Safeway Savings Rally - How I got 9 bags of groceries for $13

By Xin Lu on 17 February 2008 (Updated 18 August 2011) 15 comments

Right now Safeway is having an event called Savings Rally which lasts until February 26th. The deal is that you get a dollar off coupon for buying a number of items off a list of 2000 participating items. If you buy 25 or more items you will get a coupon for $20 off the next purchase. If you buy 20 to 24 items you get a coupon for $10 off the next purchase, and if you buy 10 to 19 items you get a coupon for $5 off on the next purchase. This is a very good deal since Safeway has many 10 for $10 items and it is possible to chain the coupons. For example, purchase 25 items and get a $20 off coupon and then visit Safeway again and use the $20 for 20 free items and get a $10 coupon, then do it again for 10 free items and get a $5 coupon for more free stuff.

I checked it out today after preparing a batch of coupons. An especially useful coupon right now is on Smartsource.com for Rice-A-Roni or Pasta-Roni Nature's Way products. It gives you 50 cents off per box. I was able to print out four since it allows 2 prints per computer. I do not recommend copying the coupons since it is coupon fraud and each coupon has a distinct bar code. However if you do have multiple computers it is okay to print out more than one. The 10 for $10 items I targetted were: selected varieties of Colgate toothpaste, Pasta-Roni and Rice-A-Roni, and Del Monte canned tomatoes. Additionally I also printed out the Flat Earth chips coupons at Smart Source since they are a promotional freebie.

With my coupons in hand I set out to the first Safeway and bought 21 boxes of Rice-A-Roni and Pasta Roni, 4 tubes of Colgate toothpaste, and 3 bags of Flat Earth chips. The total was $23, and I was supposed to get a $20 coupon, but the stupid machine only spat out a $10 coupon. So I went to customer service and asked for help. At first the lady at the register said it is because I used coupons on the Rice-A-Roni and maybe the machine did not think it counted. I then calmly pointed out that their promotion did not state that customers cannot use manufacturer's coupons, and the manager gave me $10 in cash back. This brought my purchasing total down to $13.

I drove to the second Safeway with my $10 coupon in hand and scooped up 10 cans of Del Monte tomatoes. These are useful because my husband loves to cook Italian food and some of his Filipino soups also have a tomato base. I paid with my $10 coupon and the machine correctly printed out a $5 coupon. The man at the register said, "Wow that was nice wasn't it?" I smiled, nodded, and went on my way.

Finally, I went to a third Safeway store and I had $5 to spend on anything I want. I really wanted some juice so I bought two half gallons of Dole juice for $5 and paid with my last coupon. The man at the cash register read the coupon very carefully as if no other customers have ever used it before, and said, "that is a nice deal!" I replied, "yup it is."

The final tally: I got 21 boxes of Rice-A-Roni and Pasta Roni, 10 cans of Del Monte canned tomatoes, 4 tubes of Colgate toothpaste, 3 bags of Flat Earth chips, and 2 half gallons of Dole juice for $13. I am sure some of you could do better, but I was quite proud of my nine bags of groceries. I hope noone goes overboard with this promotion and buys 200 items, but we are totally stocked up with Rice-A-Roni now for the nights when we have no time to cook!

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Guest's picture
Guest

why do you feel the need to go to different stores if you don't think you're doing anything wrong?

Xin Lu's picture
Xin Lu

The three Safeways are just on the way home on the same road. Also, the coupon says one use per store visit per day.

Guest's picture
Guest

Awesome - Fry's (aka Kroger) did a similar promotion not to long ago, and they were already having a great sale so I stocked up then. The following week, they had a bargin of a sale on Kellogg's Cereal, which I had 3 high value coupons for, and I ended up with 12 boxes of cereal for $0.40. Total! That's 3.333 cents a box!

Linsey Knerl's picture

Not only do I love that you shopped smart, but you:

a) played by the rules (one per store per day)

b) bought stuff you would use (thus preventing waste or clutter.)

 

I wish we had more than one grocery store in a 30 mile radius!!  Great article!!

 

 

Guest's picture
vh

What a coup! I HAD to link to this in Funny's Sunday round-up. Thanks for the great story.

Guest's picture
sara

I laughed when I saw your post- I do my grocery shopping at Safeway and did a similar thing last week- my total was $14, and I stacked the coupons with a similar promotion. And I got some good groceries! For the amount the 2 bottles of multivitamins should have cost [$14] I got the 2 multvitamins plus 6 bags of groceries. Great job! It sure feels good to get an amazing deal... I think I figured out I saved 85%.

