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Reader Survey, May 2010 SOUTH

Grocery and Household Items for Free or Close to It

Feminine hygiene products , personal care products, travel-size hair styling products, shampoo, conditioner, razors, shaving cream, vitamins, makeup, tweezers, cotton balls, sinus meds, cough drops, pain relievers, baby aspirin, various medicines (aspirin, Benadryl, laxatives, Tylenol, Pepto-Bismol), eye drops, body wash, band aids, bug spray, sunscreen, first aid kits, glucometers, blood pressure meters, mouthwash, floss, air fresheners, candles, ink pens, dish detergent, hand soap (Johnson Buddy Bar soap), tissues, disposable cups, photo prints, laundry detergent & fabric softener, dryer sheets, wet ones, dishwashing detergent, cleaning products, toilet bowl cleaner, stain remover & Lysol sprays, bathroom cleaners, sponges, rubber gloves, paper towels, aluminum foil, Ziploc bags (“sometimes”), light bulbs, trial-size items, guacamole, sour cream, spices/seasonings (such as taco seasonings), mixes/marinades, jello, soy sauce, hot sauce, BBQ sauce, mustard (such as French’s), ketchup, cereal, oatmeal, coffee creamer, noodles/pasta, diced tomatoes, pasta sauce, pouch tuna, hamburger helper meals, bag salad, 1 lb. carrots, Betty Crocker Potatoes in bag/boxes, macaroni and cheese, cheese (according to a couponer from Tennessee), frozen foods, canned goods, refried beans, taco shells, tortillas, taco seasoning, fruit snacks, peanuts, popcorn, trail & Chex mix, chips, crackers, cookies, croutons, rice, instant potatoes, cooking spray, olive oil, salad dressings, BBQ sauce, hot sauce, lunch meats, hotdogs, yogurt, brownie/cake/cookie mixes, poptarts, muffin mixes, single-serving milk, cereal, candy, gum, pizza, juice, ice cream, yogurt, sour cream, eggs, cheese, dog treats, cat & dog treats, movie rentals, panties (thanks, Victoria’s Secret & Lane Bryant)

From an experienced couponer from Alabama: “I am able to score for free: snacks – especially cookies & crackers, soaps (I have about 20 Dawns in the cabinet), makeup (I just got 8 CoverGirl cosmetics at Winn Dixie with its Buy One Get One Free and my B1G1 coupons), toiletries, and trial-sizes of just about everything under the sun. I have been couponing for about a year and feel like a pro. Last week I bought $222 worth of groceries and paid $86 out of pocket.”

Free items and their brand names, according to a couponer from Texas: Glade Scented candles, Glade Airwick plug-ins, Betty Crocker products, Carnation Evaporated milk, Kraft Mac & Cheese, Wacky Mac noodles, Franks hot sauce, Pledge wipes, Chex Mix, ACT II popcorn

Free items and their brand names, according to a couponer from Oklahoma: Chinet napkins, Bar-S hotdogs, Borden’s cheese singles with IP (Internet printable) coupon, French’s worcestershire sauce & Crest/Colgate toothpaste – both items with double coupon events

Freebies I get (according to a couponer from North Carolina): deodorant, razors and more razors (smile), feminine hygiene products, body wash, CoverGirl makeup, shampoo, Dawn, Soft Scrub, instant potatoes, pasta, toothpaste, lotion, frozen vegetables, and lots of free samples through the mail that usually come with more coupons!

Freebies: Kraft and other name brand items if you sign up the manufacturer’s individual website

Well, I never say anything is free because you still have to pay tax on the sales price. So I only buy ‘free’ things if I need them and am going to use them. Typical things that are ‘free:’ razors, shave gel, toothpaste & toothbrushes (moneymakers), mirror cleaner, McCormick spices, maybe yogurt, some shampoos (Herbal Essence, Aussie, VO5, & CVS brand).

Fairly new couponer from Tennessee: “My family is amazed at what I can get for free, and they brag about it to other family members regularly. I remember one specific time when I brought home about 20 boxes of cereal very cheap and they took pictures! Once I was able to snag ground beef for $.25/lb, and they couldn’t believe it. I was pretty excited myself!”

Grocery and Drug Store Chains Most Frequented

Aldi, Bloom, Brookshire’s (‘occasionally’ – Texas couponer), Publix, Kroger, Harris Teeter, HEB, Ingles, Lowes Foods, Winn Dixie, Bi-Lo, Food Lion, Giant, Tom Thumb, Albertsons, Randalls, Target, RiteAid, CVS, United Grocery Outlet, Walgreens, Rouses, Safeway, Shoppers, ShopRite, Sam’s Club, Costco, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, Big Lots, Dollar Tree, Dollar General, Dollar Store, Kmart (one couponer’s comment: ‘only during doubles week’); Bakery outlets for bread/bakery items (Mrs. Baird’s), ethnic stores, meat market, and fish monger

Good Deals – Single or Repeat Offers – & Stores for Deals

CVS: Frequently offers $1/1 paper product coupons in the red machine, which results in $.29 paper towels (still too expensive for me, considering my stockpile and how slowly we use them!). This store used to have the $1/1 Gold Emblem nut coupon, which resulted in free snack-size nuts, but I haven’t seen this one for a while. CVS almost always has free (after coupon and ECB – Extra Care Bucks) toothbrushes, razors, floss, and Colgate toothpaste (and sometimes Crest) every month. One couponer said – “I haven’t paid real money (just ECB money) for toothpaste for over a year. My favorite brand is Crest and my hubby uses Colgate… seems like there is a deal every month for each of these.” Every other month or so, CVS offers free body wash of some sort. Near the end of summer, school supplies are free after ECB. Periodically, Purex detergent is BOGO which makes it free with the occasional BOGO coupon. Check out Olay Hand Renewing Soap which is free with $1 coupon at CVS. Couponer from Georgia – “I use the ECB system and roll over to get free stuff: toothpaste, deodorant, lotion, soap, tampons, pad, chocolate, toilet paper, paper towels. I get rain checks a lot because this store is usually out of the ECB items when I get there. Rain checks don’t expire so it takes the pressure off of having to get there on a Sunday for the start of the sale.” Another couponer – “Body wash, toothpaste (Colgate & Crest), toothbrushes, razors, and Stayfree and Kotex – generally free at this store. Lots of free stuff with ECBs.” Experienced couponer – “Colgate toothpaste + ECB (Extra Care Bucks) + $.75 coupon = FREE, Revlon makeup + ECB + $2 coupon = FREE, Aussie or Herbal Essence shampoo/conditioner + ECB + $2 coupon = FREE, Nivea body wash + ECB + $4 coupon = FREE, Fusion razors + ECB + $4 coupon = FREE.”

