grocery game monthly challenge

How To Ask Your Cashier To Apply SCOP : The Grocery Game Challenge 2017 #5 Nov 27-Dec 3




There’s a right way to ask for The Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) and a wrong way. If you have zero idea about what I’m talking about then you WILL want to read this post.

Today I want to touch on how you go about asking for SCOP with sample questions for you. I also want to talk about how you should handle SCOP at the cashier, customer service or after you’ve gotten home and found a pricing error.

Asking for help doesn’t mean you are a weak person it means you have the strength to speak up and say something is not right and would like assistance to solve it. We can’t possibly know everything so don’t be ashamed, speak up.

I was having a conversation with a CBB reader about SCOP and she told me that her friend said that only “low-income people” ask for their money back for a pricing error. She went on to say that she would never ask but would say something if the price came up higher.

Seems a bit odd that one would have no problem pointing out a pricing error but will not ask for SCOP to be applied (if applicable to the store). The SCOP policy has NOTHING to do with income levels and certainly no one should be ashamed to ask for it.

Don’t let other people’s insecurities fall on your shoulders. Speak up! Clearly the person above is more worried about what others think about her financial status then anyone else.


Customer Service brings Loyalty


Why is there such a stigma pointed at consumers who want excellent customer service when it comes to store promises or promotions? You tell me.

All of the below promises are meant to help the consumer save money and the company to make money. If you’re not happy they aren’t either but we can’t be unrealistic consumers either.

Don’t ask for a unicorn when you know they only have horses, if you catch my drift.

SCOP has many names


Don’t be fooled… there’s one name and one name only for SCOP (The Scanning Code of Practice).

These are some of the common search queries on Canadian Budget Binder that I get and I realize that not everyone knows about SCOP and wants to learn. Keep in mind knowing what you are talking about before you ask for it helps speed up the process when cashing out or speaking to management.

It seems that most shoppers that come to Canadian Budget Binder looking for information on The Scanning Code of Practice are Walmart Shoppers.

I can understand why people want to shop at Walmart especially when they offer SCOP and Price Matching. Any store that will service customers in such a way will get their business. No one wants to waste time running around the stores to get all the weekly flyer deals. It’s a one-stop shop.

  • Wrong price law
  • Walmart incorrect pricing policy
  • Walmart Canada price protection
  • Price scan law
  • Scanning policy
  • Code of Conduct Canada
  • Scanning Code of Conduct
  • Price Information Code of Practice
  • Incorrect pricing law
  • I want my money and I want it now


What is a SCOP?


In a nutshell SCOP or The Scanning Code of Practice Canada is for wrongly priced items for sale when scanned. The product that is scanned must ring higher than the posted shelf price (UPC code). Most often the reason why SCOP will be applied is because the company forgot to change the product price in the computer system or the shelf-tag.

If you are new to SCOP I’d encourage you to click the link above and read all about it. This is one of the most popular posts on Canadian Budget Binder because consumers want to know how it works and how to apply it when they are grocery shopping.

We’ve never had a problem having SCOP applied when the previous weeks grocery flyer sale tags were left up. In essence having one person bring that to their attention to have corrected might save them more customer hassle. What I mean is phone calls from customers who realize once they are home of the pricing error or multiple customers getting SCOP applied.

I’m pretty certain that any store who offers SCOP gives themselves a kick in the butt when they miss something but mistakes do happen. My tip, never take your eyes off the computer screen and cashier when you are checking out. The moment you do is when you miss the opportunity to have SCOP applied.


SCOP after cashing out


What do you do if you miss SCOP and realize after you’ve paid or gone home?

This has happened to us many of times especially when we have our toddler in tow demanding attention. Most often Mrs. CBB will be watching the cashier scanning and I’ll be bagging and playing Mr. Bean with our little monster.

The most important step after paying your cashier is to read your receipt before you leave the store. If that means you pull your shopping cart over for a moment to scan the receipt then do it. A minute of your time could save you money!

In the event you find a discrepancy now is the time to go to customer service with the product and receipt and have them investigate the possible pricing error. You might find you goofed up (we have many times) or indeed you have a product you paid too much for.

In this case you can ask to have the receipt adjusted and the cashier will ask for your credit card, debit card if that’s what you paid with to reimburse you the money. If you paid with cash you will get cash back. Sometimes they will ask if you just want cash back instead of putting the money back on your card too.

