Can You Buy Coupons?

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Coupons can help you save a lot of money, but cutting them takes time and energy. Plus, you may want more coupons for your favorite products than you can find in the weekly inserts you receive. It’s no wonder that some shoppers look to buy coupons instead of hunting them down themselves.

But can you buy coupons? If so, where? While you can find coupons for sale online, we don’t recommend doing so. Below, we’ll share what you need to know about buying coupons.

Is It Allowed?

Buying and selling coupons is inherently questionable. Look at the fine print on a coupon. Many coupons say that they are to be voided if transferred or sold. This wording would indicate that coupon distributors have not intended for coupons to be used by anyone other than the person who initially received them. In fact, once the coupon is transferred, it may technically lose all value, so redeeming it could be considered fraud.

While the wording establishes that coupons are not intended to be sold, some people sell their clipping services. Coupon clipping services technically sell the service of clipping coupons rather the coupons themselves. While this is still a gray area, it has left room in the market for these services to exist.

Where Can I Buy Coupons?

There are a plethora of coupon clipping services online. For a fee, these services will clip select coupons and send them to you.

However, it is important to note that depending on the wording of the fine print on the coupon, these coupons could be voided and lose all value when you purchase them. While many retailers may honor the coupons regardless of how you obtained them, technically, redeeming a coupon once it is voided could be considered fraud.

Where Can I Get Coupons for Free?

Rather than purchasing coupon clipping services, there are plenty of easy ways to collect your own coupons for free. Weekly inserts in your local newspaper are a great way to start. However, if you’re not up for all the clipping, you might also consider downloading apps from your favorite stores. Many store apps feature coupons you can clip with just a click.

In summation, it is possible to purchase coupon clipping services to get more of the coupons you’re looking for, but we’d strongly advise against it. It’s morally and legally dubious, and there are plenty of free, easy ways to obtain coupons.

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What Are Price Adjustments and How Do They Work?

We’ve all had that sinking feeling. You just bought an item only to find the price dropped right after. For a bargain shopper, it can feel like a knife to the gut. However, if the store you purchased from offers price adjustments, no need to beat yourself up over purchasing a little too soon! Here’s what you need to know about how price adjustment policies work.

What Are Price Adjustments?

Price adjustments are when a retailer adjusts the price you paid for an item. Many retailers will give you a partial refund, allowing you to enjoy the lower price on the item rather than the higher price you originally paid.

How Do Price Adjustments Work?

Exact procedures vary between stores. Typically, you would request the price adjustment through the retailer’s customer service department. You can often do this by phone or in-store at brick-and-mortar retailers. Have your receipt handy. If you made the purchase using a credit card, they may also need that information to issue a partial refund. It is important to note that price adjustments often don’t apply to some special promotions, like Black Friday. The only way to know for sure is to read a store’s price adjustment policy and/or check with the store.

How Long After I Purchase an Item Can I Have the Price Adjusted?

Policies vary by store. Most retailers offer 7-14 days. However, some retailers offer as much as 30 days. Reading a retailer’s price adjustment policy can give you greater insight into what it covers.

Which Retailers Offer Price Adjustment Policies?

A lot of stores offer price adjustment policies. Even if you can’t find a published price adjustment policy, it may be worth checking with your favorite store to see what they offer.

Here are a few popular retailers with established price adjustment policies:

  • Best Buy
  • Costco
  • The Children’s Place
  • Home Depot
  • JCPenney
  • Kohl’s
  • Macy’s
  • Meijer
  • Old Navy
  • Sears
  • Staples
  • Target
  • Victoria’s Secret
  • Walmart

If you discover a store has dropped the price on an item you just purchased, don’t fret! Look for the retailer’s price adjustment policy or check with customer service to see if they can give you a partial refund for the difference.

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What Is a Price Book, and Why Do I Need One?

