I’ve been on a crafting hiatus. Mostly due to me returning back to the workforce but also because I’ve become an avid couponer. I am in no way an Expert – definitely would still categorize myself as a Beginner Couponer and I in no way do extreme couponing but I do enough to save my family money. I started because of a simple website (and app!) called GrocerySmarts.com
I put together a short walk-through of how I use the website to benefit my shopping needs. I hope it helps anyone looking to begin couponing or needing a fresh resource to accessing local sales and deals.
GrocerySmarts is a great tool for general couponing, but it won’t be a great way to learn how to “stack” coupons and it won’t give you deal scenarios. Because of this, I recommend not using GrocerySmarts if you are looking to stock pile. GrocerySmarts is better used for weekly grocery shopping, or in other words finding the best deals on products you are about to go out and buy. This website is especially helpful if you prepare your weekly meals ahead of time and stick to meal planning.
Here is the short tutorial I had put together for my friends and family:
Again, I can’t stress enough that I am NOT an expert couponer. I’ve only been doing it casually for 2 years and I still have a lot to learn. But I enjoy teaching those around me so I hope posting this here will help another beginner couponer looking for guidance.
Other helpful hints that I’ve learned thus far:
-Buy 1 newspaper per household member (get them from 99 cent store or dollar tree!)
-Search Facebook for local couponing groups. Often times there are “Insert Fairies” that can buy inserts in bulk and therefore cheaper for the group
-Grow slow. Don’t jump in expecting to have experiences like TLC’s show “Extreme Couponing”. Half those people will probably end up on the next episode of “Hoarders” anyway. Set a goal and boundary for yourself. I don’t stock more than 3 months supply of certain things (especially those household items with expiration dates). Other things with no expiration I may go slightly more crazy on (like bandaids).
-When in doubt, either DON’T or ASK. If you aren’t sure you can use a coupon on a certain item, either don’t try it or ask a store employee. Coupon fraud is real, and even if it was an honest mistake you will quickly be labeled by store employees as someone to watch closely during checkout making your future transactions frustrating and/or humiliating.