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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Real Extreme Couponing: Where and how to get your Sunday newspaper insert coupons.

Since we covered the basics of saving money on groceries (i.e. learning sale cycles) now it’s time to add in the coupons. To start you have to get the Sunday paper. A few personal notes/thoughts on newspaper coupons:

  • Newspapers only guarantee inserts to subscribers.  Always check your newspaper for coupons before buying at grocery store or paper box.  It doesn’t mean someone stole them, it could be that there just weren’t enough inserts sent from the publishers that week (inserts are not printed locally).
  • You DON’T need a ton of papers!  I know you are going to watch the lovely “tv show” and see people with closets of coupons.  We need enough of a product to last 6 weeks, for most families that is only 1-2 of each item (watch the sale cycle video for more information).  It will come on sale again and you will get another coupon, I promise.
  • Because every insert is different, there will be many days that I tell you about a coupon in your match ups and you just don’t have it.  The grocery deals on Southern Savers list any coupon released in the south east.  While it can be frustrating to not have a coupon, remember that if it’s listed someone did get it!  You can hop online and order it from a coupon clipping service or ebay if you really want it.  Or trade with someone on our coupon traders board.
  • One more thing… it is illegal to get in a dumpster in most states of the south.  Just because you saw it on TV doesn’t mean you can do it.

Helpful links:

How to Organize Coupons (the easy way)
How to Organize Coupons (the extreme way)

Regional Variations – Get a list of every coupon in your areas paper each week.

Remember though – coupons are just icing on the cake. If you have a bad week or no time at all you are still saving a ton of money to buy the sale price and stock up on it. Don’t worry about the coupons, just grab the sales and add coupons back in when you can.

Watch more videos to learn couponing on the Southern Savers Youtube Channel.

    • The dumpster diving comment CRACKED ME UP! Thanks for the laugh, I needed it today!

    • Carrie

      Great video Jenny!  Thanks so much for all you do! :D

    • Patricia

      Thank you those extreme coupon people are a little too much for me!

    • Singsanctus

      Re: big papers. You can also simply subscribe to the big paper nearest you. I live a good 2 hrs from Houston in a very rural area, but they still deliver it out here! I also don’t have to worry about getting dressed and going to buy it. Yes, I pay a little more ($9/mo for Sat and Sun), but it still outweighs the value I receive from the amount of coupons I use (esp with doubling). So, that may be another option for some.

    • Kim9619

      You rock Jenny!!!  I was at Publix today and saw an Extreme Couponer.  It embarrassed me to use my little ole 8 coupons!!!!

      • Carla

        I saw one in Florida last month and she was giving her extra coupons to every one she passed as she noticed what they were looking at. Very nice!

    • Dedebug88

      Once again I reminded of why you are the my favorite coupon blogger! Thank you, Jenny!!!

    • carrie

      I should probably watch the sales cycle video before commenting on it, but here I go anyway.  I disagree with keeping only enough for 6 weeks – though my tween daughter (who is so embarrassed about my couponing) and husband would love for me to only keep enough for 6 weeks.  Not only have I noticed food prices going up and packaging shrinking, just like everyone else has, but I’ve also noticed that the value of some coupons are decreasing (ex: pringles used to be $1 off of 3, it’s now $1 off of 4) and some things are not going on sale as often (ex:  I don’t think my Publix has had Beech Nut baby food BOGO since early spring – I remember when it would be BOGO about every other month).  So, because of these things, when there is a wonderful deal, I find myself having to fight going overboard because I don’t know if I’ll see those low prices again.  Because of this, I’ve started shifting my focus from always getting the lowest price possible to rather staying on budget each week and trying to feel successful if I only spend about $75 per week for my family of 5.

      As for the newspapers, I read early on in my couponing adventure to get the same number of papers as the number of people in your family.  Since I live in FL where we have the true BOGO, it makes sense for me to buy an even number and since the youngest is only 3, I get four papers each week.  Once she gets older then that might switch to 6, we’ll see.

      • Anonymous

        I know that in late June, early July the Beech-Nut Steamies were bogo because I got 4 free, but I do agree that, unless its Razors at CVS, it seems that I need more inbetween sales.

