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Walmart Coupon Policy and Ad Match Clarification

by Tara Kuczykowski on April 1, 2011 · 95 comments

As many of you know, there was quite a bit of confusion surrounding the newly released Walmart coupon policy at the beginning of March. Walmart has now provided additional clarification to the policy, as well as a clear ad match policy.

Walmart will accept the following coupons:

  • manufacturer's coupons
  • Internet printable coupons
  • competitor's coupons that have a specific price listed
  • soft drink container caps
  • Catalina coupons clearly labeled as "manufacturer's coupon"

Walmart does not accept the following coupons:

  • Internet printable coupons for a free product
  • competitor's coupons for dollars, cents or percentage off, B1G1 free, and double or triple value
  • Catalina coupons for dollars, cents or percentage off entire purchase

Please see the revised Walmart coupon policy for additional clarification regarding each type of coupon, as well as overall guidelines and limitations.

Walmart has also provided clarification on the Walmart ad match policy and created a nice printable version for easy reference.

Walmart will match the following types of ads:

  • buy one, get one free ads with a specified price
  • ads that feature a specific item at a specific price
  • preferred shopping card advertised prices for specific items
  • fresh produce and meat prices

Walmart does not match the following types of ads:

  • items that require a separate purchase to get the ad price
  • items without a specified price to get a free product
  • items that require a purchase to receive a gift card
  • buy one, get one free ads without a specified price
  • going out of business or closeout prices
  • percentage off sales
  • private label price promotions

Please see the Walmart ad match policy for additional clarification regarding each type of sale, as well as overall guidelines and limitations.

According to my sources, this information has been better communicated to the stores. That's not to say that you won't still encounter issues, but Walmart is committed to getting all stores on the same page. I'd still encourage you to print copies of both policies in the meantime, and please contact Walmart corporate relations by email or at 1-800-WALMART (1-800-925-6278) with any issues to get them resolved ASAP.

I am a participant in the Walmart Moms program -- participation is voluntary. Walmart has provided me with compensation for the time and effort spent creating this post, but all opinions are always my own!

{ 95 comments… read them below or add one }

1 bri April 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm

I went to walmart w/ a bogo P&G coupon, i was told they do not tk those anymore. I see here it is regarding competitor's bogo.Thank you.


2 Elisabeth April 1, 2011 at 5:25 pm

So the picture of Walmart's policy shows what looks like a Walgreen's register reward. Previously I have used RR's at Walmart, but it appears now they are not acceptable. So here is my understanding of Walmart's policy:

1. Walgreen's Register Rewards will not be accepted at Walmart even though they say "manufacturer coupon" and they scan.

2. Walmart will not price match Rite Aid's price shown in their ad when the price is after the "UP" coupon.

Are both of these statements correct?


3 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 6:30 pm

Yes, they decided not to accept the RRs and other $ off transaction type of Catalinas because there is so much variation. Sometimes they scan and other times they don't.

As for the Rite Aid question, I'm really not that familiar with Rite Aid because we don't have them here -- but isn't the +Up a store rewards program? An in-ad Rite Aid coupon would be accepted (provided it meets the competitor's coupon criteria), but not a +Up reward.


4 Genie April 1, 2011 at 5:49 pm

Will Walmart let customers do both(price match an item and also use a manufacturer's coupon on that item). I called my Walmart the other day and they said I could only do one or the other, but not both :( what have others experienced?


5 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 6:25 pm

Yes, you should be able to do both in this instance.


6 Christina Goodwin April 2, 2011 at 12:22 am

I was there tonight and tried to do an ad match & use a coupon and one of their CSM's stated that its in the new policy that they no longer allow this per their policy....I have read and re-read this new policy and cant see where it states this. What is the best way to handle this at the checkout?? :-)


7 Tara Kuczykowski April 2, 2011 at 11:11 am

That's disappointing, Christina. You could try asking for the store manager, but if you can't resolve it at the checkout, I'd definitely recommend contacting corporate relations via one of the methods above.

The point of an ad match is obviously to get the same price you'd get at another store. Unless that store doesn't accept coupons, you're still going to get the best price at that other store after your coupon. I guess that's the reasoning I'd try to use at the checkout stand.


