Monday, November 7, 2011

Couponing: Quick Tricks and Shortcuts

Last February, readers, we looked at how to get started with coupons. Now, let's look at some quick tricks and shortcuts from coupon experts that will take your couponing skills to the next level! 

1. Wait to save. Trent at the Simple Dollar says that the best thing to do with newspaper coupons is to not use them right away. Instead, he recommends saving coupons for four weeks,  and THEN going and buying the products. This is because typically, coupons are released by manufacturers for products, and one month later, those same products go on sale at grocery stores as the second step of their marketing strategies. By saving your coupons for a month, you can cash in on both the coupons and the sale prices, multiplying your savings. 

2. Think twice about subscribing to newspapers to save money. Tamra over at Discount Queens recommends NOT subscribing to a daily paper for coupons. Instead, she suggests shopping for manufacturer's coupons online on sites like ebay instead. It sounds wacky, but it's actually very easy (on ebay, anyway)! From's main web page, just type in "____________ coupons" (filling in the blank with whatever you want to find coupons in.) When your results page shows up, look at the expiration dates on the listings, and choose the coupons with a "Buy Now" option in order to guarantee that they get to you in time for you to use them. This saves money and time, because instead of spending money on a paper that may not have any coupons that you will use - or time looking for them -you know that every cent you spend will go towards saving. 

3. Start a conversation. Stephanie Nelson (aka "The Coupon Mom") says that talking to someone at the customer service desk or a manager at the stores where you regularly shop is a key component to scoring on savings. The best part - She gives you a list of questions to ask here. 

4. Don't fall for the myths. Jill Cataldo,one of the great coupon masters of our time, has a great article here about how the "reality" show "Extreme Couponing" is not an accurate or honest portrayal of real life couponers or deals actually achievable by regular couponing. 

And with that, friends, here's to another money-saving week! 

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