Walgreens: I can almost always get some brand of free deodorant or toothpaste and cereal for $.25 (sales + coupons). Every month, this store offers 50% off Airwick – when paired with a $4/1 coupon, it’s free! Walgreens always has deals so you can get razors free. Lysol wipes with BOGO (Buy One, Get One Free) and pair with $1/1 coupon in newspaper insert and stock up! Couponer from Oklahoma – “Fusion Razors – $.99 after manufacturer coupon and Register Rewards.” Experienced couponer from North

Carolina – “Walgreens always has good deals on shampoo, conditioner, and razors.” Experienced couponer from Arkansas – “Colgate Total – free after coupons and Register Rewards, Huggies diapers – cheap after coupons and Register Rewards.” Couponer from Tennessee – “Walgreens rotates sales on certain items – such as olives, toilet paper, pork & beans – which I buy on sale cheaply.”

CVS & Walgreens: When ECB (Extra Care Bucks) and RR (Register Rewards) are offered, use printable, home mailer, or newspaper insert coupons, along with previous ECBs and RRs, to stock up with Huggies and Pampers diapers. Great deals on toothpaste, deodorant, feminine products. Couponer from Oklahoma – “Folgers coffee – 2/$5 pair with $1/2 manufacturer coupon = 2/$4 or $2 each! Dawn or Joy detergent – $.50 after manufacturer coupon.” Couponer from Virginia – “At both stores: free shampoo, body wash, toothpaste, deodorant, razors, shaving cream, etc.”

CVS & Walgreens: Couponer from Oklahoma – “CVS is so much easier to shop than Walgreens (with its Register Reward and having to buy fillers). It doesn’t matter that CVS limits its deals as this store is worth it with its great customer service and great deals!”

Walgreens & RiteAid: If the store runs out of an item, I am always given a rain check.

Walgreens & Target: Experienced couponer from Texas – “I score dental and personal care items with repeat deals from these two stores as they have been having great double dip deals.”

CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid: Great deals on shampoo, body washes, toothpaste, feminine hygiene using Extra Care Bucks at CVS or Register Rewards at Walgreens or Single Check Rebates at RiteAid. Recently for Carefree & Kotex U pads, using ECB/RR + coupons = Free + moneymaker. I have taken four bags full of products to the local women’s shelter this past month of different products.

CVS, Walgreens, Randalls: CVS usually limits the number of deals you can do; at Walgreens, you can do as many as you want; Randalls usually lets you roll your Catalinas. At CVS & Walgreens, you need as many items as you have coupons. If you have five coupons, you need at least five items otherwise the machine will beep.

CVS, Walgreens, & RiteAid: CVS and Walgreens have a great deal on a single item every few months. I hate the Register Rewards (RR) program at Walgreens – l live alone and don’t use that much stuff so I’d rather get it cheaper elsewhere and don’t want to hold on to my RR hoping there is something I need at a good price. I get repeat deals at RiteAid, and I also like this store’s new Wellness Program.

CVS, Winn Dixie, Walgreens, Walmart: Experienced couponer from Alabama – “I live in a small town and there isn’t a lot of variety in my store choices. I do just about all my shopping at CVS and Winn Dixie. I occasionally shop at Walgreens and Walmart but they are not my preferred choices.”

RiteAid: At least one good deal on tampons after SCR (Single Check Rebates) every month. If toilet paper or cereal is also on sale, I often get it free or very cheap using a $X/$X coupon combined with the free after SCR items. Around Christmas, RiteAid offers free Scotch tape after SCR. Kellogg’s and Kashi cereals are frequently BOGO (Buy One, Get One Free) or 2/$5, and, though not a great deal by itself, it helps boost your total to $20 or $25, so you can usually get it super cheap or free. A 12-pack of Northern or

Cottonelle double rolls is on sale for $5.99 at least once a month. Once again, not a great deal, but there is usually a $1 mfg (manufacturer) and $1 VV (RiteAid’s Video Values) coupon out there – when combined with the $5/$20 or $5/$25, it’s fairly inexpensive, if not free. Covergirl makeup goes on sale BOGO once a month so it’s free when combined with the BOGO coupon. A couple times a year, Rite Aid offers a super Johnson deal (buy $X in Johnson’s products and get $X). Using store, mfg, and $X/$X coupons, I can usually stock up then and get them free. Experienced couponer from North Carolina – “RiteAid always has good deals on Prilosec OTC (especially with the $5 off $25 coupons). Experienced couponer – I typically go to this store (although I’m not sure how the new Wellness Card at RiteAid will work for me) because of its $5 off $25 purchase coupons. This helps me buy the things I REALLY need – just by adding the things which are on sale. It seems like every week I get toothpaste or a toothbrush, body wash, or deodorant and then fill my $25 total out with items I need that are on sale. RiteAid’s video values limit you because a registered account can only use a video coupon once.”

Albertsons : $.29 Yoplait or Dannon yogurt when you buy 10 in ad coupon, and, when I stack this deal with a $.50 coupon, it doubles to $1.00 so I end up purchasing 10 yogurts for under $2.00. This deal repeats at least once a month.

Aldi, Publix, CVS, Bi-Lo, and other stores: Couponer from Tennessee – “I generally shop Publix, CVS, and Bi-Lo. I occasionally shop sales at Walgreens or RiteAid. For good grocery deals that don’t require coupons, I’ll shop United Grocery Outlet, Big Lots, or Aldi. I rarely shop at Walmart anymore.”

