thanks for all the great info. I do have a question…isn’t it RA’s policy to issue rainchecks with UPs included for out-of-stock items. I asked a clerk for a raincheck for an item that had UPs as part of the deal and they would only give a rain check for the sale price but not for the UPs. Can you explain this or did I just run into an uninformed clerk…it was at a RA I hadn’t been to before. Also how do you find out about the monthly UPs? Thanks again…I look forward to your reply.

  5. Melissa says:

    Is there anyway to know if the UP Rewards will work even if not purchased in 1 transaction?

    I notice at the bottom of my receipt it shows me a total towards the reward (I was close, and missed it by less then $2).

  6. Hi, this is great, you really spell things out for us. I am wondering though, about rolling rewards. Can I buy Colgate toothpaste for $3.50, get $3.50 ups, then on my 2nd transaction: buy another tube of Colgate and pay for it with my UPS, will another $3.50 ups spit out? -Melissa

  7. I have been trying to get on the video values and you won’t let me. I forgot the password or whatever you want to know. So if you want me to continue shopping at Rite Aid, give me a clue on how I can get on the video values.
    I gave them my card number and still can’t get on.
    WHAT IS THE SECRET

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