What if I told you that with a little planning and a little research, you could cut your grocery bill in half! When you combine coupons with store sales you can buy more groceries and pay less money. There are many things that you should never have to pay for again, like tooth paste, tooth brushes, dish soap, and pasta! Here are a few basic tips so you can start saving money now!
First, buy 2-4 Sunday papers so you can start collecting coupons. You get an even amount of newspapers so that you will have enough coupons if something is buy one get one free. I cut out most coupons even if it is not something I usually buy. Sometimes the products will go on sale and you can use that coupon to get it for free! But if you are just starting out, just cut out the coupons that you may use.
Now get the current sales ad for your favorite grocery store. I prefer to shop at Publix because there are a lot of buy one get one free (BOGO) products and you can use 2 coupons when you purchase the BOGO products. Browse through the ad and see what is on sale.
Make a plan. Plan your meals based on what is on sale. Many times pasta will be .99 cents a box and it will be BOGO. Plus there is usually a coupon for $1 off 2 boxes of pasta. So that would mean you get 2 boxes of pasta free! You can get a few extra boxes when the product is free. This will be a great start to creating a stockpile*. If something is on sale that your family uses a lot – buy a few so you will have enough stuff until it goes on sale again. There is no need to pay full price!
There are many places on the internet that will match coupons with the stores sales ad. These websites are a valuable resource because they will help you to know if and where there are coupons available for the products that are on sale.
Types of coupons
- Manufacture’s Coupons – These say manufacture’s coupon at the top. You can get manufacture’s coupons in the Sunday paper, you can print them on the internet, or they are mailed to you from the manufacture’s.
- Store Coupons – These are usually found instores. Sometimes they are online at the stores website or they come in your Sunday paper. (Target, Food Lion, etc)
- Digital Coupons – These are coupons that are loaded on your loyalty cards. They come from Cellfire, Savings Star, or Upromise. Cellfire digital coupons are subtracted from your total at the grocery store. Saving Star coupons are put into an account and when you get to $5 you can cash out your savings into a gift card. Upromise digital coupons are loaded into a college savings account. Join UPromise and Save for College
You can combine a store coupon and a manufacture’s coupon for each product you buy. For example, if you are buying a bag of diapers and you have a $1.50 off manufacture’s coupon and a $1.50 off store coupon, you can give both coupons to the cashier when you check out. This is a great way to get an even better deal – especially of the diapers are already on sale!
It is important that you understand the stores coupon policy. They are usually available on their website or you can ask for a copy from the customer service department.
This is a very basic overview of using coupons. There is so much out there to learn about saving money. Start small so you do not get overwhelmed. Over the next few weeks I will outline some of the ways to set a budget, save more money, and simple ways to earn money by doing things you may already be doing. Please leave me comments if you have any questions and I will cover that topic.
*Stockpile – This is when you buy enough of something to last you 6-8 weeks. It is best to get a few extras when they are free or very cheap when you get something on sale and use a coupon. The sales and coupons usually repeat every 6-8 weeks, so there is no need to buy more than you will use. This is why you would buy 2-4 newspapers on Sunday for for the coupons.