Catalina coupons — named for the company founded on a sailing trip to Catalina island — are those long, receipt-like coupons that print out with your receipt at the checkout counter. They are sometimes called checkout coupons or YourBucks, but whatever you call them, they’re our favorite kind of coupon — we consider them the hot fudge in our couponing ice cream sundae! Here’s how to get the most out of using Catalina coupons:

How do I know which Catalinas will print when I get to the store?

There are a few different ways to know which Catalinas you’ll receive when you shop:

  • Look for the phrase “on your next order” in your store’s weekly sale circular. This verbiage is code for “Catalina coupon.”

How do I maximize my Catalina savings?

There are two kinds of Catalina coupons: manufacturer coupons, which you can use just like a manufacturer coupon from your Sunday newspaper, and coupons for a flat dollar discount off your next order. Here are two ways to maximize your “$X off your next order” Catalina coupons:

  1. Stack with manufacturer coupons. Recently, Safeway was running a Catalina promotion to receive $10 off your next order when you buy $30 of frozen food. That’s all well and good, but KCLs know that we can do better! Make sure your total before tax and coupons is at least $30, then use manufacturer coupons to bring down your out-of-pocket expense. You might pay only $20 for all that frozen food, and you’ll still get the “$10 off your next order” Catalina!
  2. Rolling Catalinas. This refers to separating transactions and redeeming the Catalina coupon that printed in your first transaction to offset your out-of-pocket expense on your second transaction. Say you buy four cans of mandarin oranges, knowing that you will receive a “$0.50 off your next order” Catalina. Buy your first four cans (using manufacturer coupons to bring down your out-of-pocket costs), pay for your oranges, graciously take your Catalina from the cashier, and then start the process over again, using your newly-minted Catalina on the next order.

What do I do if my Catalinas don’t print?

Don’t despair if your Catalina doesn’t print! There is something you can do:

  • Do not go to Customer Service. They likely will not know why your coupon didn’t print and won’t know how to help you.
  • Before taking any further action, make sure that you properly followed all the requirements to receive the Catalina. Did you buy the correct size of your product? The correct variety? Double check that you didn’t make a mistake that would have kept your Catalina from printing.
  • If you’re sure you did everything right, call Catalina at 1-800-8COUPON. Press 3, and provide your name, address, the store where you shopped, and the time of day you were there. Catalina will obtain your purchase history through your store loyalty card and determine whether you are owed the coupon, and if so, they will mail it to you. It may take a couple of weeks to receive your coupon, but you can rest assured that there is some recourse for this disheartening scenario!