Welcome to Southern Savers, where finding deals and steals is simple and rewarding!

See I told you, this would help!

Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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reduce time spent couponingHow to Reduce Time Spent Couponing

Many people say couponing is not worth the money you save because it takes so much time. Using coupons can take a lot of time, but  it doesn’t have to.  The amount of time it takes is really up to you.

Limit Deal Finding Time

Your time is valuable, don’t spend it all on the internet. There are a ton of frugal websites, and you do not need to go to every one of them. Just pick three or four of your favorites and check those regularly. Beyond those three or four sites you probably will not find any new deals – the deals just get repeated. If you spend 4 hours looking for every possible deal, you may find something like free mustard, but you have to evaluate whether it was really worth the time you put into it just to find that extra free mustard.

A way to make looking at your favorite sites easier is to read them through a feed reader such as a Google reader. I use Google reader and love it. It makes it so easy to quickly look and see what is new in the blogging world. Just so you know, you’ll still need to visit these sites from time to time since you can’t comment or enjoy any of the advanced features (like printable shopping lists) in a feed reader.  Want to follow Southern Savers in a reader?  Get started here.

Don’t spend a ton of time driving all over town. Remember you only really need to shop at one grocery store and one drug store. Things will go on sale at every store at some point, so you do not need to go to six stores to find what you need. This will save time getting ready to go shopping as well as when doing the actual shopping.  There might be a crazy deal at another store, go for it if you have the time, but don’t run yourself ragged for one deal.

Remember, the coupon organization method you pick can greatly determine how long it takes you to get ready for shopping. For many useful tips on all of the different methods of coupon organization go here.

Get Ready Before You Go Shopping

If you have everything ready to go when you hit the stores you will spend a lot less time doing the shopping.   Having your coupons cut and put together saves you from walking aimlessly around the store hunting for products and fumbling through your coupons.

Print your shopping list and your printable coupons, then pull/clip your coupons. As you get everything ready, save yourself a few extra minutes in the store by writing on your shopping list how many of an item you plan to buy.  For example:  I’ve got (2) coupons that are $1/2 Kraft Cheese, put on our shopping list next to the cheese that you want to buy 4.

Did you know that you can add additional items to your shopping list on Southern Savers?? After selecting your items, click create list. At the bottom of each category on your shopping list you’ll see the box above. Just type what you need in the blank, then click the + and your item will be added. This will be very helpful in remembering to grab another good deal or anything else you need.

Decreasing Time At The Store

Now that my list is ready and even tells me how many I want to buy, I don’t need my coupons until the very end of my trip.  I’m just a normal person in the store with a normal shopping list.

While shopping it is also important to remember that you do not need to buy the store out. The good deal WILL come around again in six weeks, so you only need to buy enough for that time period. For example, you do not need to buy fifteen bottles of glass cleaner. Six weeks from now, glass cleaner will be the same great price.  If you bought 15 last time, you’ll still have 14 left.  I’m not saying the person buying 15 bottles is doing something wrong.  Just ask yourself if you really need 15 bottles and evaluate how much time you are using in the process of buying that many at one time.  You have to load it all up, unload it to pay, then put it all away when you get home. (Not to mention cutting, organizing, and gathering all those coupons!)

In the end if you can gather your coupons and shop in an hour or two tops, then your amount saved makes for a pretty nice hourly salary.  But if you are taking a lot longer than that, then your amount saved really starts to not look so thrilling broken down by the hours.

    • Adrienne S.

      Also, the way you keep your coupons makes a HUGE difference. I used to be crazy about clipping ALL coupons and sorting them in baseball card sheets in binders, but now all I do is put the inserts into a folder marked with their date… I check southernsavers.com for the deals, find the coupon, and clip when I want to use it. I still use my binders for loose coupons that get mailed, or coupons I clipped that I wound up not using, but I barely spend any time on organizing my coupons now! I may miss out on the occasional clearance deal because my coupons aren’t all sorted, but I save lots of time in clipping and sorting.

      • Susan

        I could have posted this word for word. I just switched from clipping/baseball card sheets to keeping whole fliers in page protectors. Time investment went way down.

