Grocery Gateway: Saving Money With Coupons!

by Elizabeth Scholes

 Today we’re going to talk about coupons –  what kinds there are and where you get ‘em.  There are two basic types of coupons:  manufacturer coupons and store coupons.

Manufacturer coupons, generated by a product’s manufacturer, are easy to spot because they always have the words “Manufacturer Coupon” at the top.  Also referred to as MFR
coupons, they are widely accepted at most retailers.

The Sunday newspaper inserts are still the best place to get manufacturer coupons; however, their circulation online is becoming more and more widespread.  Currently the Kansas City Star subscription for 4-day week, including Sunday, runs $1.25/week.  You could also go out weekly and purchase the paper for $2.  If you regularly save money using coupons, this is well worth the cost.  The main coupon inserts are Red Plum, Smart
Source, Proctor & Gamble and General Mills.  Coupons online can be found through individual manufacturer’s websites as well as major sources like:

These days, you can also “like” a manufacturer on Facebook and receive coupons for products you like.  If you have a product you use a lot, do a little exploring to see if they offer coupons this way or through their manufacturer website.  Often these coupons are for higher value than the ones in the Sunday paper.  Keep in mind that most online coupons have a print limit of 2.

Store coupons are generated by specific stores and will have that particular store’s logo on them somewhere.  They are accepted only at the store that generated them.  Target, CVS and Walgreens are good examples of stores that offer these.  In the Kansas City area, Hy-Vee grocery stores generates store coupons often in their weekly ads.

Store coupons can be obtained through the store itself.  CVS and Walgreens circulate these in their ads or on in-store pamphlets that are available for free.  Target has hundreds of store coupons on their website.  Every region is different, but many grocery stores offer store coupons either through their perks card, mailing list, weekly ads or in-store. Kroger, Hy-Vee, Meijer are examples of stores that do that.

One of my favorite sites to use if I am looking for a coupon is www.coupontom.com.  This site allows you to type in either the specific product (ie: Yoplait) or the generic item (ie: yogurt) and it will tell you where to find any coupon currently in circulation, either from paper inserts or online.

And now that I’ve told you all about store and manufacturer coupons, let me tell you why the difference is so important and the absolute best part about them! You can stack them, or in other words use both store and manufacturer, for the same product to get double the savings!  Here’s an example:

Tropicana Orange Juice, sale price is $3

$1 – 1 Target coupon

$1 – 1 Manufacturer coupon

Final price: $1

This week’s challenge is to keep an eye out for coupons and get familiar with the different types.  In the next few weeks we will be talking about how to organize all these coupons
you are obtaining, and how to make your shopping list so you get the best deals for your family.  Stick with me and it will make more and more sense!

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