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Couponing | by Irasema Garcia

Fourteen months ago I was flipping through the channels one evening when I stumbled across TLC’s Extreme Couponing. I was amazed by the deals these everyday women were getting at the grocery store. I recall thinking to myself, “I’m a sharp gal and if they can do it, so can I!” It was then that another Coupon Diva was born….

I had become accustomed to doing the grocery shopping for my husband and myself. I fondly recall the $100+ shopping trips we would make on a weekly basis and still really feel as if we did not buy a lot of groceries. Of course I would look for sale items or select store brand products in an attempt to save some money. Never did the idea of coupons cross my mind.  I still recall my first grocery transaction using my coupons. I really enjoyed the rush of seeing my total decrease as the cashier scanned each coupon and reviewing my percentile savings printed on my receipt.

I am by no means an “extreme couponer”. However, I have managed to maintain a consistent 50% -70% savings every time I shop at the grocery or drug store. I have even become pretty savvy on obtaining “free” or practically free items.  I work hard to always have a full pantry, refrigerator and freezer. I stockpile EVERTHING from household items to bath/beauty products.  I have also transcended my couponing into retail stores for clothing and shoes. I refuse to pay full price for ANYTHING that I know I can get a better deal on with a coupon. My passion for couponing is very contagious as I have managed to get many of my family members and friends involved in this rewarding hobby.

My general couponing tips

  • Buy at least 4 newspapers every week to obtain the coupon inserts inside
  • Select the best method that works for you to keep your coupons organized (binder, portfolio,etc)
  • Follow online extreme couponers such as “KrazyCouponLady” or “Coupon Divas”. They do most of the leg work for you.
  • Carry ALL your coupons with you at all times!
  • Know your store’s coupon policy
  • You tube has many “how to” explanations posted for beginner couponers
  • Shop at grocery chains that participate in doubling/tripling coupons
  • Drug stores( CVS/ Walgreens) are the best places to get items for FREE

Couponing is a great way for families to save money. Couponing has allowed me to save SO MUCH money in just a little over a year. My only regret is not couponing when I was in college! Grab your scissors and get ready to start saving…

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