Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Understanding Buy One Get One Free

Buy one get one free deals are a great way to save money, but sometimes they get a little confusing. Also known as "BOGO" or "B1G1," people often have questions about what happens when you combine a store BOGO item with a BOGO coupon that you might have.

To demonstrate, we will use an imaginary example with imaginary potato chips.

Let's pretend that the potato chips you like (for me it's Lays) normally cost $4.00 per bag when they are not on sale (this is the case with Lays chips at my favorite grocery store).

If I wanted two bags, they would cost me $4.00 x 2, which is $8.00. That's pretty expensive.

Now, let's pretend that this week, the store is running a BOGO deal on those same chips. Buy one bag for $4.00 and you get another free. What a great deal! Without doing anything but waiting for the sale, you are now saving 50% because you can now get two bags for $4.00. The store will actually charge you $2.00 per bag. If you only buy one bag, it will only cost $2.00. Many people think that if the sale is for buy one get one free, you have to buy two bags. This is not the case- if you choose to buy one, it will cost half price, so technically, buy one get one free really means "half off" at the grocery stores.

Now, let's also pretend that you have a BOGO coupon for those chips. How does the BOGO coupon work with the BOGO sale at the grocery store?

Well, the store will ring up up for each bag of chips separately- $2.00 per bag, which again, would be $4.00. If you then redeem your BOGO coupon, they will subtract the cost of one of the bags of chips, which will leave you owing only $2.00 for both bags of chips! That is a 75% savings! What a great deal!

So, as you can see from that example, using buy one get one free is a great way to cut down your grocery bill. Combining BOGO coupons with BOGO sales can also save you BIG bucks at the store!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Coupon Clipping Services

I had to take a little break after last week's Triple Coupon sale at Harris Teeter!

I'm back now and wanted to share a resource with everyone- Coupon Clipping Services!

If you're like me, you race out of the bed on Sunday morning and head to the local gas station, hoping that the Sunday newspaper is still in stock. Most Sundays there are plenty to be had. Other Sundays I leave the store empty handed and disappointed, for all of the newspapers are sold out. In all fairness, there is rarely a shortage of my local paper, but I actually buy the Raleigh News and Observer because it has more coupons. This fact is well known amongst local couponers and there are times when the Raleigh paper sells out.

Enter a wonderful idea- coupon clipping services! Entrepreneurs from cities all across America, who have access to newspapers filled with coupons, sell them online via their websites. All you have to do is click and purchase. Below are two of my favorite options for obtaining coupons.

The Q Hunter- here you can buy entire Red Plum, Smart Source and Proctor and Gamble inserts! The inserts are complete and whole, just like in your local newspaper. They even list each coupon found in each insert so that you can decide whether or not you want that insert. You can buy multiple inserts and get discounts on shipping for purchase of more inserts. I have found that the purchase of two inserts with shipping is about $3.50, so about a dollar more than I'd pay for a newspaper. Considering the convenience, and the sheer number of coupons you're getting, I personally think it is worth it. In addition, one must consider that this is a great option for those Sundays that you wake up late and don't make it to get a local paper on time.

Kuntry Clippers- here you can buy individual coupons, in sets of twenty for only $1. Sometimes they go on sale and are even less. I like this option because you may occasionally need multiples of a coupon because an item you need is going on sale and this is a great way to easily order multiples. For just $1, you are getting $10-$20 worth of coupons. This amount would be doubled if it's Super Double week!

I will be adding a button to the side of my blog for those of you who decide to purchase coupons from the above companies. If you do, I get a small percentage for referring you to them, so be sure to use my link to access their website!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Great Deals in the Sunday Paper Today!

Today my local paper actually had more coupons than the Raleigh News and Observer, which is unusual. Perhaps my local paper is finally getting the message- MORE COUPONS PLEASE!

The local paper had two inserts today- Smart Source and Red Plum. Many of today's coupons worked great with the triple coupon sale at Harris Teeter this week. Below are a few of the deals that I saw that match up with coupons from today's paper: (all of the below coupons triple)

Smucker's Jelly $.55 off- makes the jelly FREE

Pringles- $.50 off- makes the Pringles FREE

Degree Deoderant- $.75 off- makes the deoderant $.25

Lipton Tea Bags $.40 off- makes the tea $.09

Knoor Rice and Pasta Sides- $.50 off of two- makes each bag $.25

Country Crock Butter- $.50 off- makes the pack of sticks $.17 and makes the BIG tub $.64

Chock Full of Nuts BIG 26 oz coffee- $.75 off- makes the coffee $3.74 (it's normally $8!)

