As couponer I can honestly tell you we are definitely among those who get stereotyped. When I walk in the store with my large pink binder, I get tons of looks especially while waiting in line. I can only imagine what they are thinking? Oh my gosh, its going to be a while..she’s got a lot of coupons!” “She must not have any money that’s why she has to save or maybe she sells her stockpile”. All those things can deter you from doing what you came in the store to do in the first place. I’m a Couponer and I like to SAVE and live comfortably beyond my means without depriving myself. I’m not rich but even if I was I still would not over spend on something that is not worth it. Money can only grow if you save and invest, I’m always investing in my future. I coupon in bulk because even if I use this one product now, in the future I average 20 uses in a year and right now they are free!! Most of my stockpile never gets too large because I know someone that might need it. Don’t be afraid to walk in that store with a stack full of savings. Go in there with confidence and maybe when they hear how much money you spent they will go out asking you questions.
I’m going to sum up everything I know to teach you how couponing can be simple and easy . Couponing doesn’t have to be for the crazy savings lady or the penny pincher, its just to save enough for you to reach your financial goals. If anything couponing will teach you the absolute value in everything you purchase, and how to capitalize on it.In the beginning it can be hard, all the cutting, time spent going through flyers and planning it out…so time consuming. When you are learning something new it takes time.
Depending how driven you are to saving money you won’t waste any of it
The quickest and easiest ways to get in and out of the store is to plan ahead. Most of us are too busy to sit around and do all this prepping. I’m going to give you the skinny on how you can be a expert couponer with these tips and tricks. After a couple of tricks you wouldn’t even need to plan anymore, you will just be in a store and know what to do.
Let begin with the Coupons
A beginner starts with buying the paper, a good start but we are experts now so we buy in bulk and save time with a coupon insert delivery service. Most of these services ship out the inserts early so you will have them just in time. The couponing delivering service I highly recommend is Klip2Save.com or Wecouponclipz.com. I have used both of these companies services and have had my coupons delivered to my door in quick amount of time. You can order them in bundles, by insert whole or even pre-cut coupons individual, saving you time on cutting, yes!! If you want to maximize on the deals throughout the week make sure you are getting a minimum of five of each insert or coupon. Generally a high value coupon or a more popular item coupon will expire within two weeks so if you missed last week don’t order unless you are certain to use it. If this in not a surprise already, there are printable coupons, luckily there is a one stop shop for this as well, LOZO.COM. This website is for printable coupons, it pools all of the printable coupons on all sites and manufactures sites together in one. Also as if this was not good enough, even the clip to load websites are on there as well.
Deciding which Coupons to Print
So I don’t go overboard printing a thousand coupons, I think of these few things when I’m selecting which ones to print.
- What do I need, besides if its a good deal but if its something I ran out of on my shopping list. For instance, I only use Listerine for mouthwash and there is printable for it. Regardless if its on sale this week, I’m going to print it out because I use regularly. If you are a beginner couponer here’s another tip as well, keep in mind the printable coupons expire most of time after the insert ones you get in the paper.
- The high value printable is the ones I frequently chose to print even if I don’t know if there is a match up for it. Manfacturers usually place a higher value coupon on there website versus in the newspaper because they have other means to you going on there website. The coupon is just use to bring traffic to there site, but sometimes you have to sign up on the email list or opt-in club for the print out. What I consider to be high value are always a 50 off of one or a 75 cent off of one more than a 1/2 because they double at grocery store retailers. So that turns into a dollar off of one or a dollar fifty off of one.
- The Rare Necessity’s, keep the basics in mind because we buy them every month. What I’m referring to is like, Milk, Eggs, Toilet Paper and etc. and especially Meat, Fruit and Vegetables. The vegetables and fruits in particular are very rare coupons. So if you see them print them!!
- The are duplicates to my newspaper inserts. We already established that the printables expire later, and some if not all times you will see the same coupons in the paper are online as well. If you didn’t get a chance to get enough newspapers here is your chance. Another reason is sit was a good deal this week and you need to go back and do the deal a second time, that’s what a printable is for.
Clip to Load or Digital Coupon
So we covered Newspaper coupons and Printables, earlier you may have heard the Clip to Load coupons. Let me explain this type of coupon but there are different kinds so it might sound like to much, I’m giving you the quick version. Every store that excepts coupons as of this day in age might have there own system to apply those coupons on to an app or to your subscribers card. If you haven’t already started this, do it now it’s super worth it. Once you have the shoppers card see if they have an app you can download to your phone. On the app there are coupons you can clip and load to your card, during your shopping trip the coupon will come off. Since were experts at this I would only clip the coupons that you will most like make use of it within that week period. The reason why i say that is because most of time all of the clip coupons have that one use of it. After you purchase the item it doesn’t regenarate, its gone. Second Beginners tip is a two for one, number one, if you have a physical coupon and a clip coupon always use the clip one first, the app will always take off the downloaded coupon and you end up giving the printable away by mistake. Save that printable or insert coupon for another transaction or time. If the store has ‘STORE BRAND , printable coupons print those out as well. There are store coupons that you can stack with the loaded coupon or manufacture coupons, print them out versus letting the computer decided where it should attach it to. This topic I would personally apply to CVS because they have a machine you can print the ECB (extracarebucks) out and load the rest to your card.
CVS’s Couponing or Reward system.
- Cvs / ExtraCare Card: load to card deals, email subscriber receive weekly coupons, The percentage of quarterly spending comes back as a ECB print out at the machine.
ECB = Extracare Bucks
CRT= CVS’s store coupons, prints on receipt or from Coupon Machine in-store. Can be combined with Manufacturers coupon.
The Beauty Bucks Club, every $30 dollars spent on beauty supplies will generate $3.00 in ECB
Catalina’s and more…
The last in final coupons to address even though it usually doesn’t come in the order of things are Peelies, Catalinas. Peelies can be found on a product in the store, like a stickers they are one the item promoting the purchase. I tend to find Peelies on items that hardly have coupons in the inserts or on new items the brands. My favorite Peelies that I find on the item but rarely received are Soft drink coupons. Large brands promote the complexity of list of brands that are under there umbrella, so you might find a Peelies that says “When you purchase a case of Pepsi and get a frito lay chip bag for free”. In that scenario both brands work together business wise but you are saving on both.
Catalinas, these coupons spit out of the machine once an item is purchase. Through the time I have spent couponing, catalinas are my favorite. First reason they last for like a month or two, so after i pull it out of purse after a while it still can be used.
They usually spit out of the Catalina machine as you scan items for purchasing, they usually generate depending on the item you are buying so if you are at a self checkout station if you are lucky you can add it to your current purchase. I usually refer to a Catalina list post on other couponing sites to get an idea what items give Catalina’s like livingrichwithcoupons.com. The list helps but honestly you don’t really know unless you purchase the item and that’s how a master list is generated, everyone contributes.
In case your still not convinced…
You can also receive a store Catalina coupon for spending a certain amount on a brand item, or instant savings. Some stores keep track of the items you buy more frequently so you might get catalina for that as well. So do you like Catalina’s now? I do.
We just summed up the actual coupons so far, you might be a beginner but you will be an expert after this series. At this point you have all your coupons together, now what do you do with them? I actually wrote a post already about this you can click on the here or the photo below if you want to know how i organize them. Next in our series we are going to go over couponing in store, How I do it and tips and tricks to save you time at the checkouts. Keep in mind, I might not be familiar with store around your area so If you have questions comment on this post and i will try my best to answer them.