Coupon Clipping Services: What They Are and How They Work
By Shannon M. Medisky
Whether you just want to hang on to more of your money or your budget demands it, doing so during this time of climbing prices can make it a difficult proposition. As the saying goes, though, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. And coupons are most definitely not broke. A tried and true budget-friendly staple, they offer a sure-fire way to save money. But if you loathe the idea of buying heaps of newspapers just to score a few bucks in savings (hint: don’t!) or you hate the idea of these little slips of paper eating up your time, keep reading because you truly can have your savings cake and eat it, too. Just start using a coupon clipping service.
If you’ve ever read the tiny print on a coupon, you’ve seen the words before: “May not be reproduced, purchased, traded or sold.” Sounds pretty water-tight, doesn’t it? Now, go back and read the very last word of the previous paragraph. “Service.” That’s right, “service.” When you acquire coupons through one of these businesses, you’re not purchasing coupons and they’re not selling them. You’re simply paying them a few cents for each coupon for their services. They gather, clip, organize and mail you out the coupons and you’re paying them for their time and efforts. They do all the work, and you save all the money.
Case in point, I have two small boys, a dog and two cats. This often equates to a less than fresh smelling house. Hence, Febreeze is a staple in my home. Last week, I purchased 5 “buy one, get one” free coupons for Febreeze for 8 cents each. That means I paid 40 cents. I then took those coupons to my local discount retailer where Febreeze was on sale for $2.99 each. I put 10 bottles of Febreeze in my cart, but after forking over my coupons I only paid for 5 of them. That immediately translated to a net savings of $44.30 on an item that I would have been purchasing anyway. Granted, I have to store 10 bottles, but finding a bit of extra storage space is a very small price to pay for such substantial savings.
A huge benefit to using such a service, is the ability to snag coupons that might not be available in your geographical region. Most coupon clipping services are national which means there’s a much wider variety of coupons available versus what’s available in your Sunday paper alone. This fact alone can dramatically increase your savings.
There are some warnings to heed, though, when it comes to taking advantage of such a service. For example, don’t get swept up by the siren song of a great deal. Yeah, the coupon savings may be great, but do be aware of coupon expiration dates. If you’ll be unable to use the coupons before the expire for whatever reason, you literally just threw money away. Avoid overbuying products, too, no matter how great the potential savings. Overbuying products that won’t get used prior to their pull date is just wasted money. Don’t do it.
If you’re ready to try a coupon clipping service, I can’t say enough good things about the one I currently use: The Coupon Clippers. And, no, I’m not getting any kind of kickback for this plug. But I have gotten great service, phenomenal savings and a super fast shipment of my coupons. (This last little point being of particular importance when you’re trying to use coupons with a weekly sale!)
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