What a fun surprise to open your mailbox to find a rebate check.
Rebates can be a way to get extra cash when you purchase an item. Yes, it takes time to process a rebate. You have to buy the product, cut out the Universal Product Code, fill out the rebate form, copy the receipt and then put everything in an envelope and mail it. No wonder that more than half of the rebate offers do not get redeemed.
Don't be nervous about rebating. If you follow these tips, rebates can be a great way to make extra money on your purchases.
1. Fill out rebate form. Attention to detail is a must when filling out the form. Be sure you fill out the form correctly. For example, many forms will say print all your information plus you need to complete all the lines on the form.
2. Have everything you need to mail in with your form. Read the form to know exactly what needs to be mailed. The form will likely require that you include a proof of purchase whether it is a receipt, invoice or UPC. The form could require an original or copy of a receipt, I always send the original but make a copy for myself.
3. Double check your work. To ensure that your rebate check comes to you, do a final check before mailing it. Have you filled out all the information and is everything legible? Are you submitting prior to the deadline? Did you purchase exactly the quantity, product or size of what the rebate requires? Have you written the address correctly? Does the rebate call for a certain size envelope?
4. Submit your rebate. Make a copy of everything you send. Keep a record of when you sent the form. The form should say how long it will take for your submission to be finalized.
I know it sounds intimidating, but just be careful and read the fine print to get your full rebate. I find it is always best to go home immediately after you've made the purchase and send the rebate.
Here are some current rebates available:
■ Staples has several online rebates available. See what Staples is offering on the Staples website. Type in: "easy rebates."
■ Kohl's offer up to 40 rebates or offers. Check out how to receive gifts, prepaid Visa cards, checks and more when you purchase select items. Kohls.com.
■ Buy the Epic DVD or Blu-ray and receive $3 when you send in your receipt and proof of purchase with rebate form. Good until Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/1gEPYvA
■ Receive a code for one adult movie ticket to see "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire" (up to $14 value), when you purchase $20 or more in Covergirl products (before tax) in a single transaction. Good until Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/IO4jKQ
■ Purchase specially marked Physicians Formula SuperBB All-in-1 Beauty Balm Concealer, Cream or Powder and receive up to $25 with mail-in-rebate. Expires April 30, 2014. http://bit.ly/1bhDkNz
■ Receive a free $10 Starbucks Gift Card when you purchase $50 or more of qualifying Scotch or Post-it Brand products. Expires Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/1g78gZ5
■ Receive a $10 The Options Gift Card, when you purchase 15 six packs of Musselman's Apple Sauce. The card can be redeemed at the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic or Athleta locations, outlets or websites. Expires January, 31, 2014. http://bit.ly/1dQnAJl
■ Receive a $5 rebate when you purchase any Waterpik Water Flosser. Expires Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/18mew7a
■ Receive $50 cash back when you purchase a qualifying KitchenAid 5 or 5.5-Quart Stand Mixer. Qualifying models include: kSm150, kSm152, kSm155, kSm6573c and kG25H0X. Expires Dec. 26. http://bit.ly/1ePXliq
■ Receive a $10 rebate, when you purchase One Crest 3D White Intensive Professional Effects 7 count, Professional Effects 20 count, 1 Hour Express 4 count or Professional Effects + 1 Hour Express 22 count Whitestrips. Expires Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/18meIDm
■ Receive a $10 movie voucher to Frozen, when you purchase and enter a code from other eligible Disney DVDs and Blu-rays. Offer expires Jan, 4, 2014. http://bit.ly/1ePZZol
■ Receive a coupon for a free Secret Clinical Strength Deodorant/Antiperspirant 1.6 ounces when you purchase four Secret Clinical Strength Deodorants/Antiperspirants (.5 ounce trial excluded). Send in the receipt(s) or UPCs (from the bottom of the box) with a completed registration form. http://bit.ly/1hyw8oE
■ Receive a free $15 Visa gift card when you purchase $50 worth of Covergirl, Pantene, Secret, Venus, Ivory, Herbal Essences, Aussie, Clairol, Safeguard, Olay, Crest 3D White Whitestrips, Always, Tampax, Head & Shoulders or Vidal Sassoon products. Expires Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/18mgdBv
■ Receive a free 59 ounce Welch's Refrigerated Juice Cocktail Coupon (up to a maximum value of $4), when you purchase any three Welch's Refrigerated Juice Cocktails 59 ounce. Expires Feb. 28, 2014. http://bit.ly/IEy9jZ
■ Receive a $4 rebate, when you purchase two 20 pound Arm & Hammer Cat Litters, any variety with a "$4 rebate" sticker. Expires Dec. 31. http://bit.ly/IsC18c
■ Receive a $6 rebate, when you purchase two individual Filtrete High Performance Filters with a Microparticle Performance Rating (MPR) of 1500 or greater. http://bit.ly/1bgFX5L
Other ways to save
■ Get a free 7UP, Sunkist, RC or A&W two liter at Thornton's with a mobile app. Offer is good at participating locations through Dec. 9. http://bit.ly/II2Vc5
■ Amazon is offering 25 days of free holiday songs downloads. http://amzn.to/1hyx5NK
■ Like Hallmark on Facebook and receive a coupon for $5 off a $10 or more purchase at Hallmark Gold Crown Store.
■ Don't forget about free shipping day December 18. Check out all the stores participating in this promotion to ship your holiday gifts free to arrive by Dec. 24. Freeshippingday.com
■ Head to the atrium at Victorian Square on Dec.15 where the UK Opera Theatre will perform many Christmas standards at their annual Holiday Celebration of Song at 5 and 7:30 p.m.
■ Kids can get a free My Size Meal at White Castle when they visit with Santa on Dec. 15 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Limit four kids per adult. Participating locations. http://bit.ly/1hyxq31
■ Get a free DVD rental at Redbox kiosks with the code NW2PCLP3. This code with also take $1.20 off a Blu-ray or game rental. Expires Dec. 12.
Deborah Morris' column, The Fru-Gal, can help you save money. Feel free to share tips on The Fru-Gal blog at Kentucky.com/living and visit her website, Fru-gal-friends.com.