Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Walgreens Q&A: How many transactions?

Debra asked, You mentioned "transaction #1, transaction #2," etc. Do you do multiple transactions with one visit to the store? I live out of town so it's sort of a 'trip' when I go shopping. I would like to take care of business with one stop but feel silly.

I understand your hesitation regarding multiple transactions. While most cashiers I've run into are very helpful, some really don't like to see customers do multiple transactions, use lots of coupons, or get amazing deals. I don't know the atmosphere of your store, but I'll tell you what has worked for me.

When I first began shopping at Walgreens, I took it slowly. I rarely did more than one transaction and I tried to keep it quite simple. My "mode of attack" was flying under the radar. As I got to know the store and the cashiers, I began to discover which cashiers are excited when I get great deals and which ones seem insulted--and I tend to avoid those that are unhappy about it.

One of the biggest helps to me is checking out at the beauty counter. I have found that almost all of those ladies are very helpful and knowledgeable--and I'm happy to be able to help them meet their sales quotas.

If I have several transactions, I will usually wait to check out until there isn't a line (I like to go when the store isn't busy anyway). If other customers come to check out, I try to let them go ahead of me when I'm between transactions.

If I'm doing more than two transactions, I'll generally ask the clerk if she's okay with several transactions. On the soap sale this week, for instance, I went when the store was slow, got my items, and found the beauty adviser, letting her know I was ready to check out. I specifically asked her if she minded me doing several transactions (I think I had about seven different ones), and she said it was fine.

I try to go out of my way to be gracious and friendly to the cashiers that help me in this way. I know my orders are more complicated and I want them to know I appreciate their time and helpfulness.

Particularly when I'm doing several transactions, I try to keep my payment simple. This week I took in quite a few coins, so that the cashier would have to worry about change as little as possible.

I ended up getting into discussion about couponing and deal-hunting with the beauty adviser, and she let me know some things I can do to help them. They are more than helpful, and I'm grateful to be able to return the favor.

Something that I have heard of others doing (particularly those without amazing beauty advisers) is doing one or two transactions at each checkout area in the store (cosmetics, front, photo, pharmacy). This isn't what works best in my situation, but it might be for yours.

7 comments:

Debra said...

Bethany,

I just returned from another trip to 'town' and to Walgreens. This time, I had $17 in RR to use. The cashier told me I could only pay with 1 RR per transaction! I said, "Can we just try and see if they'll take it?" She did and it worked, but she couldn't believe that it did.

Also, I was shorted one $4 RR for the Olay bar soaps, but it seemed I caused such frustration in the cashier, I just let it go. It was almost closing time and there was a line. She was bugged. I told her I would wait and let the others go ahead and then we could finish. We ended up doing a couple of transactions.

I did the Olay and Zest bar soaps in one transaction (with coupons for each, 4 total). The total should have been $2.00 but only 1 RR printed. Can you only get 1 RR per transaction?

The cashier made some comment about the RR not printing because I was using a manufacturers coupon AND getting a RR and that it sends a flag to Procter & Gamble that it's a "scam". (That I am scamming them by buying their product and not paying)

Can you use a MF coupon AND a RR on one item? Can you use those and still get a RR back?

I'm new to couponing, as if you couldn't tell ;o)

Sorry for all the questions. I really don't like to feel as if I'm 'in trouble' for using coupons and deals that the store advertises. It's like they invited me to the party, but when I get to the door, they turn me away.

Thanks again.

Pam said...

So what things can we do to help walgreen's cashiers with our coupons??

Jennifer said...

I actually take my 2 daughters with me, 1 is 10 and the other is 13 so I make them stand behind me in line and the help them with the transactions!!

But then there are days that I will go around and make a few trips (good thing they are all close to me)this way I can get out of the house as well:)

Anonymous said...

I'd be interested in hearing about those things we can do to help the cashiers out.

Thanks for all the work you put into this blog. It is helping me so much!
Valerie

Melonie said...

I've learned to do this at the beauty counter as well. A lot of times the gals there are "just" unpacking boxes and putting out stock - they seem to really welcome the chance to actually ring! My last Walgreens trip I got a younger gal who was super excited - turned out she coupons too. :-) Other times I've gotten an older lady who is REALLY on top of things - she saved me an additional couple of dollars on chocolate once because there was a flyer coupon that I didn't realize applied to my (filler) purchase - woohoo!

Bethany said...

Debra:

Your other RR wouldn't have printed because it's from the same promotion, and you can only do one like promotion per transaction. Your coupons had nothing to do with it. :-)

No need to apologize for the questions--that's why I'm here.

Pam & Anonymous:

I'm planning to post some of what I learned (hopefully soon), but life's been rather crazy recently. :-)

Jennifer:

That's a great idea!

Bethany said...

Debra:

Regarding using manufacturer's coupons and RRs, here's a brief summary: Generally speaking, you must purchase one item for each manufacturer's coupon (including RRs that you use.

When giving the cashier your coupons, give the RRs first, then your manufacturer's coupons, then store coupons.

If you are purchasing an item for which you are to receive a RR, do not use a RR from the same promotion to pay for your transaction. The system logs this and prevents a new RR from printing. Generally speaking, you can use RRs from other promotions, but this can still vary somewhat.

Clear as mud? Feel free to ask me to clarify anything that doesn't make sense. And take it slowly--none of us learned this in a day!