I am continually being asked and receiving e-mails about how to get started using coupons. I thought I would try to and put it all in one place as a resource for everyone to use as sort of a cliff notes version for coupons.
The #1 Question I am asked most:
How do I start. I don’t even know where to get coupons to get started?
There is more than one way to gather coupons. The Newspaper is of course the most well known. You can buy more than one paper or ask family and friends that do not coupon to save the coupon inserts for you. Some communities have a coupon box at their public Library that is shared by all. The internet! Companies are connecting more and more with consumers through the internet, via their product web sites and social network sites like Facebook. If you do not have a Facebook account I recommend getting one, for coupon printing if nothing else. There are also several sites on the internet that allows you print coupons. Such as Coupons.com, Redplum.com, Smart Source.com are to name a few. Coupon Clipping Services, these are services that process coupons and you can buy inserts or individual coupons. They do not charge a fee for the actual coupon only to process the coupons. A great Coupon clipping service is Whole Coupon Inserts.com and the Coupon Beat.com!!
Now that I have coupons, how do I use them to save the most money?
Answer: Pair your coupon with a sale! Every week the grocery stores put out their sales flyer. Spend time each week matching your coupons to the sale items. Menu plan with the same concept. Results is; not paying full price. It’s true for food and non food items alike. Next topic, to “really” maximize your savings. Learn to recognize your stores “sale cycle”. A sale cycle is the length of time between items going on sale. For example, if you use Zest soap and your family uses a Bar of soap a week and that Zest goes on sale every 6 weeks you should buy 6 bars of Zest to last until that item goes on sale again. If you add a coupon to that scenario that makes your final price even better! That is why you see those “couponers” with 10 boxes of cereal in their shopping cart. They have a coupon and are using the stores sale cycle to their best advantage.
How do I keep up with all of these coupons?
Answer: That’s a harder one to answer, because every one is different. I personally use the Binder method. The Binder method is a large notebook filled with plastic sheets that would normally hold baseball cards. I fill it with coupons instead. Some like the use the envelope method where they take out only the coupons they intend to use and put them into a envelope to take into the store. It may take you a little while to figure out what method works best for you.
Hopefully this will help get more people out there started on their couponing journey and as time allows I will add to this page along the way. The most important thing to add is that couponing is a way of life. It’s like any thing else in life worth doing, you have to put in the time and effort to make it work for you and I promise you will see huge results!! Keep a open mind and give it a whirl…….
You can also read my post on: How to set a grocery budget to start reducing your weekly grocery bill.