Dollar General Couponing Hell ~ Story of our shopping trip

Dollar General Couponing Hell ~ Story of our $2.50 nightmare on 8-25-13

Dollar General Couponing

Not a Bad Price But Was Our Dollar General Couponing on 8-25 Worth the Headache?

Let’s just start out saying this is not our first rodeo.  We have attempted to shop with coupons at Dollar General in the past and have even spoken about our unpleasant experience to the area manager who insisted we try again. He assured us it would be better.  Even so, we avoided shopping there for many months but finally decided to do a little Dollar General couponing on 8-25. The outcome in the picture is not bad, right? It should have actually been a profit of 75¢ in the end after the ibotta offers, but still $2.50 is pretty darn good for all that, we know. The work and the headache to get there is the issue. Here’s a quick summary of our trip:

Dollar General Couponing Hell

(a little harsh?.. nah)

We arrived at Dollar General with our list, coupons, a copy of the Dollar General coupon policy and a copy of the email from corporate CS explaining they do overages just not CASH back. (Turns out we needed neither the policy or the email.. that was never the issue.) We had swiftly gathered our items into our basket and walked up to the register as one customer had just finished. The cashier then informed the store manager that she had no cash after a previous customer paid with a high bill. The manager, clearly agitated by her statement, turned to us and said rather loudly “You paying with cash?” to which we replied no. He let out a heavy sigh and appeared to stomp rather quickly to the back of the store. (He never did come back with any cash for her, even when he was called back up to help with the register/coupons later in our transaction).

The cashier rang up the items and was helpful in explaining that the $2 instant savings when you buy 3 Kraft promotion would deduct at the end of the transaction.  She scanned the coupons and welcomed our help in folding the coupon to hide one of the double bar codes which sometimes makes it easier for the scanner to pick up the correct one.

Dollar General Couponing

We were left with a few coupons that would not scan, including the  $2 Dollar General coupon, the two $1 Jello coupons from the All You magazine, and one of the two $1.25 Dingo printable coupons. She reread the coupons and then called the manager back up to get the coupons entered. I felt the headache coming on from the second the manager began to speak and I realized we were now officially entering Dollar General couponing hell. He said with a less than pleasant tone as he shuffled through the coupons “Did they get this stuff?“.  Was he expecting a reply of “No, I just wanted to help them commit coupon fraud.”? (Yes, at this point we’re already dreading what’s to come.) We offered to pull out the bagged items and he declined to look.

He then tried to scan them but they didn’t scan so he set them back in front of us, patted them twice on the counter, and said “They don’t scan” (nooo.. really..perhaps that’s the reason you are up here now?) “We won’t take them”. To which the HE in this Couponing Couple politely and calmly replied “But one of them is your own Dollar General store coupon“. (It was best that the SHE in this couple keep her mouth shut since she was feeling a little snarky with the less than friendly communication and body language oozing from the manager.)

Dollar General Couponing

The manager sighed loudly again, took the remaining coupons and started firmly pushing on register keys as he said “I don’t even know what coupons you’ve already used”. (I’m thinking he could have unlocked that drawer at any time and actually looked at the other coupons to satisfy this question instead of repeating it several times in an accusatory manner, right?) He obviously was not happy about these coupons and I swear I could hear him wishing us away with each hand movement on that register.   He then said, “it took it” referring to the DG store coupon and promptly put it in the locked slot. (That was a lie, by the way)

Dollar General Couponing

In his less than pleasant visit with us, he must have said “I don’t know what coupons you have used already” five different times. He then took the Dingo coupon and voided off the product price and re rang the product up for $1 cheaper. The coupon was for $1.25 but we now had nothing to show him to prove it because it promptly went into the coupon slot as well. (We just let that go) One of the Jello coupons ended up attached to some other product so he did get that one to register on the receipt.  The last coupon he had in his hand was the final Jello coupon which he looked at and then said “won’t scan, want it back?” as he slid it on the counter toward us and walked away.

Dollar General Couponing

The cashier was looking mortified at this point and I’m not sure how many times she silently mouthed the words “I’m sorry” during the time the manager was present but it was many. We settled up with her for $3.25 more than we had intended and walked out with $1 of that in one coupon that didn’t end up in the locked drawer.  The cashier said she was sorry one last time as we left.

The End… ?

Nothing more was going to be accomplished at the store and we still got a great deal ..obviously… but that was more work and headache than we are willing to put into shopping when I can get great deals at many more coupon-friendly stores. Maybe we’ll try DG again in 6 months. Maybe not.  Sometimes it takes a while for the bad taste to go away. Yell I’ve certainly heard many other horror stories and any deals that I post for DG in the future should come with a warning.  Enter Dollar General Couponing Hell at your own risk.  If you’re lucky, you will find a store with a manager that has some customer service skills at least.

We really hope y’all have a much more pleasant trip and don’t get sucked into… dooo do dooo do, dooo do dooo do (Twighlight zone music) … Dollar General Couponing Hell!


 Here’s the breakdown of our Dollar General Couponing on 8-25


This List Has Expired


Have you had some Dollar General shopping trips you’d like to tell about?


