Super Coupon Girl & other Safeway Just4U bloggers with the media at the press conference in Oregon City. Photo courtesy Crystal Abel of Eccentric Eclectic Woman.
During the Safeway Just4U blogger event on Wednesday, we made a shopping expedition to a Safeway store in Oregon City in order to test out the new program and see how much we could save. The shopping trip was a blast, and a very fun challenge to my coupon skills!
You see, while I had known that we would be visiting a store during the event, the shopping trip itself was a total fun surprise. After watching the presentation on Just4U, the other attendees and I were asked to log into our Just4U accounts, check out the offers, and make a shopping list. We were provided with a gift card for the field trip so that we could pick up groceries using Just4U offers and see the program in action. I had a relatively short period of time to get to grips with the new system, figure out what deals I could get, and assemble a list, and I enjoyed the challenge of trying to figure out a good deal scenario on the spot. In addition, due to it being a hot day with a long drive ahead of us, this trip would be strictly for non-perishables only, so I quickly thought about some of the things we can always use around the house. After looking through all the e-Coupons and personalized offers, I decided to load up my card with any offers that might result in a good deal so that I’d have them at the ready, and planned to make my final decision once I was at the store and could see what the shelf prices were.
Once we got to the store, I met with a cameraman named Justin from KOIN 6 news who was assigned to “Shadow” me during the shopping event and interview me about my experience with Just4U. So picture this scenario: I am in a Safeway store that I have never visited before, about to implement a savings program that I had never used until half an hour prior to the trip, I had no idea what I was going to buy or what the prices would be, and I had a cameraman filming my groceries and interviewing me about coupons as I added up prices on my calculator. It was funny, surreal, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I considered this to be a fine challenge to my coupon skills, as I was doing everything completely on the fly. It’s not so easy to quickly identify the best deal on the shelf and do the math while being interviewed for the news at the same time, and I had a blast putting my skills to the test!
I identified a few items on my list of offers that looked like the best deal and headed to those aisles first. Many of the personalized offers available to me were for household and personal care items that we can always use, so as I went through the store to pick these deals up, I quipped: “I always wanted to be on TV buying tampons.” I had a mic hooked to my jacket and was answering questions while I shopped; it was so funny to be standing there with my coupon binder going through my routine as Justin stuck the camera into my cart in order to get the best shot of what I was buying. As I walked through the store with him trailing me, all the other customers looked pretty bemused!
So here is the final tally of what I bought. I only bought items that I had a Just4U offer for, because I wanted to put the program to the test and see how much it could save me by itself.
Total spent: $38.44, put on a gift card provided by Safeway
Total before Just4U offers: $48.13
1 box of Safeway tissue – Regular price: $1.59. My personalized Just4U price: .99 cents.
Safeway bath tissue, 24 double rolls – Regular price: $10.99. I had a Just4U store e-Coupon for $2.00 off loaded to my card, which brought the final price to $8.99.
1 box of Safeway trash bags, 45 ct. – Regular price: $6.49. My personalized Just4U price: $3.97.
2 bags of Pedigree dog treats – Regular price: $8.00. I had a Just4U store e-Coupon for $2.00 off loaded on to my card, which brought the final price to $6.00. (I bought these for grandma’s dog Bob!)
1 box of Ziploc bags, 50 ct. – Regular price: $4.79. My personalized Just4U price: $3.79.
1 package of Charmin bath tissue, 16 double rolls – Regular price: $8.99. I had a manufacturer’s $1/1 e-Coupon loaded to my club card via Just4U, which brought the final total to $7.99.
1 bottle of Axe shower gel – Regular price: $3.49. My personalized Just4U price: $3.42.
1 box of Tampax, 20 ct. – Regular price, $3.79. I had a manufacturer’s .50/1 e-Coupon loaded to my club card via Just4U, which brought the final total to $3.29.
So what do you think – how’d I do? I think that I did pretty well, given how on the spot everything was. All the things I bought are things that we need and will use, and I was somewhat limited in that I wasn’t buying perishable items, as there were additional deals on my card for milk, eggs, and produce. And I did all this with a news camera stuck in my shopping cart, so all in all, I think it was a success!
As for the process of using Just4U, I was unsure of how everything would ring up, but I had added up all my groceries prior to going through the checkstand and knew what the total should be if everything worked perfectly. And, it did – the total was exactly as it should have been, and all of my Just4U offers came off without a hitch. If you look at my scan of the receipt, you will see that the new receipt layout is easy to read and explains each discount, so it’s much easier to decipher than some previous versions of the Safeway receipts! But also important to note, we got a gallon of milk at the store last night which I had a personalized offer for, and the Just4U offer did NOT come off, so my milk was .40 cents higher in price than it should have been. I called Safeway customer service this morning, and they said that the system might have been offline temporarily at that time; they said they would be adding a $2.00 credit to my Just4U account to make up for it. As this system is just being rolled out, I’m not surprised to encounter a glitch; as always, I would recommend reading your receipts closely at any grocery store you visit, new savings program or not!
As for the KOIN 6 news spot – apparently there were segments at both 4pm and 6pm on Wednesday, but I missed the second spot because we were still on the road. I’m going to (Hopefully) get a copy of the 6pm broadcast, and when I do I’ll be posting both of those here. (And if you’re a local reader who happened to tape the news on Wednesday…could you please email me?)