Tuesday, May 24, 2011

More on Extreme Couponing

     Happy Tuesday!!  I hope you had a wonderful weekend.  Mine was on the not so wonderful side, a leak in the house requiring a great deal of deconstruction that is still not done, then two kids with stomach flu to top it off!  There is nothing like a little coupon therapy to make things better!  :)
     Interest in couponing has really exploded because of the show Extreme Couponing, so I thought I would give a few thoughts on methods I have tried and why I do my couponing the way I do.  Every Wednesday night I am motivated to have a huge coupon trip because of the show and I start to pull out all my coupons, open my laptop and start making lists.  As you know I am a member of a website called Coupon Sense and have been for about three years.  I have saved significant amounts of money using the site, however, I have never had a $700 grocery trip cost me $5.00.  I have consistently saved over 70%, but seeing those numbers on the TV make me hungry for bigger savings.
     Last week I decided to surf the net for other blogs that have coupon matchups for the stores I shop at and see if I could save more than ever.  Well, I spent about two hours surfing sites, making lists and another hour pulling coupons (in random order) for this great trip.  At first I thought I was going to really do well this way, but in the end, I saved 66%...what a disappointment.
     What I did discover is that Coupon Sense is the best site for me.  Yes, I pay for it, but the time I save is huge.  I do not have 30 or 40 hours to spend on couponing like the people on the show and sitting for hours clipping coupons and organizing them in a binder, then surfing multiple sites is just not for me.  Coupon Sense has me file whole packets of newspaper coupons by week with a unique numbering system, it has an incredibly user friendly database where I can search and sort by item, price, store or coupon, I can click on the items I want and print "my" list....no handwriting anything.  I then print my list and at the end there is an incredible list of the coupons I need and they are listed in order!  I can make a list and pull coupons in about 30 minutes and shop my favorite store in about 30 minutes!  Half the time the other method took me.  Will I have a huge trip that takes me 3 hours to check out?  Maybe not, but I am not sure I care.  I have had trips where I save 91% on about 15 items...I think maybe that is just good enough for me!  Here is my latest trip to Fry's!

$43.17 spent and $83.52 saved for a percentage of 66% and time saved!

    I do not have a magic formula for using coupons, I simply use the resources available to me and take a little time!  I currently have more body wash than I need (will be donating this week), razors, 12 bottles of laundry detergent, shampoo, conditioner, cereal, pasta, pasta sauce all that I got for free...not two years worth, but heck, it only took me two months to get this...why do I need two years worth?
     To learn more about Coupon Sense or sign up for a trial membership send me an email directly to erathier@yahoo.com (not through this blog I do not seem to get them) or check out my blog post http://survivingthisazeconomy.blogspot.com/2011/04/coupon-sense.html.  The one tip I will give you is extreme couponing is much easier when you get multiple sets of coupons.  I can help you get multiple Sunday papers delivered to your house, just send me an email to erathier@yahoo.com!  Happy Couponing!!


  1. Today was the first day I really saw coupon sense pay off... so it took me about a month to get enough coupons and a system that works. I saved about 50% on my shopping trip to Frys (coinsidently I got many of the same things you did :-) I was really excited about my $.50 bacon! Thanks for all of the help you have given! My goal is to get above 60% savings on my next trip.

  2. i started and have saved already just need to start getting more coupons any tips besides buying alot of papers i cant afford alot of papers and i did go through the local recycle and it looks like they dont get alot so they dont dump often so if you have any ideas oh and i live up north close to sedona so not in the valley thank you for helping my save with theses hard times i able to actually feed them more then roman noodles .lol 3 kids eat alot and diapers are crazy expensive tricia

  3. Hi Kelly, thanks for your post. There are a few other ways you can try to get coupons for free, which I will list, but I find that buying multiple papers is the best way. However, you can try asking friends and family to save them for you, put a flier on the doors in your neighborhood asking people to let you have theirs, go to your local library, hospital, restaurants that get the Sunday papers and see if they will save them for you. I have not had much luck finding them free, but I hope you do!

  4. Hi Kelly,
    Every week I go through the grocery sale ads and match up the items on sale to the coupons that I have. The problem I keep running into is that every single coupon states only one coupon per product on the coupon. So what is the point of buying more papers for more coupons?

  5. Lisa, you are right, you can only use one coupon per item. We suggest multiple papers so when an item goes on a great sale and you are able to get it for free or next to free with a coupon,you are able to get more than one because you have more than one coupon.

  6. Lisa, you are right, you can only use one coupon per item. We suggest multiple papers so when an item goes on a great sale and you are able to get it for free or next to free with a coupon,you are able to get more than one because you have more than one coupon.

  7. Hello! I was wondering where you guys GET your coupons. I get the Sunday and Wednesday paper. Where else can you get them (besides the printable ones) - Do you guys ever buy more than one paper in order to get more coupons? I dont do that because I dont want to waste paper.

  8. Hi Melody,

    Yes, I do buy three papers each Sunday and I do have two ladies who save their sets for me. I don't like to waste them either, but it is the easiest and cheapest way to get multiple inserts. You can look up clipping services online, some of them sell whole inserts! Hope that helps!