Once the cashier has given you back what you paid for the product and applies SCOP they will have you sign a print-out receipt for their records. You smile, give thanks and away you go with your money back.


SCOP from home


What if I’m already at home and realize I paid too much for a product?

If this is the case call customer service or go back in right away with your receipt. Ideally making a phone call is far easier then going back to the grocery store.

Here’s what you can say when you call customer service.

Customer Service: Thanks for calling (insert grocery store) (cashier name) speaking, how can I help you?

Customer: Hi, I was just in your store doing our weekly grocery shopping and when I came home and read my receipt I realized that the (insert product) had rung up higher than the price tag, flyer price, sale price etc.

Customer Service: What is the product in question? How much did you pay for it?

Customer: The product is (insert product) and it scanned at $4.99 but is on sale in the flyer for $2.99.

Customer Service: She/He will call a department for verification or look in the flyer to confirm. Yes, I see you have paid too much. If you could bring in your receipt we can have that adjusted for you and give you the difference back.

Customer: Would it be ok if I bring in my receipt next week when I grocery shop to customer service for the adjustment including applying SCOP?

Customer Service: Not a problem. What is your name so I can write it down in our book so the next cashier will know you’ve talked to me? or Let the cashier at customer service know that you talked to (insert customer service cashier name) and I’ve approved the SCOP adjustment.

Customer: Thank-You for your help, have a great day.

Customer Service: You as well and thank-you for choosing (insert grocery store name here).

That’s all, but if you just happened to get an employee who won’t budge or doesn’t know about SCOP always ask to speak to a manager or someone in charge. If you want to hurry along just take your receipt to customer service and have the situation rectified. Either way you’ll get SCOP applied if it’s applicable.

Management staff should be well-trained on SCOP and know how to handle it as many stores tend to forget this part of cashier training. It’s annoying for customers and cashiers who haven’t been property trained on The Scanning Code of Practice.

Even then some cashiers have no idea how to apply SCOP if it’s their first time. As a customer you must be straightforward about what you want to see happen. Motivate the cashier to ask for a manager or another cashier to help if you see they don’t quite understand what you are talking about.

Don’t ever get embarrassed about YOUR money!


SCOP at the Cashier


As mentioned about you should never be humiliated when it comes to your money especially when asking for SCOP to be implemented. It’s your money and if you spot an error you’re doing the company a favour. Feel as if you are part of the team and your reward is getting the product free or up to $10 off. This is provided the store applies SCOP as not all stores do.

To help those of you who are a bit too shy to ask for SCOP or even bring up a pricing error I’ve put together a few suggestions for you. This may help ease some of the stress involved when asking for SCOP once a pricing error is verified by the cashier.

  1. Could I please have SCOP applied to this product?
  2. Your store follows SCOP so I’d like to have that applied for this pricing error please.
  3. May I please have SCOP applied to this product due to higher scanned price?
  4. I’d like to please have SCOP exercised for the (insert product) pricing error.

Always thank your cashier, manager.


Asking for Help takes practice


The more you practice something the better you will get at it. You might not necessarily like to do it all the time but when you know there is a benefit you’ll do it. Working out comes to mind! You either love it or hate it but know there are health benefits.

If speaking up or asking for help is a weak spot for you then find easy ways to boost your confidence in stressful situations or where you feel nervous to speak up.

If I took $100 from your wallet or purse would you let me walk away with it or would you say something? Likely you would say something because it’s your money. With SCOP if applicable to the store you are shopping at comes up wrong then they are walking away with your money. Same should apply, speak up. You’ll get your price adjusted for more than one product you’ve purchased and your money back for one up to $10 or $10 off if more than $10.

Your money wears shoes too! Keep up or watch it run out of your life.

Discussion: Have you ever struggled to ask for SCOP? What other ways could someone who struggles ask to have SCOP applied? If I’ve missed something please comment below and I’ll add it in the post.


November Grocery Game Challenge


Join in the 2017 Grocery Game Challenge (GGC) fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each GGC blog post. Here are The Grocery Game Challenge rules to get you started and where you’ll also find a link for the 2017 GGC schedule. Please feel free to download, save and even print the schedule.

Post your shop and you can be next.

Note: I missed last weeks GGC post as I was away so post both last weeks shop and this weeks shop in the comment section of this post please. Thanks.

