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Friday, June 26, 2009

Publix FAQ Sheet

Many of you have responded to my Publix matchups and sent emails in asking me to explain, in more detail, how Publix works! Here is my response! I am excited to hear from so many individuals who are eager to become Publix shoppers or who simply want to learn how to maximize their hard earned dollar there!

Publix FAQ

Each Publix store policy varies by store and by state.
The first thing you will want to do is to contact your local store to ask what their coupon policy is. The policies can even differ when only 20 minutes down the road or across town!
I live in Cartersville, GA. The best way for me to explain how Publix works is to share my local Publix coupon policy with you so that everyone can see the extent of what they do...keep in mind that my competitors may not be the same as yours and that your store may not even take competitor coupons!
  • I can double any manufacturer coupon up to and including .50 (i.e. a .50/1 coupon becomes $1/1 when doubled) every day of the week.
  • I can combine Publix coupons (starting with the code LS) with manufacturer coupons (stacking)
  • I can use any of the competitor coupons (see list below) for products at Publix (i.e. Food Lion's $2/1 Digiorno Pizza coupon or a $2/$5 produce coupon)
  • The competitor coupons are face value ONLY! (they will not be doubled)
  • I can stack any of the competitor coupons with a manufacturer coupons (i.e. Food Lion's $2/1 Digiorno Pizza coupon stacked with the $1.50/1 manufacturer coupon for a total of $3.50 off of 1 pizza)
  • I can only stack 2 coupons per product (you cannot stack a $1/1 Target, a $1/1 manufacturer, and a $1/1 Publix all on one product...you have to choose the 2 that you would like to use)
  • Even though the Publix coupons and many of the competitor coupons say that you can ONLY use one coupon per transaction I AM allowed to use more than one at my store (any many stores are like this)
  • Publix DOES NOT accept expired coupons
  • Publix will accept internet printable coupons (some will not take "free item" OR "BOGO" internet coupons or one's valued over $5...my store has changed it's policy to accept all internet coupons)
  • You can use an unlimited number of coupons at Publix. The cash register will beep (and crash...just kidding) if the following numbers are met. If you use $50 or more in coupons OR if the number of coupons used exceeds the number of items purchased (in excess of 5 or more coupons than you have products) the cash register will beep and require a manager to override the transaction. DO NOT panic...they should be use to this by now!
  • The penny item coupon is found in the Sunday paper ONLY. This coupon is used on Sunday's and/or Monday's. Publix chooses 1 particular item that they will sell to you for 1 penny if you purchase $10 or more in one shopping trip! This item varies from week to week!

BOGO policy:
This one require a separate section! FL shoppers see your note at the bottom!
*We will use Kellogg's Cereal at $3.99 per box as an example.
If Publix advertises that Kellogg's cereal is BOGO at $3.99 then one box will ring up at $2 and the other will ring up as $1.99. (basically a friendlier way of telling you that it's half price)
  • You CAN use 2 manufacturer coupons per item in a BOGO sale
  • You CAN use 2 manufacturer coupons AND 2 competitor coupons per item in a BOGO sale
BOGO sale items always say *quantities limited*, they have the right to tell you that you CAN'T purchase every item off of the shelf (my store limits certain frequent shoppers because they know that they are buying the items to resell them in their convenience store). If you ever know that you are going to need 10 or more of one item...ask them to order it for you...they will AND you can still use all of your coupons on the items! I have done this many times in our local store!
Publix Store Guarantee: If an item rings up at a different price than the price advertised the item is free. If you are not completely satisfied with ANY purchase made at Publix you can take the product back (even opened) and receive a 100% refund of your money!

Cartersville, GA (and surrounding areas) Competitors:
My Publix accepts the following stores as competitors...
Target (Home Mailers, Internet Printables)
Kmart (Occasional Booklets, Internet Coupons, Catalinas)
Kroger (Catalinas or Home mailer coupons)(register your Kroger card to get coupons)
Food Lion (FLIPS: Food Lion Internet Printables)
Ingles (Catalinas)(they don't have any other type of coupon)
CVS (in ad coupons, CRT's, online coupons, NO ECB's)
Rite Aid (in ad coupons, internet coupons)
Walgreens (in ad coupons, internet coupons)
Dollar General (Home mailers and in ad coupons)

Florida Publix Shoppers:
Unfortunately you guys get the least coupon friendly deals. For some reason (if you know why please let us know!) you don't get to double coupons (they are taken off for face value only, your stores don't participate in the penny item every Sunday and Monday, you have to buy both products (buy one get one free sales) to get the sale price, and most of you can't use competitor coupons (again you will have to check with your local store...I know that some areas can!).

If an item is on sale for BOGO you have to purchase the first item at regular price and the second item will ring up at $0.00. The positive side of this is if you have a BOGO coupon to go with a BOGO sale item. If an item is BOGO for $4.99 (2 for $4.99) and you have a BOGO coupon both items will be free. When the coupon is scanned the $4.99 is taken off of your order making both free because you paid $0.00 for the second item! (I hope that this made sense!)

