Secret tips to save more money with coupons

Secret tips to save more money with coupons: Okay, so I don’t really know that these are “secret” tips, but I bet I got your attention, lol. This is the next article in our series, a series designed to teach our readers how to coupon and save more money using coupons. Be sure to read the previous articles in our series. A huge THANK YOU to our faithful reader Jen, for sharing these tips. As usual, we have included our own comments and tips as well.

Tips to save more money with coupons:

* Keeping a calculator with you is very important. Many name brand sales combined with coupons are still more expensive than the store brands. Watching the per-oz or per-unit price is important for the most budget friendly shopping.

* Knowing your store’s coupon policy is important in case you run into any issues. Always carry a printed copy of the coupon policy from the MegaMarts (Target, Kmart, Walmart, etc.) since the clerks tend to not know the rules when it comes to doubling, stacking, price matching.

* It is also important to learn your stores “unwritten” policy. For example, my local Fry’s computers will accept any coupon regardless of expiration date. But, if the cashier catches it he/she will toss it.

* Most Drugstores and some MegaMarts will let you ‘Stack’ manufacture coupons with their store specific coupons. (i.e. If you print a Target coupon for $.75 off PopTarts and a Manufacturer coupon for $1 off, you can use both at Target and receive $1.75 off a box.)

* Kroger, Safeway, and some Bashas computers do not stop you from stacking an e-coupon with a paper coupon. (i.e, if you uploaded a coupon for $.50 off of Tide and have a paper coupon for $.75 off it will allow you to use both)

* Some of the printed coupons specifically say on them DO NOT DOUBLE, most stores abide by these rules so I always calculate my pre-shopping savings with out the double discount.

* Some coupon printing websites (, , etc.) may ask you to create a log in and install a coupon printer to your computer. We (Money Savin’ Momma & Engineer) personally use these sites, and our reader Jen says they are approved by her tech-geek husband as well. The downloads are to prevent you from printing multiple or over your limit to the coupons.

* Now this last one may be a bit debatable – I (Jen) think that typically, you get the most bang for your buck by using your coupon closest to the expiration date. I have noticed that the stores usually have a sale to match the coupons for the first week, then in the last week of the coupon they put out an even better sale! What has your experience been?

Readers: What other “secret” coupon tips do you have to save money? Post a comment to let us know!

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Comments {17}

{17} Comments

  • 01.18.10 Coupons

    Coupons are great, and getting the most out of them makes them even better. Thanks for the tips!

  • 01.18.10 Stacy McGregor

    Collecting coupons is a good way to save on your groceries and other purchase. Those $.75 when added up is a huge savings!

  • 01.11.11 Joanne

    I just starting couponing again after not doing it for 17 years. It’s a new way though…I live in central Florida. I buy 10 papers each Sunday and take the coupon inserts out and put in a file folder with the date labels on it. Then I go to a website for this area (you’d have to search for the area you live in) and on that website it tells me the deals along with the dates where I’ll find match coupons for the deals for my local stores. I THEN decide my shopping list and cut out only the coupons I plan to use that day. Last Friday when I went shopping I saved 88% I bought $142 of groceries for just $16. You are right when you say that the deals on products are better closer to the expiration date of the coupon (but it’s not always that way…some products I use VERY RECENT coupons…depends on the deals). This shopping trip I made 25 cents for each jar of peanut butter I bought…made money also on my Special K cereal and my Ronzoni pasta. That money went into my other groceries I bought for which I didn’t have coupons (milk and meat etc.)

  • 04.17.11 cindy

    just beginning to coupon and finding my brain on overload. I am looking for the website that I had heard of previously and again by Joanne from Fl. on this site that matches up coupons & dates with the local store deals. I’m not seeing how someone walks out with free stuff much less paid to take it. Most stores will double only up to a max total of $1.00 meaning the sale item is for a total $1 or less. Also it seems that all coupon sites have the same coupons. My local paper has very limited coupons on food items, mostly on collectibles and services. What am I missing? Any shortcuts, advice, guidance is greatly appreciated.

