You may have seen the phrase “Rain Check” in your store’s weekly ad or been asked in the store if you want one. But, what is a rain check, and how does it work? Below you’ll find your complete guide to understanding and using rain checks.
It has probably happened to you. There is a great deal on something at your store. You stop by to pick it up to find out that the store is entirely out of stock. Does that mean you have to miss out on the deal? Not necessarily.
Some stores will offer rain checks on items that are sold out. But what exactly is a rain check? How does it work? I explain it below for you so that you know how to make sure you use them to ensure you get the best deal – even if it is not in stock right now.
WHAT IS A RAIN CHECK?
A rain check is a voucher given to customers for items that are out of stock. It allows them to purchase the product at the sale price at a later date.
WHY DO STORES OFFER RAIN CHECKS?
Stores will give out rain checks to retain customers. They know popular items may sell out and want to extend that sale price beyond their inventory.
DO ALL STORES OFFER RAIN CHECKS?
While most stores will offer them, not all stores do. You will need to inquire at checkout or possibly at customer service. However, keep in mind that not all items are eligible for rain checks.
DO RAINCHECKS EXPIRE?
That varies from store to store. They may never expire at some stores and may be valid for just ten days at another. Review your rain check carefully to find out when it expires.
ARE RAIN CHECKS REQUIRED IF AN ITEM IS SOLD OUT?
No. Rain checks are not required. The fine print in the store’s weekly ad will indicate if the item is not eligible for a rain check. If nothing is noted, then in most cases, it will be. However, the product must not be available at all in the store.
HOW DO I REDEEM MY RAIN CHECK?
When you get to the checkout, hand the item and rain check directly to the cashier. He or she will need to override the price and manually enter the sales price.
It is most helpful if you save your rain check products until the end of your entire purchase. Otherwise, if your item is scanned in the middle of your purchase, the cashier will need to review your transaction to find the price and make the adjustment.
Doing it this way makes the cashier’s job a little simpler and saves both you and other customers possible frustration.
DO I HAVE TO REDEEM THE RAIN CHECK AT THE SAME STORE THAT ISSUED IT?
In most cases, yes. However, if it is a national chain (such as CVS, for example), some stores may accept another location’s raincheck. Ask before attempting to use it.
CAN I USE COUPONS WHEN USING A RAINCHECK?
Yep – you sure can! As long as the coupon is still valid and falls within the store’s coupon policy, you can redeem a coupon for a product when redeeming a rain check.
CAN I GET A RAIN CHECK ON SPECIAL OFFERS?
It depends on the store or the store manager. For example, if you shop at CVS, they have a code beneath every offer in their sales flyer. The cashier will note the code on your rain check, so when it is redeemed, you can earn your Extrabucks. However, other stores may not offer them on select promotions.
Using rain checks is a smart way to take advantage of sales, even if the item is not available. Don’t be afraid to ask for one. The worst thing that will happen is the store will say no.