Are you a frugal shopper? If you enjoy saving money and finding deals, then price matching will be right up your alley. As the cost of groceries and everyday items continues to rise, Canadian shoppers are using this technique more than ever.
Price matching is a retail practice where a store agrees to match a competitor’s price that’s been advertised. Retailers are aware that many consumers shop on price alone and offer price-matching deals to discourage them from shopping with competitors.
Below, I’ll share all of the major stores I know of that offer price matching in Canada!
How To Price Match In Canada
If you’ve never asked a retailer to match the price of an item before, you may be curious as to how price matching works.
Stores that match prices typically offer price matching for an identical item that a competitor offers at a lower price.
This is called an “exact price match” and allows you to purchase the same item at the competitor’s advertised price, allowing you to keep the price difference and saving you time that you’d otherwise spend driving to the competitor and shopping with them.
Some stores that price match may even offer a lower price than their competitor’s price.
Here’s a quick step-by-step guide on how to take advantage of a store’s price match policy:
- Look through the list of stores that have a price-matching policy below
- Look through your favourite store’s catalogue or flyer to find the item you’re looking for
- Note down the exact model number and the advertised price
- Next, identify one or two direct competitors that have a price match policy from the list below
- Then, browse through the latest promotional flyer or check prices online to see if the competitor’s price is lower or higher
- If a store has a price match policy and you find the same item for a lower advertised price from a competitor, you’re in luck
- When it’s time to check out, bring proof of the competitor’s lower price to the register in the form of a digital or physical flyer/advertisement
At this point, you may find some variance between different stores’ price match policies:
- Some stores price match at the register, while others may require you to visit customer service to receive your cashback rebate
- Some stores price-match online competitors, while others only price-match brick-and-mortar stores
- Some stores are happy to match an advertised local competitor’s price, while others may require you to do a bit of negotiating.
Price Drops And Price Protection: How They Work
In addition to (or sometimes in place of) a price match program, some stores also offer price protection. This is an incredible frugal-living hack that can put some serious cash back in your pocket.
Essentially, if an item you bought from the store drops in price after you purchased it, you can take your receipt back to the store to receive a refund for the difference.
For example, let’s say that I recently purchased a laptop for $1,000 from an electronics retailer. 60 days later, I notice that the retailer is advertising the same item for $800.
If the store has a price drop policy, I could take my receipt back to the store and receive $200 back in the form of store credit, cash, or a refund on my card (depending on the store’s policy).
Before you try to cash in on price drops, make sure you closely read the retailer’s policy, as most require you to claim price drops within a certain number of days of purchase.
Grocery Stores That Price Match In Canada
The price of fresh fruit, bakery items, and other grocery essentials have risen significantly over the past year, according to the most recent Consumer Price Index (CPI) report by Statistics Canada.
Since groceries are many families’ top expense, let’s start by looking at the list of grocery stores that offer price matches in Canada!
1. Real Canadian Superstore
- Real Canadian Superstore Price Match Policy: Read here
Real Canadian Superstore offers a unique price matching feature, where they guarantee to match the price of identical items from a major supermarket competitor within their local trade area.
This ensures that you get the best deal without any hassle. You can also price match on its online shopping platform, PC Express.
- Maxi Price Match Policy: Read here
Maxi is one of Quebec’s major supermarkets. Although the retailer offers a price matching initiative, it’s very strict about the fact that price matching is only offered for exact products sold by local competitors in the same area. Additionally, you can only price match for up to four items at a time.
3. Giant Tiger
- Giant Tiger Price Match Policy: Read here
Giant Tiger’s price matching policy, known as the Ad Match Guarantee, beats competitors’ advertised prices. If you find a local competitor’s lower advertised price, Giant Tiger will offer the product for one cent less than the competitor’s price.
It’s not a huge deal, but hey – every penny adds up!
- FreshCo Price Match Policy: Read here
FreshCo’s “Lowest Price Guarantee” applies to identical or comparable items sold by local competitors. FreshCo stores offer to match competitors’ lower prices on the same brand, size, and attributes.