8 Donna April 2, 2011 at 1:15 am

I was able to do both last couple weeks with the pasta deal that Kroger had and matched with coupons (free). My response would have been I will go to Kroger (it is in the plaza just below Wal-Mart). I bought over 200 boxes of pasta, but only 20 at a time.... I was buying from Kroger and Wal-Mart so that I was not clearing shelves.
I also took other grocery ads last week and did several match ups and had coupons in hand.


9 meliss April 1, 2011 at 6:25 pm

krogers also changed their coupon policy regarding ecpns put on cards.


10 Amy April 1, 2011 at 6:28 pm

What I'm unsure about is, are they going to honor just the price for the BOGO item or the price and get one free?


11 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Amy, it just depends on how the price is written in the ad. If the ad shows a B1G1 with a regular price of $6, you'll get each item for $3. If it shows a B1G1 which will make each item essentially $3, then you'd again pay $3 each (not $1.50 each). Does that make sense?


12 Wondering April 1, 2011 at 6:38 pm

Now, if we could get them to clarify why women are paid much less than men even though their company policy prohibits that.


13 Jennifer April 1, 2011 at 11:54 pm

They will have to in court. :) No worries...They'll lose. :)


14 Information October 8, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Actually it is not a fact that women are paid less. And referring to the court thing some employees may have treated women wrong, walmart as a company has not. walmart as a company does not discriminate, some employees may have just given walmart a bad name.


15 Betty October 29, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Just wondering. Are Walmart associates allowed to use the ad match program


16 Andrea K. April 1, 2011 at 6:45 pm

I'm a little dense, could someone help me? I think my question is along the same lines as Elisabeth's above. Will Wal Mart accept a catalinas like "Save $2 On Your Next Order", etc.? I thought they did and used one. Of course, it scanned fine, but I had to tell the cashier and manager about the new policy change. Now I think I told them wrong. :(


17 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 6:56 pm

Originally the policy was written in a way that would include RRs and OYNO Catalina coupons -- so you were correct at the time, Andrea. However, the updated policy does exclude these types of coupons.


18 Elizabeth April 1, 2011 at 7:01 pm

How many items will they price match? Say you buy 3 of the same items, will they give you the competitors price for all 3 of the same items for the competitor price?


19 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 7:06 pm

It doesn't look like they've included a limit. I'd think as long as you're purchasing a reasonable amount you should be fine.


20 alison April 1, 2011 at 7:11 pm

I believe the answer is yes, at least it is at my Walmart. I price-matched just last night, and got 4 of 1 item, and 4 of another, and all items were matched to the ad. The even price-match "per lb" prices for produce! I think that's awesome!


21 Elizabeth April 1, 2011 at 7:22 pm

Thanks so much for the reply


22 meredith April 1, 2011 at 7:21 pm

I know we can't use the OYNO catalinas but what about the catalinas from Target and Krogers that says $ off a certain item (i.e. $1 off one pkg of kraft cheese 10.7 oz or larger). And you can now use price match on produce even though it isn't a specific brand listed? Thanks for any clarification!


23 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 7:33 pm

Yes, you can use the $ off a specific item coupons as long as they are clearly labeled as manufacturer's coupons. And yep, you can now price match product and meat -- awesome!


24 Andrea April 1, 2011 at 9:08 pm

My Walmarts have always price matched produce and meat...I guess I just got lucky! I thought that was always the case everywhere.

I'm a little slow here...they will only take a competitor's coupon for an item if it lists the price, but not if it just says $1.00 off like in Meredith's example above?


25 meredith April 1, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Sorry but I have another question! does this mean that we can not use the B1G1 powerade zero coupon at walmart since it does not have a specified price? I noticed it only has a place where the cashier can write in the amount.


26 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Yes, you can use a B1G1 manufacturer's coupon. The specified price only comes into play when it's a competitor's coupon.


27 samantha April 1, 2011 at 7:32 pm

I work in customer service at walmart, and also am a devoted couponer. They sent out a email stating that all the registers must have these polices on them at all times, and the casheiers are getting trained about these subjects. So i hope it makes it easier for all the walmart couponers out there.


