Walgreens Coupons & Deals

Why Didn’t My Register Rewards Print?

by Christie Bisbee on April 30, 2012

I wrote a post about this a while back and thought it would be a good time for a refresher. :-) Please feel free to add your tips and suggestions in the comments. We all learn from one another, which I love!

The most frequent e-mail I get is from readers whose Walgreens Register Rewards didn’t print.  There are a variety of things that could cause your RR not to print.  So, let’s talk about a few of those…

1) The Catalina Machine was not working. This is the most frequent reason that I personally experience for my Register Reward not printing. The machine could be down, unplugged, out of ink, rebooting, out of paper, have a paper jam and the list goes on. I had one store ring me up and after my RR didn’t print tell me their machine had been broken for 6 months! How crazy is that?

TIP #1 Ask the cashier if her catalina machine is working.  Most cashiers will know and be happy to send you to another register if there machine is down.  Think of the headache it’ll save both of you if you know ahead of time!

TIP #2 Look to see that the little green light is on. If it’s red, or if it’s blinking or there is no light at all, that’s a bad sign. Pick another register.

2) The item you bought was not included in the deal. Sometimes it can be a difference in size, variety, package, flavor, etc. You have to be very careful to buy exactly what is included.  I know it can be confusing, after all who knew that Oral B made that many different types of toothbrushes!

TIP #3 Look for the Register Reward Signs under the items in your store. Each included item should have a sign underneath. ( I know some stores are better than others at this).

3). You did not purchase the right number of items or you didn’t hit the purchase amount needed to trigger the Register Reward. If it says you need to buy $10, you can’t buy $9.99, it won’t work. Sometimes an item will ring up for less than what is on the sign. Maybe the item is on clearance or they are running an unadvertised sale, even a penny less can throw off the best planned scenario.

TIP #4 Watch the register closely while they are ringing you up to make sure everything is ringing up as it should. If something rings up for less than planned either throw in another item to get you over the $ amount or have them void the transaction.  You can then regroup, change your scenario and try again.

4) You paid with a Register Reward you received for buying the same item, or from the same company AND for the same amount. So if you get a $3 RR from P&G from buying toothbrushes and use that RR to pay for more toothbrushes, the RR won’t print. Or if you use that $3 RR from P&G to buy another item that generates a $3 RR from P&G, even though it’s a different item like Tide, that RR won’t print! However if the Tide prints a $3.50 RR you should be good. Why? The code on the coupon with a value of $3 has to be different than a code with a value of $3.50.

TIP #5 If you are told that your RR didn’t print because you used a coupon, point out that the ads often promote “Coupons in Most Sunday Papers” for items that offer Register Rewards. I keep an old ad with me that says as much with me in my binder to pull out on such occasions.

TIP #6 If your Register Reward doesn’t print have them re-ring the order with no coupons. Chances are good the machine is on the fritz and it won’t print without coupons either. Then you can give them that little “told you so” smile.

TIP #7
Sometimes there is no rhyme or reason as to why the Register Reward didn’t print. Sometimes they didn’t include the item in the deal an it’s their mistake. So if you can’t figure out what happened, it’s ok. Return the items or call the Catalina Company 1-888-8COUPON and let them know what happened. There’s always a chance to try again tomorrow. :-)

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Tat April 30, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Unlike some stores that print a “limit” on rewards, Walgreens does not. I learned yesterday that you can only get one RR per transaction.


Kathie April 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm

Thank you for reposting this. On April 22 I was told that RR’s didn’t print if you used a coupon. Well since they have printed in the past, I was rather upset with the attitude the clerk had toward me. After coming home and realizing how degrading the clerk was toward me and my daughter, I pulled up Walgreens webpage and wrote a complaint.
I explained what I had purchased and how much the RR was supposed to be and that the advertisement also mentioned using a coupon.
Monday morning the store manager called an explained to me that sometimes the company (not sure what company) cuts the RR’s off if you use a certain dollar mfg coupon but he didn’t know what the dollar amount was.
Store manager said he would talk to the clerk about her attitude.
Sunday April 29, I went in the afternoon with my daughter and she purchase 2 Clean an Clear products 2/$10 which was suppose to print a $4 RR and the Noxzema razors that were $3.99 with a $2 RR. The RR’s didn’t print. So salesclerk says no problem. Re rings them, RR prints an does this with a smile. This is how they had all ways treated the RR issue before. Not sure why the clerk was hateful, on Sunday April 22, she should learn from the clerk who was working yesterday how to be a good clerk, hope I never encounter the hateful one again.


