1. Find discounts on procedures, preventative care, cosmetic care, and more at doctors’ offices.
Physicians (or, more likely, their savvy office managers) advertise the heck out of their services in waiting areas and even elevators! Keep your eyes open for unexpected discounts.
2. Look for travelers’ discarded papers and coupon inserts in airport waiting areas.
Bored folks grounded on long layovers often scavenge for other people’s discarded papers. Since scavenging of this type is a perfectly honorable airport tradition, go for it! If you’re lucky enough to be traveling over a weekend, your potential coupon finds could be even greater!
3. Check the outside—and inside—of cereal boxes and other packaged foods for coupons.
4. Find coupon codes, scannable Q-codes, giveaway links, and more in bathrooms.
I’m not sure who invented those ads and insert boxes on the insides of bathroom stall doors, but it was pure genius. I’ve seen coupon codes and other treasures on these back-of-door billboards. So don’t let your eyes glaze over—look and see what you could be saving!
5. Go straight to the manufacturer for high-value coupons.
Don’t forget about going straight to the brand’s website for coupons—especially for meat and organic food savings!
6. Ask customer service agents directly for discounts and special offers.
While this most frequently happens to me while I’m on the phone complaining about poor service, it’s not unheard of for customer service agents to simply reward nice callers with discounts and coupon codes. Asking for one (or even just asking “Are any discounts or coupons available to me with this order?”) makes the probability of scoring a discount even higher.
7. Abandon a shopping cart online to find a special coupon in your inbox.
The key to success here is to go all the way through to the payment screen—just make sure you’re a registered user of the website so the merchant has your email address.
8. Find savings by being nice to a friendly, hard-working employee.
When I was a restaurant server, I was nearly always game to go out of my way to give a friendly customer a comp or a good healthy discount (often they would return the favor with a larger-than-normal tip). Retail and service industry employees in general are working rough jobs, and kindness goes a long way towards producing unasked-for savings.
9. Look for discounts at your local college campus—especially in the school newspaper.
10. Find coupons for your “next visit” in shopping bags.
The time-honored practice of stuffing coupons for your “next visit” in with your carefully wrapped current purchase is alive and well. So be sure to turn your shopping bag upside down before discarding it—you just never know what might tumble out!
11. “Like” a brand on Facebook to gain access to exclusive offers.
Loaded with tons of companies offering free samples and exclusive savings, Facebook is an easy place to find manufacturer coupons. Simply “like” your favorite brand’s page and you’ll have access to deals right on your newsfeed. Typically, two prints are allowed per deal.
Find my favorite brands to “like” on Facebook here.
12. Dig into the plethora of unwanted coupons near your mailbox.
This is especially applicable if you live in an apartment and/or share a common mailroom. Grab those unwanted coupons your neighbors left behind!
13. Ask a librarian if you can have the coupon inserts in the library’s Sunday paper.
Your local library probably receives the Sunday paper along with all of its coupon inserts. Check with them to see if you can go through the papers on Monday.
14. Stop by visitor information centers for local coupons when you travel.
15. Sign up for store text alerts and emails for exclusive coupon codes.
Sign up for your favorite store’s text alerts here.
16. Check the packaging of a product that was shipped to you.
Almost all the samples and items you receive in the mail will come with future savings attached, so double check the packaging of a product before you toss it!