28 Mrs. Bivins April 1, 2011 at 8:18 pm

Thats great Samantha! I can not tell you how many times I've held up a line at Walmart because of a coupon discrepancy...u guys remember the $5 kraft shredded cheese printable coupon, that no one would take except walmart...ultimately the lady called someone over who knew, but it was unncessary time wasted for all. Im glad that Walmart is investing this training especially since couponing is the "hot the new thing to do"
Thanks again DSM for answering all of our questions!


29 Katherine April 2, 2011 at 4:59 am

Does this mean that to receive the deal we can go through a normal cashier and not have to wait through customer service to check out?


30 Tara Kuczykowski April 2, 2011 at 11:49 am

Yeah, you should be able to go through a regular checkout when ad matching.


31 linda April 1, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Well, I was so happy to have my Walmart coupon policy with me when I checked out last time. They were not going to accept my Catalina's and I told them that it was now their policy. I pulled out my copy and they asked me "where did I get it" and then a manager had to come over and she also asked me where I got it and if she could have it. I told her no, but she could make a copy of it , so I guess training hasn't come to my local walmart yet! Thanks for the heads up on making sure to have it with me.


32 Kristie April 1, 2011 at 9:43 pm

What are they talking about on the very bottom of the "Ad Match Guarantee" page when it says that they will not honor "Competitors' private label price promotions"? I have been price matching store brand milk at Wal-Mart for years when other stores have their brand on sale. Is this talking about that?


33 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 9:57 pm

It sounds like it may be, Kristie. Milk may be one of those items that they lump in with meat and produce, so I'll see what I can find out for you.


34 Kristie April 1, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Thank you, Tara! I really would like to know.


35 Kathy April 1, 2011 at 9:44 pm

Too much trouble couponing at Walmart! ... either the managers and the cashiers are confused about the policy (no wonder ... there are too many changes to it) or a glitch with the register ... I had what should have been a simple transaction yesterday ... 2 soft scrubs with 2 manufacturer coupons for soft scrub ... couldn't have been simpler ... but the register would not accept the coupons ... it beeped and printed out a small ticket that said that the item did not match the coupon ... after a lengthy wait for a customer service manager and with angry customers behind me ... it was overridden and manually entered by the manager. All that for $1 off the 2 items ... constantly frustrated everytime I bring coupons to Walmart ...


36 jennifer May 17, 2011 at 12:33 pm

I agree!!! Walmart is not worth the trouble. I would much rather make more than one trip to my drug stores.


37 Amy April 1, 2011 at 9:49 pm

What about overage? Example: Manufacturer coupon for $2 and the product only costs $1.50. The previous interpretation of the new policy said that you could actually walk out of there with $.50 cash plus the product. I didn't see any mention of overage above. Thanks for clarifying!


38 Tara Kuczykowski April 1, 2011 at 9:56 pm

I didn't reiterate it in the post, but it is still a part of the policy if you read through the guidelines and limitations.


39 Lisa April 1, 2011 at 10:17 pm

So is Walmart not accepting any BOGO coupons at all??


40 Tara Kuczykowski April 2, 2011 at 10:59 am

Yes, they will still accept manufacturer's B1G1 coupons. It's only the competitor's B1G1 coupons that need to have a specific price displayed on them.


41 Jim April 1, 2011 at 10:40 pm

I think Walmart has the Cash Registers rigged now. Some cashiers used to have no problem with a couple expired coupons. Now they scan one, and it beeps. Comes up on their screen saying it is expired.

I don't have this problem @ Target though, if I use one or two expired coupons. Not really a big deal but another story about the "beep".


42 Tara Kuczykowski April 2, 2011 at 11:03 am

Jim, no store should be taking expired coupons. Chances are they're not going to get reimbursed for them.


43 sarah April 1, 2011 at 11:19 pm

Jim, there is a date on the coupon for a reason, it is beeping to alert the cashier of this. I dont see a problem with the registers not allowing expired coupons.