Prices rise
and fall like the tide, making it hard to know when you’ll find the best deal.
But what if there were a way you could anticipate when and where you might find
the best prices? If you’re prepared to put in the effort, you can craft your
own tool to guide you towards savings.

What Is a Price Book?

A price book is just what it sounds like: a book full of prices. Basically, it’s a record of your previous purchases, when you bought them, where you bought them, and what you paid.

Why Do You Need a Price Book?

Maintaining a price book can make it easier to spot trends and recognize good deals.

As you collect
more data, you may be able to identify sales trends and cycles, so you’ll know
when to shop for the best deals on your favorite products.

A deal book
can also help you recognize good deals when you find them. It can be hard to
remember off the top of your head how much you’ve paid for products in the
past. Having a price book offers you a way to look it up, giving you more
insight into when you should stock up and when you should wait for a better
deal.

How to Organize a Price Book

The best method for organizing your price book is the method that works best for you.

Depending on
your preferences, you might choose to use pen and paper, printable templates,
mobile apps, or computer spreadsheets to organize your information. Digital
options are easier to search, but paper copies can still come in handy.

Additionally, you
can select how to categorize purchases based on your needs and shopping style.
You might organize your book by products, categories, or stores. Whenever you
make a purchase, just enter key information, like the date, store, product,
brand name, size, price, and unit price, in the relevant location.

If you’re a hardcore deal hunter, you might record all your purchases. However, if you’re looking for less of a commitment, you can also just jot down the products you purchase most often. Either option can help you spot deals you might otherwise miss.

Never overpay
again! Maintaining a price book can help you purchase the right products at the
right time to save serious coin.

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Couponing Pro Tip: Sign Up for Mailing Lists

Even if you’re already a pro couponer, you might be missing out on some of the best coupons out there. Sure, you get newspapers for the ads. And of course, you use all the best deal apps. You may even have so many customer rewards cards that you need a separate purse to carry them all.

But even avid couponers sometimes miss a rich source of valuable coupons: mailing lists. That’s right⁠—many companies reserve some of their best deals for the loyal customers on their mailing lists. Here’s what you need to know to get started!

Sign Up for Multiple Modes of Communication

Companies are eager to keep in touch with potential customers, so many offer multiple forms of communication. You may sign up to receive emails, texts, mail, or a combination of these. If you are looking to score coupons, we recommend signing up for as many modes of communication as possible. While not all companies send coupons, those that do may send different coupons to different mailing lists, so the more lists you’re on, the better! If you get the same coupon through multiple lists, check it closely; you might be able to use each version of the coupon.

Sign Up When You’re Ready to Use a Coupon

To start your relationship with a company on the right foot, some companies send a coupon to you just for signing up. You might want to wait to sign up for communication from a company until you would be ready to use a coupon if they send it to you. That way, you wouldn’t have to let a valuable coupon go to waste just because the timing was off.

Consider Sharing Your Birthdate

Privacy is always a concern, but if you love coupons and a company asks for your birthdate, you might want to share it. Many companies that ask for your birthdate do it so that they can send you to send a special coupon on your birthday.

Look Over What You Receive

Some mail, emails, and texts you receive may make it overwhelmingly clear that they include a coupon. But sometimes, coupons are casually snuck in, so you might not notice them if you immediately delete the message.

What’s the best coupon you’ve received by signing up for a mailing list? Let us know in the comments section below!

The post Couponing Pro Tip: Sign Up for Mailing Lists appeared first on Couponing 101.

#coupons #deals #shopping #extremecouponing #couponing #freebies #grocerystoreads #grocerystorematchups #matchups #discounts #savings

Can Coupons Be Redeemed for Cash?

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If you’re passionate about saving money, chances are you’ve clipped a few (or few thousand) coupons.

While your fat stack of coupons may feel as good as cash, can it actually be exchanged for cash? The answer isn’t so simple.