Publix: Use BOGO paired with $1/1 printable or newspaper insert coupons to get $.25/each for Yoplait’s Yoplus 4pk yogurt. For various breads, use BOGO paired with newspaper insert coupons and stock up! Couponer from Georgia – “Every now and then through Publix baby club, I am sent a coupon for a couple of dollars off any fresh meat and the same for produce.” Couponer from the Atlanta area – “Yoplait yogurt’s – Buy One, Get One Free w/ $.50 or $1 coupon – making it $.25 each (Fiber One is my FAVORITE! I usually go back hoping the store sells out of the key lime so I can get a rain check-my husband says that I am the only person that he knows that gets excited when something is sold out.); Nabisco products (crackers); Green Giant frozen veggies; Schick razors $.99 w/$2/1 coupon making it FREE with $1.01 overage! When these coupons are in the paper, I will get extra papers for that coupon alone. That is extra $$ to put towards my produce!” Couponer from Florida – “At Publix, the sales rotate. So one week Mueller’s Pasta will be BOGO, and you can get a box of it for about $.70 without a coupon and about $.20 with a coupon. The two or three weeks later the sale repeats. Other sale items which rotate: Special K Granola cereal – BOGO so you get two boxes for $3.99 or $1.99/each. If you attach a $1/1 or $2/2 coupon, you get each box for 99 cents! Another regular deal: Kraft shredded cheese on sale for 3/$5 (or about $1.67/each). If paired with a $2/2 Kraft blinkie (a coupon which is distributed within the store from a SmartSource coupon machine), each package is just 67 cents!” Somewhat experienced couponer – “Often Publix will have deals and you can buy something you don’t need and turn it into a moneymaker to get something you do want at a cheaper price.” Experienced couponer – “Typically at Publix, I sue the Green Advantage flyer and manufacturer coupons to buy band-aids, Neosporin, pain medication, and a lot of Prevacid. I try to do two of these deals every time I shop there or as long as I have coupons.”

Publix and Bi-Lo: Couponer from Tennessee – “Buy One, Get One Free deals cycle through with Juicy Juice, Cheerios and other cereals, soup, pasta, pasta sauce, instant potatoes, cake mix, muffin mix, frosting, crackers, cookies, bagels, taco shells/kits, yogurt, salad dressings, ice cream, and Knorr Sides.

Bi-Lo has similar sales as Publix. Bi-Lo has fewer store coupons, but this store runs Catalina promotions and doubles up to $.60 – versus $.50 at Publix.”

Publix and Winn Dixie: Use Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) or $10/10 and printable/newspaper insert/home mailer coupons stacked with store coupons for Green Giant or Bird’s Eye vegetables.

Publix, Walmart, Sam’s Club, CVS, and RiteAid: Couponer from South Carolina – “I do all organic milk, meats, fruits and veggies if I can and use Walmart and Publix for groceries – and CVS and RiteAid for household. I use Sam’s Club for some grocery and household items: Cheese, spinach, frozen fruit, kiwi, feta, edamame, ketchup, toilet paper, paper towels, honey, parmesan cheese, and pretzels. Honestly, other than these five places, I don’t go anywhere else! Walmart is tough – pretty much prices don’t change and they are pretty rock bottom. For example, Horizon Organic is $3.99 at Publix – and $3.50 on sale rotation – but it’s $3.50 at Walmart all the time.”

Randalls: Offers double and triple coupons.

Tom Thumb: Great deals on cereal & granola bars with ‘5 off 5 selected items.’ This week’s deal was $4 off 4 items. This deal repeats every couple of weeks. With coupons, I often can get the items for free.

Kroger: Often dollar sales on items, such as tuna, sponges, rubber gloves, hand soap, toothbrushes, floss, spices, seasonings, BBQ sauce, and salad dressing, so whenever I find $.50 (Kroger doubles up to $.50) or $1 coupons on these items, I hang onto them. I use my $1 Johnson’s baby product coupons for Johnson’s Buddies Soap; in addition, Kroger often offers Catalinas on Johnson’s purchases. I can usually score deals on Kraft block cheese & Oscar Meyer hotdogs. Great deals on Pillsbury and Ziploc products. Over the past six months, there have been two separate Catalinas for Pillsbury and Ziploc and I have stocked up each time! Couponer from Texas – “Kroger will double and triple coupons, paired with a sale, so I am usually able to get free or cheap condiments and other pantry items like rice, pasta, and canned goods.” Another couponer – “I love Kroger mega deals for stockpiling. They happen every couple of months. This store will sometimes have markdowns on fresh produce. Very occasionally: deals on fresh meat, seafood, milk, organic peanut butter, and produce – both fresh and organic.” Another couponer: “WONDERFUL customer service. Great deals on meat so I can always stock up. Almost EVERY week, there is either boneless skinless at $1.99/lb or bone in breasts of chicken for $.99/lb. Pork tenderloin at $2.49/lb with no coupon needed!” Couponer from Tennessee – “Love Southern Savers for Kroger deals. If you shop Kroger, don’t forget to use Cellfire – you can stack those e-coupons with regular manufacturer coupons to get stuff for free sometimes.” Couponer from Tennessee – “Free items with coupon doubling and e-coupons: Pillsbury crescent rolls, Warm Delights, sauces and spices, and cheap items with coupon doubling and e-coupons: canned fruits and veggies, frozen veggies, and cereal. Kroger has mega events occasionally – always 10 items for $10 – a great deal paired with coupons, especially for bread. I always visit for a list of what’s on sale at Kroger.” Couponer from Virginia – “FREE to $.99: Kraft shredded or block cheese, hot dogs, juice, yogurt, pasta, bag salad, salad dressing, rice, Betty Crocker potatoes, Kraft/Velveeta mac and cheese, seasonings, hamburger helper, bar soap, cleaning sponges, and various cheap deals when purchasing during the Mega Event Sales throughout the year (Buy 10, Get $5 Off or Buy 8, Get $4 Off promotions).” Another couponer – “Kroger has repeat deals on lunchables.”

Kroger & other stores: Couponer from Virginia – “I do most of my shopping at Kroger, then Food Lion, Giant, and Walmart (only occasionally) and – every once in a while at CVS and Walgreens to get deals for personal care items like razors and shampoo.” Another couponer – “Kroger doubles up to $.50 and triples up to $.35. Most of my freebies come from Kroger, Walmart, CVS, and Walgreens.”

Kroger & CVS: Sales on soda that are better deals than at Sam’s Club.

Food Lion: Frequent sales on Snuggle for $2.99, so when I get the $3 coupon, I know where to go. Couponer from Virginia – “Free bag of 1 lb. carrots using $1 off Guiding Stars product coupon, also free cereal and ketchup (using text messaging service from 467467 specifically for Food Lion coupons), free Pam cooking spray, cheap olive oil, and lots of great Buy One, Get One Free deals.”

Giant: This store has recently been running great deals – lots of Catalinas, Buy One, Get One Free offers, and sometimes dollar doublers. Also, when Giant runs a sale on $25 in P&G products and offers a Catalina for $10, the $25 is based on the shelf price and not the sale price so you can get a really good deal.