M&Ms- I can't remember the value of the coupon but I believe it made the M&Ms free when you buy two of the $.99 bags

Butterball Polish  Turkey Sausage- $.65 off- makes the sausage $1.20

Snyders Pretzel Sandwiches- $.75 off- makes them $.75

300 Count Q-Tips- $.30 off- makes the Q-tips $1.50

Those were just the deals that appealed to ME! Take a look in your Sunday Paper today to see what other deals are waiting for YOU!

Harris Teeter Triple Coupon Trip #2

Actually, I have been to Harris Teeter about four times this week during Triple Coupons. I've been getting lots of good deals. I took a pic of my shopping trip from this morning. Take a guess at how much I spent:

Pictured in photo: Pringles, Apple Jacks, 2 Bags of Knoor Rice Sides, 2 packs of Beef Ballpark Franks, 2 Country Crock Butter Sticks (4 ct), Mahatma Rice 32 oz, 2 Smuckers Jelly, 1 24ct Lipton Tea, 1 Degree Men's Deoderant, 1 Orville Redenbaccher Popup Bowl Popcorn 3 ct, 2 packs of M&M candies

I paid exactly $4, which included tax! There are so many deals to be had this week at Triple Coupons at Harris Teeter. If you haven't been, grab up some $.50 and $.75 coupons and go! I'm going to do a post right now on some of the free deals that were in the paper today.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Time to Stock up on Mustard!

If your family uses mustard like mine does, it's time to stock up! Even if they don't, you can stock up for family gatherings since Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and summer cookout time is coming up. 

There's another reason to buy mustard right now- it's FREE at Harris Teeter! If you go HERE, to French's manufacturer site, you can print out loads of coupons for French's products, including worcheshire sauce, regular mustard, honey mustard dipping sauce, and spicy brown mustard. Many of these coupons are under $.99, so they will all triple this week at Harris Teeter. This makes many of them either free or really inexpensive. I'm talking only a couple of cents, if that much.

I always tell folks that if an item you use is free or extremely cheap, you should stock up as much as possible! I say that because it's much better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it! In fact, I have a funny story to tell about that.

On Tuesday night, we ate leftover polish sausage dogs from our cookout on Sunday. I checked the fridge on Tuesday evening and noticed that our mustard was pretty much gone. There might have been a few squirts left. We checked our cabinets to no avail- we were COMPLETELY out of an item we needed, breaking my cardinal rule.

So, I told my husband that I didn't know what to do because I couldn't eat my sausage dog without mustard but I didn't want to buy any because I knew I could get it for free the next day, on Wednesday, since triple coupons were starting. I ended up going to the store and buying a little store brand mustard for $.65, which tasted awful! It was so tart. I have gotten used to eating name-brand mustard, I guess.

The moral of the story- STOCK UP! I plan to do just that this week and hopefully, we'll never again run out of mustard!

Triple Coupons- One of my Best Trips Ever!

Today was my first day ever participating in triple coupons at Harris Teeter! I was so excited because ever since I started couponing a year ago, I have been waiting for a triple coupon event. For whatever reason, Harris Teeter had not done triples until this week.

Take a look at the photo below. Any guesses as to how much I spent?

 In photo: 2 Totinos Pizzas, 2 20 oz French's mustard, 1 16 oz Dijon Mustard, 1- 4-pack Gerber baby yogurt, 3- 2-pack Gerber Baby Foods, 36 pack of Chinet Paper Plates, 2 BIG Country Crock Butters, 1 pack of 64-count Huggies Baby Wipes, 2 bottles of Franks Red-Hot Sauce, 1 pack of Ballpark Beef Franks, 1 Dozen Egglands Best Eggs, 1 V8 V-Fusion Acai Juice Drink, 1 Colgate Toothpaste, 1 Bag of Texas Toast Tortilla Strips

And the grand total is..........$1.66! And that includes tax. I used coupons on everything I bought, most of which tripled, and I also bought everything except maybe one or two items on sale.This made almost everything I got free, with the exception of a few items. See receipt below and note all the scanned coupons and multiplied coupons.

Suffice it to say that I got lots of good deals today. I imagine that if everyone else out there does as well as I did, it might be a whole another year before Harris Teeter does triples again!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

To Double or Not to Double- That is the Question!

Did you notice that some of your coupons have written on them, "Do not Double?" Sometimes they will say, "Do not Double or Triple." When I see that, it's always a bummer for me, but if it's the manufacturer's wish, there is nothing I can do.

However, there is one little trick that works. Take a look at the bar code on the coupon. The bar codes either start with the number "5" or the number "9." Fortunately, most start with the number "5." This means that the coupon will double at the register anyways, regardless of what the coupon says. It is up to the cashier to take the time to pull the coupon and "undouble it." How often do you think the cashiers do this? If you guessed "not very often" then you are right!

