Couponing Training & How To Make or Save $$$

Posted: April 7, 2011
14

What is a price points list? It is your “stock up” price, or the price you see and say “I’m going cuckoo on this deal!”  These prices vary by region, but over the next few days I’ll be posting pointers to set you in the right direction.

Here’s the rest of my lists for great prices to pay:

Apples $0.59-$0.79 /lb

Bananas lb $0.33

Bread (Store Brand) 20 oz $0.88

Bread (Premium) 24 oz $1.00-$1.25

Brownie Mix $0.59 or less

Butter (Quarters) lb $1.50 or less

Cake Mix – $.50

Canned Beans: $.50

Canned Veggies .25 is what I aim for but I will pay .50 (especially for canned tomatoes)

Canned Soup: We don’t eat a lot of canned soup- I try to stock up on cooking soups for .50 or less a can

Canned Tuna: $.25

Cashews: Costco Kirkland = 5lbs for 39.99                    So if you can cashews $.26 per 0z that is a good deal!  Or under $3 per lb. is a CUCKOO STOCK UP price!
Sams club = 2.375 lbs for 12.98  ($4.27 per lb)

Cereal: $.75 or less

Cereal Bars/Breakfast Bars $0.75 or Less

Cheese: (Basic Cheddar or Mozzarella) $5.49 for 2 lbs (.17/oz)

Cheese (Shredded ) 8 oz $1.00 or less

Chocolate Chips 12 oz $0.89 or less

Coffee:$5.50-5.99 for a 29 oz tub.

Cornstarch 16 oz $0.90 or less

Corn Syrup 16 oz $1.00

Crackers: .49 or less not name-brand

Crackers: Ritz/Cheez-it types: $.99 or less per box

Crystal Light To Go 6-8 packs: $.65 a box

Dog Food: Alpo Canned Dog Food $.59 or less.  BAGS: $4.99/ each 20 pound  bag.  50 lb. bag of come n’ get it from alpo for $19.99 or .39 cents/lb at Sam’s is a good deal.  Blue Buffalo: 50 lb bag for $30 is a screaming deal.

Eggs: .99/dozen (usually I can get 18 for that price)

Flour: $.99-1.49 for 5 lbs

Frozen Pizza: $2.50 or less for a large pizza

Fruit Snacks: $.50-$.75 per box of 10-12 fruit snacks packs

Ice Cream 1/2 gal. $1.00  (or $1.50 if it’s your favorite name-brand one!)

Jelly: .99- 16 oz. (I will pay a little more to get a high quality product)

Juice 64 oz $0.95 or less

Ketchup: 32 oz.  $.35

Macaroni & Cheese (Kraft) 7.5 oz $0.40

Mayonaise – $.75 for 18 oz.

Milk Boxes: I have seen 8 oz. chocolate milk boxes as low as $.49 each.

Mustard- 20 oz. – $.35

Oatmeal: .49-.99 for instant oats

Oil (vegetable): 24 oz. for $.75

Olive Oil: $.12 per ounce

Pasta/Rice-A-Roni 4-7 oz $0.65

Pasta: .49 (I try to pay .25 or less)

Pasta Sauce: .49-.99 (with double coupons you can likely get a much better deal!)

Peanut Butter: .49-.99 for 16 oz.

Potatoes (Fresh) 5 lb $0.80 or less

Slim Fast Shakes –  (Pack of 24) $15

Soda Pop 2 ltr $0.69 or less

Soda Pop (Name Brand) 12 pk $2.40 or less

Soda Pop (Store Brand) 12 pk $1.67

Sugar: $1.49 or less for 5 lbs

Yogurt (Single serving) 4-8 oz $0.30

Water (Propel Water Bottles) $.50 each

White Minute Rice, 42 oz.– $1.00

Whole wheat bread: .99/loaf

Thanks to My Frugal Adventures & Savvy Shopper Deals for help in compiling this list. I used ideas from their lists, then adjusted the prices to what I feel is a cuckoo stock up price.

Please leave a comment with items you have questions on and I’ll add them to my list!

Posted: April 6, 2011
14

What is a price points list? It is your “stock up” price, or the price you see and say “I’m going cuckoo on this deal!”  These prices vary by region, but over the next few days I’ll be posting pointers to set you in the right direction.

Here’s more price point lists:

I included baby items on the drugstore list, since I find usually you can get the best deals on these items there.

