The Queen of Coupons Reigns......

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Saturday, July 30, 2011

BULLSEYE!!



Target is a great store to shop at. It's trendy and seems to be the "it" store if you get tired of the undesirable visual distractions at other one-stop shopping venues. [Wal-Mart does serve it's purpose in our economy today--but sometimes I just go there to put everything in my life back in perspective--if you know what I mean].

But today there was a great article on http://www.yahoo.com/ that gave kudos to Target for being a great place to shop and save money. http://shine.yahoo.com/channel/life/how-to-save-money-at-target-2515566/
The author verbally illustrated what great deals you can come by if you pay attention to the Target game plan. If you go to http://www.target.com/, you are led to the main page for the company's information center. You can see weekly ads, get fashion and decor ideas, and see great sales and promotions that are going on. One category that is a must "click" is COUPONS. That is where you can print the in-store coupons. And if you are a savvy coupon shopper, you know that these are not manufacturer's coupons, and thus are able to be used in conjunction with a manufacturer's coupon.


One of the best places to go to get great savings ideas for Target is http://www.thekrazycouponlady.com/. She outlines how to layer the in-store coupons with the manufacturer's coupons for greater savings. Often times Target will throw an additional savings curve in by offering gift cards for selected purchase combinations. If you are going to buy any of those ideas and have other things to buy--purchase them in a separate transaction first--receive the gift card and then use it for subsequent transactions. The gift cards are earned through the predetermined combinations of ideas prior to any coupons being used. So it's always best to apply a coupon to a sales price; and when possible, check to see if there's a store coupon available on the website.

One great tip that I've learned is that you are able to print two coupons per registered computer address. So if you have multiple computers in your home, you would be able to print a coupon for each IP address. I'm not encouraging hording, by any stretch of the imagination, but--if there's a great deal on diapers, personal care items, food stuffs--sometimes it's nice to be able to buy a few to stockpile until the sales cycle through again.

Target even offers coupons for items that don't generally get couponers attention--like the $2 off any denim jeans or clothes items. I think that's GrEaT because often you will find some terrific deals off the clearance racks that you could use the coupon on as well.

Target also mails out seasonal ads, like to Back to School, Fall, and Christmas--that contain additional coupons. $$$avings could add up big if you can layer manufacturer's coupons on those items as well. I find that when I am looking for coupons on http://www.ebay.com/-- coupon sellers will often bundle and sell Target coupons in addition to manufacturer's coupons. So if you frequent Target for your non-food and household items, it might pay to check for those coupons occasionally, before you plan your replenishment purchases.

Extreme economic times call for extreme savings and Target gets a BULLS EYE for their efforts!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Extreme Sporting....

I just read an article on yahoo that kind of had me chuckling because it was "Why Extreme Couponing Won't Work"--but the whole article laid out why it would work. http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Why-Extreme-Couponing-Wont-investopedia-503187681.html?x=0&.v=1 The bottom line disclaimer admits: "If you are organized, have free time, have the room for storage, want to save money or feel compelled to donate offerings to food pantries, then extreme couponing may work well for you." To this I just want to add a hearty AMEN! She listed every reason I shop the way that I do except for the adrenalin rush that I get every time I walk out of the store knowing that I got a GrEaT deal! I love the mini-high that makes me giddy and eager to find the next sale.

Tonight, for example--I just bought the better part of a year's supply of Tide laundry detergent (HE/hypo-allergenic, to boot) and a host of other products, for a meager $5.59. The author of the article is right, I'm going to have to be organized enough to store it efficiently near or in my laundry room, as not to forget that I already have the upcoming products that I need. But who, in their right [and left brain, for that matter] would question whether my extreme sporting wasn't worth the work? Each bottle of Tide was originally $9.99 a bottle--on sale this week for $6. That is a 40% reduction in pricing right there...but they had an additional promotion that included these sale items. The promo at the local Rite Aid store earned a $10 Up-Reward when you purchased $30 purchase of selected items. Tide, Bounce, Downy and a variety of paper products were included; all of which were on sale and had coupons available in circulation.