I just wanted to point this out so that people are aware. More times than not, you will get a coupon with instructions not to double but it will double anyways because the cashier does not notice. I hate to say this but I do not feel that it's my responsibility as a customer to point this out to the cashier. If he/she notices, and stops the coupon from doubling, I do not argue, as they are simply doing their job. However, I'll be the first to say that I certainly don't mind when they don't do their job every now and then, lol.......

Next time you have a coupon, be sure to take a look at those bar codes and maybe you'll get the lucky cashier! For more information on bar codes, take a look at this handy tutorial from Publix grocery stores.

For Barcode tutorial click HERE

No-Work Couponing!

I love it when I'm shopping and see coupons attached to product. I love it even more when that product also happens to be on sale. I really REALLY love it when the coupon attached to the product doubles and makes the item an even better deal!

That happened to me this morning at Harris Teeter in Ogden. I ran out to grab some pickles and hotdog buns for a cookout. I passed the Nature's Own Specialty Breads and saw that they had $.55 off coupons attached to them. These loaves of bread are normally $3.89 each but they were on sale for Buy One Get One (BOGO), so that made each loaf only $1.94 each. The $.55 off coupon attached to it doubled to $1.10 off, thus making the bread only $.84! That is a great deal for quality bread. The Nature's Own Specialty breads come in several varieties; all of them healthy. You can choose from Whole Wheat, Wheat Berry, Honey Wheat, Double Fiber and a couple of others. Here is a link to their website for more info on the breads. I just ate a piece and let me tell you, they are delicious!

This brings me to another point- there are so many coupons for healthy items. So often people think couponing is only for processed food. That is certainly not true nowadays. Manufacturers of all types of products are offering coupons for their items; you just have to find them! Today, finding the coupons were super easy, as they were right there, attached to the product.

I may go back later and get a few more loaves, as I have been told (thanks Tracy) that bread freezes and thaws very easily, so when it goes on sale it's a good idea to get several loaves.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Harris Teeter Triple Coupon Deals- Lots of Free Groceries!

It is confirmed that Harris Teeter will be tripling coupons next week! You can't miss this event; there will be so many free items that you can get. Many of the freebies are printables, too, so this means that you can take advantage of the free groceries even if you haven't been purchasing your Sunday paper. Just go online and print off the coupons!

Below is a link from Southern Savers, one of my favorite coupon database websites. She has a link up with all of the Triple Coupon deals, including links to where you can get the coupons from, whether they are in the paper or printable from online. I suggest printing many of the coupons now, just in case the popular ones reach their print limit. 

Triple Coupon Deals at Harris Teeter Next Week!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Harris Teeter TRIPLE Coupons Coming Up!

Rumor has it in the coupon world that Harris Teeter will be tripling coupons the week starting May 18th! If this turns out to be just a rumor, I guess I will learn my lesson about announcing things before they are official.

But, just in case it is true, this week would be a good time to get together any coupons that you think might be good candidates for tripling. Harris Teeter will triple any coupon that has a face value of less than $.99 and you can triple up to 20 per day. For example, a $.75 off coupon would triple to $2.25 off! So, I would go through my coupons and start pulling any that you think might make items free or much cheaper than usual if they tripled. You never know which items will also be on sale that week, thus making the triple coupon week even more profitable, but it never hurts to start pulling and cutting coupons for the items you are most likely to want. I usually put mine in a labeled mailing envelope titled, "Triple Coupons," and then I can go back through those coupons next week when the new Harris Teeter ad comes out and check to see which couponed items are on sale. Or, you can easily take the envelope with you into the store. 

One final tip- consider organizing the coupons in your envelope by aisle in the store. If you don't know for sure the order, just guess to the best of your knowledge. This will make shopping much easier if you are not walking back and forth across the store looking for items.

Well, we will wait for the official announcement about triple coupons. I will be sure to update here once I know for sure!

Monday, May 9, 2011

$.50 is too much for Dish Detergent

I never pay any more than $.50 for name-brand dish detergent, but usually, I get it for FREE! 

That's because there is always a coupon for either Gain or Dawn in the monthly P&G (Proctor and Gamble) coupon insert that comes out the first Sunday of the new month in the newspaper. Most of the times, the coupon is for $.50 off, so I just wait until either Harris Teeter or Lowes Food puts the detergent on sale for $1.00. When they do, I use the coupon, which doubles and makes the detergent free! I get a couple every month when this happens, so I never need dish detergent and I always get nice name brands, too.

Today I made an exception to my usual rule of never paying for detergent. I got a big 25 oz bottle of the new Palmolive Soft Touch with Vitamin E. It was on sale for $2.00 at Harris Teeter and there was a $.75 off coupon in the May 1st Smart Source insert from the Sunday newspaper, so after doubling I paid only $.50. Normally it costs $3.39 if you buy it when not on sale. 

Considering how big the bottle is and that it smells great AND feels wonderful on my hands, I decided that I would break my rule and shell out the $.50 for this detergent!