44 Olivia April 2, 2011 at 12:32 am

I really got lucky tonight at WalMart. My cashier was telling me about how WalMart is really pushing the new coupon policy. My cashier told me that she has a list of competitors ads and what products they have on sale for the week. WalMart matched the sale price from these other stores. This cashier helped me save $6.00.


45 Steve April 2, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Sometimes the cashiers complain or don't want to price match they call over a C.S.M and they usually say to cashier to honor the ad. Then the cashier wants the ad for herself when she sees how much can be saved.


46 caroline April 8, 2011 at 1:40 am

Thanks so much for making us aware of Walmart's new coupon policy. I just got back from a shopping trip where I bought 2 small cans of Similac for $4.17 each. I used one $5 and one $3 off any Similac and was told that I couldn't use the $5 coupon because it was more than the price of the item. (She wasn't even going to adjust it down, just said I couldn't use it). I told her that the policy said that the overage would be applied to the rest of my purchase so she went to ask the manager. She came back and said that the manager said she'd take responsibility and it was ok. It still kinda bothered me that neither of them still believed that I should be allowed to do it since they talked about who would get in trouble instead of using it as a teaching moment. As they were talking, I was looking for the coupon policy printouts at the registers (I thought I had read somewhere that they would be) but I couldn't see one and i'm guessing the cashier hadn't either). As soon as I got home, I printed it out so there's no question in the future.


47 Cheryl April 8, 2011 at 2:44 pm

I wish I'd visited your site before my trip to Wal-Mart today (in N TX). The policy I carry was printed in early March 2011, which just goes to show you that you need to check store policies OFTEN. They wouldn't price match items from a Tom Thumb ad that were printed with dotted lines like a "coupon", because it said "$1.99 with coupon" (not even listing an original price). If it had said "price with card" it would have been okay. The manager was very nice and explained the changes (which I have since printed out). So if beware of some of the small print on competitor ads. She also volunteered the info on meat and produce price matching which I had not yet tried.


48 meredith April 8, 2011 at 3:17 pm

I am glad I printed out the coupon policy when I went to walmart today. The cashier almost did not take my kroger coupon until I showed her the policy. She borrowed it to show the manager so that she would not get written up for accepting the coupons. She was excited about being able to use other store coupons also! I just do not understand how come corporate does not send a mass email telling stores about coupon policy changes.


49 Tara April 11, 2011 at 2:19 am

I move that Walmart hire at least one CSR per shift, per Walmart (so around 4 per store) who's job is to be educated on all current coupon & price-matching policies & who can inform the other CSR's of said policies when a problem arises. There should be one in every store, one on every shift, at all times.
This sounds like a great job for these so-called Customer Service Managers, who at times are LESS educated on policies than some cashiers are.


50 Delia April 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm

If I'm making a purchase using coupons that will give overage, can I use self-checkout? I never shop at Walmart but I have 10 $5 Similac coupons that will give lots of overage & I don't want to tie up a line. Are the self-checkout registers crediting coupons that are more than shelf price?


51 kara April 15, 2011 at 1:35 pm

My question is can u double coupons at walmart for 1 item if they coupon don't say on it do not double?


52 Tara Kuczykowski April 15, 2011 at 1:44 pm

No, Walmart doesn't double coupons.


53 kara April 15, 2011 at 2:03 pm

Well then what stores will double the same coupon. I mean that's that those ppl on extreme couponing do they have like 10 or more of the same coupon. How do they save so much and how can I save a lot if I can't double?


54 Tara Kuczykowski April 15, 2011 at 2:19 pm

Not all stores double coupons. You'll need to find out the policies for your local stores. It can vary by chain in different regions as to whether or not they double and the amount that they will double.


55 hope May 2, 2011 at 10:08 pm

i think walmart has made their coupon policy even more confusing. i think that if a coupon could be used anywhere it should be used at walmart. couponing is time consuming but worth it. I coupon all the time. by the time i work my way thru walmart and spend the time it takes to get the best deals i dont want to have a hassle at the register. com'on walmart get smart. couponer's are. im gonna go to a store where they appreciate me . if a store respects me and my coupons, im more likely to go there whether i have coupons or not.


