Mar 29, 2011

The Coupon Stash


I have been actively using coupons for the better part of 7 years and
the question I hear most is, "Where do you get your coupons?" The
short answer is newspaper and internet. In this post I'll lay out
several avenues of amassing a coupon collection.

First, I highly recommend subscribing to the Sunday paper. Each week 
(except holidays) you will receive a combination of Smart Source and 
Red Plum inserts and monthly, a P&G insert. The coupons in these
inserts will vary by region. For instance, my papers in Fayetteville
contain about three times more than the papers in my hometown. Some
areas even receive Target store coupons in their papers (I envy those
folks!). Discountednewspapers.com offers great rates on Sunday and
weekend subscriptions...often cheaper than buying directly from the
newspaper itself. If you find that your local inserts are measly or if
you missed a week somewhere, consider buying whole inserts from coupon
clipping services. When I want multiples of a specific coupon, I
usually turn to Ebay. Another favorite is Danielle's Coupon Paradise
(www.daniellescouponparadise.com) because she does not require a
minimum purchase. Other sites such as Coupons & Things by Dede
(www.couponsthingsbydede.com) or My Coupon Hunter
(www.mycouponhunter.com) have a minimum purchase requirement but have
the advantage of a larger selection of coupons. Keep in mind that
whatever you spend on buying those extra coupons will take away from
your savings. For example, I recently bought 15 Propel coupons on Ebay
because of an upcoming sale at Target that would make them $.29 each.
After shipping, the coupons ended up costing me $.10 apiece. That
means the Propel drinks would essentially come out to $.39. For me,
that was still an acceptable price. Think ahead and decide if the
purchase is really worthwhile.

Another way to add to your coupon stash is to hit the recycling bin.
One of my local Walmart stores has a big newspaper recycling bin
outside the front door. I sift through and snag a few inserts each
time I shop there (be prepared to throw that pride right out the
window!). Coffee shops and McDonalds are other places where you might
find abandoned papers. Also, check with your newspaper delivery
person. They just throw those extra papers away anyway.

Magazines are a good source for coupons as well. Free subscriptions
pop up on blogs often. When you see one, sign up because you never
know what next month's issue will bring. You'd be surprised how many
popular magazines can be gotten for nothing...Glamour, Newsweek,
Parents, Parenting, Woman's Day, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, Cosmo,
American Baby, Working Mom, Ebony, Family Circle, Elle, and Harper's
Bazaar to name a few...and they almost always (except Newsweek) will
contain coupons. Free magazines are great, but there are some that you
just won't find free, namely All You. All You is the mother of all
coupon magazines. Each issue usually has around $75 worth of savings
inside. A subscription runs about $15-$20 a year or you can pick it up
off the newsstand exclusively at Walmart. I ask for this every
Christmas :)

Walmart, Costco, Target, and Sam's Club all offer samples on their
sites. Free samples generally come with coupons. You can also request
samples and coupons for Procter & Gamble products on P&G Esaver
(https://www.pgesaver.com). These can be requested once per quarter.
For the past few years, P&G has offered a $100 coupon booklet at the
end of each calendar year. Buy $50 in P&G products (before coupons),
save your receipts, and submit for the booklet. So easy! You are
allowed one request per household.

Right at Home has a savings booklet called Organize in Style filled
with coupons for Swiffer, Cascade, Mr Clean, Febreze, and Dawn
products. There are currently six different links up for these
booklets. You can find them all on my blog HERE.


Internet printables are everywhere. Coupons.com, Smartsource.com,
Redplum.com, and Ecentives.com are some common ones. Target.com has
both manufacturer and store coupons. These sites all allow two prints
per computer. Many manufacturers offer coupons on their own sites as
well. Facebook has recently become a hot spot for printables. Simply
"like" a company to access coupons exclusively for facebook fans.

When you are out shopping, keep your eyes peeled for coupons. Blinkies
are found in little box-like dispensers (usually in grocery and drug
stores). Catalinas are coupons that print out at the register. Peelies
and hangtags are found on actual products. My kids love looking for
coupons in the store. It's like a game for them and keeps them
occupied while I shop.

As you can see, there are many ways to build an arsenal of coupons.
Next post, I'll talk about organization methods.

3 comments:

Isabella's Mom said...

Hollie, I just tried to check out ecentives.com because that was one I hadn't heard of. But when I type it into my browser, it redirects me to couponnetwork.com! Are they one and the same?

hollie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
hollie said...

Hmm, they must be. I used it as Ecentives before Coupon Network so that is the address I'm accustomed to typing. Ecentives is also the connected to the manufacturer coupons on Target's site. So if you print one on Target, you might not always be able to print it again on Ecentives/Coupon Network.