Slash Your Grocery Bill
Become a coupon queen and save a bundle every week
-Susan Samtur, Select Coupon Program
Recently, I paid $3.53 for $158 worth of groceries using coupons – some from my local newspapers, some from the internet, and some from manufacturers’ web sites. Coupon manufacturing has grown into a big business, with over 250 billion coupons being issued this year. Eight-nine percent of consumers use them, but many are in the dark about the full extent of savings coupons can offer, and others are unsure of how they work. But for the coupon-savvy consumer, coupons can turn into big savings. Here’s how to join their ranks.
Step 1: Set up a coupon folder. I use a sturdy 4″ x 8″ accordion-style coupon folder that is actually manufactured to hold monthly checks. Each tab in the folder represents a different category, and all of the categories are in alphabetical order.
For example, this week I found Sobe Vitamin Water on sale for $.99 per bottle. I had a $.50 per bottle coupon that was doubled by the supermarket. My final cost: eight bottles for $0!
Step 2: Organize your coupons. There are a number of well-known methods for organizing your coupons. I like the category method. The category method involves matching the aisles in the supermarket with the categories in your organizer.
I have about 20 categories in my organizer, such as Baking Goods, Beverages, Cereals, Condiments, Dairy, and so on.
Step 3: Compare your coupon categories with the store flyer. Go through the flyer and match up as many store sales as possible with your coupons. This should go by quickly, since each section in the flyer is devoted to a different category, which makes matching the two easier and more time efficient.
I keep all of the store flyers in one location in my house. This way, when I am preparing to go shopping, I can easily find the flyer I am looking for.
Step 4: Shop at stores that double. This is one of the best ways to save really big. I always keep track of which stores are doubling and try to stick to these stores. You can find out which stores are doubling by checking the store circular.
So that’s it. Use these four simple steps, and I promise you will save at the checkout. At first, this might seem a little time-consuming, but once you set up your folder and categories, shopping and saving become a seamless process.
Printable Coupons of the Day:
Susan J. Samtur is Editor and Chief and Publisher of Refundle Bundle Magazine started in 1973, and founder of Select Coupon Program, a grocery coupons site. Susan is nationally recognized as the “Coupon Queen” and has been featured on Live with Regis, Today, CNN, Fox & Friends, and Good Morning America. She is the author of the best-selling book, Cashing In at the Checkout – a million-copy seller, as well as two other books. She has contributed to Family Circle magazine for over twenty-five years and has been featured in hundreds of newspapers and magazines articles.