When CVS discovered that prices listed for brand-name drugs on its SilverScript Medicare site were mistakenly displayed at about 4% less than the drugs were actually being sold for, the company quickly fixed the glitch, according to a report in today’s Wall Street Journal. But what happened to customers who saw the “low” prices and ended up paying more at retail? According to The Journal, CVS cut a deal with the government, allowing the company to offer refunds only to customers who asked for them. CVS then sent letters to the customers that said they could call and discuss “your options,” and made no mention of the possibility of a refund. [More]
A CVS employee in Chicago chased a 35-year-old shoplifter out of his store and held him in a chokehold for “several minutes” on Saturday morning until police came. The thief–who had stolen tubes of toothpaste–was taken to a hospital and initially described as in “fair-to-serious” condition, but then declared dead about 45 minutes later, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. The death is being ruled an accidental homicide, and the police aren’t going to press charges against the employee. [More]
Consumerist reader Dan recently went to his local CVS to score some toothpaste when he noticed that the store was offering two versions of the same 6-oz. tube of extra whitening, maximum strength, sensitive toothpaste. One was just the toothpaste while the other came with a free toothbrush… And then he looked at the price tags. [More]
Interbrand Design Forum– part of a global brand consulting firm– has ranked the top retail brands and guess what? Walmart is most valuable. [More]
Are you curious about what dedicated bargain-hunters call the Drugstore Game, taking advantage of drugstores’ reward programs in order to acquire more toothbrushes and shampoo than your family could ever possibly use? What frugal person isn’t? Yet the forums where people discuss the tricks of this game can be intimidating, and it’s hard to know where to start. What if you’re not ready for major-league Drugstore Game? Is there maybe Drugstore Game T-Ball? Yes, there is! [More]
Reader Kyle took this photo of a “discount” at CVS. [More]
Are CVS and Walgreens price gouging on liquid Tamiflu? The attorney general of Connecticut’s office says the AG, Richard Blumenthal, has “received information suggesting that some pharmacies have charged substantially increased out-of-pocket prices for Tamiflu, in some cases as high as $130 or more. He has also heard that some retailers may be purchasing capsules of higher-dosage Tamiflu from distributors and remarketing it as liquid-form lower dosages at greatly inflated prices.” [More]
Many stores offer discounts to customers who bring their own reusable bags to shop. Now, CVS is integrating their customer loyalty program with a green initiative, and plans to reward customers with 25 cents every time they use reusable bags.
Sure, not everyone has the time, inclination, or buying habits that make extreme coupon-shopping worthwhile. But everyone can benefit from learning some of the proud secrets of the coupon ninjas, such as coupon sources for products you probably already use, and combining sales, rebates, and coupons.
Reader Evan spotted this smoking deal at a Los Angeles CVS. He didn’t specify what exactly a “CVS HLTH GRO THPST” is, but at that spectacular discount, who could pass one up? I’ll tell you who — those wise consumers who hold fast until the price drops even further, to $3.19.
Punhon bought diapers at a New York City CVS and was charged 4.875 percent sales tax, which she believes shouldn’t have been applied. She writes:
CVS pharmacies apparently don’t need consent to enroll customers in ReadyFill, a program that signs customers up for the maximum allowable number of prescription refills and then robocalls them when their drugs are ready. According to a veteran pharmacist, the automatic enrollments began after CVS’ corporate office set specific performance targets that would affect bonuses for managers and pharmacists. Inside, the pharmacist tells us what ReadyFill is, how it works, and how to escape those annoying robocalls…
The NYT has the story of a woman who, more than 10 years after she tried and failed to have a baby using in vitro procedures, is still getting marketing information for all sorts of products. First it was Pampers and baby formula — then, as the baby she did not have “grew up,” so did the marketing offers. How did they get her information? They bought it.
A 14-year-old in Middleburg, Florida, went to buy some Skittles at a CVS and found a small bag of cocaine next to the candy. Police have reviewed the security tapes, but say the store’s cameras don’t cover the candy aisle. As if sugar doesn’t make them hyper enough already.
CVS asks: How about some dead trees and a bunch of ads with that purchase? Not in so many words, of course: that would actually give shoppers a choice.
Did you know that there was a fleet of CVS “Samaritan Vans” that patrol the highways looking for motorists in need of help? We didn’t, until reader Danielle let us know she’d been saved by one.
Walgreens Cancels EasySaver Program, But That Doesn't Mean You Can't Still Play "The Drugstore Game"
Mitchell wrote to us complaining about Walgreen’s decision to cancel its EasySaver Rebate program, where customers could submit multiple rebate requests at once and get the money back along with a 10% bonus applied to a gift card. Although the program is no longer with us, it’s still very possible to game the reward/discount systems at Walgreens and other chain drugstores to accumulate huge savings. Sometimes you can even make money back.
It took three calls from CVS’ automated reminder service for me to realize what was going on: CVS Pharmacy was refilling our prescriptions without our asking for them to be refilled, and then their automated dialer was calling us to notify us that we had a prescription waiting. Nobody in my family requested to have a prescription refilled, yet three times CVS called us to tell us to come and pick up our prescription.