Monday, April 5, 2010

BOOT CAMP: Where to find coupons

Today we're going to go over some of the main sources for finding coupons:
1. Newspapers
2. Online sites
3. eCoupons
4. In stores
5. Magazines
6. Order inserts/coupons

1. Newspaper inserts:
Some have asked me if it's worth it to buy multiple papers at $2 each (Honolulu Star-Advertiser- who has connections for getting more than one subscription?).  I see it as manufacturers giving me money to buy their products- sometimes even taking them for free.  If I use more than $2 in coupons from each paper, I'm getting my money back and more. 

Some sites suggest having 1 paper per member of your family.  Having 2 or more of each coupon will also get you more mileage.  We already discussed the B1G1 coupons, but stocking your pantry will go a lot faster when you have more coupons to get more items in that trip.  Kmart is having a 10 for $10 on Barilla pasta this week- I can take in my $.75 coupons and get 5 for $.25, so I'll get 5 for the usual price of 1 ($1.25 is common store price) because I have multiple of the same coupon.

2. Online sites
If you'd rather print coupons (set your printer to the "quick/fast" print setting so you don't use as much ink), there are lots of sites you can check out.  RedPlum and SmartSource have some of the same ones as the newspaper inserts, but you can also use those as having multiples for good sales

You can go directly to the sites of the products you see on sale and want to find coupons for.  One site I follow suggests a campaign to write 5 companies daily and give them some feedback- positive or negative.  If I do have something negative, I try to let them know what changes I'd like to see, but this has gotten me some good coupons!  It is also why I now look forward to checking my mailbox.  Mailed coupons have been pretty good values- I got a $3 off IAMS coupon from a P&G quarterly mailer, and used it with my $3 off IAMS eCoupon- $5.99 total for an 8 lb. bag of dog food.

*If you click through the links on our website, you will help pay for the upgrades we have done to our site and the extras we do and give away-- we'd really appreciate it!*

3. eCoupons
Right now, Safeway is the only store that uses eCoupons.  These are coupons that are "uploaded" to your Club card and will automatically come off when you buy the particular products.  Please pay attention to if you need to buy 1 item or 2.

There's also a different kind of site- you can upload and get credit for in a different way. has eCoupons that get credited to your college fund instead of showing it coming off your receipt.  They also have a credit card that gives you 11% back on your grocery purchases.

4. In stores- Blinkies and Booklets
While I'm shopping in stores for groceries, I'm also shopping for free coupons.  The stores have "blinkie" machines for their products in their stores.  When I see them, I take a few and save them for a super sale.  Sometimes I don't use them at the same store I found them in. 
  • Safeway had a $.70/1 Kellogg's blinkie that I used on this week's Foodland B3G3 sale.  I showed you how to get those for $.60 per box after the milk coupons, but I got them for $.15 per box because I had those extra blinkie coupons!
  • Another example was the $1 off Crest toothpaste I found in Walgreens and I took 3, then Safeway had their $1.25 Crest sale- got each for $.25!
There are also sometimes booklets with coupons in them- some may be for a particular store or sometimes they are general.  Customer service desk is the best place to find any booklets.  Last week Foodland had a Spring Savings booklet with $15 worth of coupons in it (there were alerts through Twitter/Facebook- another good reason to follow!).  These are usually higher amounts than you'll find in printables.  The store-specific coupons can also be used with a manufacturers coupon, so you'll get to stack for extra savings!

When you get your receipt after your purchase, stores also have those machines that print out coupons based on the items you've bought as well.  They are not store coupons, but can be saved and used for a good sale later.  

5. Magazines
One of the best magazines for coupons is the ALL YOU magazine (only found at Walmart).  I did my subscription through Ebates, which gives you $5 back after your first order and about 26% back on the subscription price.  I'm watching for them to double the % back like when I did it, which is an even better deal.  They sent me back a check for the $5 + % back about a month later.

Sign up, then search for "" and then "ALL YOU" magazine.
26% back and $5 sign up bonus: under $10 for 12 issues
Or wait until I see them giving double % back to get 12 issues for $6.58- let me know if anyone is waiting!
They also post the list of what coupons are in each issue

6. Ordering coupons and inserts
The Coupon ClippersWhen you know of a month-long sale of something that you want to stock up on or you get a raincheck that you can wait a few weeks on, ordering specific coupons with an added "handling" fee may be your best route.  There are sometimes limits on amounts (up to 10) or minimums on purchase (must have $4 in an order), but this is how you can specifically get coupons you want.  One service is The Coupon Clippers, which sends out coupons on Tuesdays and I think one other day per week.  There's also Coupon Dede, which does whole inserts and clipped.

So there really are some great outlets to get coupons- any combination of these could work for you.


Dee Aki-Kauwe said...

I've signed up for email!! Excited :)

Sy's_momma said...

I subscribed to your emails. I like the end of the day that way I can see everything at once. :)

Sy's_momma said...

I subscribed to your emails. I like to get emails at night. So I can see everything at once. :)

Sun With Passing Showers said...

I've signed up to follow your RSS feed!