Guest post by Lacey Wilcox
I can still remember the first time I went to try and play the drugstore game. I was excited, a little nervous, and expectant of being able to show my husband my money-saving triumph.
I walked into Walgreens with my coupons and detailed list in hand. I’d used MoneySavingMom®’s helpful tools to come up with transactions that would help me get what I needed, and get a great deal.
Let’s just say, I was pumped as I walked in the door towards my first item.
It was gone.
I was crushed, for a moment. But, I could do without the baby lotion–for now anyway. I shook it off, deciding to just move on to the next item, only to find that it was gone, too.
I worked my way through the rest of my list, only to find that almost all of the items I had planned on purchasing, had already been bought. Talk about a feeling of money-saving defeat.
Anyone else ever been there? My guess is I’m not alone.
So, what do you do when all your deals are gone? Cry? Scream? Gripe about all those selfish people out there? Yell at the store manager for not ordering enough baby lotion or laundry detergent? Sit in your car and pout? Buy ice cream?
Well, no (although that last one is pretty tempting…!). But, here are some things you can do when all your deals are gone that can help save your sanity, and maybe even help you save a buck.
1. Have a back-up plan.
Write out the transactions that are your goal, and then have some others planned out just in case you can’t make them. (Note: I would only recommend putting items on your back-up plan that you either really need, or can get for free. If there are not items like this, I would not suggest spending money just so you can say you used your coupons.)
2. Try another store.
Try another location of the same store, or maybe you decide to go try a completely different one altogether. Create some transactions for alternate drug stores and grocery stores in case your first choice doesn’t work out.
3. Politely and cordially talk to the store manager.
First, ask the store manager when their merchandise is delivered, and when would be the best time to make your purchase. Then, you can also talk with him/her about the possibility of addressing people who take all of the good deals. They might not realize that this can actually hurt their store’s business.
4. Partner with a friend.
If you have small children or a busy schedule, having a back-up plan can be a little tricky. If this is the case, try partnering with a friend to help purchase deals for yourselves and each other. This way, you both don’t have to go every week. I’ve also found that planning transactions with someone else helps me to create the best scenarios.
5. Walk away, but with joy.
When all else fails, choose joy. If you can’t make it work this week, walk away choosing to try again next week. And as you walk away, remember the things you have to be thankful for: for life, for grace, for breath, for family, for sunshine, for blessings…
…and, for ice cream. 🙂
What about you? How do you react when all of your deals are gone? What advice do you have to hande that situation?
Lacey lives in the Panhandle of Texas with her husband, Kade and sweet baby, Selah, where they manage Panfork Baptist Camp. Lacey writes about adventures in marriage, mommy-hood, and camp life on her blog.