A garage filled with stacks of newspapers. An office with reams of paper printed with single coupons. Huge tangles of plastic bags from oh so many shopping transactions. Saving money is great, but couponing can be an obsession that creates a big carbon footprint.

It is possible to save money and help save the planet. Here are some ideas:

  • Add up savings by printing coupons on both sides of the paper. Recycle the scraps.
  • Recycle newspapers.
  • Re-use plastic bags at the grocery store, even if the bags are from home. Many stores offer a cents discount for your own bags. Or visit the store plastic bag recycling kiosk.
  • Plan trips to all the stores you regularly visit for one outing. Map destinations to the shortest distances to save gas.
  • Find a coupon buddy and combine shopping trips and carpool.
  • Don’t be afraid to call ahead to stores to see if the item(s) you’re after are on the shelf. No point making the drive if the shelf is cleared.
  • Donate unused coupons to overseas military families.
  • Consider using coupon apps rather than paper coupons.
  • Shop online.
Clean Couponing: Tips to Help the Environment and Save Money