Paul Michael's picture

...and tip my hat to some fantastic frugal shopping Xin. I am printing out those lists and hitting up Safeway next week. I think it would be interesting to see just what people can squeeze out of this promotion. I wish I liked rice-a-roni!

Guest's picture
Orville

Good job working the coupons. Your husband is a lucky man.

Orv

Myscha Theriault's picture

Basha's used to have similar events when we were still in the Southwest.

Great coupon combining, Xin!

Guest's picture
Guest

I also enjoy couponing. Unfortunately ours is limited to one per customer per day so I can't store hop but I have been going once a day for the last few days. I get 25 items and then use my $20 coupon the next day for 25 more items, and the cycle keeps repeating itself. I guess you can say I went overboard and have bought over a hundred items. I am not done yet. They are all usable items thought and the extra I give away since it didn't cost me anything. My neighbors were happy with my extra tomatoes.

In our area some great buys are aquafresh premium, free w 1.50 coupon but counts towards 25 items. T. Marzetti dressing, also free, didn't get a natures way rice because my coupon was expired so I printed one tonight which I will use tomorrow. (I found your story when I was searching for the coupon.) betty crocker frosting, and fruit roll ups for my kids both had additional coupns along w the tomatoes which a had a coupon for $1 off 12. The 1st day I paid $9.84 for a bunch of stuff I can use and the second day I figured out the tomato deal and needed some so I paid 98cents for a tube of toothpaste and 24 cans of tomatoes. (That was like buying one and getting 23 cans and tpaste free.) Today I paid 9.12 for $106 worth of groceries which included $5 for veggies and paper towels that I needed but didn't have a great coupon for. Since some of the 25 items were free the $20 helped with some of my other stuff. It was fun but I am tired now. I only went because I needed veggies and couldn't pass up the free food. And I still have $20 to spend. Have it planned out and will get the things I need including several boxes of fruit roll ups for the kids lunch, dressing, rice, tpaste, hand sanitizer, sauve lotion for $.00and will receive yet another coupon. (I talked to my grandma today and she wants some tomatoes along with my friend. So they will not go to waste. Any extras after this is all over I can donate to a local food drive.)

Guest's picture
1stopmom

That is really great!! I wish there was a Safeway where I live
:(

Guest's picture
1stopmom

That is really great!! I wish there was a Safeway where I live
:(

Guest's picture
Kimberly

Wow! This is amazing! I've never done this type of "stacking" offers before.

I just returned from 3 Safeways (all on the way to work and within 10 minutes of where I live) and got 11 bags of groceries for $15...and still have $5 to spend tomorrow!

I should mention that I pretty much live off slow cooker meals about 6 months out of the year...so just decided to completely stock up my pantry. I did the 10 for $10 on most items...keep in mind you don't have to buy 10 of the item...you get each item for $1.

Here's the haul:

5 whole grain rice a roni (printer on fritz so no coupon)
5 pasta roni-Nature's way
5 boxes of cheerios (plus $$ off from coupon printed at check
out)
1 wesson oil
1 colgate
10 cans-kidney beans
5 cans pinquitos beans
5 cans petite cut tomatos
5 cans basil/garlic/oregano tomatos
7 cans santa fe beans
5 cans white beans

You have to watch carefully when they ring everything up. I only bought enough to get the coupon...so if an item rings up incorrectly not only do you pay more but you get the lower value discount.

This happened with the Colgate. It was supposed to be $1..but came up as $2.50. I paid it and then went to customer service. They refunded it...but then I had to explain that it also meant I should have received a $10 coupon instead of $5. They gave me $5 cash and I kept the coupon and was on my way to the third store. So watch that register!

Sweet deal! I'm kinda amazed it worked...

Guest's picture
Guest

I am just curious about your use of the printable coupons, I have been told at my local Safeways that they refuse to accept them. Has anyone else run into this problem?

Barbara

Guest's picture
Guest

Our Safeway (von's, socal) had S & W beans on sale for $.88 each. 25 cans came to $22.00. I was able to roll my coupon over the next 2 weeks and get about 225 cans of beans. Yes we're vegi here, lol. I would give them my coupon and $2 and the register would spit out another $20 coupon for the next day.