Exchanging Coupons for Cash

The only way to get the full value of the coupon is to redeem it when you purchase the qualifying item. This is what coupons were made for, and it’s still the easiest and most financially impactful way to use them.

Technically speaking, however, some coupons do have a value beyond the printed savings. Many coupons have a cash value of a fraction of a cent. Why is this? Well, a few states have laws that coupons must have a cash value. National coupon distributors find it easier to just print a cash value on all coupons rather than targeting just a few states.

While
theoretically you could exchange coupons for money, since each coupon’s cash
value is a fraction of a cent, it really wouldn’t be worth anyone’s time or
paper cuts to acquire all the coupons needed to make a few cents. Plus, the
logistics of the trade-in process are undeniably vague. Do you need to send
them to the coupon distributor? Is there a central office you need to go to? The
world may never know.

Selling Coupons

Most coupon policies state that selling coupons voids the value of the coupon, so dedicated couponers know to stay clear of exchanging coupons for cash.

However, if you’re a passionate coupon clipper, there is money to be made selling your clipping services. Sites like eBay are full of coupons. To make much money, you’ll usually need to collect sets of similar coupons to group together for your listing, so casual clippers probably won’t make much money.

Giving Coupons Away

Another way to make great use of coupons you can’t use is to give them to strangers looking at qualifying products. Not only will you prevent good coupons from going to waste, you’ll also get warm fuzzies from helping someone else save money.

While coupons don’t really have a cash value on their own, couponing can still save you money and enrich your life.

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Couponing Pro Tip: Be Flexible to Snag the Best Deals

You cut out coupons for products you use often, head to the store with your shopping list, and fill your cart. While a routine can be helpful and reduce the risk of overspending, it can also blind you to some of the best savings. Staying flexible can help you snag the sort of deals you’ll brag about for years to come. Here are some of the best ways to stay flexible to maximize your savings.

Watch for Coupons and Markdowns as You Shop

Some of the best deals you find may be completely unexpected. Grocery stores often have sale and clearance items that don’t appear in any ads. The only way to spot them is to pay attention as you shop.

And don’t even get us started on the coupons you can find in stores! You may find coupons attached to packages, tear-off coupon pads near products, or automatic coupon dispensers scattered throughout the store. If you happen to spot coupons near sale products, pay extra attention! Manufacturer coupons generally work with in-store markdowns, so you might be able to save big.

Clip Any High-Value Coupons

If you spot a high-value coupon for a product you’re unlikely to use, you might be tempted to skip it. However, cutting it out can better prepare you to get excellent deals when the opportunity strikes. If you notice a product you have a coupon for is on sale, you might be able to use the coupon and get the product for very little or nothing. And if you’re still not interested in the product, you can share it with friends, family, or a local charity!

Try Different Brands

When you find a good deal on your favorite brand, it can seem magical. But just because a product isn’t a brand you know and love doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a try when you find the right coupon. If you are prepared to try different brands or switch between brands, you can go where the couponing tides take you to maximize your savings.

Don’t Stick to Just One Store

We all have our favorite stores, but sticking to just one store might make you miss the amazing values other stores offer. Different stores excel in different areas, so you might find you can get better prices on produce at one store and better deals on frozen food at a different store. If you’re only picking up a few things, it might not be worth the time and gas money to visit multiple stores, but if you’re doing a lot of shopping, it can add up!

Being flexible can be one simple strategy that helps take your couponing experience to the next level. What other tips do you have to find the best deals on the fly? Let us know in the comments section below!

The post Couponing Pro Tip: Be Flexible to Snag the Best Deals appeared first on Couponing 101.

#coupons #deals #shopping #extremecouponing #couponing #freebies #grocerystoreads #grocerystorematchups #matchups #discounts #savings

What Are Coupon Fairies and Are They Bad?

