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 email@example.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 firstname.lastname@example.org! Happy Couponing!!