Harris Teeter: I am pleased with this store as it doubles coupons and has special coupon events. Another couponer – “This store generally doubles or triples once a month and you can usually get certain items for free such as pasta, yogurt, cereal, and snacks.” Couponer – “This store doubles up to $.99 daily, often triples up to $.99, and offers Super Double events up to $1.98.” Couponer – “This store sometimes has Buy Two, Get Three Free sales which go great with coupons.” Couponer from Northern Virginia – “I shop at this store only when it has triple coupons and I know that there are free items which I can receive using my coupons. Free items include: sour cream, CoffeeMate creamer, butter, pasta, garlic toast, yogurt.” Couponer – “Free: Lysol cleaning products during triple coupon week.” Experienced couponer from North Carolina – “Harris Teeter always has a lot of BOGO (Buy One, Get One Free), BOG2, BOG3 sales (very good deals when paired up with coupons).” Experienced couponer – “Harris Teeter doubles and sometimes triples so you can get quite a lot of food.”

HEB: No doubling but HEB does meal deals and combo locos which often offer a lot of free products if you purchase something large. But watch carefully to make sure it’s a good deal: You sometimes must buy something much more expensive than you normally would (i.e. chicken already cut into strips and marinated for fajitas instead of just reasonably priced chicken breasts with some taco seasoning) and you get cheap free items. Recently I’ve been able to stockpile bread Oroweat Dutch Country potato and 100% whole wheat. There was a month of deals where HEB had Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) and they were only $1.88 on sale. However, the store coupon which is how you got them BOGO was taking off $2.88 (the normal price). I started noticing this after the first or second time. I thought $1.88 for 2 loaves of healthy bread was good, but I was really getting them both for $.88!!! We have probably more bread than we can handle right now but it’s totally worth it since my husband takes sandwiches every day! I have seen this promotion 2 times in the last 6 months now. So I think it’s a repeatable one. Experienced couponer from Texas – “HEB is so amazing. I wish you guys had one near you. This store will pair store deals with manufacturer coupons – and you can walk out with two baskets and spend less than the buy next to you who has only a few things.”

Lowes Foods: Yogurt at $.20 each after Fresh Rewards and double coupons.

Lowes Foods, RiteAid, CVS, & Walgreens: Expert couponer from North Carolina – I “I usually shop at Lowes Foods as this store doubles up to 20 coupons/day up to $.99. RiteAid is my personal favorite place to coupon – and CVS. I try to keep my Extra Care Bucks from CVS rolling so that I continuously get things free, such as shampoo, razors, etc. Sometimes I shop at Walgreens, but we only have one Walgreens in my town and this store tends to not stock items well and is not very coupon friendly.”

ShopRite: Experienced couponer – taught by her mom  – from Northern Maryland: “I live in northern Maryland which I would consider more like the North… we share a lot of grocery chains with NJ. I use ShopRite for groceries. Repeat deals at this store: Sylvania CFLs (60Watt) – $.99 on sale + $1/1 SmartSource printable coupon = FREE; Scotties tissues – 3 for $3 on sale & if you’re a Facebook fan, print out three $.50/1 coupons which double to $1 – FREE but you’ll need multiple computers; Halls cough drops – $.99 on sale & usually there are $.50/1 coupons which double to $1 = FREE.”

Target: I can get the free trial size bath wash and soaps, such as Degree, Colgate, Satin Care shave gel. Another couponer:– It seems that my best “deals” are found at this store – usually by pairing a Target coupon with a manufacturer coupon. I pay next to nothing for soap, face wash, gel, toothpaste, shaving cream, etc. at Target. Couponer – “Target has been great for stacking coupons! I’ve gotten a lot of 7th Generation cleaning products for $.60 to $.90 thanks to stacking.” Couponer from Atlanta – “Free: Cleaning supplies, razors, frozen meals, cereals/oatmeal. Most of the cereal/oatmeal deals have been with using coupons with sale prices plus the $5 gift cards if you purchase a certain amount.” Couponer from Northern Virginia – “I always get free Right Guard deodorants with overage. I save the coupons up and usually have the $3/2 coupons; I purchase $.97 trial-size deodorant and get overage toward other items.” Couponer from North Carolina – “Target is good for using manufacturer and store coupons so that normally the item is free or close to free. For example, Nivea bath wash for $3.97; use the $4 off coupon from SmartSource or RedPlum. I have gotten two for free recently. Also Crest toothpaste for kids is $1.49 on sale. Use $1 off coupon from manufacturer and from Target (two coupons) and get $.51 in overage.” Couponer – “Keebler cookies at Target – almost for free with manufacturer and store coupons and gift card back.”

Sam’s Club & Walgreens: Sam’s Club is great for toilet paper unless I find a rare sale or use Register Rewards at Walgreens.

Costco: Most of the time I go to Costco to buy our meats and then I split them up and freeze them.

Dollar General: Great for storage baggies, air freshener, and various non-perishable food items.

Target, Dollar General, CVS, Walgreens: Great deals on facial cleansers

Target, Publix, Walgreens, Kmart: Target and Publix have FREE Nivea women’s body wash; Walgreens has free razors all the time; at Kmart, when this store double coupons, I get ALL my items FREE!!

Walmart: Johnson & Johnson Soap Buddies and travel-size Tide are free with a $1 coupon. Also, Carefree panty liners for free.

Walmart & Target: Reach floss for free

Walgreens, Target, Winn Dixie, CVS, & other stores: My mom taught me how to use coupons when I was very young. In fact, I still have a manufacturer coupon for $.35 off ACT with NO expiration date (Remember those???). I pay very little or next to nothing for: books (spring & fall) at Barnes & Noble and Borders, candy (seasonal) at CVS, snacks (football season), condiments (summer season), vitamins (Walgreens & Target – usually BOGO with store and mfg. coupons – making it a free purchase), Reach dental products (Walgreens – once in the spring and once in the fall), cold medicine (Sept. through March at Walgreens – Vicks products usually have coupons) peanuts (Walgreens & Winn Dixie), and movie rentals (My coke rewards, REDBOX, Blockbuster Express, my local library).

Kraft usually has a variety of deals throughout the year so I stock up when there is an offer – about every three to four months.

Couponer from Baltimore, Maryland: “I find prices slightly higher than the blogs I read so I’m not sure if we in this area of the South are 3% under the national average for food prices [as the research suggests]. I think we may be +8% on a few things.”

Grocery and Household Items Not Discounted or Barely Discounted

Meat, fresh produce, and other perishables such as milk, butter, seafood, and eggs (although some experienced couponers indicated that eggs and cheese are available at little to no cost). Also, bread, honey, chocolate chips, flour, sugar, saltines, preserves/all fruit, dried fruit, Jif peanut butter organic and earth-friendly products (i.e., Burt’s Bees), Coke products.

I can get beef (ground chuck, steaks, roasts), produce, and milk on sale, but the discount isn’t that good.

