Getting the Most Out of Your Money: 50 Things to Know About Couponing

Who doesn’t appreciate the opportunity to save money? When you receive a terrific discount on something you use, it feels fantastic. Without coupons, many of these incredible offers would not be attainable.

The greatest method to save money is to use coupons. You should use coupons whether you’re a broke college student or a parent who can’t afford the hefty expense of raising a child. However, couponing entails more than merely clipping coupons from newspapers.

If you’ve ever watched TLC’s Extreme Couponing, you might believe that couponing entails swiping your neighbors’ newspapers and dumpster diving for leaflets. You’ll be relieved to find that you can obtain a fantastic deal without going to extremes. The television program is exactly that: a television show. It’s been staged and controlled. You may learn how to use coupons and save money without wasting your time by reading this book.

1. Get a copy of the Sunday paper

Many of the finest coupons may be found in the Sunday newspaper. Pick up one copy for each family member if you’re serious about saving money. Get two copies at the absolute least, because you may frequently use two similar coupons on the same purchase. Because the coupon inserts occasionally go missing, I recommend purchasing them at the store rather than through a subscription. If you buy the paper at a store, you may check to see if the insert is included before you buy.

2. Coupons to be printed

A few websites provide a wide range of printable coupons. Coupons.com and SmartSource.com are the most popular. Target.com features a vast assortment of coupons that are only valid in-store and can be used with their Cartwheel savings app. Couponing101.com, a terrific site for anybody interested in saving money, has more printable coupon resources.

3. Put Together A Binder

One of the easiest methods to manage your coupons is to use a binder. People have utilized a variety of strategies to arrange their binders, such as baseball card holder inserts or scrapbook folder pages. You can arrange them alphabetically, by category, or by date of expiration. Since you’ll be the one utilizing the binder, figure out what works best for you.

4. Request Loyalty Cards

Some retail discounts are only valid if you are a member of the store’s loyalty club. Other times, the advantages are so compelling that it would be foolish not to join up. CVS, for example, has one of the strongest loyalty programs in the industry, with unique coupons, discounts, and other perks. These programs are typically free and just take a few minutes to sign up for; they are now available at most supermarket and medicine shops.

5. Increase the value of your coupons by doubling or tripling them.

Stores will occasionally match the value of your coupon, doubling or tripling it up to a specific amount. Every store has its own set of regulations for how they double (or don’t), so speak with a manager to find out what they’ll do for you. Unfortunately, several shops no longer double or treble their prices. Even stores that double coupons will not double them if they specify “do not double.” In addition, some businesses provide double discounts, but only on particular days. To learn more about all of these regulations, call or visit your local shop.

6. Combine Coupons

Stacking coupons is not the same as doubling coupons. When you stack coupons, you combine a shop coupon with a manufacturer’s coupon. Most businesses permit this, but like with doubling, it’s advisable to double-check first. Stacking is not just permitted at grocery shops. Stacking coupons has been known to happen in retailers like Kohl’s and JCPenney, outlet malls, and even online stores.

7. Make Use of Coupons That Have Expired

It’s an unusual occurrence, but expired coupons aren’t always useless. In my experience, even expired Bed Bath & Beyond coupons are accepted in shops. Then why do they put an expiration date on it? To be totally honest, I’m not sure – I just receive the rewards! Another option is to give expired manufacturer’s coupons to military families stationed overseas. They can utilize manufacturer’s coupons for up to 6 months after they’ve expired. To learn more about giving your expired coupons, go to SupportOurTroops.org.

8. Make Use of Coupons Offered by Competitors

Some shops will accept coupons from competitors. Some stores that accept competitor’s coupons include Walmart, Publix, ShopRite, Price Chopper, Jo Ann Fabric, Michaels, and Bed Bath & Beyond. Of course, restrictions like these might differ from company to store, so always double-check before utilizing them. When you have a coupon for the identical item at another retailer, this is a terrific method to take advantage of a discount at one store.

9. Look at the Weekly Ads

Some stores provide coupons in their weekly circulars. Even if they don’t, this is where you can see whether any coupons you have line up with weekly discounts. You may now browse your local weekly advertising online at most businesses.

10. Look for Coupon Combinations

If comparing advertising and discounts sounds too time-consuming, you’ll be relieved to find that there are websites that will do it for you. Many couponing websites provide “coupon matches,” which show which impending offers correspond to known, current coupons. LivingRichWithCoupons.com is one service that offers matching for over thirty retailers.

11. Make use of price matching

Some stores will match any competitor’s pricing. Target will drop your pricing if you locate the identical item (including color) for a cheaper price within 7 days, including in the next week’s Target ad or on sites like Amazon, Walmart, and BestBuy. You’ll need your receipt as well as confirmation of the cheaper price. Walmart follows a similar policy. Always verify the policies of a shop.

