National Coupon Month
With September being National Coupon Month, now’s a great time to learn how to use coupons effectively, if you don’t already know. I remember being a little girl, carrying my mom’s huge book of coupons through the store while she rattled off what she was buying. I’d have to go through her alphabetically-indexed file, trying to decide whether crushed tomato coupons could go under “c” for crushed, “t” for tomatoes, or “s” for spaghetti sauce. Because of these (not exactly) traumatic experiences, I swore off coupons early in my adult years, but have recently picked up the habit, since there’s quite a bit of money to be saved. Here’s some of what I’ve learned:
- Check to see if the store you are shopping in has an App. Download that app and set up an account before you go shopping and many allow you to clip coupons before you even walk in the store
- Don’t go to the store with a huge box of unsorted coupons. Seriously, this is inefficiency at its best. Make a list and take the coupons that you need with you, leaving your filing system at home.
- Learn how to stack coupons. What this means is using a manufacturer’s coupon (the type you cut out of magazines and newspaper inserts) with in-store sales. For example, if you have a coupon for a dollar off of two bottles of salad dressing, wait until that brand goes on sale. If it’s normally $3 per bottle, but goes on sale for $2, then you use your coupon on two bottles, you’ll spend $3 for both bottles, total, saving 50 percent.
- Don’t buy items that you wouldn’t buy if you didn’t have the coupon, unless you’re getting the item for free, or nearly so. Saving 35 cents on a $4 item that you didn’t need or want anyway doesn’t make any sense.
- Be willing to try other brands if you can get a good deal. I recently found a coupon for a dishwashing detergent that I’d never bought before. While I’d been brand loyal in an effort to avoid water-spotted glasses, switching for a week to save a couple of dollars ended up being worth it; the new brand was just as good as the old one.
- Don’t go crazy. Is it possible to buy 86 sticks of deodorant if you can find them on sale and manage to scrounge up 86 coupons? Yes… buy why would you want to? Unless you’re vying for a spot on Extreme Couponing or you are making a big donation to a homeless shelter (which is a great reason to do exactly that!), you don’t need that many. Buy what you’ll use in a reasonable period of time, plus a few extras if you want, and leave the rest for other people.
- Find out your store’s policies. Some double or triple coupons, some will match store coupons of their competitors, some accept Internet coupons, and some will do none of the above. Learning what your store allows and doesn’t allow will go a long way in keeping you from putting forth extra efforts that won’t be acknowledged anyway.
- Don’t forget about coupon codes for items that you can order online! We keep a good selection of updated online coupons that you can use if you order from some of the ShopaholicMommies’ favorite vendors. Check it out and save money on products ordered from the convenience of your own home!
What are some of your favorite tips when it comes to using coupons? What’s been the most you’ve saved on a shopping trip? Tell us about it to encourage our readers!
I always forget to use them!
haha now im gonna tell the cashiers at the store and maybe they’ll appreciate coupons more 🙂
Thanks for sharing.
YES, YES, YES to #5! Extreme couponers drive me nuts. I don’t know how many times I’ve wanted to take advantage of a good sale plus coupons (And I only plan to buy what I need, which is always under 10) only to find the shelf cleared and none left in the back. Someone in front of me once had 100 tubes of toothpaste (on a good sale) when I only wanted 2. I left the store with none because she had cleaned them out.
I love coupons! I totally agree with not going without them organized. I’ve done that before and it’s a total waste of time. Now I always plan ahead even though it’s very time consuming. It drives me nuts when people buy 10 of something and leave none for the rest of us!
I had no idea September was National Coupon Month. I use coupons every time I shop, and follow the above tips. My biggest couponing don’t Is buying things you don’t need just because you have a coupon, I have seen consumers do this time and time again. Thanks for the great coupon advice.
I had no idea that it was National Coupon month. I use coupons all the time and you have some great tips!
ok! thanks for sharing– this ws interesting– I was wondering on a fell of these things
Good point about #5…I do make regular donations to various shelters and independent living programs for foster teens, so that’s worth it, but otherwise it would be ridiculous.
Thanks ~ great tips. Personally, I find digital coupons to be big hassel.
National coupon month! I love the surge in coupon awareness, but I don’t agree with extreme couponing.
I’m rather new to couponing but I had a very successful trip a month ago and saved $50. I was so excited. I want to learn more though. There is an orphanage in Africa that I have been working with and I really want to be able to help them but I need to learn some more – bloggers are helping a ton though!
extreme couponers drive me insane! i just want 1 or 2 of the items i have a coupon for and they have wiped out the shelves..now if i knew all those products were going to food banks for homeless shelters it wouldnt bother me one bit…but knowing most are going to end up in someones hoard in their house with the other 150 packs of toilet paper they have..burns me lol so yes please follow #5 lol thanks!! oh and every months is coupon month in my house LOL
These are very good tips you’ve posted!
Great coupon tips!!!
I never knew September was National Coupon Month, but ya learn something new every day!!
I’ve been using coupons for almost one year now and I’ve learned so much!! I find it helpful to figure out my shopping trip before I ever leave the house, matching up coupons and figuring everything to the penny with taxes. I also use individual envelopes for each store and have those coupons in their envelope which makes it easy to remember what coupons go where. I’ve saved a ton of cash and will always use coupons now! Items I don’t use but can get near free, I always donate to my church for needy families.
I already do all or most of these things 🙂 Thanks for the tips, I didn’t know there was a national coupon month.
I love couponing.
Thanks… great advice for me who just started couponing. I love saving $!
I didn’t like using coupons until someone told me the money I save on coupons ends up in my pocket. I never thought of it that way.