Tip of the Day Tuesday: Where can I find coupons for the things I need?

One of the most common statements I hear from people who are new to couponing is something along the lines of “I would like to use coupons, but I can never seem to find coupons for the things I need” or “I always end up using them to buy things I don’t need.

I have been using coupons for about five years now and have been able to find coupons for almost everything that we buy. Here are some tips for finding coupons for the things you need.

Expand your horizons and look beyond the inserts

People often assume that the Sunday inserts are the only place to find coupons. Lately, the majority of my coupons that I use don’t come from the inserts. There are a number of other resources where you can find coupons.

*Manufacturer’s websites – check out manufacturer’s websites for your favorite products. They will often have links to print coupons. If they don’t have coupons available for print on their website, use the “contact us” link to send them an e-mail letting them know how much you like their product and asking them to add you to any mailing list they may have. More often than not, they will send you coupons in the mail.

*Printable coupons – The following websites offer great money-saving coupons and you can usually print two per computer:



SlickDeals also has a comprehensive A-Z list of coupons available to print here

*Reconsider your brand loyalties – If you want to save big on items, sometimes you have to sacrifice brand loyalty. I have found that coupons typically come out at some point for my favorite brands, but for some of my favorite brands, I have not been able to find good enough sales (or get my hands on enough coupons) to stockpile enough until the next big sale. In the meantime, on some things, I have been willing to reconsider brand loyalty and in the process I have found some new favorite products!

(My husband is still pretty brand loyal particularly when it comes to his razors and deodorant, so I just do my best to stock up on those items whenever they go on sale)

*Sign up for store loyalty cards – If your stores offer customer loyalty cards, sign up. You can take advantage of special promotions and sale prices, but they also will often send you special coupons in the mail for some of your favorite products. My grocery stores will also often include coupons for items such as produce and dairy products.

*Check out catalina offers – Look for catalina offers that provide coupons for a dollar amount off your next purchase. I like to use these for meat, produce, and dairy products because it is not as easy to find coupons for these items. If you are not familiar with catalinas, check out this post here.

If you use primarily organic products, try e-mailing the manufacturer’s and check out the Organic Grocery Deals website.

For more ideas about how to find coupons, check out these posts:

Where To Find Coupons, Part 1

Where To Find Coupons, Part 2

Weekly coupon round up: preview of coupons from the 5/3 inserts

This week there will be three inserts in the Sunday paper! You can access the full listing of coupons that will be included here on The Coupon Clippers. Keep in mind that inserts vary by location, so your inserts may have different coupons or different dollar amounts.

If you are looking for multiple copies of coupons, The Coupon Clippers is my favorite resource. Coupons for the Sunday inserts are available for purchase early Saturday morning and the hot coupons go FAST.

Here’s the “hot” coupons I spotted from this week’s inserts: (there are lots of them!)

*Bic Soleil Refillable Razor HANDLE buy ONE get a FREE Bic Soleil Cartridge Refills 4-pk, to $7.29, expires 6/14/09

*$1/2 Glade PlugIns Scented Gel Refill packs on TWO, expires 6/13/09

*Glade PlugIns Scented Gel warmer buy ONE get ONE FREE, to $2.39, expires 6/13/09

*Glade Scented Oil Candles refill pk, buy any and get a FREE Scented Oil Candles Tin holder, to $3.99, expires 6/13/09

*$4/1 Glade The Fragrance Collection on any product, expires 6/13/09

*$1/1 Ken’s Marinade or Buffalo Wing Sauce on any, expires 6/30/09 (free when they go 10/$10, which they do fairly often)

*.75/1 Kraft BBQ Sauce on ONE bottle, 18 oz or larger (get it for free or close to free on sale)

*$1/1 Garnier Fructis Shampoo, Conditioner or Treatment on any, excluding trial size (these always come in handy for CVS/Walgreens deals)

*$1/1 Garnier Fructis STYLE Product on any, excluding trial size

*.50/1 McCormick GRILL MATES Blend, Marinade or Spice Rub on ONE (free or close to free if your store doubles and they go 10/$10)

*$.75/2 Quaker Chewy GRANOLA bars on any TWO boxes (combine with the coupon on Target.com for cheap granola bars!)

