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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Have a List and Be Wise to the Store's Policy

Here are some tips for getting to the grocery store with your coupons that you need!

This fabulous tips is a real time saver: cut and paste the grocery specials from your favorite site into a word document. Simple, eh!

That is exactly what I do. Personally, I trot over to Southern Savers and copy her list for Bi-Lo or Harris Teeter, where I usually shop. Then I go through and delete all the items I know that I do not buy or am not going to buy. I also remove all the notes about pricing and such and fix the spacing and margins to try and get it all on one page! While the site is still open, I can go through the list of items I want and print out my internet coupons. After the internet coupons, I match my coupons from my stash. Next to the item on the list, if I have a coupon for it, I mark a "c". That way, when I get to the store I have two ways to make sure I got what I came for...my list...and the coupons in my hand. If I think I am done, and there is a coupon in my hand, I know I missed it. Also, as I go through my list, I mark off what I have in my cart.

Now, my whole goal is to get what I can as cheaply as I can. If the items on sale do not fill my grocery needs for the week, I can get the rest at Aldi or Walmart, the two cheapest stores in my town. Aldi always has the lowest price milk, unless there is a special at the store.

Let's talk about Walmart for a moment. Why are we not shopping at Walmart for everything? (I'm talking about a Supercenter or say a Target Supercenter...) Because, although Walmart claims to have the lowest prices, they do not put their items on SALE AND more importantly, they do not double or triple coupons.

My Bi-Lo doubles coupons up to sixty cents every week. That means if I have a sale item and a sixty cent coupon, I will save an extra $1.20 off the sale price! Harris Teeter doubles up to ninety nine cents, but they don't have the best prices always. Now, for triples...I hit them and for super doubles like I explained in yesterdays post.

Your strategy is to find the store in your area that is giving you more for your coupons. These extra savings are going in your pocket!!!

Also, sometimes Bi-Lo will give you additional savings off of items on top of the sale and coupons- a total off your grocery bill if you buy a certain dollar amount of a product. This dollar amount is pre-coupon price people! It's easy to hit and results in a nice little treat!

For example last week I bought some Suave products. I had the sale price...I had my coupons...and at the end, I got another coupon for $2.00 off...Yes, I'll take it.

Anyway, all this stuff is always spelled out on the sites I visit. Remember, the hardest work I am doing is matching. Someone else is out at the stores finding all the deals and posting all this information for me to take advantage of!

Also, you need to be a smart shopper. Know your stores coupon policies and don't violate them. Cashiers often do not know the policy as well as you do. If you need to, keep a little copy of it in your purse. Obnoxious? Not really. Knowledge is power. Anway, I could have lost $17.88 in coupons last week if I was not able to explain some things to the cashier. She had to get help, but the head cashier took my coupons. I know they would because I haunt all these websites and know their policy better than they do. I'm never rude, but I am firm that they will take my coupons and they need to figure out a solution to their problem.

Some cashiers are difficult and feel it is their job to not let you use coupons. People, stores are reimbursed for all these coupons. You are not stealing. The coupon police cashier needs to be avoided. Or you better be well informed. I had to read the coupon policy back to a cashier once that was posted at the store. She tried to tell me I couldn't use four internet coupons. I had two for the same product and two for two different ones. She told me I could only use two internet coupons and pointed to the stores sign. The sign said I could not use more than two internet coupons for the SAME product and a maximum of four for my order. I knew that already, and that was why I had what I had. But it was ok,she took my coupons, begrudgingly...hey, it's their store policy. I followed it!

Know the store policy on BOGO's, too. CVS and Bilo let you use two coupons...one for the Buy-One and one for the FREE one! Harris Teeter does not. Also, you don't have to do the BOGO. Do the math...is it cheaper to just get one and use one coupon? Because both Bi-lo and HT will ring up the one item as 1/2 price. Half price and a double coupon...see what I'm getting at!!!

And, at CVS and Bi-Lo if you buy a store listed BOGO item and you have a BOGO coupon, your items are FREE! Last week I had a BOGO for some Sobe Life Water and it was BOGO at the store...heheheheh! I love it!

There are some weeks that I am not able to do all my preparation before I leave for the store. I just wanted to throw this out there. I have to hit the store on the run and match my coupons to the sales while I am there. I usually have an idea of what is on sale from my sites. It's all a matter of time. Yes, I'd rather have more time to prepare, but if I don't, I'm still going to get my savings!

I do believe that is all I have to share for today. Hope you have a great day and have been enjoying the Week In My Coupon World!!!!

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