New monthly prize: See the Grocery Game Rules


Free Money Saving Tools 2017


Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

This is the budget that brought us to debt freedom back in 2013 and now I’m offering to all of you for FREE. We still use this budget every month as it helps us to see our overall financial picture.

2014 Free Money Saving ToolsDon’t pay someone for these services, I’ve done the work for you along with some help from other amazing bloggers.

You can download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel It’s FREE! We use it to budget and in large part a reason we could pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists created to get us on track working towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet. So many free resources at your fingertips.


Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide 2017


the ultimate grocery shopping guide cbbEverything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is packed into this amazing FREE grocery shopping guide that has taken over 5 years to create.

The Ultimate Grocery Shopping guide is ongoing with new informative money-saving posts added every month.

Even if you don’t live in Canada there are some amazing budget saving tips that will help put you on the path to more savings at the supermarket.

Share this guide with your friends and tell them about Canadian Budget Binder especially if they are struggling with their grocery budget.

The time is NOW to get started saving money on groceries so please enjoy the  many money-saving posts in the The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.


2017 Grocery Shop Results


Yearly grocery budget for two + 1 Toddler 2017: $3180 or $265/month (The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

  • Total Grocery Budget for this Month: $265
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $265
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $0
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 750,000
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $0
  • Shoppers Optimum: 995,000 points

Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25… no idea where the money went but it seems we have $0.
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $24.50 we cashed out so we’re back at O.


Our Grocery Shop This Week



  • Double Pack Extra Large eggs $4.99
  • Milk 2% $4.27
  • 6 x 10% Cream $2.05 each
  • Bananas $1.49
  • Mozzarella $20.99
  • Baking Powder $5.99
  • Avocado Oil $11.99
  • 3 x Bread Dempsters $5.99

Total Out-of-Pocket $68.01-$20.99 stockpile =$47.02


  • Broccoli Slaw $3.99- 50% off $2.00
  • Romain Lettuce hearts $2.99 3pack
  • Pears $3.50
  • Pillers Sausage Whips $6.00 for 2 packs
  • Deli Meat Smoked Chicken Breast $8.50-50% $4.25
  • 2 x Astro coconut Yogurt Sale $2.99 each
  • Case of Diet Coke $3.49
  • 2 x cucumbers seedless $1.29 each
  • 6 x PC Not from concentrate Apple Juice unsweetened 2/3.00 $6.00
  • 2 club packs of chicken wings $5.50 and $4.75

Total Out-of-Pocket $42.79

Note: All totals below already have tax factored into them.

  • Total to spend this month : $265
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00/month
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $20.99 Mozzarella Cheese Brick
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $1
  • Total in-store discounts this week: $6.25
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $756.15
  • Total spent this week: $89.81
  • Total spent so far this month: $267.24
  • Total over/Under spend this shop: under
  • Total over/Under spend for the month: n/a
  • Total left to spend for the month: -$2.24 or $2.25
  • Total Spent To Date 2017: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $231.06+Feb $255.16+March ($5 budget increase) $263.60 + April $273.83+ May $257.15 + June $65.43+July $226.84+August $283.51+September $208.69+ October $226.58+ November $267.24

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

Not too bad! We went over by $2.25 which is great. One month left to go for the GGC 2017.

Note: November is a 5 week grocery shop.


Coupons and Coupon Apps


Here are some great places you can find Canadian Coupons! These are your latest Checkout 51 offers which you can use to help save money. We’re finding less and less coupons in the stores these days. What are your thoughts? Are coupon apps taking over the paper coupons?

If you notice I’m missing a valuable link please message me and I’ll get it added to the savings list below.

Sign up for the Nielsen Canada Home Scan Program and you can earn rewards points fast to redeem for awesome products or gift cards. I did this in the UK and loved it!!

Where can I find Canadian Coupons 2017?

Plus check out these other hidden areas online to get more coupons!!

If any of the links below don’t open properly please report them to my email address or use comment form.

  • Healthy Essentials Printable Coupons (Johnson and Johnson)
  • Danone Coupons Get up to $25 in coupons
  • Clorox Coupons Sign up to print coupons in the Clorox family which include Greenworks, Glad etc.
  • Kraft Canada Sign up and receive recipes and coupons by email
  • Printable Smart Source Coupons
  • Walmart Canada Printable Coupons
  • Proctor and Gamble PandG Sign up for printable coupons
  • Hidden Coupon Portals You Should know about – I found this over at Save a Loonie and you’ll want to sign up for notifications and check out the site so you get notified every time a hidden coupon is available from, Brandsaver, Smart Source etc.


