I’m new to the game of couponing. Over the past 18 months I’ve had highs and lows (I don’t need to make coupon clipping a full-time job, for example). But the payoff can be huge! I will happily spend more than a year learning a new skill if it results in a big payoff (literally). And now I am eager to share my learning experience with others who are still new to the game. Read on to discover how to become a couponing expert (or at least ditch that amateur status).

The A-B-Cs of Couponing (Or: Things I Have Learned During the Past 18 Months of Extreme Couponing)

Allow myself time to shop. Don’t rush through the aisles; I’m not in a race!

Bring my coupon binder to the store to snag any unadvertised deals (even if it weighs more than a baby!)

Clip my coupons and file them on a weekly basis so it doesn’t get burdensome!

Don’t try to take advantage of every coupon match-up. Remember: I cannot do it all.

Expect to save lots of money on the products I buy!

Families and friends will give me their coupon inserts if I ask.

Generously give away products I buy or get for free. Sharing the blessings leaves me blessed as well!

Help someone else learn how to coupon.

Inspect coupons for “fine print” and expiration dates before shopping. How disappointing to have my coupons rejected when checking out!

Jump at the chance to get free samples.

KrazyCouponLady.com is my “one-stop shop” for coupon match-ups and deals!

Learn from my couponing mistakes and try not to repeat them (and, boy, have I made some dumb mistakes!)

Make friends with and be considerate to the cashiers at the stores I frequent, and call them by name.

Ninety percent off is nice, but it is not always attainable. I set my own savings goals of what is attainable for me in my part of the country.

Opt out of Rite-Aid’s “load to card” program. I can better manage Up+ rewards when they are in my hot little hand!

Participate in rewards programs above and beyond simply using coupons (Staples, Walgreens, etc.).

Question the cashier or manager if I think an error has been made (even if my daughter gets embarrassed), but above all be polite and kind.

Remember to always send in and follow up on mail-in rebates.

Save gas by stopping to shop when on the way to somewhere else (school, church, etc.). I try to avoid extra trips that waste gas and eat up any coupon savings!

The clearance aisles and carts in the store are great places for me to find deep discounts and use coupons!

Understand the stores’ coupon policies as they vary from store to store and can change frequently.

Value my coupons and treat them like cash money, because they are money in my pocket!

Wal-Mart does not always have the best price, although before extreme couponing I used to think they did!

eXpect to feel overwhelmed when first couponing. I learned to set boundaries and limits to my clipping and shopping.

Young couples need lots of household products to set up house. Make up a huge gift basket of products to help them get started!

Zero is the best price to pay. “If it’s free, it’s for me!”

 This has been a guest post by Lisa from Grass Valley, CA
Find out more about the KCL Contributor Network!

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16 thoughts on “Extreme Couponing Tip: Easy As A-B-C!”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Im really new at this where do i get coupons in my area? And how do i use them to achieve an maxium discount or outcome. My newly husband and i are expecti.g a child and are nervous because the bills and everytjing seem to be piling up, so PLEASE HELP US TO GET STARTED COUPONING and start to save some money;-) thank you

  2. Michelle says:

    How do you opt out of the Rite Aid Load to card program?

    • Anonymous says:

      you just tell them when you get to the check out line and they will scan your card and push some buttons on the screen.:)

  3. couponluvr says:

    This is so creative! I especially agree with the “Opt out of Rite Aid load to card Up Rewards”.

  4. ella says:

    I have learned to save with this site and I love it,,,Thank u so much for putting this info out there..I just starting using coupons and every little bit counts and I am happy to save

  5. Anonymous says:

    Great article!

  6. Renie21 says:

    and here is your X

    X-treme couponing ruins a good thing. Don’t be greedy – have fun and enjoy the savings, but don’t get more than you can use.

  7. guest241 says:

    Well, that is just as clever as ever. Thanks for sharing. And the Wal-Mart one is sooooo true. I hardly shop there any more.

    • Anonymous says:

      I think ALOT of us arent. Hence the new ads saying we can get prices lower than walgreens and other drug stores. NOT with RR, UPs and POINTS you can’t.

  8. exscape says:

    okay, so am I the only person confused about the new pg rebate. I didn’t think it applied to all the products shown on the match up here. Does it apply to gain and bounty etc as shown?

  9. Anonymous says:

    I love your post Lisa, it’s awesome. I also live in Grass Valley, how weird. do you save a lot on food? and do you actually do most of your couponing in Grass Valley, or travel other places like Auburn or Roseville, if it’s here I would love to know how you save at the grocery stores. Those are the hardest for me and we go to Roseville every 2 weeks to save, thanks :)

  10. krayb450@yahoo.com says:

    i am new to couponing… i would love to have your help:)… i have all the stores, all the ads and all the coupons… i just need some help.

    • guest241 says:

      krayb450, try to get a “buddy”. No matter how organized I think I am…..Having someone with you, couponing, has really helped me. Sometimes they see things you miss, and vise-versa.

  11. Sims says:

    I love this! Thanks for sharing!

  12. mrn1 says:

    LOVE IT!!!! You hit the nail on the head with each and every alphabetic point you made, Lisa!