ClipExtreme Opinion:  I personally love coupon fairies! The whole “not transferable” rhetoric falls off the shelf since the coupon fairy didn’t technically transfer the coupon to anyone. They just left them or transferred them “onto the shelf”.   And I like helping out other people especially in these trying times. You never know if the coupon you leave fed a child or a homeless person who was a buck short for a meal.  So in my world coupon fairies are a good thing but your mileage may vary. 🙂  

___________________________________________________________

Have you ever been looking at a product when you notice a coupon for that very product sitting on the shelf? Then you’ve seen the work of a coupon fairy!

Coupon fairies leave their extra coupons near the products. Customers who are going to buy the product anyway can enjoy a little extra money in their pockets without the work of having to hunt down the coupons for themselves.

In theory, being a coupon fairy seems like a wonderful way to help other shoppers save money. However, in practice, there are a few problems with it. We’ll weigh the pros and cons to help you decide if becoming a coupon fairy or benefitting from their efforts is the right choice for you.

Pros of Coupon Fairies

Coupon fairies leave coupons for others with the best of intentions. Their work has some undoubted benefits:

  • Making it easy for other shoppers to save money – Some shoppers don’t have the time or skills to find coupons for themselves. Others are avid couponers but may not have the right coupon with them for a particular product. Regardless of their situation, finding a coupon can help them save a little money, and who doesn’t love that?
  • Spread good vibes – We’re not going to lie — finding a coupon for an item you’re going to buy regardless can feel pretty magical. A well-placed coupon could make someone’s day.
  • Avoid wasting a good coupon – When you find good coupons, leaving them unused can sting. But at the same time, you probably don’t need all the coupons you find. Coupon fairies manage to make use of more of the coupons they find by sharing with others.
  • Teaching other shoppers about couponing – It might be hard for some passionate couponers to believe, but there are some shoppers who just never thought about using coupons. If they find a coupon and realize how easy it is to use, it could pique their interest in couponing.

Cons of Coupon Fairies

  • Potential legality issues – Most coupons include fine print that says they aren’t transferrable. Violating these terms could void the coupon, so when someone finds it on the shelf, it may technically no longer be valid. Because of this, redeeming the voided coupon could be considered fraud. Will the person who finds the coupon get in trouble? That seems unlikely. But at the same time, is it worth the risk?
  • Problems for grocery stores – Loose coupons left on shelves can cause a lot of problems for grocery stores. First of all, they can easily become litter as they fall to the ground or get pushed to the back of the shelf. Then, an employee must clean it up. Additionally, other shoppers may find expired coupons and try to use them. This creates headaches for both the cashier and the shopper. Finally (and perhaps worst of all), loose coupons near cooling units could get sucked in and damage the equipment, costing the store for repairs!

Alternatives to Becoming a Coupon Fairy

  • Tell people where you got your coupon – If you see someone looking at an item you know there is a good coupon for, you could tell them where you got it and let them find it for themselves. If you’re not concerned about the potential fraud issues, you could also hand them your coupon so they can use it right away. This at least avoids the litter and expired use issues mentioned above.
  • Teach your skills to others – Coupon fairies are often driven by the desire to help others save money. Another way to do that is to teach your couponing skills to others. Instead of leaving coupons in stores, you could share your tips and tricks with your friends and family, join a Facebook group, or even offer to host a workshop in your community.

What is your opinion on coupon fairies? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

The post What Are Coupon Fairies and Are They Bad? appeared first on Couponing 101.

#coupons #deals #shopping #extremecouponing #couponing #freebies #grocerystoreads #grocerystorematchups #matchups #discounts #savings

What is Coupon Stacking?

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You have multiple coupons for the same product, but you can’t use all of them… or can you? While you can’t always use multiple coupons for the same item, you can combine some coupons, and the results are often phenomenal.

Coupon stacking can help you save big. Expert coupon stackers sometimes snag items free of charge. We’ll tell you everything you know to stack coupons like a pro.

What is Coupon Stacking?

