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Family Food Budget - Use Those Coupons


Trimming your grocery bill by using coupons is a good idea, but only if you (1)use them properly and(2) use them.

Occasionally television news stations will interview the coupon queen. You know the woman I mean, she fills a supermarket food cart up to the rim and after cashing in her coupons, pays only a few dollars for everything in the cart.

You may not become a wiz at using coupons but they are great way to save money, if you do it the right way. Take time to clip and use coupons only if they work with and not against your money-saving purpose. If you always leave them at home or buy too much because "It's such a bargain", then you are defeating the purpose of clipping and using coupons. One of the first rules should be never buy more than you originally planned to buy.

More coupon hints:

  • Clip coupons for items you normally buy.
  • Clip only one try something new coupon.
  • Always read the fine print, especially if trying to double coupon.
  • Check your coupons *before* you go shopping. Toss any with an expired date.
  • Buy or make a coupon envelope with separate sections for foods, cleaning, restaurants, etc.
  • Some stores have their coupons on every receipt you receive. Don't throw these valuable receipts away. Keep them to use on your next shopping trip. Be sure to note the expiration date.
  • Even you don't have a coupon you can usually take advantage of the "twofer" offers. Also, be aware that you do not always have to buy two the get the sale price. Put the item in your basket and if you are penalized for buying only one item, it is perfectly fine to say "I won't take this."
  • If you don't have a store flyer, pick one up as you enter the store and read it before you start shopping.
  • Put your coupon envelope in a small plastic zip lock bag and keep it in your handbag with your wallet.
  • Keep big store coupons with your store credit card.
  • There are countless online "print the coupon" sites. Most of these sites are free to join to print and use.

A few sites are:

* http://babyresource.com/coupons.html
* http://www.couponmom.com/
* http://www.CoolSavings.com
* http://www.coupons.com
* http://www.organiccoupons.org

If you want to take advantage of these deals, but do not have a printer, go to your public library and use a library computer to access the coupon site. Generally libraries can help you with printing; there may be a nominal fee. A caveat--always read the small print on the sites and the coupons before using.

And finally, if you are single find a shopping buddy, you can take better advantage of savings offers, i.e., buy one, get one free; buy three boxes of cold cereal, get one free. While you may not want four boxes of cereal, two boxes might do nicely.

Take a look at The Frugal Family's Kitchen Book, Third Edition available from Amazon.com.

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Content copyright © 2014 by Vannie Ryanes. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Vannie Ryanes. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Vannie Ryanes for details.

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