Alex May 1, 2012 at 12:09 am

If you see her working, just check out at another location like cosmetics or photo if she’s at the front to avoid the unnecessary attitude! Hope it’s not like that for you anymore


Karen S April 30, 2012 at 5:42 pm

I just had this same issue with the Belvita buy $15 or more and get $5 RR. I bought 5 of them for 15.00 and no RR only it was the manager with the bad attitude and he told me it was because I used 2 $1 coupons and I also use a $9 RR from last week. He insisted he was right and I was wrong and even yelled at the cashier that rang me out. I guess I will email corporate and see what happens.


RLynn April 30, 2012 at 6:28 pm

I had a RR fail to print several months ago. The manager worked to 30 minutes to get it print. She eventually scanned another RR item so I could get my money. She was so great!


Dawn April 30, 2012 at 9:05 pm

The one time my RR didn’t print was when I was on a midnight shop. I just happened to check out shortly after midnight and the catalina machines were resetting (unbeknownst to be or anyone else). Apparently they reset nightly. The manager was super nice and tried voiding and re-ringing a few times until the machines were back online and printed (20 minutes). So don’t try to check out around midnight.


Sue April 30, 2012 at 9:11 pm

There is a new rumor that RRs won’t print on say buy $10 get X RRs unless it’s $10+ AFTER coupons. This is with the new registers. Can anyone confirm/deny this?


Daisy April 30, 2012 at 9:18 pm

Me and my daughter had this problem last week when we tried to pay for the doves with the i cool d $10rr and 2 dove ipmq and the $6rr didn’t print! the manager assistant said it was because we where using the rr to pay.


Alex S April 30, 2012 at 9:49 pm

Sometimes the Catalina machines are on the fritz! All, those reasons are completely valid! I’m an employee and couponer, I’ve also experienced this issue! We actually have a notice in the office that such an event occur, that managers give customers the form to fill out and send it to be rebated the failed amount by the other company. However, our managers never do that. I’m glad they don’t! I bought the Belvita Blueberry with the Nabisco sale and it didn’t print my register reward, so when things like that in particular happen, it’s usually because the certain flavor/scent/etc, isn’t in the system as part of the offer, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t included! So, ask and if they are like, “How can I force a RR to print?” Simply, grab a box of another Nabisco (for example) or other product and scan it up to the required sale amount, then cash it out, once it has the RR should print and they can void the transaction as if it never happened. I also, hear other employees saying things like, “Maybe it’s because you used MFCs. It brought your total too low.” That’s aggravating because it’s ignorance to our registers and couponing! But I just blow it off because you just can’t tell some people some things, however managers at my location, always fix it. Our new registers will be hooked up very soon. I don’t know how much they will actually change couponing at Wags, but I hope not much at all! I will find out this week


Ashley April 30, 2012 at 9:55 pm

Thank you for posting this. I’m learning the hard way that rr are very tricky at times and you have to always read the fine print. I bought 4 belvita and 2 crystal light. The $5 rr did not print. I went back today and looked at the shelf, and although the rr deal is posted under all flavors it says oat only. Very confusing.


Lisa April 30, 2012 at 11:22 pm

I had the same experience as Karen, Sue and Daisy. I purchased 6 Belvita OAT (the only one with the RR sign) which was $18, used 6 $1/1 Belvita coupons, and had 2 of the Blue Diamond Almonds on sale B1G1 @$3.79. I also paid with a $10 RR from iCool from last week, and ~$5 cash. I’ve never had a RR fail to print, and the clerk and manager were nice about it, but said that it hadn’t printed because “I used coupons for the products” (he had to manually key them because the register thought they were already expired, they did expired today, so the coupons weren’t identified as belonging to the Belvita products) “I had paid with a RR” and that “my cash total wasn’t over $15.” So I shrugged and left, then called customer service from the car :-) She said the same thing they said at the store, that it was because I had used the other RR to pay for part of the transaction. My response was that RR’s are seen by the registers as Manufacturer’s coupons, so if you can’t use them to pay for another transaction that would normally spit out a RR for a different item, they should put that in the ad or in their coupon policy. She was nice, as was I, and she kicked it up to management. We’ll see what they say within the next couple days!