56 Stephanie May 6, 2011 at 3:06 pm

"Walmart will match the following types of ads:
buy one, get one free ads with a specified price"

My question is: many B1G1 ads will say in small print "save at least $x.xx on two", does this count as the 'specified price'?


57 Tara Kuczykowski May 6, 2011 at 6:08 pm

Yes, I believe that would be sufficient.


58 Tracey May 8, 2011 at 8:03 pm

Thanks for all the info! I hope I didn't miss this and am asking the same question ago.

I understand that Walmart will price match adds for B1G1 as long as it has a specified price. At CVS it is possible during B1G1 sales to use a B1G1 coupon combined with the sale to get the items free and only have to pay sales tax.

My questions is this: After matching the sales ad, will I be able to apply the B1G1 coupon at Walmart to get both items free just like I would be able to at CVS?


59 Robyn Caskey May 21, 2011 at 5:31 pm

Ok well where we live we usually only get the cvs and walgreens ad. I know it says that they will price match, you just have to bring in the my question is, can we print the ad off line and they accept that?


60 genieve May 24, 2011 at 3:36 pm

you no longer have to bring the ad in anymore...this is what weve been told (im an employee) but i live in louisiana...i would assume this is a company wide policy...look on the registers close to the register # and it should say something about the bringing the ad in.


61 lorena May 24, 2011 at 3:23 pm

I have a question, at CVS a product is 3.99 but after the reward of 3.00 I will pay .99 , does walmart will accept the .99 price or not?


62 genieve May 24, 2011 at 3:34 pm

walmart will honor the .99 price if the 3.99 price is lowered because of a reward card or an ad match.


63 paula September 13, 2011 at 10:56 am

can you clarify that? will walmart honor say a price 'after register rewards". WAGS ads will say Product 3.99 with $3.00 RR. like paying .99 after RR


64 genieve May 24, 2011 at 3:31 pm

i was in walmart last night shopping...i know what the policy states bc i am an employee...when i went to check out i was using another store's ad for the bogo and ALSO using the price per pound on some meat from another store. no where on the policy does it state we are not allowed to comp more than one store. the cashier told me i had to do one or the other. i tried to explain that i was not using a coupon twice or anything like that but she still insisted it was one or the other. my question is if it doesnt specify in the policy why will they not honor that? i would ask someone at work but thats who told me i couldnt. thank you!


65 evelyn May 25, 2011 at 8:51 am

I have a coupon for 2.00 off of two bags of coffee and one coupon for 1.00 off for two bags. can I use both coupons for the two bags? This would give me 3.00 off for the two bags.


66 Kelli May 26, 2011 at 10:55 pm

Nope - this is where the "1 coupon per purchase" comes into play. For the $2 off 2 bags your qualifying purchase is 2 bags of coffee. For the $1 off 2 bags your qualifying purchase is 2 bags of coffee. If you tried using both coupons on just 2 bags off coffee you would be using 2 coupons on a qualifying purchase where the coupon specifies just one coupon per purchase. Does that make sense?


67 tonya May 28, 2011 at 9:03 am

So does this policy mean that if the coupon doesn't scan BUT it's clearly for the same item, the coupon won't be accepted? I had this happen about 6 months ago over a $5 manufacture coupon for Huggies and the manager wouldn't accept it because it wouldn't scan. It was very frustrating and I haven't been back since. Oh, and it didn't scan at Target either 10 minutes later BUT they accepted it anyway because it was for the same item listed on the coupon.


68 Brenda Lester June 1, 2011 at 2:48 pm

Just want to say it is no longer frustrating admatching at our Walmart in Ludington, MI. They ask you at the beginning if you would like to ad match and then if they see an item you have and they know it is advertised somewhere they tell you that it is on sale at so and so and they are giving me that price. Used to be such a hassle here but not anymore.


69 Chrystal June 7, 2011 at 8:03 pm

Will walmart price match Meijer or Kroger 10 for 10 items?


70 kristen June 7, 2011 at 10:32 pm

I was very frustrated at Walmart the other day. I bought 2 bottles of Suave lotion. I had a BOGO coupon and $1 off coupon. Shouldn't I have been allowed to use both? The cashier would not allow me to. I have done this before.

