What is Extreme Couponing?

Have you seen TLC’s new show Extreme Couponing? I love this show.. imagine paying only $8 for $800 worth of groceries! WOOHOO! I love to save money with coupons, but I am not an “extreme couponer” in any way.

This post will just be a little taste of what it is and how to get started. If you really are interested you can do some research and you will find tons of sites and communities dedicated to extreme couponing. I may actually try to do this one day in the future, for the challenge of it. But I have to warn you.. you may not spend much in money, but you will have to spent a lot of time to become a great extreme couponer.

There are many levels of couponing. There is the lower “clip and save” level, who only use coupons on things they use, (me :P). However, the extreme couponer uses coupons on things they will use now, but also on what they may need in the future, like months ahead.

Extreme Couponing is a way to save huge amounts of money buying items shoppers purchase every day. It also allows shoppers to store a pantry full of household items and groceries with very little money and in case of a job loss or some sort of catastrophe, there is a stockpile of food to survive on.

So how can you get started? Well clipping coupons of course! There are many different kinds of coupons and ways to get them: The Sunday newspaper, manufacturers’ coupons, store coupons, weekly circulars, your mailbox, your local newspaper, online, blogs, company/brand websites, previous purchases, etc. The goal is to get as much high-value coupons as you can get.

Once the coupons are collected, the organization begins! You should sort out the coupons, categorize, and look at what will be on sale that day/week at the store you will be shopping at. You should look for stores that double or triple coupons in your area and talk to the store manager often, to make sure coupon policies haven’t changed.

After that, you’re set to go! Of course you will need a lot of free time, patience, and commitment, but who knows? It may be worth it!

Yay Coupon Codes!!

I loooooove coupon codes. I have previously mentioned coupon codes here before, but many of you might be wondering what in the world I’m taking about. Well coupon or promotional codes are like instant coupons you use when you shop online. They can be given out by companies for previous purchases or for signing up on their website. 

There are also websites where you can search for coupon codes by brand/company name. Some of my favorites are www.retailmenot.com, www.shopathome.com, www.couponcabin.com, and www.couponmountain.com. Now that you know what they are and where you can get them, let me show you what you can use them on:

  • Vacations – Finding a code can lead to saving money or earning free nights! Some offers include a free night after you book another. This makes it more affordable to extend a trip an extra day or two. Bundle packages are great too and may include options for the flight, hotel or car rentals.
  • College – Students are always looking to save money on books. Promotional codes can be used to lower textbook cost for students. This is a great way for students to save as much as possible on books.
  • Clothes – A code can be redeemed to save a percentage or amount off totals. When combined with sales the savings can be huge for consumers. Another way to save money is to use a value added coupon, like a discount on other goods with a purchase. Some offers may also include a buy one, get one free.
  • Cosmetics – Shopping online is a great way to save on cosmetics. Instead of paying department store prices, many turn to the internet because prices are often lower than stores. Some deals include free trial sizes, samples or bonus items on orders.

Top 5 Places to Find Coupons

So now you’re probably asking me, OK Tanya, I would really like to learn how to save more money, but I have no clue where to find these deals/coupons you love so dearly. Well lucky you! Here’s my list of the top five places to find coupons:

  1. Sunday Paper – This is usually where most people find coupons, and for good reason. The Sunday paper is full of inserts with manufacturer coupons from various sources.
  2. In-Store Coupons – Most of the weekly ads put out by grocery stores only advertise what’s on sale that week, but you can also find additional coupons in the circular. It’s also a good idea to hit up customer service to ask for store coupons, and lastly, keep your eyes peeled for those peel off coupons and blinking dispensers that provide even more savings!
  3. eCoupons – You should definitely check out printable coupon sites like Coupons.com that let you to print coupons directly from your computer. There are also some great couponing sites that allow users to upload coupons directly to their loyalty cards like Cellfire.com or Shortcuts.com
  4. Mobile Coupons – If you like saving the earth and money at the same time you should take advantage of your smartphone with stuff like mobile coupon apps and texts. Here’s a heads up: Text “OFFERS” to Target (827438) to receive mobile coupons to use on your next visit or check out Shoptext.com to receive mobile coupons via text message ;).
  5. Social Media – Finally, the best for the last. Never underestimate the power of social media when it comes to couponing! You should follow your favorite brands and stores on Twitter and fan them on Facebook. It’s a great way to score savings that most people don’t know about.

