Sunday, May 18, 2014

Coupon people can relate... I hope, cause otherwise I'm just crazy!

 I subscript to the newspaper-the Philadelphia Inquirer on weekends for one reason, the store ads & the coupons.  I'm a bit of a crazy coupon lady BUT I'm not extreme about it- What I mean is well I take what I think is a very common sense approach to shopping.  For normal dinners/pantry/freezer items I only buy things when they are on sale & I have a coupon. (for some things I just wait til they have super deals on them.. like meat) I will make my meals around what's on sale & what I have in my house.  So if chickens on sale for like 40% or 50% off a certain week .. I buy several packages, freeze it, use it & don't buy it again until it's on a good sale like that again, usually that happens about once a month in most stores.  Here's another example: The last time I got shampoo I bought Garnier Fructis on sale for 1.99 & I had a $1.00 off coupon on 1.  So the final cost was .99 & for a decent brand that's a pretty good deal.  Same with Pantene... there are usually always coupons for Pantene. So I wait til Pantene is on sale & then I use a coupon with it.  When I need shampoo again I will wait til it's on sale & I have another coupon.... what if that doesn't happen before I need it.  Well that's where all those handy "free" shampoo/ and conditioners that Brian gets from the hotels he stays at come in handy- I use them to tie us over.  Usually I don't have to worry about it.  Cause usually a coupon/sale happens every few weeks. If you are patient & mindful you will always be able to buy them on sale/& with coupon. I actually usually still have some when I buy another.  What I don't do is have a crazy stock pile of anything, I don't have 50 shampoos or toothpaste stocked somewhere in my house.  Like the really real crazy couponers.  Doing that is just not my cup of tea. To me,  It seems pretty gross to be using a toothpaste that is 5 years old-that's been sitting in ur "stock pile" plus why keep buying them when you have enough for a long long time.  I know it's a really awesome feeling when you are able to get something for almost free but IF it's not practical I don't really see the point.   There will never come a time when I can justify the logic of doing that kind of thing. But that's just me. Anyway, yesterday when I got the Target ad & started looking at it.  I got kind of excited.  They had a $10 off $50 grocery coupon in the ad.  Looking at the ad- there was also a lot of good sales on food too. So I was hoping that I could get over to Target this week to put that sucker to good use.  That's a really good deal! Especially if you use manufacturer coupons on top of it.  You can get a a lot of bang for your buck!  Now it was only on "grocery" items but I knew that wouldn't be a problem since I had a few coupons for things that were on sale there as well & I needed about 10 gallons of spring water.  (drinking one a day, every day... you really go through them) Eventually I want to get a really good "filter" system.  But until that day when I can afford a really good one, I'm stuck buying water.  This is what happens when one gets a letter from the county they live in; saying that the water tested slightly contaminated & lab rats have developed cancer from drinking it. To me there's no such thing as a "little" contaminated. SO you get a little afraid to drink the tap water.... so that means for me at least buying spring water.  Anyway, my aunt & I went out on Sunday, so I was able to get to Target on day one of their sale... Remember I don't drive *much.  Anyway my aunt wanted to go to Walmart & I wanted to go to Target so we split up. Emily & I going to Target while my aunt went to Walmart. So after finding about $40 in groceries *the way Target's grocery section is the water section is at the end of it SO I went to get the 10 gallons of SPRING water which would add up to my needed $50... only to turn the corner & discover there was only two gallons of Poland Spring water on the shelf & that was all.  NO other brands Nothing else... you have got to be kidding me. UGH!!! Can you say frustrating!!! OH NO!  SO I find a sales person & ask her nicely if she can check the stock in the back to see if they have more?  How can they not have water?  I didn't care what brand it was, as long as it was gallon "SPRING" water.   Not purified or distilled... but spring water.  She came back a few minutes later saying no they didn't have any.  She offered a few suggestions, one of which was going to Walmart.  (as an ex-retail manager I cringed when ever a sales person says something like this!!) & I was a little more frustrated about the whole situation then maybe someone should be but it was just one of those things, that really ticked me off- 1) I came in specifically needing spring water and knowing it would be a big chunk of the $50 I needed to spend in order to use the coupon  2) I had just spent a while browsing the shelves looking for deals (& going thru my over-stuffed coupon organizer full of coupons-anyone who does this, knows how frustrating that whole thing can be-it's a job in & of itself ) checking out not only what was on sale but also what I had coupons for of those things 3) I didn't want to come back or go to another store. *not driving- it's not such a simple thing to do for me. 4) I have their red card so I get 5% off AND 5) this water is a big deal to me, since I started my whole I only drink water thing & I'm trying so hard to stop drinking anything else but water for health reasons- I really needed this water, & since Brian's away it's not so easy walking to the store to get  "gallons" of spring water. Can you imagine? SO I did something I rarely do, I asked to speak to the manager.  I don't know what I expected.... I just wanted to vent.  I knew nothing I could say would magically make the water appear BUT still I wanted to voice my frustrations to some one.  I was approached by this very nice female manager named Dora who asked, how she could help? I explained to her that I really just wanted to "vent" because I didn't understand how they could be out of spring water the first day of the sale & that I needed 10 bottles of it to reach my $50 to use the coupon.  I went on... and on.. I'm sure a bit too far considering it was only water but for all the reasons I already mentioned it was really ticking me off.   Especially cause I'm a Target girl.  I enjoy shopping at Target... I love seeing the "red" clearance stickers all over the store & their stores are always neat & attractive looking.   My aunt likes Walmart cause she feels that in general their prices are better.  So I could have went there but I chose to shop at Target for all the reasons I just mentioned-NOT to mention the COUPON! LOL!. I know that while perhaps Targets prices may be a little higher in general that with the way I shop for things I can still make it work. I simply only buy things that are good deals no matter what store I'm in.   I have a good sense of how much things cost & I only buy those things,  but this whole no water thing was putting a "wrench" in the whole plan.  Anyway... I must hand it to this manager, she did a really great job of "defusing" my pissed off-ness & again reminding me why I shop at Target.  She told me she was very sorry & that she appreciated the feed back- they needed to hear from customers to be better able to stock their stores, etc.   She spoke in a manner that made me feel like I wasn't silly for my frustration even if a part of me felt like I was being. I now think she got a little residual annoyance at having just spent $52 on lunch at Friendly's, how does that happen? I even (of course) had a $5 off coupon for Friendly's & didn't pay for a drink cause I drank WATER... but that's a "rant" for another day... lol. ;)  I needed this bargain to make up for that expensive lunch.  lol. I probably wasn't in the best mood already.  I wasn't being fair but I was being human, I know from working retail-That today I was being like a lot of customers tend to be, I was taking my feelings out unfairly at someone who didn't deserve it- while I didn't yell or anything my tone let her know (especially in the beginning) how annoyed I was but bless this woman she was really good at her job & even offered me a few "coupons" so that if I didn't reach the $50 needed I could still get money off my bill.  Since I expressed to her I really didn't need anything more to make up the $50 in groceries- & so she gave me a few $3 off "apology" coupons to use.  She was really nice & I honestly appreciated it-- even though I still didn't have enough water.  I ended up texting my aunt & having her get me 5 more gallons of water at Walmart & so I ended up paying for my stuff & walking out even without my water still HAPPY!  I wouldn't have stopped shopping at Target over this either way but this manager certainly helped me add another reason to why I shop there.  She made me feel like they really cared about making me (their customer) happy.  So Thank you... Dora & Target!   :)

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