Spot The Problem With This CVS Coupon

Reader SaberTail got a pretty average receipt on a recent trip to CVS: a trailing banner that could, in a pinch, be mistaken for an unspooled roll of toilet paper. We exaggerate only a little. It had three coupons, one of which just contradicts itself out of existence.

I went shopping at CVS today and received this coupon (along with 3 others). My broke student days are behind me, so I have no need to buy cheap booze, let alone make it cheaper. But even if I wanted to use the coupon, I’m not sure they’d let me.

SaberTail didn’t mention which state this CVS is in, but not all states allow coupons for booze. (Here in New York, it’s mail-in rebates or nothing. And you can’t buy vodka in drugstores, either.) A coupon offering, say, 15% off everything can’t be used to buy gift cards, but it’s hard to believe that a coupon for alcohol can’t be used on alcohol. Right?


Edit Your Comment

  1. Marlin says:

    They put that there as some states ban discount on alcohol. Its a CYA type thing the lawyers make them put on.

  2. StarKillerX says:

    It appears to me that it’s a general disclaimer that probably prints on all coupon so say a 10% off can’t be used on those items but one specifically for an item listed, such as this one, would be able to be used.

  3. kenj0418 says:

    My odd state bans coupons on MILK.

  4. Bagels says:

    Is “Gran Legacy” like the dirt cheap hobo vodka? When I worked at Walgreens (and they had a full liquor department), it was Popov….2/3$ half pints. Oh, the humanity

    • Murph1908 says:

      When people tell me, “All vodka is the same!!!ONE!1 It’s all marketing and you are being had.” I point to Popov.

      Sure, the higher end vodkas are very simililar, and I can’t taste the difference between many. But Stoli is distinctive to me. And Ketel seems smoother than others.

      When I get screwdrivers, it doesn’t matter much (other than Popov-level). But for my gimlets, I have my preferences.

      • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

        i used to work at a bar and one night some guy was being an asshole vodka snob and going on and on about how skyy was the best and all other vodka was crap
        my boss challenged him to a blind taste test. he picked ketel one- said it was the smoothest so it “had to be skyy”

        • Cerealmom says:

          I work in liquor retail and so I know that liquor laws vary wildly from state to state,and even within the same state in some instances. In some parts of the country,every single county within a state may have liquor laws different as night and day.Drugstores here do not sell liquor, but just across the state line they do.I think since CVS operates nationwide they probably have this notice on there as a precaution against sales in those states that prohibit dollars off coupons for liquor.

          • amylynn1022 says:

            The state legislature from my state (KY) has just cottoned on to the fact that our state liquor laws are crazy (losing a lawsuit probably had something to do with it). There are something like ten kinds of liquor licenses. You can sell hard liquor and wine in drugstores–but not grocery stores, unless the liquor section has a separate entrance from the rest of the store. Grocery stores and convenience stores can sell beer, however. It rather makes my head hurt.

            We won’t even get into the number of dry counties with vineyards and/or bourbon distilleries.

  5. Hoss says:

    Vodka at a PHARMACY? CVS has no ethics. Just cause you can — don’t mean u should

    • Murph1908 says:

      I no, rite? Next thing you know, the’ll be selling candy bars and junk food!

    • incident-man stole my avatar says:

      of course… they also sell cigarettes… more stuff to make you need the pharmacy down the road…

    • snarfies says:

      I live in Pennsylvania, and in PA the ONLY place you can buy liquor is in a state-owned liquor store. No wine in grocery stores, nothing. So whenever I travel down to Maryland or DC I’m always shocked and amused to see pints behind the counter at drugstores, and whiskey in the grocery stores. To most other people its just everyday life.

      • lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

        PA resident here, too. Thank you so much, blue laws, for keeping us all safe from liquor all these years.

        • Murph1908 says:

          Former Indiana resident here. No liquor or beer sales on Sunday there. So people just head to IL, KY, MI, or OH if they are close enough.

          There are a silly number of liquor stores right on the border of these states.

        • ZachPA says:

          Also one of the few states left in which you cannot buy or sell a vehicle on a Sunday. You can walk into some state stores and buy as much booze as you want from 12-5 Sundays, but you absolutely cannot buy or sell a car. In fact, car dealers have told me that it’s actually illegal for them to be on the premises and/or show vehicles, allow test drives or write up paperwork on Sundays.

          For the uninitiated, Pennsylvania’s liquor laws stack up like this:

          * If you seek liquor, head to a state-run Wine & Spirits Shoppe.
          * If you seek wine, head to a state-run Wine & Spirits Shoppe. There *were* some wine vending machines in groceries, but they were ridiculous, didn’t offer much choice, and evidently were disused because the state pulled the plug earlier this year.
          * If you seek beer, decide how much you want.

          * If you want to buy 160 ounces or less, head to a bar, where they will sell you as much as you want, but you can only remove 160 ounces at a time from the store (make multiple trips).