Grocery Game Challenge 2017 FAQ’s


  • Grocery Game Challenge RULES: Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible. The rules have been updated to reflect changes for the 2017 challenge year.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • What is the monthly prize and who can claim it?- The monthly prize is a $10-$20-$50 PC Loblaws Gift Card and for our out of country friends it’s $CDN via PayPal.  Please see GGC rules.
  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?: The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month but you will still get a ballot when you post your shops even if they are late but I encourage you to stay on schedule. If you choose to post monthly or bi-weekly you will only get 1 ballot for that shop. It’s a proven fact the minute we stop doing something scheduled that we end up forgetting to do it altogether. Don’t let that be you! You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: No, our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. As of 2014-2015 we no longer include such items in our grocery budget so we can see actual food numbers at the end of the year in order to plan accordingly our budget.
  • Do you stockpile food? We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any longer as we found we weren’t eating it fast enough. Stockpiling is still great and just one way to help cut your budget to save money if you do find items that you can buy in bulk at a sale price.
  • Canadian Coupons:Where can I find Canadian Coupons?: Here are your latest  Checkout 51 offers that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge. There are many great Canadian Couponing websites online that share weekly coupon match-ups so you can plan your grocery list.
  • Best Coupon Apps: Coupons are slowly fading with mobile coupon apps being the big rave these days. Just recently the popular coupon site that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile app joining forces with the many other coupon apps available. If you find an app that I don’t talk about please let me know as they are always being added and I’d like to review them.
  • What is the Best Flyer App- We use Flipp on our Iphone so if you wan to have all your flyers in one spot download Flipp from the Apple Store or get it on Google Play.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • What is GGC?– The Grocery Game Challenge of course!
  • How Do I Know what stores accept coupons?:  If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  • How Do I Grocery Shop?: I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do. This is why The Grocery Game Challenge is one of the most popular hang out spots for people who want to save money on groceries.

If you’ve just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2017 get ready to look at your grocery budget by learning;

  • Where you are spending money
  • How much money you are spending
  • How much money you are saving every month

If you want to learn everything I know about grocery shopping in Canada check out my Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide! It’s FREE!

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email. If I use your topic I will put your name in a draw for a prize at the end of the year.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge 2017!


Are You New To Canadian Budget Binder?

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  1. Dee Ferguson says:

    Week 45 – Nov 24 – 30, 2017
    Name Your Store: Superstore
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Points = 13,200
    Total Out Of Pocket: $91.19

    2 Ragu Spaghetti Sauce – $1.98 (PM Frescho – $1.00) = $2.00
    2 Classico Alfredo Sauce – 2/$5.00 (400 PC Points) = $5.00
    4 NN Pasta – (800 PC Points) = $4.72
    4 NN Mushrooms – (800 PC Points) = $5.16
    10 NN Tuna – (2,000 PC Points) = $12.90
    3 Habitant Pea Soup – $2.78 (PM No Frills @ 5/$5.00) = $5.00 (I goofed when telling the cashier the per item $)
    2 Oatmeal Crisp – $5.48 (PM Frescho @ $3.00) = $6.00
    2 Honey Bunches of Oats – $4.99 (PM Zehrs @ $1.77) = $3.54
    2 Danone Yogurt – 4.18 (PM No Frills @ $2.97) = 5.94
    NN Cheese – $4.97 (1,000 PC Points) (PM Zehrs @ $4.49) = $4.49
    4 L 2% Milk = $4.27
    4 – 1 L Chocolate Milk = $4.00
    4 Minute Maid Frozen Juice = $2.00
    750 g Frozen Green Beans = $2.68
    5 lb Clementine = $2.98
    10 lb Potatoes = $3.99
    Bananas – 1.055 Kg (200 PC Points) = $1.33
    Gala Apples – 1.110 Kg = $3.64
    Bartlett Pears – 1.130 Kg = $3.19
    2 Old Mill WW Bread – (600 PC Points) = $3.36
    5 Country Harvest Bread – $2.79 (PM No Frills @ 3/$5.00) = $5.00