12. Make a list for each trip.

If you don’t have a list, it’s simple to spend more than you intended, buy junk food that looks good at the time, or otherwise sabotage your shopping intentions. You need a list before you head to the market, whether you like pen and paper or prefer to use grocery shopping list applications. This will help you stick to your budget.

13. Ask Customer Service for Rain Checks

When you have a terrific coupon for a sale item, but there aren’t any left on the shelf, it’s frustrating. Fortunately, rain checks are available. You may ask for a rain check from customer service, which allows you to return at a later date and still obtain the discount price. Rain checks sometimes expire after a week or two, so be sure to use them before they expire.

14. Save money by using coupons when items are on sale.

This is the true meaning of the word “coupon.” Rather than purchasing a standard priced item with a discount, wait for it to go on sale. If you wait, you’ll receive a far better deal. If your coupon expires before the item goes on sale, don’t panic; there will always be new coupons available, and products will always go on sale. You’ll be able to obtain the bargain again at some time because these things cycle.

15. Understand what “5 for $5” promotions imply.

When an item is on sale for $5 for five, you seldom need to buy all five. You can nearly always acquire one for a dollar if you look hard enough. It will mention if you have to buy a particular quantity of products to obtain the offer, although it might be hidden in the small print. It’s possible that sales are phrased this way to make it appear as though you need to purchase five when you don’t. Don’t be fooled by the store’s appearance!

16. Get There Early In The Day

This is especially true if you frequent places or regions where many other couponers congregate. You’ll have a better chance of finding exactly what you need if you go early in the sale and early in the day. If you arrive early enough, the shelves will not be cleared. It’s also a good idea to visit the store during “off” hours if you can, such as later at night or during regular business hours. Going about 5 p.m., when people are getting off work, will be too crowded.

17. Maintain a Price Book

This takes time and work, but it’s a valuable tool if you put in the effort. Take note of the costs you pay every time you go shopping – the best approach is to enter each receipt into a spreadsheet. You’ll be able to see what the greatest pricing are this way. When a business puts anything on “sale,” the price isn’t always lower or more than usual. A pricebook will assist you in determining whether or not a bargain is genuinely excellent.

Keep an eye on the cash register at all times.

Even cashiers and registers make blunders. Even when something is on sale elsewhere, a sale price or a coupon may not appear. You can rapidly solve it if you pay attention to the register and what the products are ringing up as.

19. Check Your Receipt for Errors

Before you leave the store, do this (or the parking lot). You may still go back to customer service and have them correct anything that went wrong if you didn’t catch something at the register. Keep all of your receipts in case the prices at your stores are same or one of your things is defective.

20. Keep a stockpile of items you use on a regular basis.

If you use a lot of deodorant, stocking up on it when a sale coincides with a coupon is a good idea. When you save money on goods you use frequently, your bank account will thank you. You don’t need a massive stockpile of stuff like you see on TV, but you should have certain essentials on hand.

21. Donate Any Unwanted Items

Even if it’s on something you don’t use, it’s difficult to say no to a good price. If you can obtain something for almost nothing and can afford it, go for it. However, don’t leave it in your garage for years unused. If you have more of something than you can utilize, consider donating it. It will feel nice to know that your new couponing skills are benefiting others.

22. Understand What “One Coupon Per Purchase” Means

Some coupons state “one coupon per purchase,” leading cashiers to believe you may only use one coupon per transaction. It would state “one per transaction” if it was about transactions, which it isn’t. You can only use one coupon per transaction, which means you can only use one coupon per item. You’re alright if you have many coupons for different things and none of the specifics suggest you can’t combine them.

23. Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever

It is against the law to copy coupons. A coupon from the newspaper, or even one that you’ve printed, cannot be photocopied. Stores will refuse to accept anything that seems to be photocopied, and if you’re found trying to use duplicated coupons, you might face serious consequences. By lawfully acquiring your coupons, you may avoid all of that.

24. Examine the little print

Look for restrictions on coupons, sale advertisements, and anyplace else where a discount is advertised. You won’t have to waste time arguing with cashiers about whether or not a coupon is acceptable if you’re well-informed. If you believe an offer is too good to be true but the fine print says it isn’t, it should be permitted. To earn your discount, don’t be hesitant to point out the tiny print to cashiers or customer support.

Don’t Forget About Your Rebates (No. 25)

Some refunds are fantastic bargains. The hitch is that they might be difficult or just inconvenient to complete, and organizations who provide rebates are well aware that you may forget to do so. Do all you can to get the reimbursement as quickly as possible. Stick sticky notes on your laptop, set reminders in your phone, or do everything else you can to avoid forgetting.

