A couple evenings ago, I posted the following on The Coupon Project Facebook page:
I sometimes have readers warn me of upcoming “policy changes,” but I hesitate to share anything until I’ve heard it myself or seen something in writing. I know that stores often reserve the right to process coupons as they see fit, and may impose limits. So my initial reaction is always to suppose the reader heard something their personal store may have chosen to institute. But when I heard from multiple readers that Twice the Value coupons would soon no longer be offered at Customer Service, I wondered if a corporate-wide change was in fact coming.
Early this morning, I received an email from Albertsons’ PR. Here are some of the highlights from that email.
- There has been a significant increase in the number of customers using Twice the Value coupons. However, many people have taken advantage of the offer, redeeming more than three sets of doublers in a single shopping trip. Albertsons wishes to curb this activity.
- Effective July 17th, Albertsons stores will no longer be offering the Twice the Value coupons in their stores at Customer Service. The only way you will be able to obtain the coupons will be through the Sunday papers. (Another reason to get your subscription.)
- Albertsons will be still be accepting up to three sets of Twice the Value coupons per shopping trip. You just won’t be able to get the coupons in the stores.
- Twice the Value coupons will be discontinued for Montana and Wyoming stores. Albertsons has seen a historically low level of redemption in these states, and has decided to drop the offering there.
PS regarding the other rumor I shared – seems that we won’t be getting the doubles in the Sunday paper this weekend. It sounds like the store was initially planning on it, but made a last minute decision to pull them. Perhaps as a result of this change being imposed. If someone knows differently, speak up. (Thanks, Erica, for the information.)
My Response to this Change
You probably already know that I advocate courteous shopping, and am a fan of stores imposing limits so everyone can get a slice of the deal. With the exception of the discontinuation of the program in Montana and Wyoming (my condolences!), I see this as a positive change – similar to the limits Rite Aid imposed a month ago.
For quite some time, I’ve had this not-so-great feeling about hearing how people were using many, many sets in a single shopping trip (even if just by running out to their car and back). I have a hard time getting my mind around the idea that this is something Albertsons would want their shoppers to be doing. Of course, I know some of you that have done this have pre-ordered/pre-bought quantity with your stores (thank you!), but not all have. If this change is how Albertsons wants to protect their interests in managing stock, and protect customers’ interests by ensuring more people can get the deal, I for one am in favor. If policies such as this one haults the Extreme Couponing movement and prevents the TLC show from airing more over-the-top episodes, I’m even more in favor.
Remember, building a stockpile can be done over time, in a gradual process. I think even with 9 total doublers (acquired from your paper), you should be able to get several items to grow your stash. I also believe that Albertsons double coupons should only ever be one part of the equation in how you get deals. Consider some of the other savings opportunities that are available to you. Flex your couponing muscles. You’re a creative bunch, and I believe in your savvy shopping powers.
Speak your Mind
There was a wonderful invitation at the bottom of the email I received today. I wanted to share it with you:
Since you’re so familiar with our stores—and clearly your readers are as well—I’d like to take this opportunity to ask you what you think would make couponing with Albertsons a better experience. We’re already investing a lot of resources into our email savings program by offering exclusive offers, but what other ways would you like to save at Albertsons? Are you finding a lot of savings in our holiday coupon booklets? Do you think that our shoppers would like to receive special offers on Facebook? Obviously we can’t honor everyone’s requests, but I’d love to hear from you and your readers as to how you want to see couponing at Albertsons evolve.
I shared my responses in an email reply, but I think it would be even better if some of you took a minute to answer this question too. Your voice does make a difference. I will make sure to share this post with Albertsons so they can read your comments. Here’s your chance: what could they do different or better to improve couponing at their stores? And, what do you feel about the change, good or bad? Do you agree with me in thinking Albertsons has made a wise move here? Or, do you disagree?