      • Mlm82lmm04

        I have to agree with u. I have a family of 6 and I have kroger and walmart. And the drugstores. I haven’t seen a good buy on softner in forever. Plus we go through a lot of food. 3 of one item won’t cut it.. I’ve run out of alot of my freezer items because nothing is worth it right now. I usually get 6 ppapers and that seems to b ok. It gives me the right amount for 2 transactions when coupon limit is 3 per transaction. Not always do I use 6. I prob won’t use 6 mustard in a year unless I come across a recipe that uses a lot. But I have learned what we will eat and won’t. I think it is different for each family. And in these tough times, having more than a six week blanket makes me feel much better. I have the worst time spending sooo much money on produce. I need my own garden. Maybe coupon clubs should coincide with a garden club so we all aren’t paying butt load for produce.

      • Bridget

        I agree with you too, depending on the item. Some sales might come around every 6 weeks, but others are seasonal. For instance, we like having lots of frozen veggies on hand. Those only go on sale with coupon matchups in the fall and winter, so we try to stock our big freezer with enough to last through the spring/summer. Most of the free deals on salad dressing and bbq sauce happen in the summer, and the good deals on cold weather food like soup and pasta sauce happen in the fall and winter. Certain brands also go on sale at certain times of the year. Specifically, Harris Teeter has great sales on Seventh Generation products in January, because that is the month where there is a big push for “healthy lifestyle” products like vitamins and eco-friendly brands. So that is a great time to stock up.

        Thanks for all you do to show people how to coupon the right way, Jenny!

    • Rachel

      I actually hate the show Extreme Coupon.  Most of them are hoarders and over weight and its ridiculous how obsessed they are and how its taken over their life.  Occasionally you’ll see someone who helps a ministry or something.  I think its that show that is spoiling it for many of us.  I’m in Macon Georgia, and the coupons are getting less valuable and the stores are getting pickier and changing their policies and its frustrating… especially now I’m gestational diabetes and have to only eat certain things, and a tight budget and a baby on the way.  Thank you for listening to my rant.  :)

    • Momof5

      Jenny, I love how you help us on your website and all of the great information, but I am sorry, the first point I have found to not be true.  I was receiving 2 copies of The State on Sunday delivered to my home and frequently not getting the coupon inserts.  When I called both my deliverer and The State paper, they told me they could not gaurantee that I would get the inserts.  Such a shame that a company doesn’t take care of it’s loyal customers.  Needless to say, I cancelled my subscription.

      • Anonymous

        it can vary by paper
        no papers gaurantee coupons every single week, but if you say your neighbor got inserts from their delivery service and you didn’t, they’ll usually send you the paper right away.
        or if you see them in a  stand paper, then you ask why you are gauranteeing them money when they can’t gaurantee equal service

    • anonymous

      is rooting through the junk mail recycle bin of your apt the same thing as dumpster diving ..even if i share the extra with cooworkers?? …we get the redplum in the mail … :(… but seriuously thank you for letting me know how to make it on my own … at this point as a single mom working poor .. my grocery budget is something like 70 a mnth .. jenny i couldnt doo it without you!

      • Anonymous

        my understanding is that bins from the city, if its the big containers or personal ones, are not to be pilfered and it is illegal
        but my understanding is that its mainly illegal because you could get hurt in the process.
        although I personally think it is wrong because it wasn’t you that paid for it. I would suggest asking your neighbors if they’d leave the inserts they don’t want on or under their welcome mat
        so that it is clearly meant for you but can be done on their time

    • Cheryl

      Jenny, thank you for all you do for us with the Ads!! I get one paper and some coupons come in the mail. That’s plenty enough for me. I buy for me and my son (I do not consider that TWO families).. I also have just one card for the grocery stores I shop. The reason I am saying this, my little dawg.. whom I love so much… he hates it when I get out the scissors and start clipping coupons. I have my “envelope” system. And it works great for me… the less time I spend on coupons, because like you said, they are not going away, the more time I get to spend with my favorite pal, my little dawg. And yes, I got get him treats with coupons!! He sniffs the bags when I come in. Jenny, THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO!!

    • Cheryl

      Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I work and don’t have time to stay up long enough to watch the “extreme coupon”  show. I do not need that.  I don’t clear shelves and I’ve never purchased more than I need. I have purchased a lot of juice for my son. But I’ve never even seen the last one. Also, I do hope that anyone watching the show tonight, and that will not be me, I hope you consider the source. Lowe’s is a wonderful store.