        I do flip through each of the fliers each week. I take a post it note and stick to the sleeve. On it, I write down the coupons that are in that flier for things that are our staples. Since I shop at Harris Teeter, I can still get a deal with doubles even if I can't stack it with a sale.

    • Guest

      Here what I do takes me 10 minutes a week to get coupons ready. Not just limit your time getting your ready but limit the stores you go to. I only go to CVS, Kroger, and publix. Since I did away with a few store I am Saving more money.

      1. Don’t look for deals everyday
      2- I use the file system only cut coupons when need them and don’t print every coupons from coupons.com
      3. Only takes the coupon you cut or print that you will use to the store
      4. I only shop one day a week
      5. yes you may miss a few deals but you are not spending everyday coupon means more time with the kids and family
      6. Just because it a deal doesn’t mean it free as taxes and coupon time do add up

      By using this system I spend under 40 bucks a week for a family of 4. Last week savings 88 percent and out of bucks was 26.97.

      • Julie

        Exactly! I agree with all 6 rules you have. very smart!!

      • ellen

        Great idea! This post is very timely. I spend way too much time looking at couponing sites on-line and clipping coupons. This past weekend, I tried to hit way too many stores. Totally not worth it. Sometimes I feel like I'm missing out if I don't check out the sites everyday.

        Any ideas for staying on budget? I've found that I can spend too much even using coupons! I'm getting to the point that I can't pass up a great deal. Help!

    • MySnellvilleBlog

      Southern Savers is really the best place to go. I love your site! But some people think it takes a ton of work, and it really doesn't. After awhile, I knew what products were likely to go on sale, which coupons to keep just for that purpose. & I keep some in my purse that I know I will use, and another envelope for coupons for products that are likely to go on deep sale. For instance, the other day I read that Publix had Crest for $1. I knew I had some .50 cent coupons that would double, making them free. I had 4 coupons, so I got 4 tubes of Crest for only the tax. People who don't use coupons are really missing out!

      • Tennille

        When the Pampers wipes coupons came out and were free at Walmart.. they shelves were bare for the first few weeks.. then they replenished the stock, over the next few weeks I picked up a total of12 of them over 3 trips… I did give those away, I regularly give things to other people that I find a good deal on, but I also give away “good deal” coupons to people I see who are buying the same item at full price. I find it rewarding to share coupon savings with others who haven't learned “the way.” It's like walking up an handing them money! When others ask me where I get my coupons or how to do it… I tell them Southernsavers.com…no need to look anywhere else if there is a deal it will be on here! Thanks so much for all the time and effort that you into this website!!

    • Germaine Jenkins

      This post is right on time! Retraining myself not to clip all coupons is a major pain in the neck.

      As for managing expired coupons, I found information at http://www.grocerysavingtips.com/expiredgrocerycoupons.htm. I sent out my first batch of expired q’s and it only cost $1.90! I’ll start saving change from shopping trips to cover postage (for sending expired q’s and rebates). Thanks for the great tips everyone!

      • Scoutmom316

        Your local American Legion will probably take your expired Qs of your hands for you as well. That's what I do with mine.

    • Leistend

      Fifteen free bottles of glass cleaner can be donated to folks that have lost their job or are on a fixed income or food/supply pantries.

      • AH

        true, but you should always try to leave some for other people. its great to donate, but its also great to be fair when shopping.

      • Michaelandheatherfair

        You mean like the ONE person who bought 40 Bogo razors at Publix with the 3.00 coupon, when I only wanted 2 of them? Ya, I doubt these “people who donate” all of these goods don't keep more then their fair share either. Very frustrating, those that clear off the shelves.

        • Dianne

          Here in Acworth, GA we have a weekend Flea Market. At my Publix, Customer Service tells me that they have had customers report back to them that the flea market looks like Publix' BOGO outlet!

      • Sallyjumpup

        I think 15 bottles of glass cleaner is extreme – I think 5 or 6 bottles (1 for yourself 5 for others) is a good amount to donate. Leave some on the shelf for 2 other people to donate 5. 40 BOGO razors is ridiculous! That's when I get mad. We are all addicted – let's help each other feed our addictions rather than get frustrated! Thank you for this post – VERY good advice (not just with the donating).

