First you need to decide on which stores you will target. In my area my top choices are Costco, Target, Albertson’s and Fred Meyer. I have chosen Costco because of their daily prices and the others for their ease of coupon use. Some stores such as Walmart and Shopko throw a fit when it comes to Internet coupons. Keep in mind each store in different areas have different rules. When I started out I would search out a manager in each store and ask simple questions such as “Do you take Internet coupons?”. Once you figure out which main stores you chose to shop at it’s time for step 2.
Next you will need to decide on a budget for what you plan on spending on food and household items each month. The reason for this is because you will be learning to shop in a completely different way seatgeek coupon code . The majority of us go to the grocery store a couple times a month and buy what we need. When you become a Couponer the goal is to buy as many items at the lowest price possible. You watch the sales, combine the sales price with a coupon and buy the limit the store allows. So let’s say you come across a deal on chicken $1.79/lb. Well that is definitely the cheapest I have found it lately so I would consider that a stock up price and buy as much as I can at the price. The store will limit you. As time goes on you will eventually stock up on most things you need and will not have to buy almost anything at it’s regular price.
OK so now that you understand the general concept you need to know how to get started. I literally spent 10 hours one day reading page after page trying to understand. In simple uncomplicated terms you need coupons! So where do you find them? The best place is in the Sunday paper. The more Sunday papers you buy the more coupons you get so if you get really into it, you may consider more than one subscription to the Sunday paper. Next there are endless coupon websites. Coupons from the internet can be printed up to two times per month. Not all store accept Internet coupons so make sure you check with the management before you try and shop.
OK so now you have a pile of coupons. And I mean a BIG pile. What do you do with them? Find a way to organize them. I use a binder filled with page protectors. I made different categories such as Meat, Dairy, Household, and so on. Then I put the coupons in order based on what they are for. I have been told that baseball card holders work great I just haven’t been able to bring myself to spend the money on them yet. I like to pull out the coupons I plan on using and put them into envelopes marked with the stores name on them. I do this because if you have ever been shopping with little kids you know how stressful that can be. This way it’s simple, I am organized and I don’t have to have a ton of coupons to sort through. I do however, bring my notebook in with me because it’s inevitable that I will forget a coupon or find something that I really would like my coupons for.
So now you have your coupons and have them organized. Where do you go from there? I start by looking at the weekly ad’s out of the Sunday paper for the store’s that I have decided to shop at. I compare prices on items between them and then see if there is anything on sale I can combine with a coupon. Even better when you can find a store coupon and can add a manufacturer coupon with it. You can use those together but you can not use two manufacturer coupons together. So this is where I got confused. REALLY confused. How do I know what is a good price?
That is completely subjective to where you live and what you are shopping for. I have noticed a good price on Milk in Idaho (where I live) is 1.53 a gallon. I have relatives in New Orleans that tell me Milk is 3 times that price. I have tried to use other websites to find these deals for me but there is nothing worse than expecting something at a certain price and then standing in the aisle at the grocery store realizing they had it wrong!!! UUGGHH! My best deals came from me and you will get faster at doing this. Seriously though, only concentrate on a few stores or you will lose your mind!
Start a list. List down your main staples that you will be buying month after month. Things like cheese, milk, soup, and vegetables. Each time you go to the store write down the normal price you see it at and the sale price when they are on sale. I have a list for each store showing the best store to buy certain items at. Like Costco here in Idaho has great deals on things like flour and eggs. Eventually you will narrow it down and have a decent idea what a good price and what a REALLY good price is.