When you use multiple coupons on the same item, that is considered coupon stacking. You generally can’t use two like coupons on the same item. However, if you have both a store coupon and a manufacturer’s coupon, you should be able to use both on the same product. That’s because these coupons are put out by different sources.

What Types of Coupons Are There?

Since coupon stacking relies on pairing store and manufacturer’s coupons, it is important for coupon stackers to know how to differentiate between types of coupons. Here are the three types you need to know:

  • Manufacturer’s coupons – You can find manufacturer’s coupons in fliers, on printable coupon websites, on product packaging, and on tear-off pads or blinkies in stores. Manufacturer’s coupons say “manufacturer coupon” and do not usually list a specific store, which makes them easy to tell apart from store coupons.
  • Store coupons – Store coupons are distributed by the store itself. These coupons most often appear in the store’s weekly flyer and usually list that they are only redeemable at that store.
  • Manufacturer’s coupons with store names – Occasionally, a coupon will be labeled “manufacturer coupon” but still list the name of a specific store. This is kind of a gray area. Since they’re technically still manufacturer’s coupons, some stores will accept them regardless of which store’s name appears on the coupon. However, don’t get your heart to set on it since some stores may reject them.

How to Make Coupon Stacking Easier

Coupon stacking can seem complicated, but with a little prep work, it doesn’t need to be hard at all. These tips can help you prepare.

  • Stay organized – Knowing what coupons you have and being able to find them can make stacking coupons more convenient. Organizing your coupons in a way that makes sense to you will make it much easier to find coupons you can stack on the same item.
  • Prepare ahead – If you’re managing a lot of coupons, finding them on the fly can be stressful. You may wish to decide what coupons to use before you go shopping so that you can have everything ready to go.
  • Know store policies – Knowing a store’s policies can make you more confident that you are doing everything above board.

Important Things to Keep in Mind

  • Cashiers may not know store policies – Even if you’re doing everything correctly, some cashiers may try to claim you can only use one coupon per item. Many coupons contain fine print that specifies only one coupon may be used on the item. However, this wording usually means you can only use one manufacturer’s coupon on the product. You should still be able to pair it with a store coupon.
  • Digital coupons may be store coupons or manufacturer’s coupons – Many stores offer digital coupons. Generally, these are a mix of store coupons and manufacturer’s coupons. You may still be able to stack them with printed coupons as long as you don’t try to use two manufacturer’s coupons or two store coupons on the same product.

Have you ever gotten products for free by stacking coupons? Tell us your favorite deals in the comments section below!

The post What is Coupon Stacking? appeared first on Couponing 101.

#coupons #deals #shopping #extremecouponing #couponing #freebies #grocerystoreads #grocerystorematchups #matchups #discounts #savings

4 of the Best Ways to Organize Coupons

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Many a coupon has gone to waste. Whether its owner misplaced it or forgot to use it, too many good deals have fallen victim to this tragic fate.

But not on your watch! Once you find the best way to organize your coupons, you’ll have easy access to them and be able to deploy them at the perfect time to maximize your savings.

Here are four ways you might try organizing your coupons:

Mini Accordion File Folder

These small, convenient folders can fit nicely into your purse. But don’t let their compact size make you think they lack organizational power! Many mini accordion file folders offer compartments with tabs, allowing you to group your coupons together however you see fit and flip through them easily.  

Recipe Box

Though not very portable, recipe boxes can be a helpful way to organize your coupons at home. Since recipe boxes are already the right size and are designed to be an organizational tool, they can convert nicely to meet your couponing needs. Whenever you have a shopping list and want to see if you have coupons you can use, you can just go to your recipe box to find coupons to use on your next shopping trip.

Binder

It’s big and bulky, so it might not be great for toting around with you. However, for an avid couponer with a huge catalog, a binder can be an excellent organizational tool. You can use plastic sleeves, like baseball card collectors do, to organize your prized coupons. Depending on your preferences, you might group coupons alphabetically, by expiration date, or by what aisle you’d find the product in. Regardless of your organizational scheme, though, a binder can help you organize a massive collection of coupons.

