How I Got $1,200.00 Worth of Groceries for Free at Walmart
I’ll admit I was fashionably late to the Savings Catcher party – but I am sure glad I went! Cardinal tried her best to get me into it early in the game, but between Black Friday , having the flu and all the other crazy things going on in my life this past fall, it just didn’t peek my interest originally. Cardinal’s proclaims of 4 bags of free coffee and money maker batteries weren’t getting me hyped up. I am not much of a Walmart shopper anyways – Target is my happy place and Walmart is , well.. Walmart. Nothing about going to Walmart for a couple of freebies motivates me. Even April and her contagious enthusiasm couldn’t talk me into running out to Walmart.. All that changed on the day she brought over cases of ginger ale and boxes upon boxes of free cereal (she already had gotten too much for herself!). She said four little words that got my heart racing and changed my outlook on this new program. These four words compose a phrase that every die hard couponer longs to hear and entirely changes the game. What were those four words? “There are no limits.” Nothing makes the voice inside my head say “Cha- Ching!” like the words ‘no limits!’ Once I realized that the Savings Catcher /Bluebird game wasn’t quantity-limited even if the competitor sale contained limits, it changed everything. I knew then that this was a game I wanted to play – and when I play, I play to win! Nothing excites me more that legally beating the system. I immediately started studying the ads and looking for items that would be free with the Saving’s Catcher Blue Bird promotion. Once Savings Catcher “caught” those items, I could transfer my savings into my BlueBird account to double it. I then took that money and rolled it into the next batch of items so I would be essentially shopping for free.
What a ride it was! Within five weeks weeks I managed to round up over $1200.00 in free products. This wasn’t the typical extreme couponing haul that people assume is all junk. This month long haul included much more than an endless supply of toothpaste and hot sauce – I now have an ample supply of fresh produce and a years worth of New England Coffee, and that doesn’t even scratch the surface of what I managed to get for free.
Here are some of the items I stocked up on for FREE;
Sweet potatoes, onions, Russet Potatoes, Oranges, Apples, Cucumbers, a years supply of New England Coffee, Capri Sun, Jello Pudding, Lunchables, Craisans, Ginger Ale, Pepsi, Coke, Apple Jacks, Special K Red Berries Cereal, Frosted Flakes, Tropicana Orange Juice, Special K Crackers, Cream Cheese, Sour Cream, Shredded Cheese, Block Cheese, Dog Food, Canned Tomatoes, Belvita Breakfast Bars, Chex Mix, Bugles, Cottage Cheese, Yogurt, Bread, Fresh Green Beans, Red Onions, Sweet Onions, Bean Sprouts, Bosc Pears, Bread Crumbs, Miracle Whip, Extra Virgin Olive Oil and more. The best part was that some of the items I got for free were money makers that gave me a lot of overage to play with. This overage allowed me to shop for free for a Super Bowl Party where I was able to get a case of beer , wine, chicken breast, hamburger and more for free!
Granted, it wasn’t all easy- peasy and was similar to the Pats Super Bowl win in that left you on the edge of your seat biting your nails to the very end. There were times some of my items didn’t catch leaving me with the option to return the product or file a dispute, which average 30 days to clear so some of my play money would get tied up. There were days that the estimated 3 day catch took more like 5-6 days to catch. Then there were the days that left you scratching your head and frustrated because duplicate items that were caught one day did not match the next. On top of this, the rules changed mid-season: produce was no longer included and drug stores were removed from the program – which again, like this years Pats season left some of your balls deflated. However, in the end $1200.00 in free product was definitely worth any time I spent waiting for matches or filing a dispute. There were some complaints by those saying the game wasn’t worth the stress or the anxiety. I say if you can’t take the heat then stay out of the Bluebird’s kitchen! If you are a die hard player you will know that in the end the math is what matters. Add up what you have got, subtract the coupons, see what Savings Catcher matched and what Bluebird doubled. Look at the bottom line and ask yourself was it worth it? Look at your stockpile – does it make you smile? Chances are you are like me and you will say ‘Heck ya it does’! If not, challenge yourself to play again next time and try harder to win this game. If items are free get them, add in coupons and then they are money makers that will allow you to get other items of your choice for free that you normally can not. For me that was hubby’s beer, a lot of chicken breast and my cheap wine!
You are allowed $599 in Bluebird doubling per calendar year and $599 per Savings Catcher catches per calendar year. If you play correctly and roll the money you will end up with $1,200 in free product or more if you add in money makers from coupons. Once you reach your limit you can have another family member 18 years or older open an account. They will be able to start rolling for free with the balance left on your Bluebird card. Use that card to pay for the next players game, and that my friends is How to Shop for Free! If you are in a household with 5 adults aged 18 and over that is 6,000.00 in potentially free groceries which is equal to $500.00 per month. If you are struggling or trying to stretch your food stamps dollars or just love a challenge like me, this is the best game going, while it is going. Unfortunately Blue Bird doubling has come to an end on 2/28. Savings Catchcer will continue to catch and match the competitors prices but you won’t get the amount doubled. There are rumors that it will be making a come back and if it does I will take it up a level and see how much of a profit I can make next time. If the game comes back and you do decide to play please note it is not for the weak of heart and it will take you on a roller coaster ride of emotions – but if you ride the ride you too will have over $1,200.00 of freebies per family member that is 18 years of age or older. For me, a ride that pays me and leaves me smiling and well stocked is a ride worth taking! And before any nay-sayers say that since produce is no longer included most of the items are things you won’t use I will remind you that our How to Shop for Free philosophy is to pay it forward – give away what you won’t use to someone in need and reap the benefits of overage for things that you want. Then just sit back and bask in the good karma that will come your way! $1,200 in groceries you won’t use may not do much good for you, but think of what they will do for someone in need.
Long live the Bluebird!
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