Get a little crafty and you can save big.
By Beth Kaufman
- You can use multiple coupons at once.
Michaels uses a variety of methods to dole out coupons (think: newspaper circulars, direct mailers, online codes, emails, and the store’s mobile app). They offer all sorts of great deals like 20% off an entire purchase, 25% off framing, 15% off sale items, and more. And you can use more than one discount at checkout. “Their coupons usually state in the fine print, ‘Limit one coupon of each type per day,'” says Collin Morgan, of Hip 2 Save. So go ahead and bring a combo with you to the register to get the most bang for your buck.
- Yes, all of them.
Competitors’ coupons from stores like Jo-Ann Fabrics, Hobby Lobby, and A.C. Moore are totally welcome. There are some restrictions, though: The coupon can be for up to 50% off one item — but not a percentage off the entire purchase. And, the official policy also doesn’t allow for using a competitor coupon with a Michaels store coupon in the same transaction. But, Lori Felix of More With Less Today says cashiers are usually wiling to break up your purchases.
- Your phone is the best way to handle all those offers.
Bloggers and shopping pros swear by the Michaels mobile app. “It’s the easiest way to check their weekly ad and get coupons that you can redeem simply by showing your phone at the checkout,” says Dianna Baros of The Budget Babe.
- There’s a method to the discount madness.
“They always offer a 40% (or 50%) off coupon that’s good for any one item from Sunday through Saturday every week,” says Kyle James, blogger behind Rather Be Shopping. “Then they frequently throw in a coupon for 20% off your entire purchase a couple times a month — and those usually last a couple of days.” These coupons can be used in-store or online.
- If your day is flexible, you can save even more.
“Follow them on Facebook for great deals and tips,” says Baros, pointing out a recently posted coupon for 20% off an entire purchase, including sale items. It was posted at 9:38 a.m. and the coupon was only good that day from 4 to 9 p.m., so this sort of deal is only really good for those less-than-hectic days.
- They price match.
“Buried deep on the Michaels website is their in-store price match policy, which includes local competitors like Walmart,” says James. The match must be to a current, locally advertised price on an identical item, but it’s easy to get: Simply show the ad to a store associate and they’ll adjust the price.
- You can basically get in-store babysitting.
Michaels offers in-store events, which are listed by location on their website. Some are free, but the ones that cost money are usually no more than $15. The best part? They even have classes for kids. “The cost pays for the supplies and while they’re busy making their crafts, mom gets to shop,” says Morgan.
- Their grab bags are worth a shot.
Don’t be too quick to dismiss the $2-a-pop grab bags, which are usually on display toward the front of the store. The see-through sacs full of unsold holiday merchandise and clearance items are a bit of a gamble — you can’t open the bags in store — but one that can really pay off. Heidi Jo, the blogger behind Simplee Thrifty, went shortly after the New Year and scored big: “I got a very nice light up Christmas sign, Christmas craft items, baking items, gift tags, ribbon and more,” she says. “The savings were 90 to 99% off retail price.”
- Holiday markdowns are more valuable than you think.
It may seem obvious to stock up on things like wrapping paper and decorations after a major holiday, but if you get creative, you can find deals for upcoming holidays. “I recently bought red Christmas gift bags for 25 cents — marked down from $1.99 — and I can use them for Valentine’s Day,” says Felix.