How to Save Money at Target

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Target Springfield, VA by j.reed on Flickr

Target Springfield, VA by j.reed on Flickr

If you’re going to shop there anyway, you might as well make the most of your dollar, right? We help you do just that in the fourth article of a five-part series outlining the best ways to save money at the nation’s leading retailers. So far, we’ve looked at saving money at CVS, Kroger and Walgreens. Now, it’s time to learn how we can maximize our savings at Target, the second largest discount retailer in the United States, behind Walmart. Here’s what you need to know about Target before shopping:

Sales Cycle: Target’s sales cycles run Sunday through Saturday, meaning that advertised sale prices change on Sunday. However, keep in mind Target’s sale prices can vary regionally and sometimes even from store-to-store within the same area.

Bonus: Top 5 Places to Find Coupons 

Money Saving Tips: While Target doesn’t have a rewards program, there are a lot of ways to get additional savings at the discount retailer. First, Target offers dozens of printable coupons online, with no printing limit. So, you can print 500 coupons for toothpaste if the deal is just that good! If you’d prefer to save your computer’s paper and ink, you can even print coupons at Target stores at the Registry computers. You can also sign up to receive mobile coupons straight to your phone.

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[Check Your Credit: Don't Guess. Know.® Get your free credit report and score. No credit card required.

Another plus when shopping at Target is the store’s “Gift Card Promos.” Often times, when you buy a certain amount of a particular product, you will receive a $5 gift card. Combine these offers with coupons, and you can often make money on your purchases! To check whether or not a product is participating in a gift card promo, scan the product’s barcode at one of the store’s red machines located at the end of aisles. The screen will show you the price and the corresponding promo.

In addition to gift card promos, Target has a national markdown schedule. Every two weeks, items will continue to be marked down until sold out or until the discount reaches 75 percent. You can find these items at the clearance racks, typically on the end caps of aisles. And finally, Target offers a $0.05 bag credit if you bring your own bags to carry your merchandise home.

Bonus: The Coupon Dictionary: Your Guide to Coupon Lingo

Coupon Policy: Below is a summary of Target’s coupon policy:

  • Target accepts the following types of coupons: Target store coupons, manufacturer coupons, Internet printable coupons and mobile coupons.
  • Target does not accept competitor coupons, but they will match competitor prices if the advertisement is local, current and the product being matched is identical.
  • Target offers price adjustments within seven days of purchase.
  • Target allows you to stack one manufacturer coupon and one store coupon per item.
  • For promotional “Buy One, Get One Free” (BOGO) sales, you may not use two coupons or promos to get two free items. Unless stated otherwise on the coupon, the use of one BOGO coupon requires that you purchase two valid items, where you pay the full price for the second item.
  • Target does not offer “overage,” meaning they will never pay you to take the item out of the store. So if the coupon value exceeds the purchase price of an item, the cashier will adjust the price of the item to match the coupon amount.
  • Target does not double or triple coupons.
  • All Internet printable coupons must have a bar code and be scannable.
  • Target does offer rain checks on out-of-stock items, except gift card promotions. Target rain checks expire 45 days after issue.

Extras: Target has a large trial size section filled with items usually marked at around $1.00. While some coupons exclude trial sizes, some do not specify a size requirement. If you have a coupon that doesn’t exclude trial size, you can often score free products in this section.

Use the Target Store Locator to see where the nearest Target store is in your area.

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Whether you’re an extreme couponer or a recent couponing convert, you can learn new ways to save money at Find out how to save money on your home loanimprove your credit and make better choices for a more secure financial future. And check out these other, helpful money-saving articles:

Photo credit: Target Springfield, VA by j.reed on Flickr