Baby Formula (Store Brand) 25 oz $9.99 ($.40 per ounce) Target $18 for 40oz when it is not on sale

Earths Best Baby Formula 25.75 Ounce $25.00 This is normally $30

Baby Shampoo/Conditioner: Free-$1

Body Lotion: Free- $1

Body Wash: Free- $1

Baby wipes: $.99/tub of 72 wipes

Cosmetics: Free when on clearance

Contact Lens Solution (Store Brand) 12 oz $2.50

Contact Lens Solution (Premium) 12 oz $3.50

Deodorant: $.50

Diapers (brand name): $5.50 Jumbo packs  I have seen these go as low as $2.50 though and I suggest buying as many as you can get when it goes below $4 – I try to get them $.13 per diaper or less.

Diapers (Store) Jumbo $4.99/$0.10 ea

Diapers (Training) Jumbo $5.99/$0.10 ea

Diaper Cream (Desitin) 2 oz $1.50

Dish Soap: Free-.49

Dish Detergent (Cascade) $0.03 per oz

Dish Detergent (Electrasol/Finish) 75 oz $1.50

Dish Detergent (Tabs)FREE – $.08each

Fabric Softener (Liquid) 128 oz $1.99

Fabric Softener (Sheets) 80 ct $0.015 or less

Face Wash: Free- $1

Floss: Free

Laundry Soap: $1.50/ 32 loads

Laundry Detergent (Tide) 32-40 ld $4.50 or less

Moisturizer/ Sun Screen: Varies, but Coppertone had some killer deals at the beginning of the summer last year.

Mouthwash: .99

Pads: (feminine) $.75 per box

Shampoo/Conditioner: Free- $3.00 (for higher-quality brands)

Shaving Cream: .50 or less

Razors: Free (I buy the razors and hardly ever buy the cartridges, I just get a new razor for free)

Tampons: 18 ct. $1 or less

Toothpaste: Free-.25

Toilet Paper: $.19 per single roll

Toothbrushes: Free- .99

Thanks to My Frugal Adventures & Savvy Shopper Deals for help in compiling this list. I used ideas from their lists, then adjusted the prices to what I feel is a cuckoo stock up price.

Posted: April 6, 2011
21

Part of the ABC’s of Couponing Guide

Guest Post by Lea from Coupon Train

Hello Coupon Friends,

My name is Lea. I do a coupon train. Coupon trains are simply a way of exchanging coupons by postal mail. While this is not a new concept and predates the Internet, the Internet has opened up opportunities to better connect savers. This means those “Great Coupons” that aren’t available in your local paper, supermarket, or even mail just may be in someone else’s. That pile of “free” products or coupons you were going to discard may be exactly what someone else is looking for. Add in a few more people, and you may just have a savings Dream Team!

Coupon Trains – The Basics

Every train is different, depending on who needs what, when, why, and where! Whoever starts up a train usually defines the specific goals and rules for that group. There are a few key fundamentals to consider before you decide which train is right for you.

Basics of the Coupon Trains – The basic coupon train begins with a group of 3 – 6 members at different mailing addresses. An envelope of coupons (typically 40 – 200) is mailed from the “conductor” to the first person on the “train route” (mailing list). That person takes out the coupons they want and replace them with other coupons at least equal to the number they took out. They then mail the envelope (“envie”) to the next person on the route, who does the same.

Ideally each person keeps the envelope for no longer than 1 – 3 days, and pulls out any expired coupons. The train needs to keep moving along, since the idea is to send and receive those much-needed coupons before the next sale, or the expiration date. Coupons expire quickly, so the train is only worthwhile if the coupons can be received, matched up with sales, and redeemed before they expire.

We host all the state but Hawaii and Alaska, Sorry!

Most of all, remember that the coupon train is a team effort! It should be enjoyable, rewarding, and bring SAVINGS to all the members. If you have any questions about the train, just ask!

Email: Freecoupontrain@gmail.com

On Facebook Freecoupontrain-Personal Blog

Thanks so Much,

Lea

Note from Deidre:

If that coupon train fills up, and there are more people who want to be involved, please leave a comment for other readers and a way to contact you below!  Maybe Hawaii or Alaska people who want to start one locally??

Posted: April 5, 2011
13

What is a price points list? It is your “stock up” price, or the price you see and say “I’m going cuckoo on this deal!”  These prices vary by region, but over the next few days I’ll be posting pointers to set you in the right direction.

Beef

  • 93% Lean Ground Beef $2.25/lb
  • 80% Ground Beef $1.59/lb
  • Ground Chuck $1.99/lb
  • London Broil $1.99/lb
  • Rump Roast $2.99/lb
  • Pot Roast $2.29/lb

Poultry

  • Boneless Chicken Breast $1.49/lb
  • Whole Chickens $.89/lb
  • Chicken Quarters $.79/lb
  • Split Chicken Breast $.99/lb
  • Chicken Thighs/Drumsticks $.79/lb
  • Turkey (Whole) $0.38/lb

Pork

  • Porkchops (boneless) $1.99
  • Pork Tenderloin $2.99
  • Pork Butt $1.49
  • Pork Cased Sausage $1.19
  • Porkchops (bone in) $1.59
  • Bacon 12 oz 0.99 – $1.25

Fish

  • Crab Legs, Large (Cooked/Frozen) lb $6.99/lb
  • Cod lb $3.99/lb
  • Salmon-Whole $1.99/lb
  • Salmon-Whole $2.99/lb
  • Salmon-Fillet 20-26 oz $2.25 or less
  • Lobster Tail 4 oz $1.00
  • Lobster Tail 4 oz $4.00
  • Shrimp 51-60 ct Raw $2.99
  • Shrimp 26-30ct Raw $2.99
  • Crab Cakes 3 oz $1.00
  • King Crab Legs $5.99 /lb
  • Tilapia (Whole)  $0.99/lb
  • Tilapia (Fillet)  $1.99 /lb
Posted: April 4, 2011
17

Part of the ABC’s of Couponing Guide

For smartsource, coupons.com, bricks.com, and redplum coupons, after you print them hit the “back” button on your browser to print them one more time.  You can print each coupon twice!  Don’t hit the back button multiple times, just hit it once.  A pop-up may appear that says “resend” or “cancel”, hit “resend”.

You can only print coupons twice per computer.  You also should never photocopy coupons.  This is illegal and could get you in serious trouble.  Coupons have a unique identifier, so if you photocopy them then that number is the same on both coupons.  The manufacturer will not reimburse the store for the multiples, the store will lose money and this is essentially stealing from the store.  Not to mention, they may decide to stop taking printable coupons altogether.

Posted: April 4, 2011
3

Let’s break couponing down to be fun and easy, not extreme and time-consuming!

Question from a reader:

I’m confused by the BOGO sales when they are matched up with BOGO coupons, how do the items come out free?

This is one question which is not easily answered.  At most stores, if a sale is buy one get one free, then you purchase one and the other is free.  So if you use a BOGO free coupon on top of the sale, both products end up free.

But at some stores, they say if you have to actually be paying for one, so you will end up buying three, and getting two for free.

I like the wording My Coupon Library used to explain this:

The coupon acts as payment for the one bought and then they give you the second as part of their store promotion. The store gets paid for the item when they submit the coupon. The manufacturer was paid for both the items when the store bought the products and then only gives money back for one of the items when the coupon is submitted.

There are some stores however that treat these sales and coupons a little differently. Rather than giving you the item for free, you buy one and then receive two free (one free for the coupon and one free for their sale). It just depends on how the store accepts the coupon

If you combine BOBO free sale with a BOBO 1/2 coupon you could pay half off the price for one item and get the second item free. Again, I definitely recommend you talk to the manager at your local store because most stores reserve the right to allow their manager to refuse any coupons at their discretion

Posted: April 4, 2011
10

Part of the ABC’s of Couponing Guide
Let’s break couponing down to be fun and easy, not extreme and time-consuming

Now, let me start by assuring you we are NOT suggesting you take up drinking :)

What we ARE suggesting, is that you look in unlikely places for great coupons!  You may not think that some of the best coupons can be found between the Old Milwaukee and Budweiser….  but you’d be wrong!  The beer aisle is one of the first places I head to in the grocery/drugstores/gas stations to check for tearpads.  While most of them are rebates for buying beer (or a beer + food combo) – there are often regular coupons that say specifically “No Beer Purchase Required”.

Isn’t that awesome??

My favorite “beerpad” of the year so far is the Pabst Blue Ribbon tearpad.  It is good for $1 off ANY fresh or frozen pizza priced at $1.99 or more.  That can make for GREAT deals during a BOGO sale, or paired with deals like the Bi-Lo pizza meal deals we see so often.

Another tearpad I just found this week was at a gas station down the road.  It is good for $.59 off Lance Peanuts (Which are exactly $.59)  And although Miller is depicted all over the coupon – it simply says “Compliments of Miller Lite”.  That means FREE PEANUTS!

I hope you start taking a closer look at the “Beerpads” in your neck of the woods!

NO Beer Purchase Required Rebates:

Super-Cool Fact: Most beer rebates require you to purchase a certain amount of alcohol in addition to meat, soda, snacks, etc…   However, in some lucky states (AL, AR, CT, HI, KY, ME, MD, MO, NC, NJ, NY, OK, UT (yeah! that’s where Deidre is!) and WV) you are not required to purchase beer in order to get the rebate.  The law prohibits it.  Which means, you can buy the item – and NOT the alcohol – and get money back!

Example of a Beer Rebate in a “lucky state”:

Purchase Heineken 12-Pack + $7 worth of Deli Meat – Get a $5 Rebate.
You are a lucky duck, and were buying deli meat anyway
Send in the rebate and your meat receipt
= Super cheap deli meat for you!

Let us know if you find any good ones in your beer aisle!

Thanks Jaime!

Posted: March 31, 2011
3

Part of the ABC’s of Couponing Guide
Let’s break couponing down to be fun and easy, not extreme and time-consuming!

Have you ever ran to the store to score an awesome deal, then find the store is sold out? Before you start to pout, think about getting a rain check.

A rain check is a slip of paper that you can get from a store when they are out of an item that is on sale. The slip of paper allows you to come back when they have the item back in stock to purchase it for the sale price.  Often the store associate will sign the piece of paper to verify it since it won’t have a barcode.

So even after the sale ends, you can come back and get the item for the sale price!  Sounds great, but keep in mind:

  • Check your coupons expiration dates!  No use going through the trouble of getting a rain check if the coupons you need to get the cuckoo deal will be expired by the time the store is back in stock.
  • Items on Buy 10, get $4 off sales usually you will not be able to get rain checks on, unless you plan on getting all 10 items on the raincheck.
  • Clearance items aren’t valid for rain checks.  Only sale prices.
  • Register rewards from Walgreens, and Plenti Points from Rite Aid are not eligible for rain checks.
  • EB’s at CVS are eligible for rain checks.   I cut the ad out so I remember what it is I wanted, and what the limits are so when I go to redeem the rain check I make sure to get the correct items and EB’s.

Next time you are in a store for a sale and it is wiped out, think about getting a rain check! Then when you go to use the raincheck, tell the cashier before you swipe the groceries so the cashier can scan them correctly.

If you go back to the store and the items still are not back in stock, make sure to request to have the rain check expiration date extended.   On great sales you may have to extend these for several weeks.

To view individual stores rain check policies, view my store coupon policies!

View more of my coupon training posts!

Posted: December 29, 2010
30

Part of the ABC’s of Couponing Guide

How do you get coupons to print?  Is it my printer, computer, the website, what is going wrong?  Help, I can’t get this coupon to print!

I’ve gotten all these emails from people reporting printing problems, so I thought I’d write a quick post about what appears to work best for me to get coupons to print from at-home printers:

  1. Before you even start, I’d set your printer settings to draft quality.  This is black and white and so it won’t use your color ink, and will use minimal amounts of black and white ink.  All stores I know of that accept internet printables, accept them in color or black and white. Go to “Control Panel“, click “Printers“, then right click your printer and choose “Printing Preferences.” Here you can change the quality to fast draft or quick printing.
  2. You must have a default printer selected for your computer, and it must be a real, paper-based printer, not a virtual fax machine or file printer or PDF creator.  To change your default printer: Control Panel>Printers>Right Click Default Printer>Choose Properties>Advanced tab.
  3. What browsers support printing coupons? Coupon printing is currently supported on Windows Operating Systems Vista, XP, 2000, and Windows 7 when used with Internet Explorer 6+, Firefox 1+, Netscape 8+, Chrome 2+, Opera 10+, Safari 2+ and most MSN and AOL browsers. If you are unable to print when using an MSN, AOL, or CompuServe browser, please try printing your coupons using Internet Explorer or Firefox. I use firefox.
  4. What if you can’t install the coupon printer from coupons.com? If you receive warnings or errors that an attempt to install and ActiveX control (Internet Explorer) or a plugin was blocked, or are asked for permission to install a program, you may need to change your browser’s security settings to allow installation of these types of controls.  Add coupons.com to your list of trusted sites.
  5. Saving Ink: Once you get those coupons printed, keep an eye out as they come out of the printer.  Sometimes there are large ads printed after the coupon.  Click on “cancel” and stop the printing – your coupon has already printed, no need to waste ink on the ad at the bottom.
  6. What if it says I’ve already printed the coupon? Sometimes bricks.com coupons will say you’ve already printed them, even if you haven’t.  This usually means they have reached their print limit and sadly there isn’t much you can do to print the coupon.