Up-Rewards can be used in future transactions on anything in the store--on sale or not, with or without coupons. The only trick that you have to be aware of--you can't take an Up-Reward from one product and buy another exact product and still generate an additional Up-Reward. You could buy it--but there won't be another redemption reward printed at the time of purchase. So sometimes staggering the Up-Rewards is the KEY to keeping the register spitting out future savings.

Back to my purchases tonight, I saw this deal on Tide in the Sunday ads and immediately ordered my coupons from www.ebay.com; the coupons were going to save me $1.50 per bottle--and arrived in the mail Thursday. I was very eager to get to the nearest Rite Aid to cash in on my find today. I was going to use my previous Up-Rewards to pay for my detergent and household items. But there was a bonus--I was also going home with more Up-Rewards.

**And going back to the article that got me spewing here--what the article didn't explain, was how the stores have rewards/incentive programs that allow you to roll additional savings onto the products by applying the "register rewards", or in this case--the "Up-Rewards" to the grand total for supreme savings, as well as adding manufacturer's coupons.

So in my first transaction tonight, I used a $40 Up-Reward that was generated last week through my purchases of Nivea products. I still had $8 in additional Up-Rewards from prior Crest and Stayfree purchases (free with coupons last week) that I applied to the grand total. So for the record, I got 6 bottles of Tide (32 loads), 2 tubes of Crest toothpaste, 2 bottles of Windex, and 2 bottles of Fantastik all-purpose cleaner-- for $5.59--which was the sales' tax for the total transaction. I paid with the Up-Rewards and I also received $16 back in Up-Rewards, to be used on future purchases. It was a night of extreme sport--but the savings throughout the year will be exponentially apparent when I won't have to shell out $10 for a bottle of detergent and $4 for a tube of toothpaste--which will literally go down the drain!

And as I have the space to store my haul--I anticipate that my "stockpile" will pay for itself over the next few months. The best money saved is the money I didn't have to spend in the first place. I got to control how much I put out for staples, rather than need and expediency dictating my purchase price and quantities. Extreme couponing doesn't have to be about hoarding, mass accumulation of limited and bizarre products, or unnecessary goods. It's about buying what you need to get you through until the next extreme sale. If it's only 1-2 items a week that you are able to eliminate from your grocery list for the next 3-6 months--your savings should be seen over the next 3-6 months!

And if you don't get around to using it in the adherence to use by dates--donate it to the food pantries or local shelters! They are in need of anything and everything that you buy at the store. And the beauty of your generosity comes back to you in the form of a receipt that can be submitted on an itemized tax filing for tax write-offs. This is called the Law of Reciprocity. So it's good to save on the home front--but it's great to also be a source of goodwill and charity in the community. This is the BeSt sport I've ever played ;)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Stock it Up!

There's always something in a new ad that is worthy of paying attention to for a small stockpile till better prices come along. I found a couple in the Albertsons' ad this morning...

Ronzoni Pasta is on sale for 88cents. If you use the 50cents off 1 coupons from June inserts--that would be 38cents a box. $3-4 would go a long way on this sale. There are a few websites that you can go to, to get higher value coupons. But Albertsons' has a policy that you aren't able to use more than what the product is for on a coupon. Make sense? OK. If you have a $1 off one coupon and the product is on sale for 88cents--they will only take 88cents off your total now. Too many "extreme" shoppers have inspired the casual coupon users into thinking that coupons are going to pay for all of there groceries. Not true...at least anymore. But make sure to line your great finds up with their corresponding coupons for stock-up potential.

Albertsons' is also running a pretty sweet deal on the back page of selected items. When you buy $30 in products, you get a $15 I-Tunes card. I know--for a lot of people without I-Pods, this is no big deal. But if you have kids that are sucking you dry for new apps, games, music...this is a deal! I went to ebay and ordered a lot of coupons for some of the items in the ad. I'm going to break my transactions up to $30 each and collect one $15 card for each sale. I may have to put the cards in hiding till Christmas--because what fabulous little stocking stuffers (hint, hint).




I don't know if there will be doublers in the Albertsons' ad for next week...but if there are--this promotion just got sweeter! You are able to double up to 3 coupons per transaction. So a $1 off coupon becomes $2 off. This deal could get particularly interesting on the Cover Girl cosmetics, which are also included in the promotion, but are going on sale for 20% off. Add some coupons and the out of pocket expense with coupons will be stellar--and you still get your $15 I-Tunes card!

And if you still have rug rats in diapers--it might be a great time to stock up on some Pampers--because if you layer your coupons just right and add a small myriad of other products from the promotion--you'll be getting a great deal! There are lots of options in the combinations of products with available coupons. And don't forget the things like Pringles--they have coupons available on them as well!

Don't forget the Kelloggs' deal either. I still have coupons for $1 off Fruit for every 2 boxes of cereal I buy. Kelloggs' has a deal going where you can submit 10 upcs from their designated cereals and receive a $10 gift card for FUEL! And you are allowed to submit up to 5 times per address. How's that for a deal! You can get free gas and free fruit all from buying a little cereal. For greater savings, don't forget the actual cereal coupons :)

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fab Fred Meyer Finds

I was out on an impromptu date this afternoon with my man. He chose Fred Meyer for a quick stop to get some new sunglasses. But what's better than a quick stroll through the store to enjoy the "silence"--right? And look what I found!



Cute Cricut cartridges on sale for $29.99! But that wasn't the best part! Unlike JoAnn's or Michael's, the coupons that were attached to the end cap were for all Arts and Crafts supplies for an additional 20% off--and there were no exclusions for the Cricut products. And the coupon states that it may be combined with other store discount coupons!


The orange coupon took $6 off the purchase, and then the store coupon found in the weekly ad took off another 10% ($2.40)...making the cartridge $21.60. That's a GrEaT deal for a very CUTE Cricut cartridge! I've found some great deals on the Internet before, but you have to pay shipping, etc. So this was a stellar find. And the prices are good for another 3 weeks...so quite a few more chances to take advantage of the sales' price in conjunction with great store coupons.

**We also took advantage of the 70% off Clearance sale and bought Skecher and Nike tennis shoes for the kids' Back to School needs to $10-12 a pair! It was Fabulous!! I felt buzzes going through my fingers as I swiped my debit card today--because I knew that I just big-time scored! I got three pairs of shoes for less than half of what one pair would have cost. Yeah!!



Sunday, July 3, 2011

Choose the Rite...



Last week was a GrEaT week at Rite-Aid. I stocked up on lots of stuff I didn't particularly need--but it was near free. But the real bonus was all the Up-Rewards. I LOVE them!! They are the first thing that I look for in the ad because they are an aMaZiNg way to save loads of cash.


So last week Nivea was on sale. When you buy $100 in Nivea products, you got a $40 Up-Reward back. That's 40% off. So I immediately went to ebay and ordered the coupons for $2 off each product. The catch in the sale was that for every two products purchased, you received the third one free. But you are allowed to use a coupon for each item purchased, so that meant I could use a coupon even on the free items. So in conjunction with all my awesome Nivea products, I purchased lots of packs of Stayfree with Buy One, Get One Free coupons and received $2 Up-Rewards for every two purchased, and got my Crest toothpaste for free.


I spent $49 in 4 transactions using coupons, and went home with $48 in Up-Rewards. Ahhh... It may not seem so impressive having to shell out some greenbacks--but I made my money back, almost to the dollar, and I have LOADS of fabulous Rite-Aid bags with very expensive products just waiting to be put away.


I wasn't overly impressed with this week's ad, but they have a $10 Up-Reward on Tide detergent and Bounce dryer sheets for every $30 spent. Now if I add a few other items (like $18 worth to be exact), I could pay for it all with my current Up-Rewards and not be out any money, and I would still get a new $10 Up-Reward to use on another purchase later. This is called rolling in coupon lingo. You use the previous register coupons to pay for new transactions like cash. AND--I could get even more products on my sale if I were to use any coupons for the Tide, Bounce, and other products included in the promo!