Q: "I feel like there are no coupons available for the products I like to buyany advice?"
A: One thing that will make you more successful in couponing is being open to try new brands. Let's say, for instance, that you have a favorite type of laundry detergent that you have used for years. You feel a certain amount of "brand loyalty" towards it, but you have noticed there are never any high value coupons for it. Would you be willing to try a different brand if you could get it for super cheap? It is important to be flexible when it comes to the brands you buy, because you will save the most money that way. I have actually discovered some products I LOVE and that I never would have tried if it hadn't been for couponing. Why not try something new if you can get it for free?
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Q: "I only eat organic foods, and there are never coupons for that. Can I still be successful couponing?"
A: Although coupons for organic products are rare, you can still save a lot of money by couponing. Let's say you usually spend $150/week on groceries (including toiletries, paper products, cleaning supplies etc) for your family. Once you start couponing you will realize that most of the non food items your family uses everyday can be gotten for pennies or even for free. If you no longer are spending $75 a month buying those misc items, then you will realize you are now only spending $75/month total and that you cut your spending by $50. If you only eat organic foods you may never reach that 90% savings level, but you will still find yourself saving a nice amount (and who can complain about that?)
Q: "I have two different coupons for the same item, can I use both of them if the barcodes are different?
A: No, you can't. All coupons state "one coupon per purchase" and this means you can only use one coupon per item purchased. In order to use a coupon, you also must make sure you meet all conditions the coupon requires. This means if the coupon says "Buy two and save $1.00" then you must buy two to be able to use that one coupon.
Q: "Since most coupons are limited to two prints per computer, can I make copies if I need more?"
A: No. And no. DO NOT COPY COUPONS. It is a big no no! Here is a sample printable coupon:
Do you see those numbers under the scan box thing in the upper right hand area? Those numbers should always be different. If you copy coupons that number will be the same (obviously) and the store will not get reimbursed for the coupon. In my opinion using copied coupons is the same as stealing, so please don't do it. (Also, each coupon is printed with your IP address on it, so if you copy coupons you will get caught and receive huge fines and/or jail time.)
If you need more printable coupons you may need to get creative. Think about asking friends and family to print them out for you, or see if you can print them from your local library.
Q: "Can I print coupons in black and white, or do they have to be in color?"
A: Black and white coupons are perfectly acceptable, so feel free to print them this way and save your color ink. You can even set the default settings on your printer to print exclusively in black and white.
Q: "At the store today the cashier would only let me use one coupon since they say "one coupon per purchase". What that correct?"
A: The cashier was incorrect. A "purchase" is defined as one item being bought. Next time a cashier gives you a hard time ask them "Well, how many items am I purchasing?" Obviously if you are purchasing five items you should be able to use five coupons. If a coupon says "One coupon per TRANSACTION" then the only way to use more than one coupon is to buy one item, use the coupon, pay and then do it all over again.
Q: "Every time I go to get the great deals, the shelves are empty and it is so frustrating! Can I do anything about that?"
A: I totally understand the frustration empty shelves can cause. I live in the "land o' couponers". Really. There are about a dozen couponers for every regular shopper (okay, well maybe not that many, but it sure feels that way!) I learned long ago not to expect to walk into a store and find the sale items in stock. Instead I take advantage of one of couponing's most underutilized elements. The rain check. A rain check is a slip of paper the store gives you when a sale item is out of stock. On the rain check the store employee will write down the item you want to buy, the sale price, and the quantity you we're trying to buy. You can bring that rain check back in the future and pick up your items for the sale price at your convenience. When using rain checks there are a couple things to remember: 1. In most instances if you are getting a rain check and you are planning to use coupons with it, if your coupons expire before you collect on your rain check, you are usually out of luck. Most stores will not accept expired coupons regardless of whether or not it was their fault for not having enough items in stock. 2. Sometimes between the time you get your rain check and the time you go to use it, newer, BETTER coupons come out, which is great! Also, if you have a rain check you may want to check eBay for better coupons to pair up with it to score an even better deal than you originally anticipated.
If you plan on buying lots of something in a sale, make sure you preorder- you don't want to be the reason for the empty shelves. Please speak to your store manager before the sale and let them know you are wanting to buy lots of one item so they can place a special order for you. It will make you happy because you will get all of what you need, and it will make them happy because they will not have to deal with grumpy customers all week who are complaining about the empty shelves.
Q: "What is the best way to find out about an upcoming sale?"
A: The best way to find out about upcoming sales is to view the upcoming ads and match ups. You can see the ad scans at the "Iheart" sites. The sooner you are able to find out about a sale the better because you want to have plenty of time to prepare and stock up on extra coupons if you need them.
Q: "Where is the best place to get coupons?"
A: I get about 80% of my coupons from the Sunday paper, and the rest are from the computer.
Q: How can I get extra coupons for an upcoming sale?
A: If I need more than my usual six copies of each coupon, I usually get them off eBay. Here is what I do:
1. Seach eBay for coupons (like "Purex coupons")
2. Narrow my search by only looking at sellers who offer a "Buy It Now" price. (When you are buying extra coupons you need them ASAP so waiting for an auction to end will not work.)
3. Find a batch of coupons that is the right price
4. Check out the seller's rating. (I will only buy from seller's who have high ratings)
5. Make the purchase via PayPal
6. Wait for your coupons to come in the mail!
There is also the option of using a clipping service. There are many different ones out there. With a clipping service you pay per coupon (usually between .15-.25 cents) and then you pay a flat rate for shipping. Most clipping services also require a minimum purchase as well.
EBay is great if you are looking for several of one kind of coupon (at least ten) and clipping services are nice if you just need a few of several different kinds of coupons.
Q: "How do I go about getting coupons directly from my favorite companies?"
A: In preparation for my episode, I wrote a lot of different companies. When I write to them, I don't ask for coupons, I usually just let them know I like their products. I use a general letter for all of them, but I always make sure to mention something very specific about a certain one of the companies' products. Some of the coupons I used in my episode I received because of a complaint (like the diaper ones). If you take time and send feedback (good or bad) to companies, many times they will send you coupons in appreciation.
Q: "I want to start, but it all seems so overwhelming! Where do I even begin?"
A: First off, check out my 8 step Extreme Couponing beginners guide on here. I tried to write a simple, easy to understand step by step guide to get you started! Ask questions! Feel free to stop by my Facebook page www.facebook.com/rebeccadavidsonextremecouponing.com and ask me any questions you may have!
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Posted in Financial Services Post Date 10/02/2018