    No Shop

    Grocery Game Challenge Results
    Total Grocery Budget for the 2 Adults ($1820.00, for the pay period – $70.00)
    Total Human (Adults) this Week Period: $91.19
    Total Human (Adults) to Date: $1,427.70 (minus Debt pymt & Gift Cards) = $1,271.31

    Total Grocery Budget for the 3 Cats ($364, for the pay period – $14.00)
    Total Cats this Week Period: $
    Total Cats to Date: $350.39

    Total Grocery Budget for Stockpile ($507.69)
    Total Stockpile this Week Period: $
    Total Stockpile to Date: $163.05

    Total Grocery Budget for the Personal Hygiene ($182)
    Total Personal Hygiene this Week Period: $
    Total Personal Hygiene to Date: $227.40

    Total Grocery Budget for Meat ($499.98)
    Total Meat this Week Period: $
    Total Meat to Date: $407.10

    Total Coupons Used this Week Period: $
    Total Coupons Used To Date: $22.48

    Total Grocery Savings for this Week Period: $
    Total Grocery Savings to Date: $89.64

    Total Price Match for this Week Period: $22.99
    Total Price Match to Date: $77.48

    Total PC Points Received this Week Period: 13,300
    Total PC Rewards Points Used this Week Period:
    Total PC Rewards To Date: 20,928

    Overview: This week resulted in a major stock up of groceries. Definitely made use of the PC Points for the next round of free groceries.

    • Hey Dee,
      I figured there would be a big shop in the making after moderating the last few. I see those clemintines are in the stores again for the holidays. We love them too but the Mrs. won’t eat them but I will. Is it just me or do you notice the prices going up at the grocery store? You get ballot #10 Great shop, and points!

  2. Please read the FAQ’s on the Retail Concil of Canada’s website regarding SCOP for when it applies vs. does not apply. I’ve worked retail where often hear people claiming SCOP when it isn’t.

  3. Please, everyone, read the FAQ’s on the Retail Council of Canada’s website regarding when SCOP applies vs. when it does not. There are times when it does not apply; having worked retail, I’ve seen too many people think it applies when it does not.

  4. Please take time to read the FAQ’s from the Retail Council of Canada so you know when SCOP applies vs. when it does not apply. Having worked retail, too many people think SCOP is a given – however, things like shelf label matching the product, product is stickered vs. not stickered, it is a look up item vs. a scanned item (i.e. produce is where you often see this), etc.

  5. NOVEMBER – Nov 27-DEC 3, 2017


    •Total Grocery Budgeted For Year: $190.00 x 12 = $2,280.00 for 2 adults



    We have hubby on vacation for 4 weeks starting on Friday and we’ll likely do lots of eating lunches outside the home as we travel around taking in the Christmas sights and sounds. Our vacation budget will handle our lunch hour treats – even if we just pick up a vegetable tray and some cold meat and cheese to enjoy. I am making sure though that we have either a pot of soup, a nice stew or some homemade beans in the fridge for a quick re-heat when we do get home. My well stocked pantry and freezer make it easy to whip up some awesome soups without going anywhere near a store!


    Better still…when hubby starts his time off, I don’t need to make any packed lunches again until January! Woo hoo! I get a bit of a vacation too! 🙂









    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions This Year: $308.47
    •Total Coupons/Rain Checks Used This Year: $0.00
    •Total Price Match Savings Used This Year: $0.00
    •Total More Points Earned This Year: 324 Points
    •Total Air Miles Earned This Year: 58 Air Miles
    •Total PC PLUS Points Earned This Year: 20,000 Points
    •Total Optimum Points Earned This Year: 4,100 Points



    $ 2,090.00 Grocery Budget JAN-NOV
    ($ 414.57) NET RESERVE SAVINGS
    ($1,675.43) Actual CASH SPENT


    $ 405.69 Re-Stocking Fund
    $ 170.70 Holiday Season Fund + $210 RCSS POINTS +
    $10 Dream Air Miles + $10 RCSS Gift Card (TOTAL $400.70)
    $ 649.59 Summer Season Fund
    $ 421.87 US Shopping Reserve
    $ 41.56 GGC Savings Reserve
    $ 0.00 Points Redeemed Reserve

    OUR CURRENT TOTAL UNUSED RESERVES ARE $1,689.41. This means the $1,274.44 that we carried forward from 2016 PLUS AN ADDITIONAL $1,445.94 that we have added in 2017, LESS $1,030.97 that we have drawn out for use in 2017.


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