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Coupon Nerdery

January 2nd, 2018 at 07:07 am

A few years ago, a very good friend of mine got into couponing while trying to pay off debt. She was amazingly good at it. The beauty of couponing now is that there are tons of web sites now where they do the work for you. All you have to do is visit them regularly (sometimes deals can be posted daily) and voila! Savings opportunity identified.

There are varying methods and philosophies in the community. Mine is to only coupon for what I need. Sometimes, there will be opportunities for free items that I may not necessarily need but they're great for donating. My philosophy is to look out for deals on things and brands we use regularly, stock up at the reduced prices and keep ahead of having to spend at full price.

CVS is by far the best pasture for couponing. They are generous in their extra care bucks, coupons and you can stack manufacturer and CVS coupons which makes it easy to score deals. When items are on sale, receive ECBS and have manufacturer coupons, it's the best deal. I get everything from deoderant, bodywash, razors, Cerave (my dermatologist recommended it and it's expensive!), Tide, dish soap, Windex, dental care, over the counter meds (only what we actually currently need because these expire), sometimes even groceries.

That being said, my favorite shopping experience is Target. This is a double edged sword because it's super easy to overspend here. The old adage of stick to the perimeter is true here. Stay away from the middle of the store! I love the Cartwheel app. I scored a prime rib roast at 50% off for our New Year's Even dinner and a ham for $9 which should feed us all of next week with meal planning and creative recipes. In fact, when the checker scanned my Cartwheel code on Sunday it reduced my bill by $45.

One of my favorite things about Target is when they offer gift cards back. Like the 52 week challenge, I have in the past tried to save these gift cards for Christmas but then bunk up my finances and end up using them for groceries. This year, I intend to stick to it!

So here's an example of why it's better to buy cheap. Tide pods (I know, a luxury item) are usually $8.99 at Jewel. On sale at CVS, they will be 4.94, sometimes with a deal of spend $30, receive $10 ECBs. I will pair that up with other items that I need to buy within the spend $30 category. Usually this coincides with a coupon that comes out. So this week, I scored this:

Tide pods (12CT) $4.94/$10 WYS $30

4.94/30=16%
16% of $10=$1.60

$4.94-$2 coupon-$1.60 ECBs=Total cost of $1.34

I bought one pack, went in my stash and helps me avoid spending more on something I could buy for $1.34. And when you roll those ECBs you then have less cash to actually pay out. Anyway, that's what I do and why I do what I do. I monitor what is actually a good deal and what is actually needed in our stash. My stash is big enough that I can wait until things are free to close to free.

2 Responses to “Coupon Nerdery”

  1. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    When I shopped CVS I found I overspent a lot ... even though I was only getting things we "used"

  2. alliecat79 Says:

    FrugalTexan, you are absolutely right. CVS is already overpriced as it is. I try to calculate everything before I go to make sure of what I will spend. And I try to be super picky about what I choose to buy. I have gotten many items for free in the past two months though which is great!

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