26. Request papers from family or friends.

If you know someone who receives the newspaper but never uses the coupon inserts, see if you can borrow them. Most individuals would gladly offer them to you if they were going to toss them away anyhow. This is an excellent approach to obtain numerous copies of coupons in a legal and cost-effective manner.

27. Read a variety of coupon blogs

Different bloggers are interested in various themes, stores, and bargains. Reading various blogs will guarantee that you don’t miss anything that another blogger hasn’t written about. Feedly, NewsBlur, The Old Reader, and Newsvibe are all services that allow you to aggregate many blogs to read. You can also use IFTTT to automatically store blog content to Pocket, one of my favorite article-reading apps.

28. Don’t Spend Money on Things You Won’t Use

You should not purchase anything that you know will be discarded. This is, of course, unless you want to give them away. I propose that you concentrate on your personal requirements until you have become an adept couponer and have stored up on products that you use frequently. Then, if you truly want to buy something you don’t need or aren’t sure about, go ahead and do it; you can always give anything you don’t use.

29. Keep an eye on expiration dates

If you’re buying numerous things, put the older ones at the front so you’ll notice them first. So that your stuff don’t expire, you should utilize the older ones first. There’s no reason to squander something simply because you misplaced it at the back of the pantry; prevent this from happening in the first place by ensuring that the newer items you purchase go further back in the pantry.

30. Look for Binder Alternatives

Binders aren’t for everyone when it comes to couponing. Some people like their envelopes to be labeled with categories or letters of the alphabet. Another common alternative is accordion files. If a binder isn’t working for you, try several ways to organize your coupons.

31. Join Email Lists for Restaurants

Because of the high expense of dining out, many couponers strive to avoid it. While it is true that it is more expensive, many restaurants provide email lists with many coupons. You may get some pretty good coupons around birthdays and other times of the year. Red Robin is one of the greatest places for this since they send you vouchers for a free burger on your birthday!

32. Use A Coupon Bag To Organize In Style

Coupon bags are a good option if you don’t like binders, envelopes, or other methods of coupon management. Glowgirl16, an Etsy seller, produces beautiful bags made just for your couponing requirements. For a few dollars more, you can have personalized labels or extra dividers. This is a fantastic alternative for fashion-conscious couponers.

33. Ignore TLC’s “Extreme Couponing”

“Extreme Couponing” is a wacky program that portrays couponers as mad. TLC is known for presenting the most bizarre episodes in order to attract viewers. They reveal couponers who trash dive, spend every waking hour couponing, push their children to participate in it, and even steal to acquire their savings. Furthermore, some of them utilize 15 shopping carts and completely empty the shelves. You should not accept any advise from this program since these are very bad things to do.

34. Keep an eye out for blinkies and peelies

Blinkies are coupons that may be found in a grocery store’s blinking machines, generally in the aisles near the item. Peelies are coupons that may be peeled off of packaging directly. These are particularly effective methods for obtaining coupons for items for which you may not otherwise have coupons.

35. Keep an eye out for tearpads

These are similar to blinkies and peelies in that they may be found throughout the supermarket. They’re torn-off coupons on a pad, commonly featured on special displays. They’re not as prevalent as they once were, but they’re still worth keeping an eye out for.

36. Don’t Empty Your Shelves

If you have a large family and go through a lot of cereal, it’s OK to buy ten boxes. However, purchasing a large number of products only for the purpose of stockpiling is not acceptable. When couponing, it’s impolite to leave nothing for other shoppers, especially if those products are something they need need. If an item is available in limited quantities, buy only a few. Always leave a few more on the shelf for others. It’s only basic politeness; you wouldn’t be pleased if you went seeking for something and discovered there was none left.

37. Treat cashiers with respect

When it comes to coupons, some cashiers aren’t well-versed, but try to remain cool and polite at all times. Understand why the cashier would be irritated if you’re using 15 coupons and some of them are unclear or don’t ring up correctly. “Kill them with kindness,” as they say, and don’t get upset if a cashier is rude to you. It’s not the end of the world if you have a negative grocery shop experience.

38. Do not steal Peelies, Blinkies, or Tearpads.

People abusing the system and everyone loses is one of the reasons why you may not encounter many peelies, blinkies, or tearpads on your shopping visits. Part of the blame is undoubtedly due to “extreme couponing.” If you’re not going to buy the item with the peelie on it, don’t remove it Because you’re being unpleasant to the person who is going to buy it and might have saved money. Always consider how your actions might effect you if they were taken by someone else. You should not do that if you would be unhappy if someone stole all the tearpad coupons.