          * If you want more than 160 ounces, buy a case from a distributor. They will sell you a whole truckload if you want, and you can arrive in a truck and take it all with you at once. Just know that a case is no less than 24 beers or malt liquors.

          If you run a bar, you must buy your booze at the liquor store and distributor just like everyone else. You get no discounts and you pay sales tax on your purchase just like everyone else (though your patrons don’t pay sales tax on the liquor, wine and beer they buy from you.) You must have a special Sunday license to sell beer and/or liquor to your patrons on Sundays. To get such a license, you must serve some sort of food. There is a bar about a block from me that offers cans of Beefaroni to qualify for Sunday sales.

          I am hopeful for the eventual privatization of PA’s liquor retailers, and the easing of PA’s liquor laws in general. Anybody who looks at the numbers will notice that PA has a higher concentration of alcoholics despite the fascist laws. When I can walk into a Turkey Hill Minit Market and buy a six-pack of beer and a fifth of rum, I’ll be happy.

          • NickRayko says:

            Be careful what you wish for. Washington state recently privatized liquor (hard alcohol) sales, and prices have, for the most part, gone up considerably, even though nearly all grocery stores & drugstores now sell booze. An additional hassle is that while the old state-owned/operated stores posted a price that included all taxes, few private stores do so now. So, the $12.99 posted for a 750 ml bottle of (whatever) doesn’t include the 20.5% state liquor sales tax, nor the additional $3.83/L excise tax.

            A sample of price differences, post-privatization –

      • shepd says:

        I wonder if they exist for the same reason we have the same thing where I am (the LCBO). The original reason for their existence was they maintained a blacklist of people who have bought booze. Buy too much (because you’re supplying someone) or be caught drinking too much and you may not buy booze anymore. To be able to buy the booze in the first place, until 1957, you had to get a drinking license (yes, really). It wasn’t until 1975 that blacklists were dropped.


        • mharris127 says:

          Oh, the LCBO. Brings back memories of my time in Ontario. At least the store in Kenora was clean, attractive and had whatever wine or hard liquor I wanted. Also, the Beer Store was two stores down but their selection wasn’t that great compared to the States.

    • Difdi says:

      Depends on how you use it. You can view alcohol, particularly things like everclear, as being basically better-tasting rubbing alcohol.

    • elangomatt says:

      Can’t tell if you are trolling or not so I’ll assume you are not. I don’t really think of places like CVS and Walgreens as Pharmacies at all. I think of them as a convenience store with a pharmacy attached. The only type of place I would call an actual pharmacy is if the store only sold OTC type medications along with the prescription stuff behind the counter.

    • missy070203 says:

      I guess some people like to be able to get their oxys, prozac, and booze all in one place…. nothing like a 1 stop shop

  6. RogueStomper says:

    For those who want a more natural rememdy, the doctor prescribes vodka!

  7. Blueskylaw says:

    There is no problem with the CVS coupon. The exclusion specifically
    mentions vodka, but since “Gran Legacy” is swill, the coupon applies.

    • GearheadGeek says:

      The exclusion mentions alcohol, not vodka… I’m pretty sure that Swill is a brand of alcohol sold only for use in $1 well drinks, isn’t it? ;)

  8. cactus jack says:

    I believe the disclaimer is a general one for the extracare card. This is a separate coupon to be used with the card and no further discount or reward will be given. If I’m understanding this correctly. Either way, get your dollar off and check or file it in the trash.

    • RandomHookup says:

      It is their general one, but it does make them look incompetent. We like making fun of companies that look incompetent (or worse).

  9. YouDidWhatNow? says:

    Oh, that alcohol isn’t for *drinking* – I’m only going to use it as an antiseptic.

  10. dicobalt says:

    This is the same as unlimited internet.

  11. coujo says:

    here in Rhode Island, you cant buy liquor at a convenience store or super market. it MUST be sold in a liquor store.

  12. momoftwokids says:

    I’m putting my money on Washington state here. We voted to get rid of our state owned liquor stores so now EVERYONE is selling hard alcohol, including pharmacies like CVS.

  13. Geekybiker says:

    Its that new non-alcoholic vodka.

  14. MarkFL says:

    I work for an inventory company, so I have been in a LOT of CVS stores, but I have never seen one that sells hard liquor. It’s not prohibited by law here in Florida, though, because some Walgreen’s have a liquor store attached, as do a few Publixes and most Albertson’s.

  15. Worstdaysinceyesterday says:

    I thought the error was CVS’S instead of CVS’. oopsie

  16. Bender6829 says:

    Drugstores selling booze and smokes never made any sense to me… until I realized it’s all about money!

  17. IraAntelope says:

    maybe no alcohol in that brand of vodka? new yorkers, beware of those mail-in coupons: sometimes the bottle has been on the shelf so long the coupon has long expired. been there.