In the great state of Texas, H-E-B grocery stores reign supreme. The chain's supermarkets are readily available in urban areas, but often H-E-B is the only shopping option for those in rural areas. In areas with no competitor market or even drugstore, a rural KCL may feel like there are not a lot of money-saving options available.

Luckily, H-E-B is a couponing heaven! And the word is out: Shoppers love H-E-B, and because of its growing popularity KCL has increased its coverage of this store by publishing weekly matchups and midweek deals.

Here is how to find coupons and use them to score the best deals at H-E-B:

Find coupons in-store

H-E-B loves hiding coupons in their stores. Really! They are known for yellow, vertical coupons affixed to store shelves below products that can be immediately redeemed at the register, and multiple coupons can be used for multiple products. All H-E-B stores have a central location for such coupons (often near their business center office). In addition, be sure to check the pharmacy area for pamphlets and company-sponsored literature with coupons. Before leaving the store, pick up their monthly “My H-E-B Texas Life” glossy print magazine. It always includes around $40 worth of coupons that can be clipped in the last few pages.

Know the coupon policy

Read the full policy, noting that the most money saving will occur from these two coupon-stacking options listed in their policy:

  • One (1) manufacturer issued coupon and one (1) H-E-B issued Store-sponsored (Type S)
  • One (1) manufacturer issued coupon and one (1) H-E-B issued Big Savings coupon (Type B)

Both of these coupon types are the yellow, vertical coupons explained above. Their "Type S" and "Type B" coupons may be for an amount off (like $1) or they may be buy-one-item-get-another options. Here's a recent scenario:

  • Chex cereal everyday low price: $2.28
  • One "Type S" store coupon for free H-E-B peanut butter (Retail = $2.24) WYB 2 boxes of Chex
  • Combine with one manufacturer coupon for $1 off 2 boxes
  • Final price for 2 boxes of Chex (14 oz.) and one jar (18 oz.) peanut butter = $3.56

Use coupons for clearance merchandise

Find the H-E-B clearance section. It might be a stack of shelves near the back of the store or a shopping cart of discontinued items near the registers. Use coupons on these items, which are usually discounted at 50%, 75%, or more. Additionally, know where your H-E-B places clearance refrigerated items (mine has them at the bottom shelf near the ham). Sometimes even the name-brand refrigerated items (think Kraft cheese, Carl Buddig deli meat, and Oscar Meyer Lunchables) can be picked up for free or nearly free with coupons.

Use coupons for the Combo Loco and Meal Deal feature items: Combos Locos are items available as a group purchase. Buying a certain box of fish sticks may yield free Kool-Aid and macaroni and cheese, or buying bagged salad may yield a free bottle of dressing. While a manufacturer coupon cannot be used for any item being obtained for free, it can be used on the feature item. In a promotion from this month, an 8-pack of Energizer batteries yielded a free gallon of milk, so any manufacturer coupon for Energizer could be used in this promotion along with the coupon for the milk offered by the store. The same principal applies to the Meal Deal items. Be sure to check out their deals in September when children's books are added into the mix.

Print coupons directly from their site

Coupons change regularly, so check back often for printable H-E-B coupons online. Be sure not to overlook coupons for specific store-branded food, household supplies, and cosmetics!

One final tip: Look for the seasonal gift card promotions. In 2012 from October to December any gasoline purchased with a prepaid H-E-B gift card (which come with no purchase fees) is eligible for an automatic 12 cents-per-gallon-deduction purchase price at the pump. Since H-E-B offers the cheapest gasoline in my town anyway, this is a super deal! So keep a gift card on hand to load with money when this and other promotions cycle.

Knowing where to find the coupons and how to use them can help you score big at H-E-B. With your new weekly savings, you'll be singing their motto all the way through the parking lot: "Here, Everything's Better!"

 This is a guest post by Audrey from Texas
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