Home Depot’s Competitor Coupon Acceptance Policy – Fluff With Little Substance

Home Depot, like many retailers, claims to accept all competitor coupons. Getting them to accept competitor coupons at the checkout counter is an entirely different ballgame. The outcome depends on a number of factors but largely on the experience of the person at the counter, manager’s interpretation of the internal policy and on the time a consumer is willing to invest in it. Home Depot does not officially publish anything regarding this policy and their website provides no information either.

Should you have an original competitor discount card, the experience should be relatively painless but can be time consuming. What ensues will be one of the following, in increasing order of frustration:
  • The cashier just accepts the coupon with a smile.
  • The cashier calls the manager, checks, and accepts the coupon.
  • The cashier will show a completely surprised face and then say something like “Sorry Sir, but we are not ”. Asking the cashier to check with the manager usually solves the problem.
If you have an email printed coupon, the experience will be painful at the minimum and in many cases, the store won’t accept it. Below is our experience at our nearest Home Depot store, trying to use a Lowe’s $10 email coupon, that can be signed up for online.

Us: We have a Lowe’s $10 coupon. Will you honor it?
Cashier: Let me check with some one.

She calls the manager and waits. As it was a weekend, the store is busy and there is a line behind us. The manager says to accept it. The cashier tries to scan the UPC code and it says “invalid UPC”. We point out that the only requirement was that we charge it using a Visa card. She rechecks with the manager and says it is a printed coupon. The manager at that point replies that they don’t accept any printed coupons. I pointed out that the Lowe’s coupon could only be obtained that way and the wording on the printout tells as such. She rechecks with the manager and the reply is a strict No. The Lowe’s Store is much farther away compared to our nearest Home Depot and so we made the purchase without the coupon. Patience and time would probably have changed the outcome but we didn’t think it worthwhile for us at the expense of the other consumers also waiting to get on with their business.

Similar experiences posted on the web makes it clear to us that the policy really is to honor the coupon only after making the customer jump through hoops!
  
Update: The discussion above was based on our experience in May 2008. Currently, they do have a competitor policy in their website, although coupons are not clearly mentioned. Coupons are not listed in the excluded list either and so that is a good sign.

Last Updated: 01/2015.


3 comments :

Beverly said...

I have had different experiences within the same Home Depot trying to use Lowe's home printed coupons. When I tried to use the $10 off $25 at my local Home Depot I was told that they did not take any home printed coupons. We talked back and forth for a few minutes and I left. I have a few shares of Home Depot stock, so I would rather shop there than Lowe's. But when the manager would not take my coupon I went next door to Lowe's and bought the same item for a lower price and used the coupon. One positive outcome was that I found Lowe's had a lower price.

jarbell said...

Bring your Lowe's coupons to store 4119 in Frazer, PA if you have any problems come see me at the Contractor Services desk, I will take care of you with no problems at all!

Anonymous said...

just tell them ok and leave the cart at the register and leave the store.
the joke is on them

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