Frosted Flakes and Barbecue Sauce Deals This Week!

As cookout season nears, there were some good deals this week on barbecue sauces. This is a good opportunity to stock up and have sauces ready for the summer. 

Jack Daniels Barbecue sauces were on sale for $2.50. I had a coupon for .75 off from yesterday's paper, which doubled to $1.50 off, so I got the sauce for $1.00. Also, Biltmore Salad dressings were on sale for $1.99. After my $.75 off, it was only $.50. 

Finally, Frosted Flakes were a good deal. They are on sale right now for $1.64. There is a printable coupon available here for $1.00 off, which makes them only $.62! I printed two coupons and got two boxes. 

I also noticed that Harris Teeter is running a pretty good deal on Bounty Paper towels. The eight pack select-a-size, is only $5.99. Normally they are $10.49. I also had a coupon for $1.00 off from the Proctor and Gamble coupon booklet that I received in the mail, so I paid $4.99. This was a good deal for me because I happened to really need Paper towels this week.

Don't forget to check your e-mails and receipts for your personalized E-VIC specials from Harris Teeter this week. New deals start on Wednesday, so you only have one more day to take advantage!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Which Box Would You Choose?

Imagine you are at the grocery store and quickly grab two boxes of Blueberry Nutrigrain bars. Your kids and husband love them, they are on sale and you have a $1 coupon, so you are doing great!

But, when you get home, you realize the error. Take a look at the above picture. Which box would you choose if you could only choose one?

If you chose the second box, you are right! That box has $5 worth of coupons inside! During Super Doubles, you could count that as $10 worth of coupons. My point is that it is always important when in the grocery store to be on the lookout for specially marked packages that contain manufacturer's coupons. It's one of the easiest and cheapest ways to get coupons. 

By the way, the Kellogs company is offering coupons right now on specially marked packages of cereals and breakfast bars, and possibly other products. I saw them on Mini Wheats last week and then on Nutrigrain Bars this week. They are really good coupons, too- for cereals, juices, breakfast foods and also $1 off of fresh fruit and $1 off of eggs when you buy Kellogs cereals. It is not too often that you see fruit and eggs coupons, so those are always nice to come by.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Free (or Cheap) Beef at Harris Teeter

I grabbed a nice little deal today at Harris Teeter.

I noticed that Grande Tortilla Chips are on sale 2 for $5. They are normally $3 a piece, so this was already a good deal.

Then, I saw that on most of the bags were sitting coupons for $1.50 off of a beef purchase when you buy two bags of Grande Chips. Since this week is Super Doubles, that doubled to $3.00 off of the purchase of meat.

So, I went over to the meat area and grabbed some Angus Ground Beef that was on sale. I think it was $4.19. So, I ended up with a little over a pound of ground beef for only $1 and some change.

I did not see any stipulations on what kind of beef you must purchase to do this deal, so I imagine that you could potentially purchase a pound of meat that was on sale (for example, the cubed steak is on sale this week there for $2.99/pound) and after the $3 discount from Super double Coupons, you might get the meat for free!

Even better is that I grabbed two Grande Bags, both with the meat coupons. So, I still have another $1.50 off of meat coupon left. I will probably go back tomorrow and use that one. I might even get two more bags of Chips to stock up, which will also net me two additional meat coupons.

It is rare to find meat coupons, so this was an especially exciting deal!

Coupon Mom Coupons Restocked Today

While I still get most of my coupons from the Sunday newspaper, I do print some coupons online. One of my favorite sites from which to collect online coupons is, ""

Today they restocked their coupons. This means that you can go back in and print up to two copies of any coupon that you need. Two is the limit, unless you know how to clear the memory or IP address from your computer, which I know how to do but feel that it is not worth the hassle. The coupon mom website remembers your computer IP address and limits you to two prints of each coupon.

But, every couple of weeks or months or so, they go in and "re-stock" their coupons. Then you can print two of every coupon again without having to do anything crazy to your computer!

A couple of tips about printing coupons- only print the ones for products that you know you will use at some point. Think about the ink waste! That could really eat up your savings for sure if you print and waste coupons. 

Also, you can print in black and white in order to save your color ink. The grocery store still takes black and white coupons from the printer, as long as the bar code is there. Finally, keep in mind that online coupons sometimes "Sell out." When this happens, you get a notice that says, "Print limit reached." To avoid this happening to me, on the day they re-stock, I go and click through all of their coupons and print any ones for products that I know for sure I will use in the store. 

By the way, The Coupon Mom website has many resources for couponing. There's a coupon database, store deals summary and many more articles to read about how to coupon and organization and time saver tips. While it is not my absolute favorite coupon web site, it is a great place to get started and does offer some of the best coupons on the net!