When most people think of saving money, they don’t think of shopping at Target as the best option. However, In my experience, shelf prices at Target tend to be marginally higher (between $0.02 – $1.00) than their biggest competitor, Walmart. Furthermore, what most people don’t realize is that Target offers many different ways to save money – 10 in fact – many of which can be stacked on single items! As a result, if you use these money-saving Target shopping tips, you can get things for significantly cheaper than Walmart or most other stores.
So, are you excited yet? Let’s go over the ways you can save money at Target. One handy point I cannot stress enough is have the Target Coupon Policy printed out and on hand in your binder or coupon box. If there’s an issue, often it can do the talking for you.
1. Manufacturer Coupons
Manufacturer coupons are accepted at Target, as they are accepted at most stores. Furthermore, you can use manufacturer coupons in conjunction with Cartwheel offers. Don’t worry if you don’t know a Cartwheel from a handspring – we’ll get to that. ;-) This is called stacking offers. Also, Target accepts 4 like coupons per transaction, unless the coupon lists stricter limitations. This means four of the same coupons, not four coupons total.
2. Target Cartwheel
You’ll flip for Target Cartwheel! Target Cartwheel is a savings program that Target offers to all customers. Cartwheel gives % off discounts as high as 50% on items! You can get discounts on everything from grocery items, clothes, diapers, clearance and more! Cartwheel will stack with manufacturer coupons. The percentage off discount for Target Cartwheel is calculated AFTER the Target coupon has come off, but BEFORE the manufacturer coupon comes off. As a result, stack these three to get triple the savings!
Where do you get Target Cartwheel?
You can download the Target App and find Cartwheel as an extention within the app. It’s all very user friendly. Don’t have a smartphone to get the app? No problem. Your Target Cartwheel barcode is the same no matter which offers you have loaded onto it. Just print it out from the website and keep it in your wallet (laminating is a good idea) to have them scan each time you check out.
Target Cartwheel Limits
The limit for Target Cartwheel is four like items per transaction. Therefore, this means if you have a Cartwheel offer loaded for 10% off pretzels, you can buy FOUR bags of pretzels and get 10% off each, but no discount will apply on the fifth bag in the same transaction. It is reusable, so you could buy 4 bags of pretzels one time and as long as the offer is still valid, more the next time you shop. At this time, Cartwheel is only redeemable in store and not online at Target.com.
Target Cartwheel also offers manufacturer coupons. However, these only work on ONE item, one time. Just search “mfr” in your Cartwheel app or on the Cartwheel website to see all of the manufacturer coupon offers. As a result, manufacturer offers in Cartwheel will stack with Target category coupons and percentage-off Cartwheel offers just like paper manufacturer coupons. They will not however, stack with another printed or insert manufacturer coupon. To add any offers, simply click or tap the “+” button on the top right of the offer.
- To see offers you have saved to your Cartwheel barcode select “wallet” and then tap “Cartwheel Saved Offers” on the left hand side, right below your barcode like shown:
3. Category Coupons
Just about every week, Target has some sort of category deal going. An example is a promotion they run often, save $5 off a $20 Meat Purchase. You will find these category coupons in the weekly flyer, OR a mobile coupon in your Cartwheel app. Under the checkout screen, you’ll see a tab at the bottom labeled coupons. Click it and all the available category coupons that are valid pop up. You can use your mobile barcode coupon ONCE. If you wanted to do additional deals I suggest you cut out the paper coupons in the flyer. Good news is: manufacturer coupons AND Cartwheel offers on individual items stack with a category coupon! Yahoo!
4. Target RedCard
Target RedCard is by far the easiest overall way to save at Target. Furthermore, it’s completely FREE to get, easy to sign up for and gets you an extra 5% off every single purchase (except gift cards) that you use it with. There are two kinds of Target RedCard: credit and debit. If you have credit issues or aren’t a fan of credit cards – no worries. You can get the Target RedCard Debit Card. It deducts your Target purchases from your existing checking account! While 5% may not seem like much, but when you get to the end of the year and realize you’ve easily saved a few hundred dollars by JUST using that, it definitely seems worth it!
5. Reusable Bags
Additionally, reusable bags save you 5 cents for every one you use at Target. It’s really straightforward: bring in your bags and use them instead of plastic bags. So, have 3 bags? Save $0.15. 4 bags? Save $0.20. Easy peasy! Nearly all of us have reusable tote bags that we got for free from one promotional event or another hanging out around the house. Might as well put them to good use!
So those are the primary ways to save money at Target. As a result of all we have learned so far let’s talk about putting them together to save the absolute most money and really making the most of the couponing tips we have shared in the most ethical way.
6. Gift Card Deals
Target runs weekly (& sometimes longer) sales in which you can EARN a Target gift card for purchasing a certain amount of items. These will be listed in the weekly ad, as well as specially marked in-stores. So, if you can use Target store coupons, manufacturer coupons, Target Cartwheel, and Target RedCard on a gift card deal scenario, you can save significantly. See a gift card deal here to see how this works together.
First of off, the trick to making gift card deals work for you is to do something called “rolling” the gift cards. This means that each week you will find gift card deal scenarios and split them into individual transactions. You can follow all of our Target deals here for the best gift card deal scenarios. For each transaction (if noted) you will earn a gift card. Then, you will pay for each transaction with a gift card earned in the previous transaction. In conclusion, the key is to end each week with a couple of Target gift cards to start the next week’s shopping plan.
For example, you might do this deal in transaction #1. Therefore, you have earned a $5 Target gift card from that deal. Then in transaction #2, you’ll do this deal. As a result, you will pay with the gift card from transaction #1 and earn a gift card to help you pay for transaction #3. In conclusion, this goes on until you’ve gotten every deal you want, all while spending very little out of pocket.
7. Free Item Deals
First of all, target runs weekly (& sometimes longer) sales in which you buy a certain number of items and get one item free. Usually these are “Buy 3 Get 1 FREE” deals. However, keep in mind that you cannot use a coupon or Cartwheel on the free item, but you CAN use all the savings opportunities available to you on the items you’re paying for to get the free item. So, see this deal as an example to on how to save the most with free item deals.
8. Clearance Deals
Most noteworthy, Target has some of the best clearance offers around. Items start at a discount of only 15% – 30%. Also, some will drop to 70% off. This is the best time to shop because it’s an automatic savings without any coupons at all! Therefore, once you start Target deal shopping, you’ll learn about how they clearance entire sections of the store periodically throughout the year. So, whether it’s 70% off toys at Target or BIG savings on baby items, you can really save!
Additionally, make sure every time you are in Target, you walk around the outer perimeter of the store (near the exterior walls) because that is where the clearance items will be located: on the shelf end caps facing these walls. Most of all, don’t forget to scan clearance items to see if they come up even lower in price; sometimes clearance items are marked at a higher price than they ring up as! Therefore, you can use coupons on clearance items to maximize savings. However, most Cartwheel offers will not work on clearance items.
9. Rebate Apps
Lastly, take advantage of smartphone rebate apps. These rebate apps almost ALL stack with other savings (like the ones listed above) and give you money back on purchases you are already going to make. Recently though, some apps like Checkout 51 state you cannot redeem the offer if you’ve used a manufacturer coupon so be sure to read the fine print!
Even though it’s not an immediate lowering of price, it IS a way to get some money back and EVERYTHING adds up.
(Note: The specific deals referenced as examples in this article are listed as examples ONLY and may be expired by the time you are reading this article.)