where’s the catch?

look what followed me home from the store the other day!

cereal - what a surprise!

i swear, these jumped right up into my grocery basket. i was so shocked when i got home. πŸ™‚

lately, i’ve been very loyal to my puffins. box after box after box has come and gone from the condo casa.


locally, puffins are available for the best price up at beechwood zehrs. when i ran out of them earlier this week, i didn’t feel like driving up to beechwood just for cereal. i decided to see what i could get in lieu of the puffins across the street at valumart.

reese puffs -> puffins…close enough, right?!

i’ve had these reese’s puffs before, and wasn’t a huge fan. but, what sealed the deal on trying them again was a) they were on sale b) the offer of a free beach towel!

five options to choose from!

i grabbed a box quicker than you can say puffins, catch you another time.

at home, i carefully read over the fine print.

i’m leery about promos that appear to be completely free, no strings attached. they sound too good to be true. but this one appears to be straightforward. free towel, shipped for free to your home. and the ordering instructions are very clear:

1,2,3, free towel for me!

i love how this offer is open to canadian residents only! i’m so used to seeing “for u.s. residents only” in magazine ads (or on blog giveaways, haha!). also, it’s funny that the small print states there’s a limit of 10 towels per household. that’s pretty generous!

i followed the ordering directions to a t:

there's my unique code, on the inside of the box...

the website - first step -> enter your code

someone has a sense of humour!

nope, not a robot!

....and a joke about delivery method!

my first choice would have been the pillsbury dough boy towel. sadly, neither dough boy nor the sizzlin’ stripes version are available any more.

3rd choice: the cheerios towel - that's ok, too

order done in about 2 minutes - great online service!

i’ll let you know when my free towel arrives. er, make that towels. yes, i hightailed it back to valumart to scoop up two more boxes of puffs. now, if i eat all three boxes in a row, i’m going to be mighty sick of these sweet little balls, but as long as i keep the package sealed, they’ll keep for a while – and i can alternate them with…puffins! so, if all goes according to plan, i will have three towels (the cheerios, honey nut cheerios and lucky charms ones) by october 18th!

β—Š β—Š β—Š β—Š β—Š

upon seeing the free towel offer on the box of cereal, i immediately thought back to the free tshirt deal we had once upon a time at the store. it was two-three summers ago when the running room teamed up with vector cereal and saucony on a promotional deal. on specially marked boxes of vector cereal, there was a coupon for a free tshirt from the running room. literally, all you had to do was cut the coupon off the cardboard cereal box, bring it in to the nearest running room store, and collect your free tshirt. seriously. there were no catches, no requirements to buy product, nothing.


the good news is that we went through a lot of tshirts. in fact, saucony was completely overwhelmed by the demand for the shirts, and ended up producing many, many more shirts than originally anticipated.

actually an awesome shirt: tech material, light, good quality. this is the front...

...and the back! i still have mine - love it! and yes, i bought vector in order to get it!

speaking as someone who was working at the store level, the free tshirt offer was…often overwhelming and quite intense. we frequently ran out of shirts. of course, people looking to redeem their coupons were *disappointed* (the nice ones) when we were out of shirts. every time we’d get in a new shipment, they would fly out of the store. we went through a lot of shirts that summer.

my personal opinion is that the free tshirt offer was good in theory; however, i would have made it free with purchase of $20 or $50, something like that. the idea is to draw people into the store to get the tshirt, then hopefully they will buy product once in the door. we got a lot of folks who flew in for the tshirt and scrambled back out asap.

it’s fun to still see these vector tshirts being worn in the neighbourhood. i can spot them a mile away!

any great promos that you’ve capitalized on? ever been hooked in by something that appeared to be free but had a catch? i would not be so keen on the beach towel offer if i had to pay for shipping. this is a pretty sweet deal for only having to invest in a box of cereal!




treat: chocolate chip taste-testing challenge (~ a palmful of each)

price: vegan chips (on the left) = $5.99 a package!!! the hershey’s (from valumart) = about half that price

rating:Β  both get *** (three stars) for their taste

tasting notes: love chocolate chips. these are both delicious. the hershey’s win because they are dark chocolate and practically sinful in deliciousness. the vegan chips get the advantage for their tinier size and totally delightful flavour – they taste very authentic and pure. if i had to choose, i would take the vegan chips. but not for that price.

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  • Nicole  On August 11, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    Someone on my Facebook received their “free” towel today and seemed quite pleased. She said they were on the “thin” side but they were quite large! I want to get a box of cereal, now, for the sole purpose of getting a towel!

    • 1970kikiproject  On August 11, 2011 at 6:57 pm

      Oh, that’s neat! If she got a dough boy towel, I’m jealous!
      I’m not expecting great quality since it’s free…the designs are just too cute!
      Valumart still has the specially marked boxes…maybe you can search them out in your ‘hood?! But you need TWO boxes, one for each of your girls!

  • Johanna B  On August 11, 2011 at 1:42 pm

    Rachel, my soon to be 24 year old daugter, wore “Kix” tennis shoes for years as a kid. Cute little pairs were free with the purchase of a box of “Kix” (it’s a cereal in case you’re unfamiliar). I ordered a pair in every size. She was too little to complain.

    • 1970kikiproject  On August 11, 2011 at 2:55 pm

      i LOVE kix! we cannot get them in canada, but i enjoy them very much when in the states or in aruba. they make a great “base layer” for my cereal combos! a tennis shoe giveaway? that is too awesome!

  • Zo  On August 11, 2011 at 9:30 am

    I would have wanted the dough boy one too! I can’t think of any great promo deals like that, but I’ve taken advantage of free with purchase type deals!

  • Anonymous  On August 11, 2011 at 6:57 am

    ARGH! – THERE!

  • Anonymous  On August 11, 2011 at 6:56 am

    A while back Cheerios (I think!) had an offer that was identical to yours – free product, free shipping, free, free, free. It was a long-sleeve shirt themed to the olympics. I went back and got a second box when I realized all the “free-ness” but when I typed in my code discovered that it was all “sold out”. Very disappointing. Had I been thinking I would’ve ordered Jacob a larger size so that when he outgrew it I could wear it (that would work now – can you believe it?). Also, when Jacob was a toddler Cheerios had another give away for a Thomas the Tank Engine with a Cheerios caboose. It was not QUITE as free (I think there shipping) but it got played to pieces and so a great deal for us in the end.

    LOVE the freeness! Enjoy your towel(s)! πŸ™‚

    • Anonymous  On August 11, 2011 at 6:56 am

      Woops – I didn’t mean to be ‘annonymous’!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: