1. Doctors offices and clinics
The medical profession is not immune to the rising tides of economic competition. Physicians (or, more likely, their savvy office managers) are now advertising the heck out of their services in waiting areas and even elevators! Keep your eyes open for discounts on procedures, preventative care, cosmetic care, family (think group) care, and more.
2. 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 are lucky enough to be traveling over a weekend, your potential coupon finds could be even greater!
3. On or inside dry goods boxes (like cereal)
There's nothing quite like using one cash-saving coupon to score a second cash-saving coupon! So check those cereal and brownie mix boxes—inside and out—before recycling them. You just might find next week's savings tucked away in plain sight!
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, scannable Q-codes, brochures (tucked into takeaway boxes), website links, 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. Customer service agents
While this most frequently happens to me while I'm on the phone complaining about poor service, it is 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.
6. Browser "wait, don't go!" windows
I will never forget the first time this happened to me. I was just about to input my payment for some item online and then I suddenly changed my mind. I closed the browser window. A few minutes later a pleading email—complete with discount coupon—arrived in my inbox. The merchant wanted me to come back and buy the item—so badly they were willing to discount it to gain my business.
Note: The key to success here is to make sure you go all the way through to the payment screen, and make sure you are a registered user of the website so the merchant has your email address.
7. Friendly employees
I waited tables for five (loooonnnnnnggggg) years. Contrary to popular belief, it wasn't the customers that drove me away. Nope, my customers kept me sane while I attempted to juggle the multiple insanities generated by staff and management alike. So 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.
8. College and technical school campuses
College and technical school students are nearly guaranteed to be budget-conscious…on account of those hefty tuition and expenses they have to fork over. But they may not yet be savvy enough to take full advantage of the coupons and discount offers merchants pepper their campus newspapers with. So don't be shy—it might be worth it to swing by your local campus and see what savings you may discover!
I didn't know eBay sold coupons until I read about it while searching for coupon codes online (my favorite kind). But yup, it’s true—eBay has literally thousands of listings for coupons featuring everything from lingerie to cereal (click this link or just visit eBay and type in "coupons" to see for yourself)!
10. Coupon trains
A coupon "train" isn't an actual train, of course (although if you are traveling by train, be sure to check your cabin for abandoned coupons!). Rather, a coupon train is an email-based list or group that circulates an ever-changing list of coupons amongst members, with everyone taking what they want and adding back to the list before sending it on its way.
Note: The best way to find a coupon train is just to do an Internet search—you can choose between "potluck" (all types of coupons for all different types of products) or "specialty" (one major theme such as pets or babies). Here is an example of a Yahoo coupon train group.
11. In your shopping bag
If you shop at specialty boutiques or with your local community merchants, 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!
12. Krazy Coupon Lady (of course!)
As usual, we saved the best for last—KCL is a literal pot o' gold when it comes to nabbing great discounts, deals, coupons, codes, freebies, and two-fers for all the items on your shopping list!
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