When I was growing up, my mom and dad had very different family responsibilities. For example, my dad balanced our budget each month, but my mom did all the shopping—and all the couponing. Today's couples (as my husband and I can attest) often have a very different approach to household tasks. We often shop together, or consult one another before shopping. And we talk a lot about where we find good prices on the items we like the most. If you and your partner share the responsibility for shopping and budgeting, these tips can help you sync up your couponing efforts so you save even more!
If you have any other tips you and your partner use that really work well, we'd love to hear about them in the comments section below!
1. Sync up your couponing activities
Recent couponing studies highlight how both partners often coupon to find extra savings. What differs is which partner coupons for which items. For example, you may do most of the grocery store coupons and all the coupon printing. But your partner may be the household expert at finding great deals and coupons on appliances, electronics, and online coupon codes.
What to do to sync your efforts:
- Figure out where your shared savings priorities lie. Sit down with your budget and a highlighter. Highlight the line items (ex: grocery, paper goods, entertainment, auto maintenance) where you both want to save more.
- Assign couponing responsibilities. Next to each highlighted line item, write either your name or your partner's name.
- Identify resources to help each of you coupon in your respective areas. This is very important, because each of you may have great resources the other one doesn't know about!
- Decide what types of coupons you will use. You may want to use all types (newspaper inserts, printables, codes) or focus your efforts on one or two types (this can work best if you are just beginning to learn to coupon).
- Decide who searches for which coupons. Even if one of you has the responsibility for couponing for groceries, you can both search for grocery coupons. Perhaps one of you will search online for printables and codes, and the other one will focus on in-store sales inserts and newspaper coupons.
Great resources to learn more about couples couponing:
- Real Men Use Coupons: The Statistics, the Stereotypes, and Where to Start
- 10 Days to Become a Krazy Coupon Lady
- KCL's printable coupons database
- KCL's newspaper coupons database
- KCL's mobile coupons database
- KCL's Stock-Up Price List
2. Sync up your weekly shopping lists
This is an especially important tip when you’re couponing with your partner! You want to sync your shopping lists each week and then divvy up your pile of coupons for maximum savings. This way, neither of you is out shopping at full price or duplicating the other's efforts.
What to do to sync your shopping lists:
- Choose a common way to add "need to buy" items to the lists. You may want to use an app (more on this in #3), create a working list on your fridge, or another method.
- Choose regular days to shop. Perhaps the weekend or one weeknight works best for you if you both work. Then you both know the weekly deadline for adding new list items.
- Talk before making unplanned shopping trips. If you feel tempted to make a last-minute run, talk to your partner first to get their support (important for accountability!).
3. Use apps that allow you to sync grocery lists and wish lists so you stay organized
Today's couples are much luckier than my mom and dad were back in the day! There are so many free or super-cheap apps to help even the busiest couples coupon and save together on the go.
Here are some resources to help you choose:
- How to Create a Shopping List with My KCL Account
- 4 Shopping Apps That Will Keep Your Organized and Focused on Saving
- Cut Food Waste and Save on Grocery Bills with These 4 Apps
- Earn Cash with These Money-Saving Apps: Sign Up Today!
4. Choose a couponing spreadsheet and input your savings for tracking purposes.
Couponing together may not be the most glamorous activity you share as a couple, but what is glamorous is sitting down one day and realizing how much you are SAVING. Those extra funds in your bank account may become your emergency fund, your retirement savings, your delayed honeymoon or anniversary getaway, or your child's college fund!
What to do to track your couponing savings:
- Download KCL's couponing spreadsheet, How to Set Up a Couponing Spreadsheet.
- Set up your account on KCL. Choose one account that you can use together so you can store all your selected coupons in one place (see the first resource in #3 for more).
5. File all printable and clipped coupons in a shared file so each can access as needed.
Finally, this system works best when you have a shared file you can both access to find the coupons you need when you shop. So choose a place online (for codes and e-coupons) or at home (for newspaper coupons and printables), and pop all your coupons in there for shared use as needed!