It’s hard to find coupons for Ocean Spray cranberry juice. Other items which are hard to purchase for a discounted price: soda, toilet paper, paper towels, trashbags, ketchup, real maple syrup, Tide detergent, gluten-free items, coconut milk, beef jerky, Asian chili garlic sauce, and other Asian specialty items.

Couponer from Oklahoma: ”I don’t usually find coupons for Ragu or Prego sauce and for peanut butter in general.”

Experienced couponer from Northern Maryland: “It’s hard to find a good deal on toilet paper!”

Couponer from Northern Virginia: “I can never find good deals on dishwashing detergent. I am always telling my husband that this is the one item I never have in my stockpile, and we use so much of it!”

Expert couponer from NC: “For some reason, I don’t really find a lot of great deals on canned vegetables, gallons of milk, or fresh produce. I can find some pretty good deals on meat if I get to the grocery store right when they are putting out newly marked down meat.”

Experienced couponer from Virginia: “I rarely find coupons for milk and various fresh fruits and vegetables. I sometimes find coupons for bread, rarely for eggs and soda, and only occasionally for nuts.”

Vickie, from South Florida, disagrees with the states on the South being 3% less than the national average. In S. Florida, grocery prices are high, and there is no doubling of coupons. BOGO (Buy One, Get One Free) is helpful, but it’s hard to find anything free other than shampoos, razors, etc. Rarely and in some cases never for meats/chicken/pork, fresh produce, fruit, peanut butter, toilet paper, coffee, pickles, organic other than milk.

I really can’t think of a category where you can’t get *any* kind of a discount. Meat and produce go on sale and sometimes manufacturer and/or store coupons are available. If you can get overage on something else, you’ve created your own discount. Kroger often sends me free coupons from for bagged salads because I often purchase them (but only when on sale!). I guess specialty and gourmet items don’t usually have discounts. I get such items at Trader Joe’s, which has very good prices for high-end products.

Fresh fruits and veggie sales are rare or still end up being somewhat pricey – even with a sale.

I use the local farmer’s market for deals on produce and meats.

I know that Bengal Insect Spray is never on sale anywhere. That stuff is pricey yet works like a $40/month exterminator and only costs about $15/year.

Meat (however I find independent coupons from the local store for meat sometimes if it is close to the ‘sell by…’ date), milk, fresh vegetables, toys (Target will rarely have a valuable coupon), school/business supplies…

I find it hard to get a good price on organic products, including Green Goodness juice which my kids can’t get enough of. I use overage to try and help pay for these items.

The cheapest toilet paper for me: four rolls of Angel Soft for $1.25. That’s about $.31/roll. I haven’t been able to beat that price by buying more rolls, even with stacked (mfg. + store) coupons. Same thing with Ziplock bags and paper towels – I haven’t been able to get really good deals on these items.

Couponer from Baltimore, Maryland: “This is the most which I will pay – and if I can get it for less, I’ll stock up: meat/cheese for $1.99/lb, organic romaine for $1/head, organic spring mix salad for $.25/oz, organic celery for $.69/lb, organic carrots for $.50/lb, organic milk for $3/half-gallon (Costco) or less, cream cheese for $.50 for 8 oz, sour cream for $.40 for 16 oz.”

I am generally unable to get shaving cream, Olay face wash, and contact rewetting drops at a discounted price.

Couponer from North Carolina: “My son is on a gluten-free diet, and it is very hard to find good deals of these items.”

Experienced couponer: “No coupons for produce, milk, protein powder, other high-quality protein bars, and certain cleaners like WINK.”

Experienced couponer from Texas: “I am disappointed that I haven’t yet found a way to get fruits and veggies for free as this is the majority of my bill these days.”

Seasoned couponer from Texas: “I usually can get pretty much of anything at a discount, but not free.”

Somewhat experienced couponer from Farmers Branch (another way of saying ‘Dallas’), Texas: “Toilet paper, trash bags, COKE products (never any coupons), brand name bread, Kitty Litter…”

Eggs, fruit, veggies, and some snack foods, which my kids love, like Veggie Booty.

I have had a hard time getting really good deals on laundry detergent, fabric softener, and bleach. I also don’t get a really good deal on contact solution. I like the more expensive brands. I can’t help it .

Tips for New Couponers

Attend a coupon workshop in your area, if possible.

Find a website or two that tracks grocery store deals and let them do the hard work for you – then all you have to do is gather your coupons, and go shopping!

Google for blogs specific to your local grocery stores to get coupon match ups and deal scenarios.

Experienced couponer from Northern Maryland: “Go to the Dollar Tree early in the morning on Saturday/Sunday to get $1 Sunday/Weekend newspapers! If you clip even one $1 coupon, you have made back your money.”

Start slowly with one drugstore program. Trying them all at once can be overwhelming. Write down your lowest prices for common products which you buy (10 or so products). That way you know if it’s a good price in your area so you can stock up on those items.

Don’t give up if a cashier gives you a hard time!

When a stores gives you grief about using coupons, go to the store manager and talk with him or her. Know your store’s coupon policy before you go. For example, it helps to know that Tom Thumb will only double one coupon for the same item….this way, you don’t have five cans of soup and have to put them back.

Don’t be brand loyal. If you really hate a certain brand, you can always donate to someone in need.

Don’t be shy or timid! There is nothing wrong with using coupons – just be honest and know each store’s coupon policy. Once you get the hang of it, you will never go back to paying retail price again.

Print online coupons; share coupons with friends and keep each other aware of deal; get sale flyers from EVERY STORE each week and match up coupons.

Be proud of couponing and the savings instead of being embarrassed to use coupons. It’s a totally different mindset when you make it a game to see just how low you can get you bill!

Use a pantry/stockpile inventory list to keep track of what you have and every once in a while purge expired or soon-to-be expired items and DONATE – give, give, give!

Get to know the stores’ coupon policies, the more confident you are, the better!

Hand your coupons to the cashier – two to three at a time. I get so bummed when the cashier misses a coupon! One dollar to me is ONE DOLLAR so I hand them over slowly!

I didn’t believe this when I started couponing, but it is so true: deals will come along again. Don’t freak out if you miss one–another, better one will come along (this has happened to me so many times!). Don’t run yourself ragged, hitting every store in town, trying to get every deal. It gets old, fast. You’ll burn out (and want to burn all your coupons!) or you’ll get obsessive, living only for the deal highs. Balance (and restraint!) is key. Get what you truly need, use, love, and have room for; let the rest go.