    • Christy

      I find it helpful to look at the coupons as I shop. I know that takes a bit more time in store. I go with my list ready and all my coupons clipped together. When I grab something on the shelf, I like to double check that the coupon is for the product I am grabbing. For example, a few weeks ago I printed out 2 coupons for Nature's Own bread that was for sale (linked to Southern Savers list). The coupons turned out to only be for their Premium bread, which was not BOGO. I just find it is easier to double check that the coupon works on the product and the size I am grabbing before I get to the register and it causes all kinds of confusion at the register.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=649435583 Kelley Collins

        I completely agree. It probably adds 5 minutes to the shopping portion of my trip but then saves time at the register. Also, double checking your coupons saves you from looking like you are trying to scam with invalid coupons. I know I'm only trying to use the right coupons but stores do get a lot of people who try to use coupons incorrectly so I want to make sure that I am as honest as possible, even if it means taking extra time.

        • MaryT

          I agree, too. There have been several times when I have gone to the grocery store with my list and coupons, only to find that the store does not carry a particular item for which I am holding a coupon (things I've added to Jenny's shopping list). By flipping through the stack as I go, I'm able to pocket that coupon to use at another store without having it show up at the cash register as if I was trying to scam.

      • Amy

        I agree, too!

    • Smartmomj

      This is a great post! Thank you so much, between your blog, I Heart Publix and Simply CVS I feel like I am very well covered.

    • meme

      When I think back a few years when my husband was earning a very good paycheck each week and I wasn't couponing, I get a little sick to my stomach. Even though we have shared our income with others as the need be, we reached an age in life when my husband isn't being considered for a new job. We are pre-retirement age and still need our living expenses covered. Looking back, I could have encouraged couponing in the household, still shared with others, and saved toward our retirement years. No need to look back, but I do find satisfaction in stretching our few dollars to cover our needs.

      And, as the others posted, avid couponers–please leave a few items for us who truly need the eye drops and thermacare and hemorroid medicines! LOL.!

      • Lori V.

        “And, as the others posted, avid couponers–please leave a few items for us who truly need the eye drops and thermacare and hemorroid medicines! LOL.!”
        Im a 40ish stay-at-home mom, buying for our family of 6.. and I couldnt agree more! I ran into a couple in Publix recently, who were buying about 20 cans of Raid with coupons… clearing the shelf. Im guessing they must re-sell these items??

        • Shauanscoupons

          I am one of the ones that really like to stock up when I find an unbeatable deal. This week is a prime example. Smart Balance Milk was on sale for 2.50 and there was a coupon to go with it for 2.50. I was able to gather up 20 coupons from my supply and a few friends who didn't want it. Then, the day of the publix sale I called customer service and requested that they order 20 for me. They ordered 20 extra so I was able to get all that I wanted and without effecting their supply. This process was incredibly smooth. Publix called when my milk was in stock and I went in that day with my list. For those who enjoy stocking up on good deals, I highly recommend this approach.

    • Mandasparkles7

      Great post! Couponing doesn't have to take a lot of time, just follow the points you stated above and it is WAY worth it, it saves you so much money!!

    • momof3

      When I shop now, armed with my coupons, I actually say a prayer of thanks for being able to afford what I need. I have a dear friend whose husband has only worked here and there in the last few years, and I was able to not only provide for my family, but share a few bags of needed items with her as well! Thank you all for the support and comments–We all need ways to stretch our dollar further!

    • Nicki

      We have Food Lion, Harris Teeter and Lowes Foods as well as all the drug stores. I decide on the day the ads come out which grocery store and drug store I am going to concentrate on for the week. It saves me a lot of gas $, time and energy. Most weeks is Harris Teeter (which is tough b/c if it's not on sale it's TOOOO expensive) CVS and Target. I can handle 3 stores.