Coupon Organizer

If you want an organizational system you can implement quickly, it’s hard to beat a coupon organizer. Coupon organizers are already designed to accommodate coupons, so they’re usually the right size. Plus, they often even have categories listed already, so all you have to do is put in your coupons.

All of these tools are good options to organize your coupons, but ultimately, the best way to organize coupons is the way that works best with your shopping habits.

Do you have any other ways that you like to organize your coupons? Let us know in the comments below!

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What Are Coupon Match-Ups, and How Do They Work?

Sales and coupons can both be effective ways to save money. What many people don’t realize is that you can often combine sales and coupons for even bigger savings. No, this is not some mythical reality you can only dream about, and it’s not cheating the system either. Countless couponers regularly benefit from coupon match-ups, and you can, too! We’ll tell you all you need to know to get started today.

What Are Coupon Match-Ups?

A coupon match-up is simply pairing a coupon with a sale on the product. Since sales are usually run by stores and coupons are often issued by manufacturers, you can generally use a coupon for additional savings off the sale price. Even if a coupon is issued by a store, it may still work with some sale items!

Methods to Find Coupon Match-Ups

The best method to find coupon match-ups is whatever method you’re most comfortable with. Here are a few methods couponers use:

  • Go through sale ads, then coupons. You can find store sale circulars in newspapers or online. Peruse these ads to look for the best deals on your favorite products. You might jot down sales you’re interested in or circle them. Then, look through your coupon inserts and favorite websites to clip any coupons that correspond to the sales you’re considering.
  • Clip coupons, then go through sale ads. My preferred method for matching coupons is to clip coupons first, then look through sale ads. Because coupons are often good longer than sales, coupons you clipped a couple of weeks ago may pair up beautifully with a sale happening this week. Clipping any good coupons you think you might use can prepare you if you find a good sale on that item.
  • Search a coupon database. Several sites maintain coupon databases that list coupons that are currently valid. To do coupon match-ups using these sites, simply make your shopping list based on what’s on sale, then look for additional coupons in the database to stack your savings.
  • Find a local coupon match-up online. Some local couponers will do the match-up work for you! Search Google and Facebook using search terms that include “coupon match-up” and your city. You can include the name of your preferred grocery store as well. Be sure to look at the date on any match-ups you find, since they will only be valid for a week or two from the time of publication.

Places to Look for Coupons

If you’re new to couponing and don’t know where to start, we’re here for you! To get started, check out our guide on where to find coupons. Below, we’ll list just a few of our favorite coupon sources to use for match-ups.

  • Coupon inserts in newspapers. Newspapers frequently run coupon inserts. Smart Source, RetailMeNot Everyday, and Procter & Gamble are some of the most common inserts.
  • Coupon websites. Some coupon websites, like Coupons.com, offer free printable coupons.
  • Store websites/apps. A lot of stores now offer digital coupons, which you can digitally “clip” on the website or app and redeem in-store.
  • In-store coupons. In-store coupons can be some of the most convenient coupon match-ups. You may find these on packages, tear-off pads, or blinkies.

Things to Keep in Mind

  • Store policies may vary. While stores usually allow you to use manufacturer coupons on sale items, they may limit how many you can use. Knowing the store policy before you shop can make you more confident doing match-ups.
  • Cashiers may not know the store’s policies. Even if you are complying with all store policies, some cashiers may claim you can’t use your coupons on sale items. And we don’t blame them for thinking that! Some deals just look too good to be true. If you know the store’s policies, it may help to explain them to the cashier or talk to a manager.

What’s the best coupon match-up you’ve ever found? Tell us about your best deals in the comments section below.

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#coupons #deals #shopping #extremecouponing #couponing #freebies #grocerystoreads #grocerystorematchups #matchups #discounts #savings