- Step 1: Search the Sunday papers Don't limit yourself to one edition of the Sunday paper. Serious savers carefully go through the coupon inserts in several editions, because different papers carry different coupons. The money you save will more than offset the cost of the papers.
- Step 2: Print out coupons Print coupons from internet sites like "coolsavings.com":http://, "smartsource.com,":http:// "hotcouponworld.com":http://, "coupons.com":http://, "couponsurfer.com":http://, and "ppgazette.com":http://.
- TIP: Into green living? Check the internet for organic coupon websites like "organiccoupons.com":http://.
- Step 3: Check brand websites If you can't find coupons for your favorite foods, check the brands' websites; they sometimes offer printable coupons.
- Step 4: Get organized Organize your coupons in an accordion folder by food type -- frozen foods, cereal, beverages, etc. -- and arrange them by expiration date.
- Step 5: Know supermarket policy Check your local supermarkets to determine which has the most generous coupon policy. Some won't accept coupons printed off the internet; others never offer "double coupons," or days when coupons count twice their value. Ask if you can "stack" coupons, or use both a manufacturer's coupon and a store coupon on the same item.
- TIP: Some stores have a little-known policy of giving you an item free if the advertised price doesn't match the price at the register, so keep your eyes peeled!
- Step 6: Scrutinize your store circular Scrutinize your weekly store circular for sale items -- especially those for which you have coupons. See if you can plan menus around discounted foods.
- TIP: Grocery items go on sale in rotation, usually every 12 weeks, and are often on sale in several stores.
- Step 7: Get extra coupons Get extra coupons for the items you buy all the time simply by writing to the manufacturer and asking for them (it helps to praise the product first!).
- Step 8: Set up a coupon swap Organize a coupon swap with friends and neighbors, so they can take advantage of coupons you don't use and vice versa.
- FACT: People who use coupons and supermarket loyalty cards save an average of $678 a year, according to a survey.
You Will Need
- Sunday newspapers
- Coupon websites
- An accordion folder
- Store circulars
- Lots of patience