You don’t have to carry a giant binder, waste all your ink, or buy a dozen papers each week in order to get tons of freebies and great deals. I use (an admittedly obese) accordion-style coupon holder and a smaller one for store-specific deals, and I have a more-than-adequate (read: more than I can use) stockpile. I clip the coupons for items I regularly buy, items I know I need to stock up on, and coupons that I know regularly result in free items. I file the remaining insert by date in plastic sleeves in a binder and refer to them as deals arise. I don’t feel like I miss many great deals. So what if I find something on clearance for which there may or may not be a coupon? I clearly didn’t think I’d ever want or need the item if I didn’t clip the coupon to begin with.

Greed is ugly, so behave ethically. Don’t clear shelves. Don’t do multiple transactions and hold up the line. Don’t try to cheat on coupons (cashiers will remember you and scrutinize your coupons that much harder next time–I know because I was a cashier once!). Don’t buy stuff to resell it. And certainly don’t brag about it if you do.

Stay organized. I use the binder system, and it works well for me. I also created a spreadsheet which I print out and take to the store. It lists everything I plan on purchasing and includes the price of each item and which coupons I am using. Stick to the list and to the budget. It’s easy to want to buy, buy, buy when you can get things so cheaply. But, if you can’t use it or donate it, don’t bother! You can blow your grocery budget by buying things you don’t need just because they’re inexpensive.

My tip would be to plan everything out and have coupons organized and coupon policy in hand when going to the store. I save so much money when I am organized.

Sometimes you should buy items you do not need because they make you money to go toward the purchases of the items you do need. A math chart I created has helped my mother and daughter, who are learning couponing, to better understand. In example one, I did a chart leaving out the money makers and placed only what they needed to buy. In chart 2, I put what they needed to buy and the money makers and they were shocked that the out of pocket was less when they added in the items they didn’t need. They can always give the extra items to a local charity.

If your store issues rain checks and they are out of a product you need, get a rain check so you can still buy it later for the same price.

Create your list before shopping, add up your total OOP (out of pocket) after
coupons so you will know what your total should be. If you are required to buy say $25 of items, always have a few extra items and coupons on backup in case the store is out of what you need to buy. It’s hard to do math on the fly and easier to make mistakes.

Copy deals you want to remember into a WORD document. Instead of printing out coupons every day, set your default printer up so that your print jobs are held until a later time. Then, once a week, you can print everything out at once and then clip insert coupons to match.

Make sure you look at the Sunday coupon inserts each week. If you see some high-value coupons on items you need, go ahead and purchase extra papers for later use.

Have a plan, don’t just walk into a store with a stack of coupons. Check Hip2Save before you leave your house!

Don’t buy on impulse; have your coupons ready and know exactly what the ad and coupons state; plan your trip before you go – yet be ready to change it when you get to the store.

STRATEGY!!! You must get involved in a weekly/daily routine and stick to it! I have a binder with baseball card pockets, and I have a filing cabinet too. I also have started a new way! I have a bucket with envelopes labeled with individual dates and inserts. Each envelope has one insert. This way I have them ready for trades or future sales.

Make a budget, stick to it, and spend it in cash. The budget may be adjusted over time as your situation changes and/or as you get better at couponing. But whatever it is today, live within your budget.

Find an organizational system that works for your learning/shopping style: Clipper or filer – or somewhere in between. Enjoy the challenge, and ask for help as needed (we couponers love to pitch in).

Don’t expect to snag every deal. I have learned to LOVE getting the sale but, when it doesn’t work out, I don’t obsess about it. There is always tomorrow and another opportunity.

Stockpiling is the key to success, but don’t chase every deal… because you can’t.

To heck with brand loyalty, just buy whatever’s cheapest.

Combine coupons with a sale; stack coupons if allowed; don’t be brand loyal.

Try to coupon for an entire month before you make a decision on whether or not to stick with it. It will take that long to amass a good collection of coupons.

Try to find multiples of the same coupon. Save your coupons until you can match them with a sale – and, if possible, stack with a store coupon.

Couponer from Virginia: “I’ve saved the most by doing coupon matchups from sales ads and matching the coupons to the sale items and planning my menu and purchases around that. My favorite sites to use are and

I have one 8-month old and when she heads to bed, I coupon. I take one store a night while I relax with a TV show and make my list and gather my coupons. This way, I am not spending four hours one night on it. Be proud and flaunt your binder… I have had tons of people ask me how I do it and how they can do it!

Take advantage of Walmart’s policy to match any other store’s sales price (except Buy One, Get One Free). It makes it so easy to get all your deals at one location. Also print coupons online more than once if you are able to.

I shop all over and have a variety of stores within a two-mile radius of my house. So I combine my shopping trips hitting some stores on the way to work and other stores on the way home. I always carry sales circulars so that I can match prices at Walmart if I need to run into that store.

When you have extra coupons, give some to the ladies at the counter who ring you up. Nine out of 10 times, you’ll make a buddy who will share in the joys and excitement of couponing. The ladies at my local drugstores have become some of my best shopping buddies!

If you know in a store and decide not to use a particular coupon, leave it propped on the applicable item for someone else in need!

Couponer from Arkansas: “Scout the stores often. If you wait a few weeks between visits, you will likely miss out on some good deals (this mostly applies to clearance). I get my best buys from the clearance sections at Target and Walgreens.”

Go through your local area’s sales ads and match up sales with coupons for great deals. Use every resource available to get coupons. Swap coupons with family and friends. This is especially important if you live in a small town, as I do, because access to coupons is limited.

I never go into a store without my entire binder and coupon bag. Today, when shopping at Target, someone asked me if I worked at this store. I must have looked at the person strangely as she said: ‘You have a professional binder.’ I replied: ‘I am a professional couponer!’

Use some sort of search engine/shopping rewards website (Swagbucks, MyPoints, Ebates, etc.) to help you rack up free rewards, including cash or CVS gift cards, and/or join a survey panel that pays you to answer surveys. These easy Internet activities can help finance your CVS/Walgreens/RiteAid trips!

Buy items for overage – even if you don’t need them. Your local food pantry will grow to love you!

Buy the Sunday paper; get a coupon organizer; stock up when it goes sale (and read Hip2Save).

Unless you plan on being the first person at the drug store on Sunday morning, don’t bother going on that day because all the good stuff will soon be gone. Wait until mid-week when the shelves have been restocked. Grocery stores usually restock by Saturday for the weekend.

When clipping coupons, ask yourself ‘Even if I don’t regularly buy this brand, would I choose it over my usual if it was free?’ I clip almost everything in the paper .

Only cut coupons on the items you use regularly. Date and save the rest of the newspaper. File it so you can refer back if you find a special deal.

