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Back to Basics: What is a Catalina and what do I do if my Catalina Doesn't Print??

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I thought it might be helpful to put together a Video Catalina along with the information below.  Hopefully this helps answer all of your questions now!  If you can’t see the video in your email update, watch it here.

What is a Catalina??

A Catalina is a piece of paper that prints at the end of your transaction.  There are 4 different types of Catalinas that may print for you:

Dollar Off Coupons:  An example would be a “$4.00 off your Next Your Purchase” Catalina.  These can be used on ANY future purchase.

Manufacturer Coupons:  Sometimes you may get a manufacturer’s coupon printed out instead.  I usually buy Beech Nut Baby Food for my daughter because it is cheaper.  But Gerber wants me to purchase their brand, so I will always get Gerber Manufacturer Coupons printed out of the Catalina Machine.  Many times we don’t know when or if we will get the manufacturer’s coupons printed out after our order.  Just think of it as a little surprise if you do!

Store Coupons:  Target is a great example of this.  Instead of printing out a manufacturer’s coupon for a brand, you will actually get a Target Coupon.  These are great to get because you can use one Target coupon and one Manufacturer’s coupon on each item.

Previews of Upcoming Catalinas: Sometimes you may not get one of the 3 coupons I mentioned above.  Instead, you will get a preview of an upcoming Catalina.  It will tell you when the Catalina Promotion Starts and which products qualify to get the coupon.

Helpful Hints on Getting your Catalina to Print

Make sure the Catalina Machine is on:  Before the cashier starts scanning your items, make sure the Catalina machine’s green light is on. If it isn’t, your Catalina will not print. And, if the Catalina machine is turned on in the middle of your transaction, chances are that you will not get it to print either.  So make sure you check that before you start checking out.

Double Check the Items you are Purchasing:  In order for a Catalina to print, you have to purchase the EXACT sizes, quantities and brand.  If the 11.8 oz Box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch is part of the Catalina Promotion and you purchase the bigger box instead, you WILL NOT get a catalina printed out.  So make sure you double check sizes, brands and that you purchased the right amount.

Call up Catalina:  Sometimes you do everything right and the Catalina still doesn’t print out.  What do you do in that case?  Call up Catalina directly at 1-888-8COUPON or email them at  You will need to have your receipt and item handy so they can get the information from you.  If you did purchase the correct brand, sizes and quantities, then they will mail you your Catalina coupon. 

I hope that helps you all understand Catalinas a little bit more!

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  1. Thanks for posting this Melea! I went to the Draper Smith's today and bought my 8 General Mills Cereal boxes and didn't get one catalina. Needless to say after 10 minutes talking to the store manager, I ended up just returning the cereals. They couldn't give me any info on the catalinas. I have never had that happen before. Thanks for posting the specifics. I'm glad at least you can give me the info.

  2. Just went to Smiths in Sandy to get the Cereal– Cinnamon Toast crunch- box size is 12.8 oz for 3.19-so even with the coupons & catalinas too high for me!!I guess all Smiths don't havve the same prices.Thanks for all the work you do–I love getting good deals, and you help us do it!!

  3. At Smith's when you use a catalina to pay for a purchase will a new one still print out if you bought participating items again? Also do you have to separate your transactions if you have more than one catalina you are trying to get?

  4. I think you were at my Smith's in SS in the video! Quick question…is there a limit to the Catalinas you can get as long as you separate the transactions? They scan my Smith's card, so I wondered if there was a limit with how many Catalinas you can earn.

  5. Julie-Nope. No limit!

  6. Thanks! Another Catalina question…can I use the Catalina on products that also create a Catalina? For example, can I use a Catalina I got last week for buying 5 Fiber One bars to go buy another set of Fiber One bars or will the Catalina not print? I am always nervous about losing a Catalina if I make a mistake.

  7. Julie-I tell people it is better to be safe than sorry. Sometimes they roll and sometimes they dont. And, we dont know they are rolling, until someone tries it out. So, I just make it a rule to not roll them unless I know for sure. You don't want to miss out on the new catalina printing.


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