Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A 25 Cent Coupon is Not Worth My Time!

"Okay, so is a quarter savings really worth my time! I mean how much could a $.25 coupon actually save me?" It is so funny to me when I hear people say that. In fact, I was surprised when one of my best friends said, "I don't get it. I mean, I see what you get, but I just don't get it. So, whoopee a 25 cent coupon, I mean really, how much does that actually save you and is it really worth your time?" So I thought about it and then I came up with a simple example to explain to her to see if she thought 25 cents was really worth the LITTLE time I use to save money at the grocery/drug store.

The whole art/idea/concept of Super Couponing is matching manufacturer coupons to in-store sales and promotions. So if Kroger was having their Mix-n-Match sale where if you buy 10 mix-n-match sales items you get $5 back, how could 25 cent coupons really save you even more money? Let's face it, you can walk into most grocery/drug stores and many times buy cereal for almost $4.00 a box if not more (I use to do it all the time), but if you start to pay attention to store sales you will notice that the same cereal will eventually be on sale for $1.67 to $1.99 throughout the year. So...... having said that, let's get back to the mix-n-match sale at Kroger and my 25 cent coupon.

I am going to buy 30 mix-n-match items that cost $1.99/each (to be on the high side)
That total = $59.70. I have (30) 25 cent coupons. My (30) 25 cent coupon total = -$7.50. My store triples coupons up to $.39 and doubles up to $.50 so my triple coupon discount total = -$15.00. Since I bought 30 mix-n-match items, I am going to get $5 off for every 10 items. So now my mix-n-match store discount = $15.00. So let's see how much 25 cent coupons helped me save.

Total Groceries = $59.70
-$7.50 ($.25 coupon x 30)
-$15.00 ($.25 coupon tripled x 30)
-$15.00 Mix-N-Match Store Sale Promo
Final Cost = $22.20
Savings = 63%

This does not even include additional savings you could get with e-coupons such as cellfire, shortcuts, pgesaver and upromise that you download to your loyalty card. That could easily be an additional $5.00 if not more.
Cost = $22.20
-$5.00 (e-coupons)
Final Cost = $17.20
Savings - 71%

So I asked my friend, if you walked into any store from Target to Neiman Marcus and someone was standing there at the door handing out coupon cards (like they do at Bed, Bath & Beyond) and saying, "Hi, how are you? Please take this card today and when you check out you can get 71% off your purchase." Do not tell me that you would say, "Thanks, but no thanks I don't need to save 71% today "and be on your way. Bed, Bath and Beyond's coupon card is 20% and people snatch them quickly and almost take off the employees hand afraid that it may be the last one. Have you ever been to a "Last Call" sale at Neiman's. It's a mad house for women to snag savings on designer clothes. The evil eye looks some women give each other when the other has gotten the last size of a particular dress that was on sale for 50% off. Trust me, I have seen Prada Go Postal up close for designer savings.

I will be very honest, I do not need to clip coupons to feed our family. We are very blessed and are financially secure. I started clipping coupons because I spent an outrageous amount of money each week on groceries! It was crazy and I felt like we never had much to eat for what I spent. Now I'm in shock when I think about how much I spent compared to how much I could have saved just with a 25 cent coupon and let's face it most coupons are $.50 - $1.00 and even much much more when you look at home goods, cleaners, hygiene, etc... A Razor with refill cartridges alone cost me at least $21 and now I can't remember the last time I actually paid more than a dollar for the same one. I constantly tell my friends and families that they would be shocked with how much FREE stuff is out there. My husband laughs when he comes home and I have my stuff on the counter to take a picture and post. He use to say he thought I paid $20 with the coupons. Now he just laughs and says, "Let me guess, it was FREE and you got $5 back" and a lot of the time - HE'S RIGHT!

So I'll answer my friend's question, "How much does a 25 cent coupon save you and is it really worth your time?" Here is my answer and a question for her. "Why wouldn't you use a 25 cent coupon?" I've shown you how much you can save and couponing does not take much time or effort at all. In fact, it is pretty easy and fun. In the beginning it was a little uneasy and I was nervous about all these things I was getting for so little or FREE when I checked out. I didn't understand couponing completely. Then once I caught on (which doesn't take long) it became like a game to see how much I could actually save. I would laugh when I walked out of the store thinking this is so funny and just bizarre that I got all of the things I needed for FREE or almost FREE.

To me it is just common sense, financially smart and a habit. You don't have to use coupons every time all the time, but why not the times where you financially benefit. Have your kids turn off all the lights in their room when they go to school, don't crank your air conditioner down to 60 degrees all day, don't leave the hot water running in the shower, if someone gives you a gift card then use it when you shop at that particular store, etc... You don't HAVE to do these things, but why not if it saves you money and you can spend that money more wisely elsewhere. We are financially secure and I am a stay at home mom and I would much rather spend our money on luxury items, vacations or something fun for our family than on groceries, drug store items and other necessities by saving where I can.

I do that with the help of that little 25 cent coupon.




  2. prop to you!!!!! i agree, why not save that money and spend it with the family!