Coupon FAQs – 10 Ways to Save More Money Shopping in 2013

clipping coupons

 

Our family has been using coupons for about 3 years now, and while we’re by no means experts, we have saved thousands of dollars a year on food, household items, restaurants, entertainment and more.  These savings have paid our bills during periods of unemployment, paid for a new roof and new furnace without having to rely on credit cards, and also enabled our family to indulge on fun stuff like concerts, dining out, trips, vacations and more. Even if you don’t “need” to use coupons, the savings you could experience could help improve your  own and your family’s lifestyle and give you some some extra $$$ to afford some of the extras you’ve been longing after.

 

If you’re just thinking about starting to use coupons, or just getting started, here’s 10 ways coupons can help you save money this year.

Use Coupons:
Given the name of my website, you might be thinking, “Duh!”, but coupons are one of the top ways to save money and they’re not just for groceries anymore! You can use them at restaurants, retailers, entertainment venues, automotive repair places and more. I’ve even used coupons on things like paint, outdoor lighting, patio furniture and more. By doing a quick search online, you can find coupons on many items and services, so it always pays to take a look. Watch for my post coming soon on the best places to find coupons.

Stack Coupons:
Did you know that many stores (that have store specific coupons) will allow you to use these coupons AND manufacturer coupons at the same time on the same items for extra savings? This is called “stacking” and is a great way to score some amazing deals at Target, Walgreens and other retailers. Watch coupon blogs like this one for store match-ups to see how to score the best deals!

Play the Drugstore Game:
Some couponers I know, including readers of this site have mentioned that they are hesitant to play the drugstore games at Rite Aid, CVS and Walgreens. While it does take a bit of time and patience to learn, the game is worth it and there are some amazing deals to be had. I’d recommend starting with just one drug store near you and taking it slow on small deals for freebies, and then working your way up from there. We have scored thousands of dollars worth of free groceries and merchandise – and only wish we had started on the games sooner!

Price Match:
Do you have coupons for Store A, but Store B has the product you want on sale cheaper? Do a price match!  Most major retailers will price match competitor ads and it’s a great way to score a lower price. Whether you do it to use coupons, or merely to save time by getting the best price on several items all at one store, price matching is a great way to save money at the register. Click here to see my tips and tricks on how to price match.

Rebates:
I used to think rebates were a hassle and not worth the time, especially since so many of them can take weeks and sometimes months to arrive. I even once let a $75 rebate expire (gasp!) because I got too busy to fill it out. I’ve since found out that rebates are really easy and really lucrative. You can even make a profit on lots of purchases. Just keep your receipts, cut out your UPCs and submit those forms, and the checks will start rolling in!

Reward Programs:
Yes, they do take a bit of work to accrue points, but you can rack up some serious savings and freebies just by participating! In the last couple years  we’ve gotten free bikes (yes — more than one!) for the kids, hundreds of cases of soft drinks, free diapers, free amusement park tickets, restaurant gift cards, store gift cards, free product coupons, free DVD’s, free toys and more equaling thousands of dollars in merchandise all from reward programs like Coke Rewards, Disney Rewards, Swagbucks and more. While they do take a little bit of time, the results are worth it – especially since it’s free!

Stockpile:
If you’ve been using coupons long, or read other coupon sites, you’re probably familiar with the term stockpiling – which is basically just stocking up on non-perishables when something is free or really, really cheap to save $$$ so that you don’t have to buy it later when it’s full price. Doing this doesn’t make you hoarder, or even as overboard as those folks on Extreme Couponing on TV, it’s just a way to save money as well as time. We LOVE our stockpile and use it daily. We no longer have to make last minute trips to the stores, or run out at 11 o’clock at night for diapers. We have the things we need on hand and pay the best price possible for them – and save lots of cash doing so!

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Some deals are just not worth the time it takes to do them. If the discount is small, or it’s a product you don’t use, or don’t need right now – it’s OK to let it go. Also don’t sweat it if you have a busy week and just don’t make it out to score the deals you were looking for. Sales and promotions run in cycles, and if you miss a deal this time – trust me it will be back again.

Keep Those Receipts
Have you ever bought something only to see it go on sale the next day? Many stores will offer to refund the difference if it’s a reasonable amount of time. Keep your receipts, and when this happen, check out the store policy – you might just be able to get some $$$ back due to the new sale price, plus you never know when you’ll need those receipts for warranties, returns or other deals!

Use Technology to Your Favor:
I admit, I was late getting on Facebook and Twitter, but these are amazing tools among others that can help you score some serious savings, and if you’re not using them, you’re missing out. You can create a duplicate account for promotion offers (much like you might have a “junk” e-mail address) so that you keep promotions away from your personal stuff, and avoid pimping out your friend list. I also recommend using an RSS feed to stay up to date on deals from various blogs and websites. RSS can stream updates from your favorite sites directly into your MyYahoo, your Google or other e-mail system, so you can check hot deals at a glance and stay constantly up to date. I love mine and check it many times a day!  You can subscribe to 2 Kids and a Coupon RSS feed on the right hand side of the screen (look for the little orange button with the white waves on it).

How do you use coupons to save your family money?  Leave a comment below!
Like This Post? Be Sure to Share!Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Google+Share on StumbleUponShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInDigg thisShare on Reddit

Comments

  1. Melissa portillo says:

    I love now stores like shoprite have electronic coupons that you can clip to your rewards card from there website!

  2. Yep. Digital coupons are great and very easy — especially if you don’t have time for the clipping!

Speak Your Mind

*