Also if I am allowed to use both how to I explain that to them? That is not outlined in the Walmart coupon policy.


71 paula September 13, 2011 at 10:58 am

i have had the same problem and no one seems to know !


72 Lynn June 16, 2011 at 12:16 am


It is outlined in the policy...only one coupon can be used.


73 Jo June 22, 2011 at 9:52 am

Will Walmart take a competitor's coupon that is for more than one item? Coupon has the items pictured that are part of the sale and has 2 for $25. I see Walmart's coupon policy say they pricematch ads for a specific item with a price but what if it's for more than one item??


74 dee bee June 23, 2011 at 12:32 pm

Okay I have a question, I was confused on their Preferred shopping card prices for specific items that are in a printed ad. I called corporation because from my understanding, I would get the price I would walk out of the store with.Ex: Store A, toothpaste $2.79-$2.00 ebr=$.79. I asked my husband which price do I pay and that's when I called corporation and told them about this certain ad and she told me that whatever price you would walk out of the store is what you would pay. So I said so then I would pay the $.79 and she said yes. Then I also called my store and asked them the same question and I got the same answer except today when I went to purchase my, I was told that I would have to pay the $2.79. I told them what corporation had said and what the Salary management had told me and they told me that that was not it. So as fire came out of my mouth and through my ears, came home and called corporate again and got the same answer that I would pay the $.79. Waiting on the store manager to call me back.


75 Flea01 October 28, 2011 at 12:25 pm

I was at my Walmart a couple weeks ago and I always price match and use coupons but when I tried to price match and then use a competitors coupon (Target for toilet paper) I was told they do not take competitors coupons for item that were price matched. I figured if the price match was from target and the coupon was from the same they would take it .


76 Flea01 October 28, 2011 at 12:35 pm

Lorena, They do not honor price after register rewards so if the ad says you pay $ 2.99 - $2.00 register rewards final price or is like paying $ .99 you pay the $ 2.99 because a register reward is a just a coupon for the next shopping trip if that makes sense.


77 Linda February 8, 2012 at 7:07 pm

Will walmart price match an item that is on a 3 day sale. One of the stores by me does that maybe once a month for the days Fri,Sat,Sun. So if I go in there on one of those days would they match it. They do not have a reg. price just the sale price. Thanks in advance for any answers.


78 jackie October 4, 2012 at 2:19 pm

What is meant by the term will not honor store ads outside our trade terratory


79 Brandi October 27, 2012 at 6:58 am

I know that Wal-Mart will match competitors ads on meat by the pound. (Even though my Wal-Mart says that they won't. I will be taking the policy with me to the store the next time that I go.) Sorry, I ramble. My questions is will they match B1G1 on meat. Winn- Dixie will often have their meat B1G1.


80 maria November 23, 2012 at 3:40 pm

ok will they honor for example my ad says prices are good till 25th and i got in on the 27th with that ad will they still price match it?


81 Tracy Lowe March 23, 2013 at 3:07 am

I've been couponing and price matching at wal mart for over a year now. Tonight, i was told that I could not price match and coupon for the same items. Now granted, I have had some major hauls for wal mart but this one...was maybe 60.00 worth of stuff?? that's really being generous about the prices. The store front manager told me that the policy changes took effect today..really cuz that sounds like bull to me, she also told me that this came from corp., to the district, to the managers..Wal Mart's policy on their website still has not changed as far as I can tell. I'm pretty sure I would have seen it.


82 marilynn April 18, 2013 at 1:22 pm

i was todl they only ad match with in 25 miles of our store is that true i live between phoenix and tucson and we cant as match with either one it has to be within 25 mies of the stoe


83 Sherry May 15, 2013 at 10:53 pm

OK just to clarify, I can use a competitiors coupon if it says manufactor coupon but says for example rite aid on it also, but does not say the price of item instead says $1.00 off 2. I can use it?
However if it only says rite aid on it not manufactuter and says $1.00 off 2 I can not, right? Now I went to my local wal-mart, which is about the only store around for about 35 miles, but they say they will only ad match from an area of 30 miles which would cut the town in half, they are asking for descrepencies!


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