Discount coupons abound. Most are accompanied by limitations such as “Limit one total purchase discount per transaction.” Some say “No photocopies” or “Reproductions not accepted.” Most say “Must be surrendered at time of transaction.” That fancy phrase means you have to give the coupon to the store associate. Then there’s the familiar phrase, “Excludes clearance items.”
But wait! It gets more complicated. There’s a list of other items that don’t qualify for the discount. Here’s a sample quoted from a craft store $5 off coupon (capitalization is theirs).
“Offer excludes clearance items; doorbusters; previous purchases; all gift cards; classes; custom & personalization services; Sample Swatches; all patterns; irons & steamers; AccuQuilt Go!® products; sewing machines & sewing machine department merchandise; remnants; all cutting and laminating machines & accessories; all Cricut® products; all cameras, film, printers & accessories; Hatchimals™; LEGO®, LOL & other kids’ products; all magazines; all As Seen on TV items; all Purchase with Purchase & Gift with Purchase items.”
What is that Purchase with Purchase tongue twister?
And don’t forget the “Taxes not included” disclaimer.
The stratagem ($5 off) is part of a battle plan to get me into the store. It’s similar to the first paragraph of a book that compels me to turn the page. Both are like fishing. I am lured by the discount. I’m hooked. Browsing turns to buying.
I’ve become a master of using discount coupons, (I used the $5 off coupon in the knitting department), but I don’t dare read beyond the cover of a full-price book.