Robin emailed me this compliment and question:
“I just wanted to say Thank You from one Mom to another. I love your website and I’ve begun checking it daily. I’ve also shared it with several friends in my area, and you’ve definitely won us over.
I also wanted to mention that I have found that the local Kroger (our major supermarket here in Dublin, GA) will not accept any printable coupons. Do you find this to be the case in a lot of grocery stores? Is there anything you’ve found that I can do to persuade them to change their mind?” -Robin
My Answer for Any Store:
I used to think that most stores were free to set their own coupon acceptance policies, but now I have learned that is governed more by Corporate than by individual stores, so you have the right to question it. Talk to the Store Manager because sometimes the cashiers do not fully understand the store’s coupon acceptance policy. If the Store Manager says they do not accept printable coupons, and the store is part of a larger chain, contact Corporate through their website or by calling. Ask Corporate for their printable coupon acceptance policy in writing. If they provide it to you in writing and it varies from what the Store Manager told you, then take a copy of it with you and ask if they will follow Corporate’s policy and accept your printable coupons. If they do not, follow-up with Corporate with the specifics about your visit and what the store told you. If you are still unable to use printable coupons at that store, then you need to shop at a different store with them.
I find that most stores accept printable coupons, although they may not accept the “FREE product” coupons because of problems with fraudulent coupon usage. I am finding that some of the stores I visit are becoming more strict about what format the printable coupons need to be in for them to accept them. My CVS is the perfect example of this, the Store Manager has told me that the printable coupons need to be printed in color and on a full-sheet of paper (not cut out) because they are having problems at that specific CVS with people bringing in photocopied coupons (this is illegal). So, I bring in my full sheet of coupons, if there is more than one coupon on a page I cut it out in front of the cashier.
My Answer for Kroger:
Contact Kroger by email to request a copy of their printable coupon acceptance policy. Take the email that you receive to the Store Manager. Be prepared to carry this email with you every time you go there, it should help prompt the store to accept your printable coupons. If they will still not accept them, contact Kroger again and give them specific information about your visit and the coupons that they would not accept.
Here’s an excerpt from the email that my friend Elizabeth received when she contacted corporate about a similar problem at her Kroger. Here is Kroger’s response:
“Kroger instituted a change in the company’s policy to now accept print-at-home (PAH)s internet coupons as of November 29th, 2007 and as store divisions across the United States have already complied with this change…hopefully, management’s word in your store has gotten to each store’s head-cashier.
We do accept internet coupons, providing the following is true:
1) The coupon is not for a Free product or for more than 75% off the original cost – we do not accept those from the internet.
2) The coupon scans properly at the register. If the registers do not register it, it is most likely not a valid coupon.
3) If the coupon is altered in any way.
Other than that, yes, we now accept Internet coupons. You may simply provide your cashier with the coupon at the time of check out and as long as it scans, it is fine.”
Remember that you as a customer have the right to question your store’s coupon acceptance policies. Just remember to always be polite in making your requests, the goal is to gain knowledge about your store, what coupons they accept, and how the store serves their customers.
What’s your experience if you’ve questioned your store’s policy on printable coupons?