Easy UPC Symbol Removal for Your Mail-in Rebate Needs




let's say that your husband decides to set up an entirely new computer system in anticipation of starcraft II and buys parts online, many of which require mail-in rebates for the best price. this is a quick way to peel off the UPC symbols for your many rebates. it's easier than trying to cut through the entire cardboard, especially if the UPC symbol happens to be on the corner of the box. this also allows you to reuse the box to hold stuff.

fingers and skill belong to alokito. inspired by a former architectural student working at a t-mobile store.


1. box cutter/exacto knife/etc
2. opposable thumb and index finger
3. box with UPC symbol

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Step 1: Score Around the UPC Symbol

using your box cutter, make 4 cuts around each side of the UPC symbol, making sure they overlap at the corners. you need to press just hard enough to pierce the top layer of cardboard.

Step 2: Lift the Corner of the UPC Symbol

using the tip of your box cutter, lift the corner of the UPC symbol off the box. if you notice that the edge rips a bit, go back a step and score a little deeper.

Step 3: Peel It Off.

Peel off the UPC symbol, leaving the box more or less intact.

Step 4: Mail in Your Rebates.

while you wait for your checks to arrive, you can spend many hours hooking up your computer system and installing linux.

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    10 Discussions


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Wow, this seems eerily familiar. Having I did the same thing I'm a bit worried about what the guy said below me about not accepting rebates but this was the only upc and the other was on the video card labeled, warranty void if removed.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    One quick word of warning. I'm sure many of the rebate processors are getting more used to these, but I did have a couple of refunds that were being rejected since I didn't send in the "original" UPC symbol cut from the box. They thought what I sent was a copy and wouldn't listen to my explanations, but after cutting up the box and letting them play puzzle they honored the rebates.

    3 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Heh. Some minimum-wage worker at the rebate processing center got a quick education in corrugated cardboard anatomy that day! At least you prevailed in your appeal. I learned this trick from a warehouse guy at my first job, who used to save all the packing slips and stuff from packages that came in. This way, the boxes were still useful for other storage, even if the labels were on the front face or something. I do this before reusing boxes that eBay goods shipped in, so person I'm shipping to doesn't get the address of the last person who shipped me stuff. Sometimes I'll use a heat gun to remove labels, too. (Heat guns are incredibly handy to have around!) You might find that one of those little plastic "coupon cutter" gizmos works well, since the blade only protrudes a fraction of an inch, you don't have to manually control the cut depth. You'd need a serious fingernail to lift the corner, though, since you wouldn't have a big blade to dig in there and get it.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    thanks for the heads up. do you happen to remember which companies rejected them at first? we haven't had any issues with the ones we've sent in (yet).


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    I really don't remember who it was. I think it might have been for a hard drive rebate, so possibly Maxtor? The other one I don't remember what that was, but in the end I did get my rebates though.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    I just got a new video card, and of course they want the entire label off the end of the box. I use my new boxes to store the equipment it replaced, as a backup. And I was like ugh, and just before I was going to cut it off, I seen this. Worked perfectly, box is still usable. Thanks.

    1 reply