It’s worth noting that each location’s price match policy can vary, so be sure to check with the customer service desk beforehand.
- IGA Price Match Policy: Read here
Like Giant Tiger, IGA supermarkets offer a price guarantee to match any local competitor’s advertised price within the same local trading area and will also beat the price by one cent to ensure that you get the lowest price.
To take advantage of IGAs price matching policies, simply bring a flyer or receipt of purchase to the register when you checkout.
6. No Frills
- No Frills Price Match Policy: Read here
No Frills honours price matching for in-store purchases as long as you bring a valid advertisement or receipt from a local competitor for an exact item. Price matching at No Frills is valid for up to four items at a time and can be redeemed with a cashier at checkout.
- Save-On-Foods Price Match Policy: Read here
Save-On-Foods is known for its Western Family line of off-brand alternatives. The grocery store won’t match the price offered by a competitor’s local retail store. However, if you find a name-brand item being advertised or sold for less by a local competitor, Save-On-Foods will offer you a free Western Family equivalent.
For example, if I found a 16-ounce box of name-brand Cheerios advertised for less than Save-On-Foods Toasted Oat Rings, I could receive the Save-On-Foods off-brand alternative for free.
It’s a bit more complicated to redeem, but it’s a better deal than many other price protection plans we’ve gone through.
Electronics Stores That Price Match In Canada
Looking to buy a new laptop, TV, phone, or smart gear for your home? Electronics can be expensive. While payment plans can make them more affordable, taking advantage of price matching and price drops can really help you save.
Here are the top computer, electronics, and appliance stores that offer price matching in Canada.
8. Best Buy
- Best Buy Price Match Policy: Read here
Best Buy’s Low Price Guarantee in Canada ensures they match product prices of key online and local competitors. To qualify, the item must be identical in terms of the brand, model number, and colour and must be sold and shipped by a Canadian competitor.
You can request a price match in-store, online, or via phone. Some conditions apply, and special sales like Black Friday are excluded from this policy.
- Related Reading: How Best Buy Financing Works
9. Memory Express
- Memory Express Price Match Policy: Read here
Memory Express offers its “Über Price Guarantee” and will beat the price of any Canadian retailer by a whopping 10%. Memory Express also offers price protection and will refund the difference if the price of an item you purchased drops within 15 days of purchase.
With deals like these, it’s no wonder why Memory Express is one of the top-rated electronics stores in Canada.
10. The Source
- The Source Price Match Policy: Read here
The Source has a simple, straightforward price-matching policy. If you find an identical item offered by a competing authorized Canadian dealer for a lower price, you can bring a flyer or receipt as proof to checkout and receive the same item at the competitor’s price.
The Source will not honour price matching for special holiday sales and during other promotional events.
Related Reading: 11 Best Computer and Electronics Stores In Canada
Clothing, Home, Office And Pet Stores That Price Match In Canada
Whether you’re going back to school, need to stock up on office supplies, grab some new trainers, or shop for your pets, here are some of the best price-matching deals offered by other general retailers.
11. The Bay
- The Bay Price Match Policy: Read here
Formerly known as Hudson’s Bay, The Bay was recently rebranded. The retailer specializes in selling designer clothes, beauty products, and home goods for a lower price than you’ll usually find at other major retailers.
However, if you do happen to find the same item being offered at a lower price by a local competitor (or even online retailers), you can bring proof to the register and get it for the same price as the competition.
If you happen to notice the lower price later, you can also email The Bay with proof to request a rebate.
12. Sport Chek
- Sport Chek Price Match Policy: Read here
Sport Chek’s price match policy states that they will match a lower price if you find one within 30 days of your purchase. Sport Chek will credit you the difference if you find a lower price. The lower-priced item must be identical and in stock at Sport Chek.
This price-matching policy only applies to items purchased in their retail stores. Online ordering from SportChek.ca is not eligible for price matching.
13. Bed Bath And Beyond
- Bed Bath And Beyond Price Match Policy: Read here
Note that Bed Bath and Beyond has closed all retail stores in Canada and only offers online shopping now.
