Reader Question: How To Use Rain Checks

I received the following question from Mandy:

I was just wondering if you ever wrote an article about getting rainchecks on products from different stores and the different store’s policies in regards to providing rainchecks?

Good question. The short answer to that would be no, and to be honest, I’m not sure why!

For those that are unaware, a rain check is a slip of paper that allows to you get the sale price of an item after the sale is over.

When there are great sales available at stores, the items can be scooped up rather quickly. It’s not always possible to be at the store as soon as it opens, so unfortunetely, some people miss out on those deals. Unless of course – they ask for a rain check!

What stores give rain checks?

The following stores give out rain checks when asked:
– Shoppers Drug Mart
– Zellers (never expire)
– Safeway
– London Drugs
– Real Canadian Superstore
– Canadian Tire
– Metro
– Toys R UsSave On Foods
– Fortinos
– Rexall/PharmaPlus
– Your Independent Grocer
– Sears (never expire)
– Loblaws
– Home Hardware
– Thrifty Foods (never expire)
– London Drugs

As for the policies regarding these rain checks, most will expire within 30 days. However, Zellers rain checks never expire.

Check the shelves for your item each time you are at the store to see if the items have been re-stocked. If the item is not re-stocked by the time your rain check is about to expire, you can always ask for a new rain check.


  1. Lynn

    I work for Canadian Tire. Our rain checks are also good until the product comes in, whether it has been 1 week or 1 year. Also, they can be redeemed at a different Canadian Tire then the one you obtained it from. Even though, we call the customer when it arrives..it is good practice for the customer to call the store or come in and check on their product. We do get very busy and can be short staffed so there are times some may get over looked.

  2. Amy

    Metro also provides rainchecks.

  3. Liz

    I got a rain check from Wal-mart a few weeks ago for an electronics item – even though the employee in electronics told me I was unable to I went to customer service and they were happy to give me one – they also don’t expire which I was surprised to find out

  4. Liz

    Oh and Toys R Us gives rainchecks as well – especially good if you need to buy a gift off a registry but the item won’t be re-stocked until the sale is over

  5. Lindsay

    Save On also gives out rain checks, but they expire in 2 weeks.
    I was pleasantly surprised when the clerk offered me one last week!

  6. mary

    fortinos also gives out rainchecks

  7. Vivien

    Rexall also gives rain checks! My mom once got a rain check on an item that had a bonus of 20 air miles. When the item came in she got the price the item was selling at previously AND the bonus air miles!

  8. Marlene

    Did you know most stores will give rainchecks you have to just ask. Most stores give one with a variety of expiry dates from 2 week to 90 days. BUT …BUT I say….WALMART gives rainchecks that DO NOT HAVE any expiry date!! They will not give a raincheck on a “special” buybut on everything else they will. My most fav part is the no Expiry date.

  9. Freckles

    Are you sure that RCSS (Superstore) gives out rainchecks? Here in Alberta, they don’t, and and they also advertise that they don’t. Does RCSS have a different policy in Ontario?

  10. kimberly

    Freckles: I was issued a rain check from Real Canadian Superstore just this week. I’m in Ottawa. It was my first time requesting one there but it went really smoothly.

  11. Emily

    No rainchecks at RCSS in BC either in my experience. This is the wording on the flyer “No rainchecks or substitutions on clearance items or where quantities are advertised as limited.” Most of their best sale items are limited in that there is a limit of a certain number at the price per customer. I am not sure that I have asked recently about other items–but a long time ago I was told no rainchecks period.

    Some stores limit the number of an item you can get with a rain check. For example Shoppers has a limit I think it is 4. If there is a limit on the original sale then I have had that noted on the rain check.

    As others have mentioned–best to ask for one at customer service with your flyer in hand. Depending on the store I have even had them then help me find the product in a different part of the store then where it usually is–so if store layout allows I try to do the raincheck thing before I checkout.

  12. Sonia

    My Zellers raincheck had an expiry of 60 days.

