Have you ever walked out of a grocery store with a cart load of food and necessities for $30 or less? I have! Let me tell you, it’s awesome! Honestly, I don’t always coupon and shop sales, but when I do, I save about 60 percent, on average, on groceries. So how do I do it? Read On!
How to Coupon
The first Sunday paper every month has a ton of coupons.Make sure you set a reminder to buy one every month. For newspapers with only weekday editions, you may be able to get the coupons in the Friday paper too. Coupons are also available online, but unless they’re over a dollar, they’re not worth the ink and paper, so skip them.
The trick with coupons is to only clip coupons of items you actually use and need. If you don’t use an item, don’t clip the coupon. Plain and simple. Many manufacturers release coupons of new items to sell the product. The truth is, if you aren’t going to use it this month, you shouldn’t buy it.
I have wasted more money than I care to mention on buying new items because they’re cheap! Take a lesson for me and just stick to the items you use.
Search Sale Ads
Many companies schedule their sales to match the coupons in the first Sunday news papers. Drug stores, such as CVS and Walgreen’s offer awesome deals on these items to lure in couponers. If a retailer runs out of an item, don’t fret. Most still offer rain checks for the sale price. Ask a customer service associate or manager for more information.
Go through the ads online or the paper version in the Sunday paper. Write down the items you buy from each ad, the name of the retailer, and the sale price of each item. This is included on the FREE Coupon Shopping Organizer at the end of this post.
Match Coupons with Sales!
Match your coupons with the sale items. This is how you receive 60 percent off or get free merchandise! For example; if you find pasta sauce on sale for $1.50, and it’s normally $2.19, and you have a $.50 coupon for it too, you will end up paying $1! How cool is that?
Some retailers, such as Kroger, offer digital coupons too! Kroger has coupon events where you can purchase up to five of a particular item. Combine the coupon with their sale ads for amazing discounts. I regularly buy my All laundry detergent for $1.99 a bottle there! They also offer great deals on frozen pizza, shaving supplies, and feminine hygiene products.
After the extreme couponing craze a few years ago, many retails stopped the doubling coupons. Some grocers may still offer double coupons, but you will have to search. Just call around and ask them if they double coupons. If you find a store that does, ask what the maximum coupon value is for their double promotion. This is typically $.50 to $1.
Once you know who offers double coupons, target the sale ads of that store for coupons up to that value. If they double up to 50 cents, set every coupon to the side of that value or less and scour their ad for matches. If there is match or the item is inexpensive, buy it there.
Plan Meals Base on Sales
Plan your weekly meals based on sale items and coupons. If you find a great frozen pizza sale and have coupons to boot, eat pizza a couple times that week. Planning your meals based on what is on sale can make a huge difference in your grocery bill.
Sometimes you can find great deals on ground beef and taco kits or Hamburger Helper. If the beef is on a really good sale, buy it and freeze it immediately. When items for dinners with the ground beef go on sale, buy those and you already have the sale beef in your freezer. Planning your meals this way takes time and practice, but can save you tons of money.
Don’t Over Purchase!
Don’t purchase more that what you can use by the expiration date or use within 6 months. It’s not worth taking up the space in your home, unless you have plenty of room for storage. Only purchase items your family uses on a regular basis. If you “might” use it, don’t buy it. Shop Smart!
Planning is Key
Shopping coupons and sales doesn’t have to be mysterious or difficult. Careful planning is a great way to save money and live well on less.
Do you have advice for others? Please share it in the comments. To download the FREE Coupon Shopping Organizer, enter your email address in the form below and click “Download.”
Thanks again for reading! Remember to sign up for updates and the monthly newsletter!