*$4/1 Always INFINITY on ONE, 28 count or higher

*$1/1 Crest Rinse on ONE, 440mL or larger (these always seem to come in handy for Walgreens/CVS deals)

*.50/1 Crest Toothpaste on ONE, 4.2 oz or larger paste or liquid gel (these always seem to come in handy for Walgreens/CVS deals)

*Gillette Shampoo, excludes trial size, buy ONE and get ONE FREE Gillette Styler or 12.2 oz Shampoo

*$2/1 Gillette Venus Razor on any ONE

The Coupon Clippers

There are also some great printable coupons on Coupons.com (print them below):

*$1/1 Kelloggs Frosted Flakes cereal
*$2/1 California Pizza kitchen pizza
*$1.25/1 DiGiorno pizza
*$1.50/2 Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressing
*$.50/1 Cottonelle toilet paper 4 pk
*$1.50/1 Dove Cream Oil body wash
*$1/2 Fresh Express salad blends
*$.75/1 Fresh Express Complete Salad kit
*$2/1 Dry Idea deodorant (makes it free at Target)
*$.75/1 Barilla Piccolini pasta
*$3/1 Huggies Pure & Natural diapers
*$1/1 Kelloggs Apple Jacks cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Mini Wheats cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Raisin Bran cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Froot Loops cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Corn Pops cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Rice Krispies cereal
*$1/1 Kelloggs Special K cereal (use it with the Target deal this week)
*$3/1 Children’s Claritin Non-drowsy
*$4/1 Non-Drowsy Claritin (15 count or larger)
*$4/1 Claritin-D (15 count or larger)

Tip of the day Tuesday: When bargain hunting trips don’t go as planned

When bargain hunting trips don’t work out, it can be frustrating and for a new couponer, enough to lead them to give up. From time to time, even experienced bargain hunters experience “glitches.”

Tonight I made what I thought would be a quick run to Randalls to do the Living Well promotion. Things took a little bit longer than expected when my $10 catalina didn’t print.

Here are some tips for dealing with bargain hunting “glitches”

Make sure you buy participating items

When grocery stores offer special promotions, there are typically special tags on participating items. Also read the fine print in the ad because sometimes only specific sizes, scents, flavors, etc. are part of the promotion. Buying one “wrong” item will throw everything off.

Don’t be afraid to visit customer service

If your deal doesn’t work out as planned, don’t be afraid to visit the customer service desk. Participating promotion items usually have a special marking on the receipt and they can usually easily figure out why your deal didn’t work out as planned. Sometimes it also might be something as simple as a catalina machine that is not working. If you bought an item that did not count toward a specific promotion, if you ask, they will usually let you return the item that did not work and exchange it for the appropriate item.

Stand your ground

Sometimes you will encounter customer service associates or even members of management who are not familiar with coupon policies and who are afraid of coupons. You may hear things like “Your coupon didn’t print because you paid with coupons” or “You have to pay X amount after coupons.” Be informed about store coupon policies and don’t be afraid to stand your ground. You can learn about that here.

Don’t let a bargain hunting trip gone wrong ruin your experience forever. Take a deep breath and move on!

Tip of the Day Tuesday: How to spot "fake" coupons

How to Spot Fake Coupons
Coupon fraud is becoming more popular. These tips will help you learn to spot fake coupons.

I also thought Emily’s post on her blog Laundry and Lullabies about Coupon Ethics was great and worth reading. You can check it out here.

Tip of the Day Tuesday: Tips for Coupon Usage

If you’ve been couponing for very long, chances are that at some point, you’ve been faced with a cashier who accused you of trying to commit coupon fraud or you’ve had to deal with frustrated customers behind you in line. Check out these tips which will help to make your couponing experiences a lot easier!

The Unspoken Rules of Coupon Etiquette