39. Newspaper Inserts Shouldn’t Be Stolen

This is yet another basic etiquette advice that must be stated! When I was a kid, one thing that really irritated my mother was getting newspapers that didn’t have any coupons in them. Who knows, maybe an extreme couponing paper courier took them. All I know is that stealing coupons from someone’s newspaper will make them angry. This is something that a lot of individuals on “Extreme Couponing” do. Stealing is a felony, and while coupons aren’t as valuable as a mobile phone, it’s nonetheless unlawful and impolite.

40. Send compliments or complaints to manufacturers via email.

Is there a particular product that you adore? Do you have a certain cereal, beverage, or even laundry detergent that you prefer? Send an email (or a letter) to the product’s maker. They will almost always give you coupons if you leave your email and mailing address with them. The same is true for things you don’t like, especially if you still want to do business with them in the future. Inform the firm that manufactures the frozen supper if it isn’t up to grade. To make up for it, they’ll most likely offer you coupons or perhaps a voucher for a free purchase, just like they did with compliments.

41. Barter Coupons With Other People

You may trade vouchers with others either online or among your pals. Because you might not be able to get some coupons in your location, exchanging is the best option. Of course, you’ll have to pay for an envelope and postage if you trade with someone online, but the savings from the coupons should make up for it. Some people even buy coupons online – I’ve never done this, but it’s something that a lot of couponers swear by. The coupons save them more money than they paid for them.

42. Inquire about policies at your local grocery store.

Not only does each shop have its own set of policies (which may or may not be consistent with the company’s main policies), but they also vary over time. Due to “Extreme Couponing,” several shops no longer double or triple coupons. Give them a call or chat to customer care at the store on a regular basis to make sure they’re still giving bargains like that. You won’t be caught off guard if you expect an item to be really inexpensive but don’t receive any.

43. Save more money by using Swagbucks coupons

Swagbucks is a “get paid to” website where users can earn points for doing things like conducting surveys, viewing videos, and signing up for offers. These points can be exchanged for Amazon and other retailer gift cards. Printing (and using) coupons is one of the ways Swagbucks users may earn points. Swagbucks uses Coupons.com to provide these coupons, therefore you may or may not be able to print them if you already have them from the site. Remember that the coupons must be utilized in order to receive the points.

Use Coupons For Travel/Trial Size Products 44.

Many coupons state that they aren’t good on smaller items, however others are. If you’re used to seeing “not valid on travel size” printed on the bottom of coupons, it’s easy to forget about them. If the coupon doesn’t name them, but a lesser version of the product is available, you might wish to acquire it. Because they’re cheap to begin with, you might be able to obtain the item for almost nothing.

45. Double-sided printing

Many discount websites allow you to print twice. If you’re currently printing coupons from the internet, pick them and try again. You’ll most likely be able to print them again, but you’ll be cut off after that. This is an excellent technique to legally get more coupons for an item in order to purchase multiples.

46. Make Use Of Promo Code Extensions On The Internet

If you purchase online, you’ll need a browser plugin to help you discover promo codes. Honey, which is available for Chrome and Firefox, is my preferred browser. Coupons At Checkout is another option for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Internet Explorer. Both look for codes automatically at checkout on a variety of websites to ensure you don’t miss out on any possible discounts.

47. Visit a variety of stores

You definitely have a favorite grocery shop, but don’t be afraid to go out to get the greatest value. On something for which you have coupons, a different retailer may offer a significantly greater value. Check out a few different weekly advertisements to see if there’s something better.

48. Make Certain Your Coupons Aren’t Fake

Fake coupons are a real thing, and they’re a major issue. It’s possible that a voucher you get as a PDF download is fake. Only a few firms send coupons in this manner. Check CouponInformationCenter.com to discover if it’s real or not. They exist to prevent coupon fraud and preserve detailed records of the counterfeit coupons that circulate.

49. Locate a Food Bank or Shelter in Your Area

They’re probably interested in products you have but won’t use, as well as additional coupons you won’t use. Look for local food banks and shelters on the internet, then call them to see if they need anything you have. With the coupon talents you’ve gained, you’ll be able to accomplish something fantastic.

50. Place coupons beside a product or give them to the cashier.

This is something my mother taught me, and it’s a terrific method to give away coupons you don’t need. If you don’t intend to use a coupon you’ve clipped or printed, put it on the shelf near the goods or ask the cashier if they’ll give it to someone who has the item in their basket. I’ve also done this with restaurant coupons that I don’t use – many places give out free dessert coupons, and I seldom have dessert, so I ask my waiter if they can give it to another table. You’ll feel better if you do something decent for others.

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