I’m always on the hunt for ways to save money when grocery shopping for my family. The desire to spend less and get a bargain is the reason that I shop at my military commissary.
When I want to shave a little more money off my grocery bill, I use my commissary rewards card. I use it every time I shop at my commissary as a convenient way to save money without the hassle of clipping paper coupons.
What is the Commissary Rewards Card?
The commissary rewards card program has been available in all commissaries since August 2012. Its main purpose is to give commissary patrons a hassle-free way to redeem coupons electronically. It’s an e-coupon program specifically for the commissary and can only be used at the commissary.
If you don’t already have a commissary rewards card, ask your cashier for one the next time you’re buying groceries. Then go online to register it. After creating your account, download the commissary rewards application for iPhone or Android. For busy moms, the free mobile app is key to getting the most out of your commissary rewards card.
Next comes the fun part: loading your coupons on your commissary rewards card.
Once your card is registered, you can log in and digitally clip the coupons easily. I usually start by comparing available e-coupons with my shopping list.
For example, Barilla angel hair pasta is my go-to family-friendly meal on hectic nights. Right now, there’s a coupon to save $1 on any 4 boxes of Barilla pasta. I’ll digitally clip that coupon. Then it’s ready for my next trip to the commissary. When commissary cashier scans my ID card, I also hand her my commissary rewards card. You want the cashier to scan the commissary rewards card before any groceries.
As a discount double check, I use the commissary rewards app on shopping day. Before getting in line, I’ll pull up the app and double check the items in my grocery cart with the current e-coupons. (This is why I’m super excited about DeCA’s plan to improve the Wi-Fi inside their stores.)
Let’s face, I don’t always stick to my grocery list. But by using my commissary rewards card, I don’t feel so guilty about my impulsive purchase of Chex Mix. I saved $0.50 with my commissary rewards card.
Keep in mind that these digital coupons have expiration dates just like paper coupons. If you have an e-coupon on your card and a paper coupon, you can’t use both because it’s against DeCA’s double coupon policy.
The system is set up to accept the commissary rewards card coupon first so if you have a paper coupon that expires earlier and you want to use that one, don’t use your card on that commissary trip. Save it for your next trip.
Or you can buy enough to cover both items. For example if I have a Barilla paper coupon and an e-coupon, I buy 8 boxes of pasta. That’s enough to fulfill the requirements for both coupons.
DeCA said that “new digital coupons are posted two to three times weekly,” so be sure to log in regularly so that you don’t miss any savings. I also recommend subscribing to the commissary rewards card email alert. These emails remind you when new coupons are available.
Curious about your savings with your commissary rewards card? Look at the bottom of your receipt. Your total savings is printed there.