View Full Version : Guidelines for Newbies :) Helpful Hints for New Couponers
08-29-2010, 07:53 PM
So you have decided to save a few dollars by using coupons. You have come to the perfect place to learn how to do just that! Our members and staff at Have Coupons, Will Travel are the best out there at playing the savings game and are eagerly waiting to answer your questions!
Tip~The following guide is to help you save money and show you how to have fun while doing it. The most important advice I can give you at the beginning is start out slow, read the boards, get to know the members here at HCWT, ask for help when you need it and have fun!
08-29-2010, 07:53 PM
Basic Couponing For the Newbie~
Collecting coupons~The first thing you need to do is start gathering coupons. Don't worry about what you are gathering for now, just get out there and start finding them. The most practical sources are printable coupons and the newspapers. You will find all the available printables right here at HCWT~Printable Coupons (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?141-Printable-Coupons). There is also a weekly Sunday coupon preview (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?143-Insert-Schedule-amp-Previews) , so you can get an idea of what is going to be in the newspapers. You also need to watch for coupons in the stores. Many manufacturers have tearpads of coupons right in your store! Also, never, ever throw away coupons that you have collected and don't think you will use, those coupons can prove to be valuable to you in other ways which we will explain later in this guide.
Organizing~Being organized is the key to successful savings! If you can't find your coupons then you can't use them! There is no right way or wrong way to organize your coupons, some of us like the binder method, some like the box, some like to just carry a smaller coupon clutch that fits in their purse. Find the way that is best for you and get those coupons sorted.
Know your stores' policies~Find out if your store doubles or triples coupons, if they have limits, do they require a shopper's card and any other policies they have, some of the larger chains policies are posted in our store forums (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?94-Off-To-The-Stores%21)
Check your stores' current sale~Now that you have your coupons collected and organized it's time to check your store's sales. You can find many of the larger chain store's ads here ~Store Ads (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?94-Off-To-The-Stores%21). Find the items on sale and see what coupons you have to match the items.
Store Shopper's Cards~If your store offers shoppers cards, be sure to know all the benefits of the card, I shop at Kroger, I can load e-coupons (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?166-Electronic-Coupons) onto my card for even more savings and can use my card at gas pumps to save an extra .10 cents a gallon.
Make a list~Never go to your store unprepared! It is easy to forget a coupon here or a sale item there, make a list and stick to it!
Bigger isn't always better~Using coupons on a smaller size product may be a better value than buying the a larger product. Say you have 3 coupons, the larger size product is $4.99 and you use a $1 coupon=$3.99 Using those 3 coupons on three smaller products at $1.50-$1 coupon=.50 will get you the same amount for only $1.50.
Always~make sure to take you coupons with you all the time- you never know when an unadvertised sale may pop up and you have a coupon to make it an even sweeter deal! Even If you leave them in your trunk, a walk to the car is much better then a trip home.
Keep your Eyes Open~Look through out the store for more coupons-peelies, tearpads, blinkies, and even rebate forms!
RainChecks~ Make sure to get rainchecks on sale items that are out of stock. This gives you time to collect more coupons and grow your stockpile!
Save your Receipts~You never know when you may get your hands on a rebate for an item you bought recently!
Be Friendly~ Above all, remember to be nice to the cashiers! They are only doing their job, so the easier you make it on them, the easier they will be on you. Get to know your cashiers too. Be friendly and they will remember you for that. No one wants to be known as the crabby coupon lady- then you get a bad rep. Keep it legal and follow the stores guidelines and you will have no problems :)
08-29-2010, 07:54 PM
More ways to get coupons~Now that you are comfortable with using coupons and have a better idea of what you need you are probably wondering how to get even more coupons. Seasoned couponers are brilliant when it comes to coupon gathering! Remember earlier when I said don't throw any coupons away? Well just because those coupons aren't valuable to you, they might be valuable to one of our members and you can trade for coupons you need. We have a whole forum for traders (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?86-The-Trade-Station), we even have auctions (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?88-Auctions)! You don't have to have a lot of coupons to trade for other coupons either, a lot of traders ask for stamps or items they may be collecting, such as Boxtops For Education, Labels For Education, Coca Cola rewards codes etc. Trading is a perfect way to get what you need and get rid of what you don't and it's also a great way to make friends! The most important thing for you to do as a trader is be sure to keep up your end of the deal, not completing you end of a trade will ruin your reputation quickly and trust me, the information of your bad trade will travel from one coupon board to another!
Coupon Trains~You can join a coupon train, we have them right here at HCWT~Coupon Trains (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?101-Coupon-Trains) or you can start your own train! A coupon train is a group of couponers that supply one another with their coupon wishlists and send envelopes of coupons to members within that group, the train has a conductor and the conductor sets up a mailing schedule for the riders.
Also, when you begin trading, I really recommend you know the lingo that traders use, here is a very good list of Commonly Used Abbreviations and Acronyms
08-29-2010, 07:56 PM
Even More Savings~Once you get around the boards you will find that there are oh so many other ways to save! For example, let's say you purchased a can of soup that is regularly $1.25 a can, the soup is on sale for .75 and you have a .25 cent coupon that can double to .50 at your store. So after the sale and coupon you pay .25 for the $1.25 retail priced soup. BUT~perhaps your store is offering a coupon good for $2.00 off next order if you buy 5 cans of that soup. If you gather 5 coupons and buy 5 cans of soup, your total price after coupons would be $1.25 and you would get a coupon at checkout (catalina (http://havecouponswilltravel.com/forumdisplay.php?174-Catalina-Coupons)) for $2.00 off your next order...you just basically made .75 cents for buying the soup!
Ask Questions~ We were all new to couponing at one point and time. Feel free to ask any questions you may have. You have access to some great couponing minds here who have been doing this for years:) We are all here to help each other save money, so jump on in, read, learn, ask, contribute! And most of all, SAVE $$$
OK, so when you break it down like that... apparently I do know more about coupons than I thought. Maybe I'm just lazy and wanted mom to do all the work. lol because I actually understood all of that. I guess having Kelly as a mom it was inevitable that I would know atleast a lil bit about couponing. I think I'll still let her take me shopping though. Not quite sure I wanna go do it all by myself yet. :) maybe seperately in the store so I can always go find her if I need to ask a question. :)
08-30-2010, 09:16 AM
It really isn't all that hard- you just have to change the way you think about shopping- you need to almost make it a game! How low can you go! Take it one step at a time, and sooner or later you will have it all figured out- just in time for the stores to go and change their rules- lol
08-30-2010, 09:19 AM
Great advice, Wendy! :clap2:
When I'm with mom she does all the work.. so my game is to see how many tear pads stickies blinkies and other things I can find in say 5 min. lol and I also try to see how many ppl I can convert to using coupons... If we have a big quantity of a certain coupon I'll stand there and anyone who tries to buy that product I give them a coupon and tell them about how they are going to save with it. :) or my job is to flirt with the cashier so he doesn't hate us when we get in his line 5 times in one day for a great deal!!:D
08-30-2010, 09:41 AM
:) or my job is to flirt with the cashier so he doesn't hate us when we get in his line 5 times in one day for a great deal!!:D
08-30-2010, 12:23 PM
:rofl: at JoJo
09-01-2010, 07:48 AM
She really does do that.....of course when she was single she seemed to enjoy it a lot more :lol:
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