    • macboy

      I am on a low-carb diet, so there isn't too much I can coupon on, so I don't get to go crazy with the sales and coupons. I am also a relatively healthy single guy in my 20s, so all of the make-up and medicine sales at the drugstores don't really do anything for me. I usually go to Publix and Winn-Dixie every week, which is pretty much all we have in Orlando. I almost always get meat from W/D and then other stuff from both stores depending on the sales. They are both in my back yard, so I'm thankfully not burning too much gas. I then may go to Walgreens or CVS if there is something I need there. They seem to be on almost every street corner here. That's especially true for Walgreens.

      • Just me

        I'm trying to collect a “medicine cabinet” stockpile of essentials for my son (relatively healthy just turned 20) SO just wondering what you would recommend he have on hand other than toiletries.

        • Ann

          How about first aid items, such as bandaids, antibiotic cream/spray, alcohol, peroxide, aspirin, stomache aid, cotton balls, tweezers, etc. I have made up “first aid kits” for nieces and nephews when they move into their own apartments or move off to college. Look in your medicine cabinet to get an idea of what you keep on hand and/or use regularly.

        • Carissa

          In addition to the first aid items (great idea) I would add in general medicine items… Rolaids/Tums, maybe some immodium, Tylenol/Advil/Aspirin; Cold/Flu items since that season is right around the corner – Robitussin/Halls cough drops/Sudafed and the like. Most of these items should be coming on sale and we'll be getting GREAT deals on these items in the near future (if you don't have a stockpile of these items already). You may also want to consider a multivitamin too.

    • Phoenixphyre763

      I have a quick question. Do I need to print all of the printable coupons when they come available and hoard them? OR will they be available until they expire? I understand I need to grab inserts when they come out because they are a one shot opportunity.

      • Dianne

        You really should print the coupons you know you'll use as soon as they are available. I have never printed all the coupons. Some of the highly sought after coupons disappear quickly because there is a limit from the manufacturer on how many to “let out” to the public. Get the coupons you want, not all coupons. HTH.

      • Guest

        No only print what you will use. As the ink adds up which mean in end you may not end up saving money inless you use every coupon you print. I use a black ink l printer that way to save money as color is not cheap.

    • Daughterofadonai

      i pretty much use southern savers exclusively, i still find that it takes me such a long time to get everything togther, but i think for me i just need to get a routine down. i stick to pretty much just publix and kroger, occassionally food lion cuz its right down the road. my organization consists of the q inserts from the paper divided by date and stored in page protectors in a binder, publix store flyers in the back binder pocket, and printed pages in the front, loose q's are on a magnetic bag clip on the fridge that i can grab and stick in my purse quickly. i make a list of exactly what i'm getting at each store and pull those q's before i leave the house. doing all this it still takes me several hours each week, but as a friend pointed out, divide the savings by the time spent and its quite worth it! i haven't been able to wrap my head around drugstore shopping though, i know big savings is there! i did make a cvs list today, but its nothing i can use, but its a lot of stuff i'm sure will help with my church's food and hygeine pantry!

      ps…. does publix take man. q's that print off of kroger catilinas????????

      • http://www.southernsavers.com/ Jenny

        Yes they do take them!

        • Dianne

          And so do my CVS and RiteAid!

    • Mechlingfamily

      Thank you so much for this fresh perspective on saving money. It does “cost” too much if you are giving up your life. On that note…I'm logging off!

    • Coupons777

      Thanks Jenny for all your tips. This is a great article. I do use the “add an item” to the shopping list and love it. I found it goes much quicker in the store when the whole list is typed nice and neat rather than adding to it by hand.

    • Bwalldorf

      Thanks so much for posting this! I wonder, does anyone have a system for knowing when they can throw out a certain insert of coupons? I have been doing this since about February, and I can remember that one month my pile of coupons inserts became so overwhelming that I finally broke down and rifled through every one of them to see which ones had completely expired. If that were started as a list or post I think it would help a lot. Just a 'housecleaning – throw out your SS 6/12 and RP 3/14' kind of post.

      • liz_in_SC

        Bwalldorf,
        If you will go to taylortownpreview.com you’ll find that she has a list of unexpired insert coupons. This list is organized by date and insert name starting with the oldest inserts first. This makes it very easy to spot inserts that effectively have little chance of containing useful unexpired coupons. I hope this helps!
        liz_in_SC

        • Genabear

          Thanks for the link! Using that list should help weed out old q's.

