Never used a coupon in your life? This beginner’s guide to couponing will teach you the basics so you can start saving money today!
The quickest place to start finding coupons is your mailbox. Every week your mailed coupons from small local shops inside your Pennysaver. Thumbing through you’ll notice it won’t be long before you find coupons from businesses usually only a stones throw away from you. If you don’t receive the Pennysaver you can visit the QPON section online and find deals there.
When you find coupons, it’s important to organize them. One hardcore Pennysaver user has seven file folders labeled with the day of the week. He puts the coupons he’ll be using in it’s proper folder. For example he buys pizza for his family on Fridays. After thumbing through the Pennysaver and finding an excellent pizza coupon from a pizzeria down the street from him he cuts it out and places it in the Friday folder.
Another way to organize them is by expiration date. You can also use a coupon binder rather than loose file folders.
While searching for coupons, if you can’t find one for a store you like but find there competitor’s coupons, save it. Many stores will accept competitors coupons and price match and some will even beat them.
Most coupons say “one coupon per purchase” somewhere in the fine print. Cashiers will try to tell you that that means you can only use one coupon per transaction/day. This is NOT true! One per purchase means that you can only use one coupon per item purchased! So if you are buying 10 items and have 10 coupons then you can use them all!
If you don’t have 10 coupons, ask your neighbors, friends and family for their copies of the Pennysaver and cut out those coupons.
Start paying attention to price. Make a Pricebook. Keep a list of items you regularly buy with the best and regular prices for those items. This will help you when you see that “sale” and you can make a well informed decision about buying.
Watch the cashier. When checking out pay close attention to the price screen to make sure everything rings up at the correct price. Also, make sure that the cashier scans all of your coupons. Coupons sometimes stick together or get dropped or the cashier will scan the coupon but not realize that it didn’t go through. Kindly point out that they missed one and they will correct it.
Check your receipt. BEFORE leaving the store look over your receipt to make sure everything rang up correctly and all of your coupons were scanned. If there is a problem take it to customer service immediately so they can fix it. If you leave the store and come back at another time then it might not be fixable. If the cashier missed a coupon and you notice right away it’s easy to see the mistake. But, if you come back later after several other coupons have been added to the cashier’s stack or the stack is gone then there is no way to prove that they missed a coupon.
Every couponer will eventually go overboard and buy too much of something. If there is no way you will use it before it expires then consider donating the item to a shelter or food pantry.
I hope these tips have been helpful! Happy Couponing.