Monday, April 04, 2011

C is for Coupons

It seems like every where I look these days I hear about coupons and how great they are.  They've had coupon gurus on the news, commercials for various stores saying how great their in store coupons are, and they even have a new tv show dedicated to hard core couponers.  It's crazy.

My mom recently got into the coupon craze after taking a couponing class...yes, such things really do exist....and now happily (I assume) spends a few minutes each day going through the coupons from that days newspaper.  Her little coupon pile is getting impressive and today she managed to save $100 and some change at Publix.  She was thrilled and is still showing the receipt to everyone.

If you're in the central Florida area, this is the site mum loves and browses before shopping:

Couponers United

It takes a bit of getting use to at first, I had to play around a bit to find out where everything was, but it has this really nifty section if you go to coupons > coupon database. Type in what you're looking for, the more generic the better I've found, and hit search.  If a coupon for it exists it'll pop up and tell you where to find it.  
Now I hear you ask, why more generic? I'll tell you!  I was looking for candy for Easter and typed in Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, at the time I got nothing, no coupons in existence.  For fun I typed in Reese's and located 3 different coupons for a mixed bag of candy that had Reese's in it.  Since I liked the other candy it came with I was able to use a great coupon that I might have otherwise overlooked.

Should you want to learn more about couponing, the lady that runs that site will teach a class for you if you ask, but you'll need (I think) 10 people in attendance, so go gather up your friends! 

I did learn one nifty trick from my mom after she took the class if you're lucky enough to have a Publix to shop at, you can use coupons for their fact you can use 2 coupons.  So say I buy 2 packs of X that are on BOGO.  I also have 2 coupons for $1 off X.  When it rings up at the register it shows you've purchased 2 X's, then the store takes off the price of one of those X's (BOGO) then also your coupons, so that the one pack of X you're actually paying for just got $2 knocked off, which in some cases makes it practically free.

Now if you want to see the far end of couponing, go check out TLC's Extreme Couponing

Don't feel bad if you never reach their level.  I decided after watching it that this is a form of approved hoarding for people with addictive personalities.  When 1/3 of your house is stuffed with the spoils of your tri-weekly shopping trip, it's time to take a step back.

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