Saving Money on Groceries with Coupons

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The Most Important Thing About Couponing

Don't waste your time! The first time I decided to try out coupons (about a year ago), I began collecting them from every source I could. I went on a clipping frenzy, cutting every coupon I thought I might possibly use out. Then spent hours sorting them into categories and squeezing them into a series of baseball card holders. Finally I placed them in a large binder. Well that was a complete waste of time. Since then, I have learned how unnecessary this time spent was and also how ineffective it was. I ended up saving very little money and probably spending more than I would have, buying things that I did not need.

Time Spent Clipping Coupons

Now I have a rule I follow pretty rigidly and it works very well. I only clip coupons just before I go shopping (for about 15 minutes); sometimes I do this in the grocery store parking lot just before I go in. I always have a list of items I need to get to help me look for items on my list. I never have a huge amount of coupons; I might have 10 at the most.

Couponing

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Effective Tips for Couponing

There are several other things I do to help me save more than you might believe possible.

  • I only shop at two grocery stores and I always get their advertisements. If you don't get the newspaper, you can pick up these advertisements in the store for free.
  • All of the coupons I use come for free in the mail. I get a coupon pack once a week that includes grocery store coupons for the 2 stores that I shop at. Some stores also have coupons that can be printed right there when you walk in.
  • Sometime during the week, I quickly flip through these and trash the coupons or pages that I know I will not use. I put the others on a shelf (unclipped) for later use.
  • Just before shopping and clipping any coupons, I browse through the grocery store advertisements. I am scanning for specific things: the items on my list and staples such as flour that I may need to buy later in the year and special deals on those items specifically. Special deals would be BOGOs (buy one, get one half-off or free), buy 10 for $10 (this can often save you a great deal of money if it is a nonperishable item), and any mark-downs that catch my eye.
  • After scanning the paper, I clip coupons. I only clip the coupons for the items that I need or staples that I know I will need at a later time, and items that I both need and are one of the special deals.

Charmin Toilet Paper
Without Discounts
With Discounts
Price
$7.99 x 3 = $23.97
$6.99 x 3 = $20.97
Coupon
0
-1.00
Special Deal
0
-5.00
TOTAL COST
$23.97
$14.97
SAVINGS
0
$9.00

Effective Couponing Example

Here is an example: I didn't have toilet paper on my list, but we tend to run out of this item before I buy it, so I noticed when looking through the advertisement for the store I was at, that if I bought 3 packages of 12 double-roll Charmin toilet paper, I would save $5. In addition, this item was on sale for $6.99 (usually $7.99). When I looked through the coupons, I had one coupon for $1.00 off any Charmin purchase. The best case scenario would be having a total of 3 coupons - that is why you should keep multiple coupons for the same products. See the short video below for a great example of this. My total savings with the special deal, markdown and coupon is shown below. This only took a couple of minutes to plan and I saved $9.00!

Collecting Multiple Coupons for the Same Product

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4 comments

carol7777 profile image

carol7777 3 years ago from Arizona

Though I see it does take some time you have ultimately saved quite a few dollars. Good hub and good work.


Rosie writes profile image

Rosie writes 3 years ago from Virginia Author

Thanks carol7777. Yes, it does take some time but it can be managed well if you stay focused and don't stray from your needs. I think many people are having to pinch pennies now, so I hope this will help them.


Mark Johann profile image

Mark Johann 3 years ago from Italy

My mom used to do this and it is very clever to think of the savings you can make. It is a win win situation, I guess, from the establishment and you.

Coupons are not only promotional, it is also helpful to some.


Deni 23 months ago

Kim .THANK YOU so much for the grab bag!!!!! There was 1 coupon for Pop-Tarts ALONE that made the price so worth it! We saved a penny more! LOL And you got it to me so quilcky!!! I am gonna get a couple of more from you. TONS of diaper coupons they are great!!! Thank you again, this is certainly a money saver!!!!!!!

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