  • 05.08.11 samantha

    I agree with you Cindy to an extent. I live in the same kind of area. I have recently found though, that if you shop at riteaid, cvs, walgreens, with their bonus cards you can make out ok. the trick is when you look at the sale circulars, you have to plan for two trips to each store, for instance, last week in cvs i got one ecb for 2 bottles of herbal essences, with their ecbs you can then turn around and buy more groceries on your next visit, so your first trip is stuff you need with ecb rewards and any coupons on the ecb reward items, Your ecb prints on the end on your receipt an then you redeem it. so last week between all coupons and the separate trips my mom who does the shopping and i find the sales, paid 60.00 for stuff that we would probably had no trouble paying every bit of 120.00. Also Riteaid has a survey suggestion at the end of the receipt, complete it and you get a 3.00 coupon off entire purchase, these are stackable. the only thing about the drug stores to watch out on is the buy one get one 50% off because even with coupons it usually isn’t much of a deal. But these drug stores carry alot in the way of groceries so buy there first and wrap up in the grocery stores.

  • 05.11.11 Janet

    Kroger no longer allows you to load their digital coupons and use a paper coupon stacked with it. They did for quite some time but now the Kroger coupon department states that this has always been their policy. They handed me back my paper coupon recently and applied the digital coupon only (which does not double like the paper ones). The lady in front of me one day soon after was arguing with the cashier on this. The cashier behaved like we were all trying to get over on their company. Obviously, all the visiting regional managers that I had noticed that month chewed the cashiers out for something they didn’t know was a problem and what the computers did not stop from happening. I think they just found a way to provide digital manufacturer coupons and not have to double the paper ones. Hence, I load less of their coupons unless they are on Kroger specific items or for amounts over $1 which they don’t double anyway.

  • 05.23.11 Linda

    If you shop at Walgreens, you can separate your purchases and get the rewards first and then use them on the other purchase .

  • 09.16.11 Jessica

    what you said about the saving your coupons til the end… I just read that and realized you are right… I always get frustrated because I have coupons I use at the beginning of the month and then I am mad because I don’t have them for the better sale at the end… I never even took this into consideration until reading that! Thanks… but by all means… if it is at the beginning of the month and it’s a freebie or a can’t pass up because it’s almost free and might not happen again kind of deal… DO IT!!!

  • 09.26.11 vanessa

    we need to help Joanne

  • 07.04.13 Cheryl Fisher

    Thanks for the tips and information on how to help save money. I shop at Krogers and your information is helpful.

  • 07.09.13 brandi hawn

    i’ve been couponing for a while now and it’s so frustrating when associates don’t know their own coupon policies! i hate having to carry the policies with me in my purse b/c i feel like a dork but you have to if you want your deals to always come out right 🙂

  • 08.02.13 Karen Chayne Sanchez

    Now I am convinced how coupons can help me BIG time every time I go shopping. Thanks for sharing these tips! 🙂

  • 11.20.13 Brigid OHara Koshko

    Thank you for these tips. I am trying to get myself more organized so I can enjoy saving $$ too.

  • 12.06.13 Mary Mosier

    Thanks for this information, I am out of work and every penny I can save right now, helps a LOT>

  • 03.25.14 mary ross

    I jut started couponing as a hobby in January and have already saved over $500.00 and I am not an extreme couponer. I do not buy but 1 paper on sundays and only print my limit of two per coupon. My family is so proud and excited on my savings and now believe me when I say it is worth the trouble to look at sales and coupons and get the deals.

  • 04.16.14 Erica

    Be sure to stack your coupons properly. If you have (numbers for example only) a coupon that is $5 off a purchase of $25 or more, a coupon that is store-specific for a product, a manufacturer’s coupon, a store-specific coupon for $3 off your next purchase at the store and a digital coupon (on your loyalty card), you need to use them in that order. Why? Your other coupons might drop your total below $25, making the first one unusable. If you find out at the last minute that you can’t combine a product-specific store coupon and a manufacturer’s coupon for some reason, you want to use the one specific to that store because you can always use the manufacturer’s coupon at your next stop. If you have a store-specific coupon for $3 off (for example, Walgreens’ register rewards coupons), you want to use it next to last because using it before the others could make the cost of several items fall below the price required for the product-specific coupons to apply, making them all useless. Digital coupons on your loyalty card are pretty safe to use after everything else; there’s less terminology per coupon, so there’re less terms that apply, making them more versatile and likely to apply even if you’ve already lowered the product’s cost to $0! Happy couponing! See you at the checkout!

  • 04.16.14 Erica

    PS – You can also use Checkout51, Ibotta and SavingStar to get money back from your purchases. Today I made a quick trip on the way home for just a couple of items that got me $2.50 back from a $3 purchase that only cost me $.50 in the first place, so after it was all said and done, I made a little money and got free stuff!

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