Put coupons that you will use for a certain store in an envelope for that week and label it. Plan ahead. Put your store rewards card in that envelope as well.

I don’t usually cut out my coupons unless I know I need an item right then. This way, when a deal is posted that says it’s in the 12-10 SS, I know exactly where to go to find it.

Try to save in other ways than just couponing. I often bring a salad for lunch and wash and cut my own lettuce – saving me at least $2 compared to a prewashed & cut bag of lettuce. The lettuce goes further too. I also buy raw carrots and cut my own carrot sticks instead of buying baby carrots.

Pair up manufacturer coupons with store coupons at places like CVS and Target. Stockpile – but don’t hoard or clear shelves! Don’t be afraid to walk away from a coupon – if it’s not a good deal for you.

Always, always, always keep your coupons nearby…you never know when you will stumble onto a super great deal and those clearance items can disappear in a flash.

Start with one store. Figure out their policy and how the couponing works. Publix would be the first choice if you have one near you. Then celebrate that 10% savings when you first start. You can’t just start and expect to save 50-75% when you just start. It will take time to build up, and eventually 50% + savings will become a regular savings.

Bribery works wonders with the hubby. Get him one of his favorites when you are out (ice cream, chips, etc.) and that way he will be more gracious when you leave him with the children while you are out grocery shopping. I always make sure there is something in there especially for him. I figure, if I saved $75, then I can splurge $3.99 for his favorite dessert. Or better yet, get it when it is on sale with a coupon and it really sweetens the deal!

Be willing to try new things! Some our favorite things have been when I found something really cheap with a coupon and almost didn’t get it thinking they would not like it. It is usually things that I would never have paid full price for before I started couponing. For example: Hidden Valley Nut Clusters retail for $3.99. I would never pay that before! On sale, with a coupon -I have gotten it for $.75.

Have fun. I still get so excited when I get something for free or for just a few cents. My husband is very supportive which makes it more fun. It is like a game to me: I try not to pay more than $1 for any one item.

I would tell newbies to get organized, be patient, and do not be afraid to try new brands.

Don’t waste too much time trying to find a certain coupon. Sometimes I find myself spending 20 minutes looking for (or trying to print) a 75 cents coupon. I have to remind myself that my time is worth WAY MORE THAN THAT!

Toothcare items I only buy when they make me money, and I still can’t seem to give all my extra coupons away before they expire.

If a store isn’t coupon-friendly, I won’t shop there.

Know your store’s policy and be prepared to defend yourself if you are questioned. Make sure you’re right though. For instance, I had a cashier tell me that what I was buying was not on the coupon’s picture. The coupon said Nabisco but only one thing was pictured. I had to point out that the coupon said ANY NABISCO PRODUCT. Check your receipts before you leave the store. (At Walmart recently, I was charged the full price for an item with no coupon shown; the cashier adjusted the price right there and gave me cash back.) This is hard to do with kids but worth it. Write down the coupons you will be using so it’s easier to check.

Use cash envelopes to control your grocery and household items spending.

One of my favorite things about couponing with sales is getting treats or things we need for free or nearly free. I love getting things that we don’t use – but my in-laws do. I give them items and they think we spend a lot of money on them when truthfully most of the time the items are free or less than $1.

Keep a list (preferably on the computer because it’s easiest to update) of what you have. Then refer to this list when you are meal planning so you know what you need to buy. Also, use the list to decide when you have enough of something. For me, this means I won’t get any more of that item unless the store is paying me to take it and I can give some away.

Get comfortable with cooking/substituting ingredients – plain yogurt can be used instead of sour cream, etc.

New Couponers: Biggest Challenges

My biggest challenge is knowing how to get a good deal on the things that I need for the week when they are not part of a ‘deal.’ Specifically, I have a hard time getting good deals on meat and produce.

Couponer from Mississippi: “Although I have always been a couponer, my biggest challenge is keeping my coupons organized and up-to-date.”

Getting to the different stores that offer the best deals with my coupons. It’s especially hard with two babies in tow. Getting my coupons organized.

My challenges have been organization and finding the coupons that I want as I don’t subscribe to a newspaper.

I am not familiar with different grocery store prices enough to know what are the best prices, and it takes me over two hours to shop at one store.

New couponer from Georgia: “Feeling unsure of store policy and attitude. And now using Internet coupons.”

Knowing when to buy something. I paid $.16 for sour cream one week at Harris Teeter with triples. The next week it would have been Bi-Lo. I’m constantly torn between “Do I?’ or “Don’t I?”

Staying organized: It’s hard to keep track of what coupons I have and their expiration dates; it’s a challenge to print out all applicable coupons , and there aren’t a lot of good coupons in the newspaper.

Biggest challenges: Keeping everything organized and trying to figure out once I get to the cash register how not to get flustered when I’m told that I can’t use this coupon – and also knowing the coupon rules for each store.

Coupon organization is huge for me. I have no idea how to do it!

Keeping organized. I hate carrying around my big binder to each store. It’s so big and bulky but, if I try to gather my coupons first and not take the binder, something is always missing when I get to the store.

My biggest challenge when it comes to using coupons is that there are so many of them that I have a hard time remembering what I have coupons for and what I don’t. I have them organized by category in a pop open type folder that has 13 slots. But I still have trouble sorting through all of them once I get to the store. Also, for over 50% of the coupons, the grocery store doesn’t carry the product. Or I find that the generic brand is cheaper – even with the coupon discount on the brand name – so I usually just buy the generic.

Finding time to cut and organize my coupons. Also, learning which stores to shop at … although it’s impossible to get all the good deals.

Finding coupons for the basic things I need.

Figuring out the max I should pay for things like toilet paper, diapers, paper towels, etc.

Doing the drugstore shopping math is the hardest thing for me still. It takes a lot of time and effort to get the most value for your money.

Use the clip-less method for coupon organizing until you shop more and discover what will work for you. Be prepared to walk away from any deal/store if you encounter problems.

I don’t feel like I’m getting the maximum value when it comes to couponing. Either I’m not getting enough coupons or the right coupons. Lots of the ‘deal scenarios’ include coupons that I DID NOT get in my Sunday paper.

My biggest challenge is seeing all the deals posted on Hip2Save and deciding which ones are BEST for our family. And my other challenge is trying to further cut our budget down.

New couponer from East Coast of Florida: “My biggest challenge is to know what to purchase where and when. I feel so crappy when I use a coupon at one store and then find a better deal at another.”