Despite the fact that you cannot take advantage of most deals the way that all other states can...you still can get some pretty good deals each week!

If Betty Crocker potatoes cost $1 at Walmart and $1.49 at Publix you would think that the sound choice would be to buy the ones at Walmart and you should IF you are not buying them while they are on sale OR without a coupon. If, however, you are a coupon user (and/or a weekly sales shopper: meaning that you shop the sales to make your weekly menus) it will benefit you to wait for this product to go on sale for BOGO (2 for $1.49) and stock up whether or not you have a coupon. If you have a coupon for .35 off of Betty Crocker potatoes (that's usually the amount that the manufacturer puts out) and combine 2 of them with the BOGO sale you will get 2 boxes for .79 (less than the cost of one at Walmart).

While your deals may not be as plentiful in Florida due to the coupon policies you still can score a great deal of savings!

My Shopping Trips:
You can go here, here, and here to view some of my past Publix shopping trips. When I have the time I take pictures of what I buy and break down the transaction for you. This will help you understand how the stacking works a lot better!

Other Items Of Interest:
Publix Advantage Buys:
Publix releases 2 separate flyers on a monthly basis (start and stop dates can vary)
Green Flyer: Health & Beauty items
Yellow Flyer: All other store products
These are items that wil go on sale for 1 month at a time versus the normal weekly sale schedule. These flyers also have coupons in them. The Green advantage flyer almost always has a coupon in it that yields a free product! These flyers are released in the Sunday's paper following or on the date that the last one expires/d. Once the new flyers are released in the paper you will see them in the store within a couple of days up front with the weekly sales ads!

Publix quarterly publications and coupons: Valuable coupons in each program!
Grape Magazine (wine)
Greenwise Magazine (organic)
Family Style
Baby Club
Preschool Pals

Make sure that you get rainchecks on any item that is out of stock. My store allows you to get rainchecks in a quantity of 4 per sale item! Rainchecks are only offered on weekly sale items.

ALWAYS be on the lookout for coupons in Publix. They are coupon fanatics...I have never seen one store release so many booklets and single page coupons in my life! They are everywhere in the store...so keep an eye out each time you shop!

I hope that this post has answered most of your questions.

If there is anything that I have not covered please leave a comment below to share the information or email me if you have any more questions! savingyourcents (at) gmail (dot) com!


Mandy said...

At my local store, you don't even have to produce the 1 cent coupon with your 10 dollar purchase. They did tell me not all stores will do that.

I am a Publix girl. The Baby Club coupons are fantastic with lots of freebies inside.

I did not know you could use other store's coupons...I will be calling my store today to verify!! That makes me sooooo happy since I have a ton of Kroger coupons lurking in my file! Thanks for the other tips. I love this blog and check it everyday for the deals:)

Anonymous said...

I also didn't know that some stores accepted competitor coupons. I thought I was doing good at buying items 50% off and using a coupon.

I called my store first thing this morning and it seems as though they also accept competitor coupons.

I am so excited to know that I can save even more money at my favorite store!

Thanks for posting this wonderful information on Publix. I have been a long time reader and have never been let down by any of the information that you share!

Keep up the hard work. I know that you spend a lot of time sharing all the deals with us each day!

Susan (an everyday reader)

Anonymous said...

I also live in the Cartersville area, but don't have the ability to shop at multiple stores. I've been shopping at Kroger, but have considered switching to Publix. If you only shopped at one grocery store, which one would you choose? Thanks for all you tips and advice!

Lissa said...


Thanks for writing in to ask! It's really hard to say which store! My personal choice would be Publix because I can get so much for so little there.

Your shopping habits are going to play largely on which store to choose! I am a stockpiler. I have a years supply of anything in my home. I can choose to only buy the things that are free or close to it when I shop because of this. If I need to bulk my freezer back up with meat then I just don't go shopping for a couple of weeks and add that budget money into the third weeks shopping trip to purchase meat when it is one sale!

Most of Kroger's shelf prices are cheaper than over at Publix but Publix has more items on sale that you can match up with coupons. Kroger's meat and produce is also cheaper.

It really all depends on what you purchase on a weekly basis. If you are buying things to cook for the upcoming week then I would suggest Kroger (and make sure you shop the sales ad to come up with your weekly menu). If you have a stockpile then I suggest shopping at Publix because you can stock up on so many things for great prices there.

If you did have an option to shop both Publix and Kroger I stongly suggest that! They are so close together that you could do your main shopping at Kroger and run over to Publix to pick up the free and close to free items in just minutes with a prepare list.

I understand that there are circumstances that may prevent you from doing this but if at all possible try it if you can! You will get a lot more for your dollar by doing this!

Email me if you have any more questions!

Lori Stamz said...

ok, i am curious about "doubling" how do they know to do that or is it automatically done? Is that something that can only be done on certain days? I have never doubled before so I am very curious about this concept!

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