  • MShad

    Yeah, I wanted to buy razors there once and the lady looked at my coupon for what seemed like 5 minutes and looked at the razor and was extremely hesitant to put it through. When all was said and done I paid more than I should have and walked out with a bad taste in my mouth. Every time I go into the Dollar General Market store, something twilight zone like happens. Once the cashier left before checking me out to go to the bathroom and didn’t come back for a really long time. Another time the cashier went to do a price check on shampoo that I thought was on sale and she fell and someone else had to help me. It’s madness I tell you! The Dollar Tree is the same way. They won’t accept coupons $1/2 because they can’t allow one coupon to attach to two products. I just stay away from both when couponing is concerned. 🙂

    • I had to giggle on the “won’t accept coupons that attach to 2 products”… you should try it again and take their coupon policy in with you. I’m interested in which part they are translating for that.

  • coupontammy

    Okay you had me laughing from the minute I saw the title of this post. This is pretty close to the couponing Hell I go through at my local Walgreens. They are so rude to couponers. they treat you like you are taking money out of their pocket. Last time the cashier said to me when she had to manually enter a coupon, “You know we won’t get the money for this if it won’t scan”. Like you I try to bite the bullet to get the good deal. I would rather go some place that treats me with respect and knows what customer service is.

    • Someone should write a book with a list of the silliiest coupon quotes or something!! I know anyone who has couponed long enough has a couponing story of their own. It is, however, much easier to accept the lack of coupon knowledge and silly coupon comments if the customer service is great. The stores with employees that need training on coupons AND customer service are the worst.!

  • Kamaya

    Wow! Sorry about your bad experience. The both of you get a gold star for remaining calm! As soon as I had noticed attitude with the manager my attitude would have changed too (I’m a lot better than I used to be)!!! It’s too bad that the friendly cashier has to work for a rude manager. Is this the first DG store you’ve been to? Hopefully you can shop at another one that has better customer service skills.

    • Hubby gets the gold star… I get the cut on my lip from biting it. lol This is definitely one of those areas that he and I compliment each other. I give him the “this is not acceptable look” and then I bite my lip to avoid blurting out all the thoughts boiling in my head and he (with a much higher tolerance for the very rude or insulting people ) talks in a calm manner with no sign of frustration (to a point of course). hehe Now… we don’t come across this horrible customer service often but when we do we make a great team! I too feel bad for the cashier. She obviously did not approve of her manager’s cs skills either. Sadly, we would have to drive a good ways further to another town to get to a different DG If we ever felt that we just HAD to shop there we would try it but fortunately we have so many great stores that we have other options.

  • txhmgbrd

    oh my gosh, i AM going to walgreens and my dollar general and thank them all for being so wonderful. we went to DG this morning and had absolutely no trouble. matter of fact, there were other managers there from other stores along with a regional manager to show them the store, products, etc. our DG just built the largest in our area and others come to view it and see how things are done. the regional manager asked me how i like it and the cashier was very sweet and told him that we were regulars. LOVE them. and i had no trouble what so ever with my coupons.

    • Well now who is bragging about having something the rest of us don’t (sneer) LMAO.. just kidding! It’s nice to hear someone’s happy story! You’ll have to pardon us while the rest of us drool over your great shopping at DG though! Here’s a napkin []

  • Angel

    I can totally relate. Went to Walmart trying to use twix coupons. Casher kindly handed me back the coupons and said they could not take them. I kindly asked why? To which she called a manager over. She asked the casher, who said they won’t scan. The manager looked at them and gave them back. Told me they were fake, photo copied coupons. They don’t take them. Excuse me….I printed them purposely for this trip. She said same ID#, I looked didn’t see that. She then pointed out that my coupons did not have the yellow dots. I explained that smart source coupons don’t print with yellow dots. Only does. She said in a very nice tone that my 8 & 10 year olds mouths dropped. We don’t take copied fake coupons! Then walked away. I turned to the cashier who said sorry, I get in enough trouble from you couponers. I kindly said Good Day and walked away leaving everything. That’s the 3rd time I had issues with my local walmart and coupons. I’ll pass and take another store. Not worth the hassle.

    • We only had one person accuse us so far of having photocopied coupons (knocking on wood) and that, of all places, was our favorite store (Publix). We avoid her lane now. We have had some frustrating WM trips in the past though. I’m not a big fan of shopping in the store anyway so by the time we even get to the check out I’m ready to go! Any additional issues with coupons is just crap on the cake. (ok.. so I was trying to think of the opposite of the good saying “icing on the cake”… fail)

  • nikki macy

    I was ready several times using all those Gillette $6/3 q’s I have, for the fallout from cashiers.
    But I took them all to WM, using self-ckout. No beeps, nobody knows nothing and off I go on my merry way! snicker, snicker

    • That makes it nice, Nikki. We rarely use self checkout because sure enough we end up taking all the time of the one person manning those lanes. That’s great to know those coupons didn’t have any trouble!

  • Amie

    I want to Dollar General to get pudding and 2 kraft salad dressings. The $2/2 DG coupon wouldn’t scan so I was not able to use it. I had tried a different DG previously with one of their coupons and that one didn’t scan either. I later read the small print on the coupon. It tells the cashier how to key it in if it won’t scan. I wonder why their coupons won’t just scan. C’mon.

    • Odd, isn’t it. I did point out the instruction on the coupon to the cashier and manager and it didn’t help. It seems to me they need a new register system.

  • Alana

    Also don’t forget the $5/30 or the $5/25 coupon depending on the value of the coupon and use it on Saturday at the beginning for more savings that the other coupons don’t take then you still come out on the good side.