Bed Bath and Beyond is one of my favourite places to shop for fun, useful gifts or stock up on kitchen and bath items.
Usually, the retailer has great prices. However, if you find the same brand/item being sold by a local competitor at a lower price within 30 days of purchase, you can request a refund for the difference online. Note that BB&B offers online price matching in some circumstances.
14. London Drugs
- London Drugs Price Match Policy: Read here
London Drugs’ price match policy in Canada allows them to match prices of identical, in-stock items from Canadian retailers found in print or online. If a lower price is found elsewhere, London Drugs will match it and even refund the difference within 30 days of purchase.
While we’re on the topic, London Drugs also offers some excellent “freebies” for new mothers and their babies.
- Petsmart Price Match Policy: Read here
Need a new dog leash, aquarium tank, cat toys, or kennel? Petsmart has just about everything that a pet owner could need. Although Petsmart doesn’t appear to offer in-store price matching, it will match prices for online purchases if you find a direct online competitor selling the same item for lower.
That being said, Petsmart will not match prices that you may find on Amazon or eBay.
16. Office Depot
- Office Depot Price Match Policy: Read here
Usually, I try to stay away from shopping at Office Depot (or Staples, for that matter), as brick-and-mortar office suppliers typically have sky-high prices compared to what I can find at a local dollar store or online.
That said, Office Depot offers a good warranty service, so I’ll sometimes shop with them if I need a printer or other tech.
Office Depot and its partner Office Max also offer a 14-day price match policy. If you find the same item sold by a local competitor within two weeks of purchase, you can receive a refund for the difference by bringing your receipt into the store.
- Staples Price Match Policy: Read here
In my opinion, Staples offers a far better price match guarantee than Office Depot. You have 30 days after purchasing most items to receive a price match refund and 14 days for electronics. Just bring in a competitor’s flyer or a receipt proving that a direct competitor offers a lower price.
Home Improvement Stores That Price Match In Canada
From simple home repairs to holiday decorations, lightbulbs, and plants, these are the best home improvement stores to check for price matching.
- Lowe’s Price Match Policy:Read here
Lowe’s has one of the best price-matching policies in the game. The massive home improvement retailer offers to match both online-only retailers and local competitors and offers an additional 10% off!
Usually, you can find a Home Depot right near every Lowe’s, which is a great way to try to hunt for deals and get that free 10% off.
19. Home Depot
- Home Depot Price Match Policy:Read more
Like Lowe’s, Home Depot will also match the price of any local brick-and-mortar home goods retailer or online-only retailer and give you an extra 10% off on top of that. All you have to do is bring proof of the other store’s lower price.
Does Canadian Tire Price Match?
Canadian Tire is one of the country’s most popular retailers and offers several other preventative and maintenance services.
Although Canadian Tire used to offer a price-matching policy, the chain stopped price-matching in 2022. Instead, Canadian Tire began offering a price drop policy.
If you purchase items from them that are advertised at a lower price shortly after purchase, you can come back to your home store, and the front desk will refund the difference.
Price Matching Like A Pro: How To Find A Lower Advertised Price
Want to become a price-matching pro and save the most? Check out these two free apps:
- Flipp: Flipp allows you to enter any location and will show you all of the local flyers and deals in your area. You can also search for specific items or categories to see results from multiple flyers.
- Reebee: Reebee is almost identical to Flipp and allows you to browse through local flyers and compare/contrast items and deals you find. You can also save coupons to your device for later use.
What makes both of these apps so great is that you can view up-to-date, real-time flyers that you can use for price-matching, which saves you the hassle of trying to browse through flyers.
Is Price Matching Worth The Time?
It really depends on how much time you’re working with. For cheap everyday groceries like bread, cereal, and other small snacks, it may be more of a hassle than it’s worth to price match.
However, price matching can really help you save money if you’re looking at electronics or shopping at home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot, where items generally cost a lot more.
If you’re looking to save on everyday grocery runs, I’d say that you’re better off using a couponing app like Checkout51, Drop, or Caddle. You can see a full list of my favourite couponing apps here!