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If you’re a regular Publix shopper, there’s a freebie you need to know about that happens in July. When you make any monetary donation to their Tools for Back to School campaign, you’ll get a free Publix reusable shopping bag. Normally, the basic green reusable bags cost $0.99 a piece, and getting one for free usually only happens on Earth Day.
I chatted with the Customer Service team at my local Publix store to find out more details, and I was surprised to learn you can actually donate as little as $0.01 at the register and still get the free bag. And it’s not just the basic green $0.99 bags they were giving away. But I’ll get into a little more on that below.
Here’s what I found out about the Publix Tools for Back to School campaign — including where the donations go, which bags you get to choose from, and more.
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If you donate any amount of money at Publix during the Back-to-School campaign, you get a free reusable shopping bag.
Each year in late July, Publix kicks off their “Tools for Back to School” campaign to raise funds to buy supplies for local schools in need. You can participate right in the checkout line by donating any monetary amount (even as little as $0.01) at the register. Just tell the Publix associate that you’d like to donate to Tools for Schools. Then they’ll add the donation amount you pick to your bill.
In return, you’ll receive a free Publix reusable shopping bag as a thank you.
When is the next reusable bag giveaway at Publix?
The most recent donation campaign took place July 12 – 23, 2023. If the pattern continues, you can expect the next bag giveaway to happen July 10 – 21, 2024.
You could choose any reusable shopping bag in stock (up to a $1.99 value).
I actually found out you can choose any reusable bag as your freebie, not just the standard green $0.99 bags they have at the checkout line. As long as the reusable bag has a price of $1.99 or under, you can get it as your freebie. Just bring it to the register at checkout.
My store had a display with $1.99 reusable bags themed for Marvel, Disney, Minions, The Flash, and Star Wars. Not a bad deal to help raise money for local schools and get a free reusable bag! I like using the themed bags as cheap gift wrapping or as a stocking stuffer.
Your monetary donation helps Publix buy supplies for local schools in need.
This Publix initiative raises money to support local schools. All funds stay in the district and/or county where they originate, and Publix stores compete to see which location can raise the most funds.
Some Publix stores give out a mini shopping bag keychain instead of a reusable bag.
A few Krazy Coupon Lady shoppers have gotten a free mini shopping bag keychain instead of a reusable grocery bag. So your mileage may vary on this freebie! Check your local store in mid-July to see what they give away. Some people consider the keychain a collector’s item, since they don’t sell it in stores (or even on the Publix merch website). It reminds me of the Aldi quarter holder!
Donate to local schools all year round as a Club Publix member (if you live in certain states).
Did you know that Publix has a program that lets you earn money for the local K – 12 school of your choice? It’s called Publix Partners, and you’ll just need to have a Club Publix membership to set it up. A portion of each transaction gets donated to the school of your choice. For every $37,500 in eligible purchases, your school will earn $250. Schools can receive checks up to four times a year from their earnings.
So far, Publix has donated at least $40 million to more than 5,000 schools across the Southeast since they started the program. But they currently only offer it in the following states:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
Follow these steps to start earning money for your local school:
- Join Club Publix (if you haven’t already). It’s free.
- Log in to your account and select “My Publix Partner.”
- Search for the school of your choice.
- Pay with the Publix app (iOS / Android) or enter your phone number at checkout to link your purchase.
TIP: Your school won’t earn money on purchases of gift cards, alcohol, lottery items, money services, postage stamps, prescriptions, or online transactions with Instacart.