Save Your Money - Use Coupons!

In the initial days after I moved to the USA, I used to convert the currency & find some things so expensive [do I see you nodding? :D ]  Then I learned about the different kinds of coupons they use here & how it really helps save up at least a little bit each month.  Several people might not know about coupons, some might - but never use them.  And if it’s about feeling shy, stingy, or “what people may think” ... then trust me no one cares.  And even if they do, you shouldn’t – they’re not working hard to pay your bills  :-)

So, save your money - use coupons!  Here are 5 simple ways:

1.  Some Sunday newspapers have lots of coupons mainly from Smart Source, Red Plum, and P&G - with extra inserts sometimes.  Although they boast of things like 'over $199 in savings', most of the coupons do go unused (unless you share it with family/friends/neighbors - which is a good thing to do!).  Unless you subscribe to & read a newspaper regularly, you can do this like me:  once in a month I go on to P&G Everyday Solutions to see ahead the date they will include a coupon booklet in the newspaper, and then I purchase the newspaper only for that day.  Or you could go on Sunday Coupon Preview & see the upcoming offer details along with their expiry dates.  I don't know why but actually Saturday's early-edition newspapers also have these Sunday coupons inside a packet in the newspaper.

2.  A great website that doesn’t require any registration & allows clipping & printing coupons for free is that you should bookmark.  It contains over 100 coupons in many categories, some of which are updated/changed about once/twice in a month.  It’s valid in US only (you must check if it doesn’t work in your state by any chance).  Just enter your zip code, click on the ones you want to print & that’s it!  (Note: the first time it will ask to install software; it keeps track of your IP & allows printing only 2 coupons per month.)  Secret: sometimes I enter some other zip codes to see if there’s any other interesting offer … shhhh!

3.  How often do you dine out for lunch/dinner & how much do you spend per week? has a database of over 18,000 restaurants (from casual to fine dining, cuisines from A to Z) in US that you can save in.  For example: you can buy $25 restaurant gift certificate for only $10; view participating restaurants list.  Conditions such as minimum number of entrées or a minimum purchase amount & exclusions of beverage/alcohol, certain holidays, etc apply.  They also show what the best deal is, what the new restaurants are & which are recommended in your area.  You can refine your search results from 16 options, such as by cuisine, average entrée price or special features.  If not for yourself, you can also send it as a gift to someone else.  It’s really worth it!

4.  If you’re not interested in any of the above, then how about photography or dance class discounts, concert or massage/spa discounts; dental check-up or salon discounts, and many more?  I am talking about where you can get almost 50–80% off deals in your city & also know how many people bought it, plus the clock ticks to show you the time limit to buy the deal online.  Then you just take the printout with you to the place.  I bought two Groupons of $25 worth of lunch for only $10 for a Thai restaurant and $40 for a Swedish massage package originally costing $83 – saving myself over $50!  If not for yourself, you can also buy Groupons as a gift for someone else.  Worth it!

5.  For best deals on gadgets (such as cameras, mobile phones, GPS, etc) or for best deals in stores (such as Kohl's, Target, Staples, etc) or for best deals on electronics (such as printers, TVs, laptops, etc) or for best deals on travel, clothes, clearance, coupons, Amazon, or you name it – it's all there on SlickDeals.  It’s a forum where bargain hunting considerate people around the world share the lowest & cheapest price, best deals & bargains with thousands of free discounts, promo codes, reviews & price comparisons that they find.  It could be in the form of links to store websites, links to coupons, and so forth.  None of us have the time to keep track of every reasonable offer in the stores & websites – that’s why a combined effort like this makes life easier  :-)  This is another site you definitely want to bookmark!

I hope this post helps you & I would love to know what you think.  If you have anything to say, please feel free to leave a comment below.  In a forthcoming post I will share more links to print coupons for generally used products.  Update (15 Oct 2011):  Here's the post I was talking about:  Coupons: Grocery, Kitchen Items & Household Products

Until then, happy saving!  :-)

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Disclaimer:  The author of this blog is not paid to promote these websites / companies / products / brands / links and takes no responsibility for any change in promotions/offers by individual websites / brands.  This list is solely created to share the database that the author created to help people save and holds no other intention.

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