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Couponing 101: Printables

December 4th, 2013 1:35 pm by Amanda Arnold-Drinnon

Couponing 101:  Printables

Welcome back! This week is about saving with printable coupons. 

“Printables” are coupons you can print from home via computer, and can be used the same as the ones you clip out of the newspaper. There are three main sources for printables:

 1. www.coupons.com

2. www.smartsource.com      

3. www.redplum.com 

Unfortunately, this month we will lose a fourth source, www.couponnetwork.com, as they are refocusing their activity to strictly Catalina coupons, which are coupons that are printed at check-out that may be used on a future purchase. So, what is a printable coupon and how do I use it? 

It’s really simple. 

Go to one of the above sites, select the coupons you want, and click print. Initially, you will be required to install coupon printing software onto your computer. It is completely free and will usually allow you to print two copies of each coupon that you select per computer. 

So, if you have two computers attached to one printer, then you can print four identical coupons. Each coupon will have a unique number assigned to it. Never photocopy printable coupons. Photocopying coupons is illegal and is classified as fraud. 

The above sites reset/issue new coupons on the first day of each month. If there are any coupons that you want at the end of the month….Print! They may be gone the next day. 

Coupons also have a print limit nationwide so it is possible that the overall limit can be met before you get it. If you see a high value coupon, print it or it may be gone. If you register with www.couponingtodisney.com and/or www.thekrazycouponlady.com, both post “hot” coupons on their blogs and Facebook pages. 

Another great source for printables is company web sites. Betty Crocker, Bisquick, Pillsbury, and Kellogg’s are just a few of the companies that have printables on their homepages and/or mail printables to your E-mail. 

These require you to register with an E-mail account. Set up a free E-mail account to use for couponing and store clubs. This will keep your regular inbox from getting bombarded. 

One last source for printables is store sites. Many stores and restaurants have printables on their homepages. Some require registration and some do not. Again, set up a separate E-mail account to use for money saving tactics. It will save your sanity. 

Two of my favorite stores, Target and Wal-Greens, have printable coupons on their sites that you can stack with manufacturer coupons to score some great deals! 

This was one of the biggest shocks I had when I started couponing. 

Stacking is when you combine a coupon and other money saving strategies (cash back, store coupons) to maximize savings. 

Now, the big question…What’s the investment in ink and paper? It depends on how much you print and what you print. Here are a few tips to make sure printables are making money and not costing money: 

• Only print what you will use 

• Print in black 

• Register for a rewards program at an office supply chain and roll the rewards! Rolling rewards means that you use      reward money on offers that give you rewards back, thus eliminating the out-of-pocket expense. This is more “money    recycling” than couponing, but the savings add up!

• Use a coupon swap group to attain extra coupons 

So, now you may be asking yourself, “Can I still save if I don’t have a computer or if I don’t want to use printables?” Yes! In fact, I have a very dear friend who is an amazing couponer and she never uses printables.

Remember, it’s not all or nothing. Find what works for you and your schedule. Any savings are better than none. 

Next week we will explore digital savings. Please send all questions, comments, and/or tips to aarnold@timesnews.net. I look forward to hearing from you!

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