      • Amy B.

        My general rule of thumb is 3 months. I only keep 3 months worth of folders in my file box & each week I remove the oldest insert from the back and use the folder to file the new one in the front. I quickly go through and cut out the 1-2 coupons that may still be valid & recycle the rest. Hope that helps..

        • Alli

          I was getting on to ask the same question! I've been couponing for about 2 months and am already running out of space in my accordion folder!! I LOVE southernsavers!

      • Jamie

        When throwing away whole inserts, be sure there isn't a coupon with a long expiration date. I use a binder when I can. I clip coupons I'm interested in, beginning with older ones, then try to clip older inserts.
        As far as cleaning them out, as I go through the binder, I'll grab out old ones as needed. *Be aware: some places accept expired coupons!

      • K Hanks07

        I keep the inserts filed by date, and at the end of each month I go through the ones from the previous month and clip the ones that aren't expired. I have a small accordion folder I put the clipped ones in. Saves tons of time clipping, you only have one month's worth of inserts to sift through, and I carry just the small file with me to the store in case of a surprise deal, in addition to my shopping list/coupons.I used to clip all my coupons, but it got to be way too time consuming!

    • Mom_4_Him

      Thank you Jenny!!! I hear all the time that people don't have time to coupon. I explain to them that I a blessed stay at home homeschool mom of 5 and I need to be a good steward of the money that God has blessed us with.

      I do check out I heart Publix on Monday to prepare for upcoming sales, but finalize my list when Jenny puts hers up. Sometimes I just can't get everything done on Tuesday night.

      I do stockpile items, but not all at one time. I really believe in respect, and the golden rule!!

    • Guest

      Using coupons should only take 10 minutes a week. Use the file system that way you find coupons fast. Don't print every coupons you find on coupons.com as ink add up. Limit the store to 3 or less. Just cause its a deal does not mean its a deal inless you really need the items as taxes and coupon time add up. I feed a family of 4 following this for under 40 bucks a week.

      • Shortbutsweet30217

        I have been couponing for a few months now and still haven't gotten my grocery bill down that much. We eat a few organic items, drink organic milk, and eat some fresh fruits and vegetables. We are only a family of 2. I would love to spend less than $40 a week. Any ideas that may help me out? Thanks!

    • Melissa

      I have been couponing for about 3 months now. I want to get a coupon organizer. I currently do not have an organized system. Does anyone have any ideas or recommendations?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Rebecca-Cissel/51206421 Rebecca Cissel

        Now is the best time to get a coupon binder. 3 ring binder, baseball card sheets (with the baseball cards in walmart) and dividers. With back to school sales, now is a great time to buy.

        • Melissa

          Thanks for the idea. It is great to have ideas from people who have crossed this bridge

          • http://deedeelovejoy.blogspot.com/ DeeDee_FL

            I use 4×6 photo pages instead of baseball card. With baseball pages, you have to fold EVERY single coupon!! UGH!! I cut white cardstock in 4×6 and inserted, then I can use the fornt and the back of the page if needed. I also found Coupon Clutch online and made my own version. Looks like a totebag when carried rather than an ugly binder.

      • Jenni

        I tried organizing on my own with typical little accordion coupon filers, and it didn't work well for me, so I bought the Couponizer, which has great for all the random tearpad/blinkie/clipped-but-didn't-use coups that I have. But I've found that even with this great system, it is SUCH a time-saver to just keep my newspapers inserts in stacks, unclipped, in chronological order, with the oldest on the bottom. I'm cheap, I don't even use manila folders. I separate them only by Smartsource vs. Red Plum/ P&G and this is because of the way the dates are noted on the outside of the cover sheet of each insert, same place a book's binding would be. Smart source has the date in the center of the “binding”, and RP and P&G has it on the end. Since I've been doing this, I've saved a LOT of time. I also want to start stapling the Regional coupon overviews published here every week, but haven't yet done so. -Personally-, I find the 3-ring binder and baseball cards sheets to be overkill, involving more time in the clipping and organizing than is worth it, not to mention WAY bigger than what I want to have to carry around with me in the store.