      A situation happened this past weekend.. I had 6 coupons to buy the Old Orchard juice. But, I could buy only 4. I told the cashier I’d just get the other two on another trip out. The cashier did tell me that after our transaction, I could go back and get the other two. Plenty on the shelves. My son drinks juice, not sodas… and he had a tough time making ends meet. I am happy I can help him and I am happy that Lowes’s allowed me to make that transaction w/o grief or w/o embarrassing me . Love that store!!!

    • Grocerys4us

      Jenny, thanks for reminding us we don’t have to go to the extreme. I know salad dressing is one thing I overstocked on and I feel so ashamed that I have rank tasting dressing that has to be thrown away instead of more good old vegetables and fruit purchased instead.

      About the coupon inserts in the home-delivered newspapers. My newspaper told me they don’t put the inserts in the papers in my area. I wasted my money on the subscription. If others are missing inserts, call your newspaper and see if this is the case. HTH

      • Mary

        Are you referingto the Atlanta paper that ran the special a few weeks ago? I ordered it but haven’t received one yet.

      • Diwh8331

        They arrested a man in Miami last wk for stealing them out of the boxes.  This is so wrong to be stealing them away from us as we are also paying for the inserts.

    • Mary

      Went to Walmart this Sunday and picked up 2 newspapers.  When I checked them the circular was gone.   According to my sister, there is a couple who takes them…RIGHT IN FRONT OF EVERYONE.  They will go through 10-15 newspapers and take or STEAL all the circulars.  She confronted them and they just ignored her.  She then went to the clerk and complained and still nothing was done. 

      First, that employee should be reprimanded.  Secondly, I am going back this Sunday and will call the police if/when I see them stealing the circular.  This greed is crazy! 

      • shoping4deals

        Mary sadly this has become a real problem…I have friends who have a commercial paper route— People will steal from the boxes, ie pay for one paper and take them all. Now they only put 1-2 papers in the box where as before maybe 10-15 depending on the location.  They have even had the entire newspaper box stolen!!  When they pick up the leftover paper from the Walmart they have been pilfered and the coupons stolen.  Removing items out of the newspaper is the same as opening up a box of cookies and eating 1-2 then putting the box back on the shelf…..wonder how Walmart feels about the customers that do that???  I hope you do call the police—what they are are doing is the same thing as stealing!!  The paper delivery people are the ones that are getting hurt because their income depends on the number of papers they sell.  People buy the Sunday paper for the circulars and coupons. 

      • carrie

        I wonder if you called the newspaper office and told them what was happening and where it was happening and how many of their papers weren’t selling because of the missing coupons what they would do.  Since it would be the newspapers bottom dollar (loss of sales due to no one buying the paper without coupons), they might get on the ball and do something.

    • Anonymous

      I love this post

      because it says the truth
      there are no “rights” to coupons. even if you see it on some sidewalk or recycle bin. and you really only “need” 2 of each insert (maximize on bogo savings)
      I actually personally witnessed a person going through newspapers at Winn Dixie, it’s crazy. If you needthe coupon, buy the paper or get it from a clipper site.

    • Anonymous

      I still remembered one lady complaining about only being able to get 40 coupon inserts from the dumpster
      it irks me how people feel entitled to things they didn’t want to purchase

      • Missy

        Well the people at my local convenient store act as though my husband and I are stealing or doing some criminal activity by going through the papers.  I have gotten to where I have to take the papers to the counter and go through them so they can “see” what I’m doing!!  Otherwise they rush up on us and get snotty asking what we’re doing.  It has gotten to the point with me that I don’t even care about couponing anymore!!

        • Gga8758554

          i can promise you these store owners are arabs!!!!!!!!!1111
          I do not deal wiht them. you have every right to check out the paper. about 27 yeara ago i wrked in a store and yes, people so get the coupons out.

        • Toni Miller17

          Buy your papers at a different store.  I look through mine before purchasing too, just to make sure all my inserts are there.  I’ve never had a problem.

    • Czmerek

      I found it actually funny ( and ridiculous) that you have to remind people that getting in a dumpster is illegal.

    • Tmcgready

      Thank you that you said it’s still a good idea to stock up when items are on sale even without the coupons if you just don’t have time to clip and organize the coupons.  I had been feeling guilty for not couponing due to lack of time!

    • Fi

      Not to sound silly, or ignorant.. but why is it illegal to get coupons when someone has discarded their paper and no longer want it? Not saying is this something I do, or something that I plan on doing, but I’m simply just curious. I really just didn’t know it was illegal.