Hope it helps. Happy Couponing!

Happy Birthday to YOU!

July is a big birthday month for me. Mine, two of my closest friends, and my fathers birthdays are all in July. And for me, my birthday is synonymous with free stuff! Getting tons of freebies and deals on your birthday makes the day even better. Here’s a list of some stuff you can get to make your special day even better! Some require you to sign up on their website/newsletters and are only valid in certain locations. Remember that some places will want you to show proof, so bring along an id. Another heads up, you can usually get one free drink on your birthday at most clubs or bars with an ID, of course only if you’re 21 & up! 😉

Food:

  • Applebee’s – Free dessert and song on your birthday.
  • Baskin Robbins – Baskin Robbins will send you a coupon for a free 2.5 oz scoop of ice cream on your birthday plus other special promotions when you join the Baskin Robbins Birthday Club.
  • Buffalo Wild Wings – Get a coupon for a free dessert to celebrate your birthday at Buffalo Wild Wings.
  • Carrows – Join the Carrows E-Club to get a free dessert on your birthday as well as one for joining.
  • Chevys – Join Chevys Compadres Club and get a free dessert on your birthday.
  • Claim Jumper Restaurant – Join the CJ E-Club and get a free dessert on your birthday.
  • Cold Stone Creamery – Cold Stone Creamery will send you an email with a coupon for a free ice cream creation to enjoy on your birthday. All ages are welcome!
  • Dairy Queen – Join the Dairy Queen Blizzard Fan Club and get a free ice cream cone on your birthday as well as a coupon for a blizzard when you join.
  • Denny’s – Come in and get a free Grand Slam on your birthday.
  • Fuddruckers – Join the Fudds Club and gett a free burger on your birthday.
  • Grimaldi’s – Sign up for the birthday club at Grimaldi’s and get a free pizza.
  • Keva Juice – Free 24 oz. regular blend smoothie.
  • IHOP – Come on into IHOP and get a free meal (a sundae at some locations) on your birthday.
  • Macaroni Grill – Come on into Macaroni Grill on your birthday and get a free dessert plus a song.
  • Marie Callender’s – Join Marie Callender’s E-Club and get a coupon for $5 off your meal and piece of pie when you visit during the month of your birthday.
  • On the Border – Get a free appetizer on your birthday when you join On the Border’s Club Cantina. When you initially join you will get an instant coupon for a free bowl of queso or empanadas.
  • Outback – Get a free dessert and a song when you go to Outback on your birthday.
  • P.F. Changs – Come in and get a free dessert on your birthday.
  • Red Lobster – Join the Overboard Club and they will email you a suprise for your birthday.
  • Red Robin – Join the Red Robin eClub and get a coupon for a fee burger on your birthday. This is for all ages!
  • Round Table – Get a free personal pizza when you visit on your birthday.
  • Ruby Tuesday – Join the So Connected club and you’ll get an email for a free burger on your birthday.
  • Sonic – Free regular creamslush, free medium tator tots, or a free medium drink!
  • Wingstop – Free large fresh cut seasoned fries.

Other:

  • American Eagle – Coupon for 15% off.
  • Aveda – Free gift up to $24 in value.
  • Chuck E. Cheese’s – 20 free tokens.
  • Cost Plus World Market – Sign up to their explorer club and get $10 free to spend in store or online.
  • Hot Topic – $5 off coupon on a purchase of $30.
  • Old Navy – $10 off coupon on a purchase of $50.
  • Sephora – Sign up as a Beauty Insider and get a free gift from Sephora on your birthday.