How to get coupons to print on a mac:

Overall, people have an easier time in Safari then on Firefox. Also:

Coupons.com – Coupon printing is currently supported on Macintosh OSX 10.3 or higher when used with Safari 2+ and FireFox 2+.

RedPlum.com – Coupon printing is also supported on Macintosh when using Safari under OS X 10.3 and higher

SmartSource.com – Macs running OSX 10.4 (Tiger) or 10.5 (Leopard)

Here’s an email received:

Dear valued customer,

We are sorry you had trouble installing our coupon printing software. An installation issue occurs when you have successfully completed the installation, but our server is unable to communicate with your Coupon Printer. You might be running third-party software that is blocking communication with our servers, or disabling the browser plugin, or both. When this happens our site cannot detect your installation and you are prompted to download the installer every time you try to print coupons. To diagnose and fix this problem, check these possibilities…

For Mac OS X:

1) Have your browser plugins been disabled?

Check to see that your Coupons, Inc browser plug-in is enabled.

In Safari, click the Safari menu and select “Preferences”. Under the “Security” icon, make sure “Enable plug-ins” is checked.

In Firefox, click “Tools” and select “Add-ons”. Under the “Plugins” category, make sure “Coupons, Inc. Plugin” is enabled. If it has been disabled, you will be prompted to install continuously until it is.

– To test your printing ability (without hitting print limits on offers you want), visit: http://b.coupons.com/z.asp

2) If your browser plugins were already enabled, then try doing a fresh install of the Coupon Printer.

First uninstall the Coupon Printer by opening the Applications folder in your Macintosh HD. Locate the “Coupons” folder and run the uninstaller within. Once the uninstaller has completed, re-download the installer from the link provided below and run the installation again.

– To re-download the Coupon Printer installer, visit: http://help.coupons.com and click on “Help Me Install”

3) Is this a browser-specific issue?

If neither of the above possibilities fixes the issue in your current browser, try using an alternative web browser. The Coupon Printer is compatible with Firefox and Safari on Mac; however, an environment-specific issue may cause one of these to stop working on your machine. If your problem is occurring on Firefox, then try printing from Safari.

Please address the possibilities described above and let us know if you were able to identify and solve the issue.

Thank you,

Mac Technical Services

 

I hope that helps you! Please leave a comment below if you have any other printing coupons tips!

This post is part of my in-depth training guide to couponing.

Posted: December 26, 2010
8

Post-Christmas is the best time to get decorations for next Christmas!  Here’s the mark down schedule for Christmas decorations, lights and candy by store for the day after Christmas:

Walmart: 50% off, $1-7 select clothing

Target: 50% off
75% off – three days after
90% off – a week after

Kmart: 50% off

Lowes: 60% off including select electrical cords!

Home Depot: 50% off

Big Lots: 50% off

Rite Aid: 50% off

Walgreen’s: 50% off candy only – all other merchandise shipped back to their headquarters.

CVS: 50% off – will go down further in 2 days

Now if you are looking for the biggest Christmas markdowns, 75% off or more, you’ll have to wait a few more days.  In my experience, the best items go quickly so you may not want to wait too long.  Christmas lights always go quickly, as people want matching sets of lights.

Ask CCD Readers: Have you found any great after Christmas clearance items?

Posted: December 13, 2010
5

You know uPromise and cellfire and P&G eSaver and shortcuts, but do you recall…the most famous eCoupons of all?

Sam’s Club now has eCoupons! Well, these are pretty new so they aren’t famous yet, but if you are a Sam’s Club Plus Memeber you will definately want to login and load your Sam’s Club eCoupons to your card!  There are over $300 in savings on  Sam’s Club eCoupons site per year!

What are eCoupons?
They are just coupons you load to your card, and when you swipe it at the store and make your purchases, the coupons automatically come off the total.

Posted: November 5, 2010
4

Have you ever wanted to save a list of deals for later, in case you don’t have time to do them now?  Gotcha’ covered!  On every post on my site, there is a new “ Add to favorites” button on the top right corner.

See it next to the big green arrow in the picture? No need to login or register! Just click “Add to favorites”, and the post will be added to your list of favorite posts.

View of a Favorites list:

To view your list at any time, just click on the Favorites tab on the main menu bar! The big orange arrow in the picture above is pointed at the Favorites tab in case you missed it!

Since this feature is new, please let me know if you have any issues with it.  I hope this saves you time searching for a specific post!

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