      • Mlipscomb841

        She did not say it was illegal to get the coupons that others no longer want, she said it was illegal to get in the dumpster. I don’t know for a fact, but I would guess the reason for that is because it is a safety hazard.

        • Fi

          What I was trying to say is…. If they’re in the dumpster I would think they’re no longer wanted – they got there somehow. That’s why I worded it that way. I was just curious why is all.

    • Mom4

      Just wait until Kroger cancels their doubling and tripling like they are doing in Texas!

    • Jacq

      Hi Jenny- How long do you keep your inserts?  I also really like the accordion file method where I keep each insert but I am not sure when a good time to toss the inserts.  I have been keeping them for 6 months but rarely use some of the older ones. Any words of wisdom?

      • Peachy_Marietta

        When I receive a circular I go through it and find the last expiration date of any coupon I might use. I then write the date of the circular on the front with the expiration date below it.

      • I’ve tried the accordion style and the the “clipping every coupon” style.  The accordion style saves you so much time! Once most of the coupons have expired in an insert, I clip the few that aren’t and file them under the clipped section in my binder until I use them or they expire.

    • Marylou762

      Thanks Jenny, great info. on the video.  I buy 4-5 papers a week unless it’s a holiday.  Living in Florida we do not get to double any kind of coupons so, the bottom line is we can get the items cheap but, still have to pay for most of the products.  Watching extreme couponing is not realistic  to me , things do get stale and unless you donate to your food bank , who needs 80 bags of candy ??    I have been able to save and stock pile personal items , laundry items and some can goods  etc.  I really enjoy your website , thanks again for all the great info.  Mary

    • You’re awesome! Thank you for this site! I totally agree with you about the amount of papers needed. I got stressed just watching the show last night for the lady that has crates and crates full of coupons.  REALLY?! Why would she do that to herself?  I buy 3 every Sunday and I have more than enough stock for my family of 5.  Not to mention, I ‘m constantly giving bags of goodies to me mom and  mother in law!

    • April

      I have a question below, for those who collect more like 6 – 10 of each insert each week…. skip to the 2nd paragraph if you don’t want to read the novel of a post I’ve managed to write ;) 

      When I first started out, I used to clip every coupon & file it away in its respective category (junk food/snacks, frozen, meats, breads, household, personal & beauty, pets, etc.), and that got old REALLY fast.  Clipping every coupon (or even half of them) just seems crazy to me these days – WAY too time consuming for nowhere near a justifiable payoff.  I switched putting my inserts into large calendar or manila envelopes with the dates & quantities of inserts written on the front (i.e., 9/04 then underneath, 7 – RP, 8 – SS), along with my file system only for printed coupons, clipped coupons that weren’t used, etc.  
      But then the massive stack of envelopes got to be too much.  So I very recently bought a couple of 21-folder accordion files.  They’re WONDERFUL, but I’m thinking I need to buy a better kind than the ones I bought…. Because I collect anywhere from 6 – 10 of EACH insert each week (so 12 – 20 total inserts each week… unless there’s P&G or anything else, which means 18 – 30, although the P&G’s are really thin), there’s no way I can use every folder in the accordion file.  

      I think I’m still going to have to get a 21 or 26 folder file, and still only be able to use like 1/3 of the folders (otherwise, it won’t close)…. My boyfriend says I need to get 3 accordion files… one for each month.  As much as I LOVE using the accordions… I really wish I could find a way to use only two.  Although the 2 I currently have are really heavy… Last weekend did me in…. I walked away with 10 RP’s, 10 SS’s, 10 P&G’s & 10 Everyday Savers (I call them ‘box top coupons”).  I can’t fit one more thing into that accordion file now! lol…. 

      Any advice or ideas for people like me, that collect a lot more than 2 inserts each week would be highly appreciated!  I’ve been to Wal-Mart, Target, Staples & Office Max & still haven’t found the perfect accordion file.  I also really, really want to avoid having to spend more than $15 on each file if I can.  I prefer to spend $10 – $12, which seems to be the average price. 

      OH and for the record, I also use a mini-accordion file system for my clipped coupons now, too.  I LOVE that thing!  I leave the large accordions in my car, and carry the little one in the store with me.  That way, I have everything with me, and I use my iphone to check the Coupon Database when I’m in the store, in case I need to run out to the car to grab another coupon.  It’s a great system :) I just need a better accordion file!

    • April

      And for the record, I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to see a Coupon Database iPhone app, so I don’t have to use the internet to check the database when I’m in the store!!  :)