        • Jenni

          “…so I bought the Couponizer, which has great CATAGORIES for all the random…” Sorry. Really wish we could “edit”!

          • Melissa

            Thanks for the info.

        • Mike

          Hey Jenni…I use a similar system, but here is a time saver that might help you save even more time. I just take a sharpie or pen and wriete the date on the front of the insert to save time finding that small date on the binder. It only takes 3 seconds to write the date and it saves your eyes.

      • ms meat

        i use a 3 inch binder with photo sleeve holder that way i can see my coupons and i divide them breakfast housecleaner etc. this way i can find what i need

      • Coupons090

        it depends how much time you have . if you have alot of time, i have used a binder w/ baseball card holders , clipped all coupons and organized by isle .this way you will have all of them ready when you find clearance items or unadvertised sales . another good thing is at a moments notice your ready for what ever! the bad part is all of the time you will spend throwing away old coupons. i carry two toddlers w/ me and my binder has been knocked over spilling its contents all over publix isles , or just plain thrown from the cart once again the contents scattered all over. so for now i label my news paper inserts by date w/ a list of coupons within attached to the outside.i mark them out when i have used them all … i only clip the ones i plan to use , the day of . now what to do with the ones i didnt use , i would love to tell you i put them back in their folder .honestly they dont all make it , and end up in various pencil holders . if you need a visual of how to binder them try you tube there are alot of good ideas

    • Amber

      I should have read this /before/ I went shopping today. It was one of those epic trips. Went to Publix to get the AJC, hoping it actually had the coupons (I live outside the delivery area, so there are two stores where I can get it) and bought some produce. Went to Bed, Bath and Beyond to get a new trash can (with a 20% off q, natch.) Went to Ingles to get some beef, but the sale was last week, not this week. Went to Kroger to get produce, bread, eggs, and work the mega sale (which didn't really work out for me the 4th thing I wanted wasn't there. Mega sale, you are my nemesis!) I tried to get beef there, but they didn't even have the right cut. And then I reluctantly went to wal-mart and bought some beef and tortillas.

      Usually, it's better than this trip. But I'm an couponer with ADHD, and it's frankly a wonder that I can get my inserts into the accordion folder at all. Fortunately, I'm a single lady with time on her hands, and couponing is fun for me. It helps me get my desire to shop out, save some money, and feed myself.

      • Scoutmom316

        You and I are in the same boat, fellow ADHD couponer. My biggest problem is sorting the silly things. I spend tons of time on coupons but I consider it my hobby, a lucrative one at that!

        • amy1112

          Have you tried drawing squares on a poster board and writing your catagories in the squares? Then as you cut you just put the coupon in the square. When your done cutting take 1 pile at a time and file. Saves lots of time!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Susan-Parrish-Evans/1401557929 Susan Parrish Evans

      Thanks so much for all the wonderful shared info….coupon'rs are….priceless!

    • SFLS

      Great post! I file my inserts by date, only clipping the ones I plan to use. Before shopping, I use a binder clip on all the coupons I PLAN to use. When shopping, I use another binder clip to hold all the coupons I WILL use at checkout. At the end of the trip, I will have a binder clip of coupons I didn't use and an empty binder clip.

      Also, keep a pair of scissors in your car.

    • Jmf1959

      I use a 5 x 7 card file with dividers labeled roughly based and organized the way my local Publix and Kroger are (i.e. household cleaners, meat, cheese, beauty supplies etc) As I clip (newspaper or computer printed) they go right into the file and are ready for me when I sit down to make my lists. I use an envelope and make my list for that weeks' sale for each store. Doesn't take me more than about 45 – 1 hour each week to clip, file, and make my lists. Makes shopping for 4 plus animals a pleasure and fun to save money too!

      • Almcgrew

        Awesome idea. I have used a photo book. I bought it at Walmart. It is a binder with sleeves for 4×6 photos. I have each section tabbed off with those sticky tab dividers, such as meats, canned goods, and frozen. I use a quart size ziploc baggy and put only the coupons I will use in it to take to the store. Works awesome. It started off taking me three to four hours a week and now that i am getting the hang of it I only spend an hour and a half. Once i get all the websites and everything down, it will be less.

