Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Couponing 101

I get asked a lot about couponing and I'll be the first to admit that I know zilch...nothing...nada. BUT, I do have friends who do. So Maryann from Coupon $avvy in Cowlitz Co. has put together this beginners guide for people like me. Thanks for doing this Maryann!

Couponing started out as survival for my family but soon turned into a new way of life.

Over the last year I have suffered many trial and errors but through my journey found a way to feed my family of 7 for $25.00 a week.

If you are ready to start your own frugal journey here are a few easy to follow steps.


Where do you find the Coupons?

~The sunday paper is the best way to start collecting coupons. I buy anywhere from 7-15 paper a week.

~eBay is a great place to buy coupons.

~Magazines often have multiple coupons. The best one is All You magazine sold at Walmart

~Online sites such as Coupons.com offer many high value coupons


I have my coupons, now what?

~The biggest mistake beginers make is rushing out and using coupons.

I want to make the biggest bang for my buck so I wait to use my coupon until the item goes on sale.

~Before making your weekly menu, take note of what you have on hand in your pantry. This single task saves me a ton of money.

As a couponer I have had the opportunity to build a large overstock of items my family eats regularly, by doing this I only have to purchase the fresh fruits, veggies and dairy products.

~Just because you have a coupon doesn't mean you have to use it! Unless you know your family will use the product, don't buy it. Remember you are trying to save money.

~In the beginning I thought I had to rush out a score every deal, this became very overwhelming and took way too much time. Remember deals are always coming and going and every deal isn't a GOOD deal.

Loading my loyalty cards

~Couponing has come a long way in the last 20 years. It used to be we just cut out our coupons and that was it. Now we have text coupons, internet printables and ecoupons. I must admit I was slow at jumping onto the ecoupon bandwagon but now I wouldn't leave for the store without them.

An ecoupon is a coupon that you load directly to your store (Safeway or Fred Meyer) club card. What most people don't understand about ecoupons is that they can be stacked with your manufacture coupon aswell as a store coupon.

For example:

Yoplait yogurt is on sale at Safeway for $2

I use:

$1 manufacture coupon

$1 ecoupon from Shortcuts

$1 ecoupon from Cellfire

$.50 Safeway double

______________________

I just walked away with free yogurt and $1.50 in my hand!

Loading your club card is a simple task that can save you a lot nof money.

www.shortcuts.com

www.cellfire.com

www.safeway.com

Couponing has turned into something I enjoy and is no longer a source for survival.

By saving money on food and household products I am able to save my money for other things a family of 7 needs.

I wish you the best of luck on your new frugal journey,

Happy Clipping!!

~Maryann

Coupon $avvy in Cowlitz Co.

5 comments:

Katie said...

Thanks for posting this! I have been couponing for about 2 years, and LOVE it, but I am still learning so many new things too! I use 2 websites that tell me where the deals are with the coupons, I could not live with out them! (pinchingyourpennies.com and couponsense.com)

printable coupons said...

My favorite coupon site is http://www.clickmycoupon.com/ here you can also get restaurant freebies and special, printable coupons for food and clothes, rebates and deals.

Pamela said...

Couponing is also a good way to be able to give to a food pantry. Our church also puts together crisis care kits for situations like Katrina and Haiti. I was able to donate toothpaste, shampoo, soap, etc. without it costing anything or very little out of pocket. I just went to my stockpile and shopped! Over time I have learned for some things I won't even pay out of pocket because I know that I have plenty in the stockpile to give away and to use. There are always deals.

pscole3467 at gmail dot com

Gypsy Trader said...

You know you have couponing in your genetics right ? Grandma had one whole room dedicated to the organization of her coupons. Takes a lot of time and I know you're a very busy Mom, maybe when you're a Grandma .... teehee

Anonymous said...

If your friend is buying 15 newspapers at 1.50 each for the coupons, she doesn't really have a grocery budget of $25/week. It's more like $47.50.