While the new, longer, and more detailed GS1 bar codes help cut down on coupon fraud, it can be a frustration to Krazy Couponers when they don't scan at checkout. Read below for more information and what you can do.
The GS1 bar code has been featured on most coupons for a long time, though usually paired side by side with the 12-number standard UPC bar code. However, since this past summer, more and more companies are opting to leave off the UPC bar code and just keep the GS1 Databar. This contains more information within the symbol and helps crack down on illegal bar code decoding.
These new coupons that only feature the GS1 are legitimate and should be accepted at all stores that take manufacturer coupons. However, some stores have not equipped their registers to scan the GS1. This can lead to confusion, especially because cashiers have the ability to type in a UPC bar code when the coupon is having trouble scanning. If this happens to you, kindly explain to the cashier about the GS1 and why it may not be scanning (they need to update their system, which you may want to take up with the store or district manager). Point out the GS1 on other coupons that also feature the UPC bar code. Also, while the register may not scan the coupon, ask the cashier to scan the coupon with the hand scanner, which is more likely to be updated.
Some store policies do specify that if the coupon does not scan, it cannot be accepted. In this case, you'll need to abide by their ruling, although you may want to alert the manager regarding the GS1, or use those coupons at a different store that has updated their system.