Some people disregard rebates because of the extra hassle - or perceived hassle - of filling out and turning in forms. But don't be put off by rebates, because they can offer some real savings. In essence, rebates are like other coupons except that instead of getting your savings at the register at the time of purchase, you get it later in the form of a check, gift card, or other kind of credit.
True, you have to wait to get the savings, but it's almost always worth it.
- Rebates often come with larger purchases such as appliances, tires, or electronics, but many items sold in grocery or drug stores use them as well.
- How to do it. Some manufacturers require you to fill out and mail in a physical form. Others allow you to submit your rebate request online. Either way, you to submit the rebate form. But the submission process is usually quick and easy. It takes just a few minutes to fill out a form and provide proof of purchase. The key is paying attention to the details - and then actually sending it in.
Make rebates count with these tips:
- Make sure you fill the form out correctly. Seems obvious, but if you make even a tiny mistake, you won't get your refund.
- You'll have to provide proof of purchase so make sure you give the manufacturer exactly what they're looking for. It could be a receipt, a UPC barcode, or other proof. Be sure to give them what they ask for.
- Make a copy of the rebate form and your proof of purchase. This will keep you organized and will also help in case a rebate is contested or the rebate never arrives.
- Keep an eye out for the rebate check if it's coming by mail. The check will often look like generic direct mail so be careful not to toss it by mistake. Also be aware of the written time frame of when the check should arrive. Make a note of when you mailed it in and check with the manufacturer's customer service if it doesn't arrive on time.