Seeing the ‘deals’ posted but they are not the same at the store. Stores being out of things. Not getting the coupon to go through and not noticing until I get home!! Yes, it’s only $1 but that was the point of the coupon!

Finding enough coupons to complete deals – especially when so many coupon inserts contain regional coupons. Very frustrating!

My biggest challenge is when the stores do not have their sale items labeled correctly. Then I have to take the item up to the register to ask about it with two wild young boys often in tow. Frustrating.

Couponing with a three-year-old, two-year-old, and three-month-old is my biggest challenge.

One of my biggest challenges is time. Since I’m new to couponing, I’m not very efficient at what I’m doing. Finding the time to clip and organize, let alone find deals and price shop, is a struggle. I wish I had more of a routine and it was easier for me to spot good deals vs. okay ones. I’m new to this area (DC) and still coming to grips with the high prices .

My biggest challenge is the amount of time it takes to prepare my list and also knowing if I am getting the best deal with each coupon.

My biggest challenge to couponing is timing. I seem to really need things that aren’t on sale. I make too many trips to the grocery store.

My biggest challenge is that I feel like many cashiers/managers treat me like a common criminal simply for using coupons. When I try to stand up for myself, I feel so embarrassed and know that I have embarrassed my girls too, with the line piling up behind me. And I’m being kind. But still I feel like a fool and walk away shaking like a leaf. Mind you, there are several cashiers who are super sweet and never hassle me, but there are more who hassle than not. I’m a non-confrontational/peace-needed kind of person so this is definitely going against my grain! I truly wish that managers would be more informed on coupons and pass that knowledge on to their employees – sure would make checking out so much easier.

New Couponers: Questions

How do you organize yourself so that you can locate your coupons? I see an item on sale and have to fish through my coupons to see if I have an applicable coupon and then I have to determine whether it’s a good deal. It’s tiring and makes me wonder if I’m doing it wrong. How do you accumulate more than one coupon? Do you ask neighbors for their papers or buy multiple papers?

What is the best way or how do you prepare for a shopping trip?

How do you decide which coupons to print out and which ones to avoid? What’s the best time of day to shop? If you take your kids along, how do you keep them occupied?!

How do I save more on food items? How many times a week do you go shopping? How long do you spend in one store?

What method of clipping coupons do you find gets you the best deal – clipping all coupons you might use of keeping coupons in the dated flyers and clipping as needed?

What are some secrets as far as time spend on couponing? The list making and gathering of coupons is a very timely process.

As a newcomer to couponing, how do I know if the deal I’m getting is really as good as I think it is? For example, I bought OJ at a store with a coupon – only to see that it was on sale and even cheaper at another store the next week – and, with my coupon, it would have been a screaming deal.

When you make the decision to buy something one week on sale, do you use all your coupons to take advantage of a deal – or do you keep some and see what comes up next week? I have tried this second approach and had some good coupons expire because the deal was never ‘good enough’ again.

How do I make sure and use each coupon at the right time? For example, I got toilet bowl cleaner at Target for $.83 last week and Walgreens has it on sale for $.50 this week.

How does an experienced couponer shop at the Commissary – when there is no weekly flier and, therefore, no way to plan in advance?

If I choose to organize my coupons in a binder, how can I make each coupon visible so I can be sure to use it when I see a good deal?

I’m outgrowing my two-inch binder. How does an experienced couponer use this size binder?

Are repeat deals only on certain items (i.e., shampoo, razors)? Are there seasonal sales (i.e., oatmeal or coffee in the winter months) on certain items? What blogs/posts, if any, cover seasonal deals?

What are your price points? What stores do you frequently shop? How do you get your coupons?

How do you get the maximum use of coupons before the expiration date? How do you determine if it’s worth the extra trips (gas money, time) to special stores?

Are store brands a good savings when on sale? Is printing coupons off the computer instead of buying a Sunday paper a waste when you factor in the paper and ink?

How many papers do you get each Sunday? Where do you get the majority of your coupons – from the newspaper or from the Internet?

How do you save on produce if your regular grocery store doesn’t take competitor coupons?

Is there a comprehensive rebate website out there where I can search rebates on specific brands?

What do you do when you get to the store and it doesn’t have the item you have a coupon for but you need the item? Buy the generic? Go to a different store?

How much time (in other words, how many hours a week) does an experienced coupon user spend organizing coupons and planning shopping trips?

What recipes do you follow daily – for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snacks?

Are there any tips for couponing and saving money while still trying to eat healthy and least processed foods?

When do you find time to shop with your coupons?

How do you manage your time so that you are not spending TOO much time on the computer looking for deal s and coupons?

How much time per day/week do you spend planning your trips and actually shopping – and do you find it easier to set aside one day for shopping per week or are you constantly running out to score the latest deal?

I’d like to know how other people keep up with their coupon binders. It takes so much time to pull out expired ones and file new coupons in!

Is there a website which lists the sales – coupled with coupons for Publix, Target, Walgreens, etc.? If so, please give me the address.

Should I feel embarrassed about stockpiling? Because I really do – I have everything hidden in closets and got a strange reaction from the only person who has seen my stash.

If I need a grocery item now, which is not on sale and which I don’t have a coupon for, am I better off buying it at Walmart or at Publix?

Should I use my Extra Care Bucks from CVS to purchase things like milk and bread to reduce my grocery budget – or is that a waste since these items are higher priced there?

How do you keep track of all the items you’ve purchased and how do you manage your stockpile?

My question relates to the deals that bloggers post online. When you only have access to one computer, what exactly can you get for FREE? Most deals that are posted are for people who have more than two coupons for a product. Many of us are using one computer and we might get two prints through Bricks (coupon websites with bricks coupons – allowing the user to print a coupon twice using the browsers back button). We can’t afford the Sunday paper. HELP!

Is it ethical to use coupons for a variety other than specified on the coupon? For example, if the coupon specifies no salt added or light soup, can I purchase instead the regular variety?

Can you buy two items and use a $1/2 coupon on each items – or just one coupon?

What is the item you can ALWAYS get for free?

Is one newspaper with coupons sufficient? I always see scenarios requiring more than one coupon… Is this the norm? Is it better to get another paper or to purchase the coupons that you need from websites that charge you on a per coupon basis?

What is your biggest time saving tip? What one thing do you wish you’d known or someone had told you when you got started couponing? Do you spend more money buying things that are a “good deal” than you did before you started couponing?

I don’t get how to use a Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) sale combined with a BOGO coupon. How do you do this?

How can I create my own couponing website specifically for the Birmingham, Alabama area?

Do you know of a good source (blog) for Northern Virginia?

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