This Issue


Anyone who doesn't use coupons when they go grocery shopping is missing out on an easy way to save money. Many stores double coupons, so a 35 cent coupon will actually save 70 cents. On an average shopping trip, people purchase 16 items, so if you were able to save 70 cents each on only half of your purchases, that would be $5.60. Multiply that times 52 weeks, and you have over $290! That's money that you can use for other things, or to save.

The only problem is, it seems like the only coupons in your newspaper are the ones for products you don't buy. There are a few good ways, though, to get all the grocery coupons you can use, on the products you actually buy.

First, and easiest, buy groups of coupons at a discount from a coupon service. The biggest and best is called Coupon Connection of America. First, you purchase a booklet of 10 certificates, each worth $15 in coupons, for around $25. You then pick the exact items and brands that you want coupons for from their list of over 1,200 national name brand products. Send in a certificate to the company with your selection list, and they send a total of $15 worth of coupons for the products you selected. If you buy a certificate booklet for $25, you'll get $150 worth of coupons you can use, for a $125 total profit! If your store doubles coupons, you'll save $275 ($300 - $25 price of booklet)! CCA has agents across the country. Call them at (800) 989-1819 for the name of the closest one.   Another way to get coupons is to subscribe to a coupon saver's newsletter. The best one is Refundle Bundle. It contains lists of coupons and rebates available from manufacturers, as well as a classified area, where you can find people who want to trade coupons they don't need for ones you don't need. This can be a great way to get the ones you want. You can find the current subscription price, as well as other coupon newsletters, by looking through the "household" sections in the periodical reference books at your local library.

Finally, you can start your own local coupon club. Advertise in the weekly PennySaver papers in your surrounding area for people interested in saving money. It shouldn't be hard to find a place to meet. If you have the space, meet at your house or basement. Often, public libraries will have meeting places for clubs and organizations for free or very low cost. At your first club meeting, you can get suggestions from the people attending as to how the club should work. Form a "board of directors" from the people who have the best suggestions. If you have to pay for a meeting place, charge a low yearly dues that will cover the expense, as well as any mailing or newsletter expenses.

Get a subscription to some of the best coupon saver newsletters in the club's name, and share the information with other members (but don't photocopy them and pass them around; that's illegal. Give members subscription info if they are interested). The bulk of the meeting can be used for coupon trading sessions. Try to discourage coupon or rebate selling, as that can be a touchy subject for a lot of people. Equal value trading can be extremely successful for getting the coupons you want.

Try these suggestions, and you'll find yourself saving a LOT of money every time you go to the grocery store!