Last year I blogged about saving money through the use of coupons. A co-worker shared with a couple of us in the office how she’d saved hundreds of dollars on grocery, household, and other every day items, simply by using coupons and reading various forums.
I took a second look when she told me that she found even better buys at smaller stores than purchasing them in bulk at the larger warehouse stores. I was surprised. Now I have clipped coupons before, I just haven’t gotten those kind of results. My key chain is even full with discount price plus and advantage club type cards that I faithfully use every time I shop. But I’ve never saved that much money. She even gets tons of free stuff like kleenex tissues, contact lens solutions, air freshener, paper plates, and other items. She’s darn good!
Consider this to be an update as to how I’m doing with this coupon phenomenon.
Like any new habit, I started out with good intensions and a lot of enthusiasm. Clip, clip, print, print, away I went. From the couponmom.com website to CVS, Acme, ShopRite, Target, Walmart, and Rite Aid, I was clipping, printing, and making my lists.
Suddenly I realized that this couponing business was an extremely time consuming full time gig! Slowly but surely, the coupon circulars began piling up in their “designated” place… never to be seen again… that is until I became re-inspired by the show Extreme Couponing. If you haven’t seen the show, please check it out! These folks are out of control BUT are saving INSANE amounts of money! I’m talking about buying over $1,000 in groceries and paying less than $50 bucks! Yup! That’s right. Insanity!
By the way, you can find printable coupons for most of your favorite stores like Old Navy, Target, or wherever else you like to shop.
I went back to my pile of coupon circulars to sort and clip only to find that most of the coupons that I saved had expired. Oh well.
Although I do find the show to be incredibly inspiring, realistically, I just don’t have that kind of time. I realize that my failure to find the right balance, was because I didn’t establish a system that could work for me.
I am undoubtedly one of the most system oriented persons around. Mostly everything that I do has a system. From stacking and rotating my abundance of bath towels and sheets, to vacuuming the house, to packing for vacations, I have a system. So I need to figure out a system that will fit into my routine.
I am a serious seasonal allergy sufferer. Given the fact that, from Spring to late September, I run outside at least 50+ miles a week, I have to take a pill every day. Eventually I will seek out herbal alternatives, but for now it’s Claritin. What inspired me to get back into the coupon game was a recent $24.00 savings on my allergy meds.
Thanks to my teacher, Mrs. S., I’m becoming a better student.
At CVS, I made two separate purchases of a Claritin Non-Drowsy, 24 hour Relief (40 tablets).
Regular price: $22.99
Sale price: $19.99
CVS Claritin coupon -$4.00
Manufacter’s coupon: -$5.00
Final Price for each: $10.99
Total savings per box: $12.00
I should have used another CVS $3.00 off coupon to further reduce the price to $7.99, but instead used the $3.00 to get a free 24 case of 8 oz. water bottles that was on sale for $2.88. I could have also used the $3.00 off coupon towards three boxes of tissues at 88 cents each, or…. Okay. I know. You get it.
So I almost have my supply for the season and I still have several manufacturer coupons to spare. I’m hoping to catch another good deal in the upcoming week.
Now the question is, how do I stay motivated this time? Well. I’m working on a system that will work for me.
I will keep you posted. Meanwhile. Happy Shopping!