It Ain't Easy Being Cheesy!

I've just got to let you know about our madhouse experience at Hyvee yesterday. As you know, the Hyvee Hot Weekend Sale is going on right now (through Sunday) and the hottest deal is on Kraft shredded cheese: buy 5 bags for $6.00 and get a $5.00 Catalina coupon at checkout that is good on your next purchase at Hyvee. This Catalina coupon is *rolling*, meaning you can use the coupon in another transaction to buy 5 more bags of cheese, pay $1.00 out of pocket and then get another $5.00 coupon!

DBF and I had to clean out our freezer to make room for this silly sale. We headed to Hyvee and the place was absolutely packed! I mean, you could barely make it down the aisles because it was so crowded. There was some poor Hyvee employee back there by the Kraft with mountains of boxes of cheese. He had to jump into the fray every once in awhile to restock, and it was clear that he had been assigned just to do that. While I was waiting to snag some of my own, I commented to him that he had a heck of a job trying to keep up with the sale. He said "yeah, we're not making any money on this, so I'm not sure why they did it". Then he saw an opportunity to jump back in and took it so I never got to answer him. The simple answer is that it gets people in the door! Given the crowds, it worked.

Anyway, there IS a limit in the sale ad, but he was telling folks who asked that there wasn't. Simply not true and we found that out the hard way. We grabbed 12 bags of cheese thinking we would get two $5 Catalina coupons. We had six $1.00 off 2 Kraft coupons. Our total came to only $46 and change (obviously, we had other stuff as well) and when I said "Awww...we didn't make $50!" to DBF because we wanted to use the $5 off $50 coupon in the customer appreciation books, the cashier said "well, let's try it!" Sure enough, it worked!

Then the fiasco began because the second $5 Cat didn't print. Isaiah, the assistant manager, took us up to Customer Service and had them refund it. But the CS rep refunded us $8.27 in cash (did she refund one too many?). When I pointed it out to her, she said "just keep it" even though I protested that her register would be short! So that basically converted my three $1.00 off 2 coupons to cash. I had paid only $4.20 + tax out of pocket on the original transaction, so I "made" $4.00!

While DBF loaded the rest of the groceries, I went back through the line to re-buy the cheese and get the second $5 Cat. Now here's where it gets interesting....I used a $6.00 Walgreens Register Reward to pay! It beeped, but the cashier pushed it through. Out of pocket was just tax and I got the $5.00 Catalina.

So, with the $5.00 off coupon, the $4.00 cashier refund and the Walgreens RR, we got 12 packages of cheese and a profit of $4.80 AND we have two $5 Catalinas for our next shopping trip! I just wish I had more coupons and freezer space!

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