    • Michael

      Hopefully you should be getting new subscribers since I spoke about debt during today's message and included your website as one to look at. Thanks for being a blessing,

    • Kpower-davis

      Very timely post – thanks! You have all just confirmed what I finally figured out after a full 2 weeks away from home, computer, and grocery/drug stores.

      I usually have to learn by hitting the pavement with my face and the couponing experience was no different. Guess what? Since returning home I have clipped coupons only twice and (oooohhhhhh) have gone to the store unarmed – no notebook – no coupons – more than once. I GOT IT! Now, I can continue my life, help out with the budget so that I can continue to be a stay-at-home mom, AND use coupons! Thanks again, Jenny, and to all the helpful input from others!

    • Peachy

      I write the date of the insert and the last expiration date on the front of the inserts and All You so I know when to pitch them. I get the All You expiration dates from their website.

    • Bssessoms2

      Be sure to check expiration dates on sale items and items with coupons – sometimes they are sale due to expiration date. I have had to throw items away due to becoming out of date. So sometimes it may seem like a deal but then again it may not be worth it. Thanks.

    • Snebacooper

      I also use a 3 ring binder with Panoramic photo slides, but to help me even more I paper clip all the multiple coupons together so they don't get lost in the one section. I buy more than one paper so I get multiples. Looks neater and is a time saver. I just paperclip them the day I cut. The cashiers seem to like it too, make it easier for them to go threw. The only draw back is that you need ALOT of paper clips!!lol! But they are CHEEP! ;o)

    • Jerry

      I keep my coupons, circulars, rebates, shopping lists, etc., in a plastic grocery bag. In the bag, the coupons are kept alphabetically in small envelopes, one for each letter, except some uncommon letters are combined (like V-Z). This is much cheaper than buying an organizer. I keep the SS, RP, and P&G coupon booklets stacked in date order. If I have only a few coupons to use, I clip them while I'm waiting on line. To get a smoothly ripped coupon, I crease the coupon each way between my thumbnail and my index finger. It comes out almost as neat as using a scissors.

    • duke06

      I am new to couponing and I'm a little frustrated. Last Sunday I purchased a Sunday Charlotte Observer from a stand, for the coupons, but it didn't have any coupons in it. I then went to the local grocery store to purchase a 2nd Charl Observer but I looked it in to make sure it had the coupon insert before I purchased it.
      This Sunday I went to the local grocery store to purchase the Charlotte Observer but they were sold out, so I purchased it from the local stand and again it did not have the coupon inserts in it. Does this happen often?? Does anyone have any advice so that I don't keep spending money for nothing?

      • Carissa

        I always look in my papers to make sure I have the coupon inserts that are expected. I don't like paying for a paper that I don't read for nothing! I will sift through however many papers it takes me to make sure I have all the papers I want with all the inserts I want too.

        I have heard that sometimes the inserts don't always make it into some batches of papers. I have also heard that some bad couponers will steal the inserts from some papers. So, I am very careful when I buy my papers. I've taught my husband to do the same too when he's picking them up for me.

      • Danielle D

        Get it delivered to your house! i wake up and make coffee and CLIP! That is, on the days I don't work!

    • Vickistaggs

      My best way to save money was by joining Afullcup.com!! It is a large community of people willing to share their saving tips, deals and stories. You can trade coupons, too. I have saved so much money and accumulated a stockpile of things for my whole family.
      August 13, 2010 11:13 AM

    • Cutenurse_2006

      I am so confused :(. Im new at this and a busy wife, mom, and working woman. Please help!!!

    • Latabia

      I’m trying to understand the coupon match after I have selected my items. I understand that coupons marked with a date are associated with Sunday papers when they became available. I also understand the tearpad and SS dates. If I do not have the coupons from the dates that have passed, is there a way to get those coupons?

      • laura

        you can buy many coupon inserts on e-bay some people also sell multiple of just that coupon at a very low rate.