Alex May 1, 2012 at 12:06 am

With any of the sales there are usually occasions that not all signs are printed for all individual flavors. The Belvita Blueberry is included regardless if your location placed a sign or not. That is per the ad and a list of nabisco items I looked over in our office, it’s just an odd thing that does happen often…There have been times when all Dawn has been all sale but there’s only one sign or a sign for all but one scent. You just have to use common sense and read the ad closely. The Belvita in the nabisco part of the ad was not specified to a certain flavor, therefore any flavor of the same brand and size should absolutely work, even if no sign was placed under the items on the shelves. Any decent Wags location, should see that and honor it as well as ours. No system is perfect and hopefully it will only get better


Christie May 1, 2012 at 8:42 am

Alex I think that darn Belvita just plain wasn’t working on Sunday. Hopefully it’s been fixed but it didn’t matter how it was being rung up it just didn’t want to print the RR. I think the upc wasn’t programmed in.


Amy May 1, 2012 at 12:34 am

I think tip #6 is a terrible idea. It doesn’t do you or the cashier any good to have them re-ring up the transaction without coupons. And getting a little “told you so” smile probably won’t make you many cashier friends at the Walgreens you frequent. (and being friends with the cashiers will usually payoff at some point)


Christie May 1, 2012 at 8:38 am

Ha – well it’s worked for me, dozens of times. When I encounter a situation where the RR doesn’t print and they keep telling me it’s the coupons, I will always say “ok, well then let’s ring it up without then” (which is essentially doing it their way). And 9 out of 10 times the RR doesn’t print.

And perhaps I need to further explain the idea of an “I told you so smile”. You DON’T say I told you so (because that would be rude), instead you simply smile. It says “even though I’m right – I’m not going to say anything or point it out – instead I’m going to continue to be polite and just smile”.

In fact, after every time that this has happened to me, I end up with cashiers who are not only nicer to me, they have a greater amount of respect for me. I guess it’s all in the delivery. :)


Nikkiter May 1, 2012 at 10:44 am

Well, I must be blessed with a fantastic Walgreens because when a RR doesn’t print, I ask for my manager who just rings me up a giftcard with the price of the RR. But trust me when I say I had to pull teeth over a few months to get my Walgreens on my side. After a few incidents and complaints to corporate, my local Walgreens is friendly. They ALL smile when I walk in. It just takes time to build that type of relationship.


Edda May 1, 2012 at 5:53 pm

This week I had a various situations:
1.) I was happy to use the $3 RR from U Kotex to buy the Depend and still get the $3.50 RR (As u explained using same co. different amount u will still get the RR).

2.) Went to 3 different stores and bought the Dentyne, “the peppermint flavor” it did not print a $1 RR. The store manager adjusted the price to $1.49 so it was really nice of him. I guess the only ones printing were the black but none of the store had any.

3.) In front of me was a couponer buying the Belvita deal and some Reach products. I am not a pro at this “couponing” but she acted like she was “all that”. First her MQ for the Reach were $1 and the special is .99 of course the Q was beeping. She told the cashier to adjust the price to a higher amount and the cashier said she was not allowed to change the store prices. Second, her deal of Belvita was a no-go because the cashier notice that the IP said “Redeemable at Walmart” even though the Q scanned she ask the manager and the manager said not to take them. Last the girl left frustrated empty handed.

I get along well with the cashier so I told her what she needed to do with the Reach to adjust the MQ. But I was not sure on the Belvita Q if the store can accept those but u do not have to be a “rocket scientist” to understand “redeem at…”. I have used many times at Wags the IP saying “Available at Walmart” but not the”Redeemable at Walmart”. Since I did not have the MQ of the Belvita I did not get this amazing deal this week. I rather not get this deal and avoid getting a bad reputation like that couponer trying 2b2 slick.

Once again Christie thanks for all your advice and showing us how to be honest couponers.


Melinda May 1, 2012 at 11:47 pm

My Walgreen’s actually gives cash (the amount of the RR) to the customer when a RR fails to print.


Kristine June 5, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Ok, so if you have a situation where your RR failed to print, and you want to return the items and ‘try again’ — what happens when you no longer have your coupon and you’ve used a RR? Do they take that amount back off of your next transaction or are you just out of luck? Does anyone know?


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