Starting on May 23, 2011, Publix’s official coupon policy will officially change and the staff here at Miss Money Bee want to keep you updated and informed of the new changes and the alternative stores that you can shop at if you feel like taking your grocery shopping elsewhere.
The major change that Publix will be implementing is that they are changing their definition of what a “competitor” is. Now, a “competitor” is only other grocery stores, so you cannot use a CVS, Food Lion, Walgreens or Target coupon at Publix as a “competitor matching coupon.” Also, many Publix stores are going to start to limit the number of item deals you can get per transaction. For example, the Publix near my apartment in Miami, FL is allowing shoppers a limit of 5 deals on Buy 1, Get 1 Free (B1G1) items or 10 like items. Shoppers can no longer use multiple competitor coupons on one item – instead just one Publix coupon/discount and one manufacturer coupon. For example, if the Publix you shop at has been allowing multiple of the same Target coupon, that will now no longer be permitted. The coupons all say “limit one per transaction.”
Also, understand that each individual store will apply coupons differently so you are best advised to speak with a manager at your local Publix. Also, all Florida stores will NOT double coupons. See below for a easy breakdown of the new coupon rules.
• Manufacturer’s coupons (limit one per item).
• Publix coupons (originals only-no copies).
• Valid Internet coupons.
• Coupons from nearby competitors identified by each Publix store. (Competitor names are posted at each Publix store.)
• Manufacturer’s coupon and either a Publix or a competitor coupon on the same item.
• Will accept coupons from competing pharmacies for prescriptions only.
Coupon Acceptance Limitations/Exceptions:
• Publix will not accept percent-off-items or percent-off-total-order coupons.
• Publix will only accept coupons for identical merchandise that they sell.
• Dollars-off-total-order coupons will be limited to one Publix and one competitor coupon per order. The order total must be equal to or greater than the total purchase requirements indicated on the coupon(s) presented.
• Acceptance is subject to any restrictions on the coupon.
• Publix reserves the right to limit quantities – different per store so check with store manager.
• Manager approval is needed for individual coupons above $5.00.
• For a buy-one-get-one free (B1G1) offer, each item is considered a separate sale. (Means you can use a coupon on each item).
You will still be able to save money while shopping at Publix, but you may not be able to save as MUCH money. Publix has stated that this new policy is primarily designed to prevent certain shoppers from taking advantage of couponing, but they still want regular shoppers to be able to save money. I personally believe this change is targeted more towards those shoppers that come to Publix and buy all available stock of B1G1 sale items leaving no supply for other shoppers, which is completely understandable.
For those individuals who want to explore other grocery stores in an effort to save money, I would suggest checking out ALDI, a discount grocery store that was founded in Southeastern Iowa in 1976 that now offers over 1,000 locations nationwide. ALDI has managed to keep prices competitively low because they mostly only offer ALDI select brands. This means that the majority of the store consists of ALDI produced and manufactured food products – meat, vegetables, breads, alcohol, fruit, etc. Another different aspect about ALDI and how they keep their food prices so low is because they have less staff and they charge customers 25 cents to use a shopping cart and when you return the cart, you get your quarter back. This is done in an effort to cut all unnecessary costs, like paying staff to go out and collect carts, and is done without compromising the quality of the food or service. ALDI also charges for shopping bags – this also cuts overhead costs and promotes a “green” way of living. The last biggest difference about ALDI compared to other grocery stores is that they do NOT accept credit cards. Yet again, this limitation is done to cut costs. Companies are required to pay a merchant fee to the credit card companies every time someone uses a credit card, and because of this, ALDI only accepts cash, electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards and debit cards. To see if there is a ALDI location near you, click here.