  13. tammy-lynn

    Rexall Also gives rain checks I have some for the Cottonelle 12 double rolls that were on for 4.99 so I can use my 3.00 off coupons.

  14. Linda

    I guess Walmart rain checks vary from one location to the next…I got one just last week at Walmart, and the girl actually wrote “Valid for 30 days” on it before she handed it to me. I also asked for the rain check to be written for 9 of the item but she would only write it for 5 :S

  15. jo

    Rain checks are often held in the warehouse for customers at Canadian Tire. Ask your Canadian Tire if they do that. It means that it will be held for you for a couple of days or more. You don’t have to look for it on the shelf.

  16. LilFrogMom

    YIG gives rain checks and so does Loblaws.

  17. Debbie

    The RCSS and Walmart in SE Alberta don’t give out rainchecks, period.

  18. Eternal Brat

    I have used rainchecks for years to get the great prices that some stores offer. Unfortunately some rainchecks are given out that will never be honored. Last year I got a raincheck for an outdoor item at the end of the year from Zeller’s, only to be told by the department manager that it should never have been given to me as they were just trying to clear things out and the item won’t be in until next spring whereupon my raincheck would be invalid. Walmart customer service may give one out but the department knows if the item will ever come in.
    Whenever I see a ggod deal and there are none left, I ask for rainchecks – doesn’t hurt me and, if they say no – oh well, I tried.

  19. Lori Calder

    It is a little known fact, but Wal-Maret does give rain cheques, they must be used at the store they were originally from though

  20. narokavi

    Sears also offers them and they never expire.

  21. Cynthia

    Home Hardware gives rainchecks.
    They are treated like a special order and they will call you when the item is in.
    At least the Bridlewood Home Hardware in Ottawa.

  22. Mandy

    Thrifty Foods provides rain cheques and they never expire.

  23. Cindy

    I’m surprised to hear so many people having issues with rainchecks at Walmart. It’s where we most often go and I have gotten them on soooo many things the last month! I’ve not yet had any issue redeeming them either. Someone mentioned they wouldn’t do it on “Specials” and I am not sure what that means as I have used them on a lot of sale items, including the Purex 3 in 1 sheets that were on for 2 bucks a few weeks back.

  24. Jen

    London Drugs will happily give you a raincheck on any advertised item. The rain checks are good for only two weeks, but you can definitely come back and have the date changed should it expire before the item comes in.

    The rain checks are good at any store, and you can ask the cashier for one when you check out.

    London Drugs will also price match any advertised item. Be it from Walmart, or where ever. Just have the flyer from the advertising store, and if they carry it they will match the price.

    BTW London Drugs is a Canadian owned family chain, and they support, and hire local people which equals money in Canadian pockets. Walmart is a U.S. based company, with most of it’s profits going to the U.S. Just thought I would put that in there, if anyone is deciding on which store to purchase from. Personally I will always support my local business over another country’s if I have a choice, and yes cost is a important factor, I understand that also.


  25. Cassie Howard

    Thanks to everyone that posted about more stores that give rain checks! I have added them to the list. I have spoken to head office at Walmart, though, and they told me that stores should not be giving our rain checks.

  26. Marie Vavros

    I work at Zellers and our rain checks expire in 6 months, they were good for a year but now they have changed it

  27. Sara

    ToysRus rain checks dont expire…………at least when i have gotton them they havent, in the kitchener waterloo locations at least

  28. Sharon

    The “Rain Checks” for Save-on Foods are good for 2 weeks, however, if the ‘Sale Item’ does NOT become Available on their Shelves within that timeframe ~ simply have your “Rain Check” date adjusted by either the Cashier/Store Manager or someone at the Customer Service desk. Safeway has recently changed their Rain Check Policy, although they are “Good” for 3 months ~ it used to be that if you requested 4 of an Item & didn’t fulfill the entire ‘Rain check’ ~ the Customer would get it back; they NO longer do that, which only makes sense to me. You must complete the “Rain Check” transaction in “One complete Sale” in order to get that ‘Sale Price!’

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