Posted by: Amanda | March 29, 2012

My Own Little ‘Extreme Couponing’ Adventure

Yesterday I packed up the boys and headed out to the nearest Target (which is approximately twenty-six miles away from our home). There are some stellar deals to be had at Target this week (on toys in particular, check out Totally Target, for more information), as well as some great coupons available to make average deals much sweeter. Additionally, the Target stores in my area just added produce this past weekend, which makes the store even more attractive to shop at. JR and I have been discussing for years how much we like Target and how we would shop there more often if only it carried fresh food/produce (in our area, we have been to Super Targets when we traveled) – and now it does! So more frequent Target trips are probably in my future, is what I’m trying to say.

Yesterday’s Haul:

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Before sale prices or coupons, the total retail value of what I purchased was $83.56.

(1) Simply Orange Juice: $2.99

(1) Silk Dark Chocolate Milk: $2.99

(2) Glade Expressions Starter Kits: on sale for $3.49 each, $6.98 total

(2) My First Crayola Triangular Crayons: on sale for $2.87 each, $5.74 total

(1) Revlon Crazy Shine bonus kit: $2.89***

(1) Revlon Large Catch Nail Clipper: $2.89***

(1) Up&Up Facial Tissue: $0.99

(4) Furreal Friends Dizzy Dancers: on sale for $6.99 each, $27.96 total

(1) Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Puppy Playhouse: on sale for $19.46

Which rang up to a total of $72.89 + tax. I was a little nervous because even though I was holding a big stack of coupons, I didn’t realize that I was holding over $50 worth.* To be clear, I knew approximately what the total would be after coupons, but I had not determined what the total before coupons would be before heading out to the store.

I used the following coupons:

(1) $1.00/1 Simply Orange Target Coupon

(1) $2.00/1 Silk Manufacturer Coupon

(2) $2/1 Glade Expressions Manufacturer Coupons

(2) $1/1 Glade Expressions Target Coupons**

(2) $1/1 My First Crayola Manufacturer Coupons

(2) $1/1 My First Crayola Target Coupons**

(1) $5/2 Revlon Tools Target Coupon***

(1) $0.50/1 Up&Up Facial Tissue Target Coupon

(2) $2/1 Furreal Friends Dizzy Dancers Manufacturer Coupons

(2) Buy One, Get One Free Dizzy Dancers Target Coupons** ($6.99 each, $13.98 total)

(1) $5/1 Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Puppy Playhouse Manufacturer Coupon

(1) 50% off Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Toy Target Coupon ($9.73 value)

Total saved with coupons: $51.21

Total after coupons: $21.68 + tax on non-grocery items. I paid with my Target red card, so I saved an additional 5%.

Having just saved myself over $60 off of retail prices (74%), I was pleased with the transaction. Then, for only the third time in my life, someone complimented me on “all those coupons,” and “having saved so much.” The lady seemed to have just finished checking out in the next lane over (and must have watched my transaction fairly closely), I commented on how Target had some great sales this week, told her about the Target store coupons, and will probably never see her again. I like to think that seeing my transaction and being told about the Internet coupons will assist that lady (and others) with saving money in the future.

The reason that I occasionally write about my experiences with couponing is because I hope that it will help others in some way. Maybe someone didn’t know about printable coupons or a blog that I have found particularly helpful. I’m not a super extreme couponer, as I haven’t the time, money, storage space, or need for a room full of items, even if they were free. If others are interested in doing so, I want them to get the same deals that I do.

It was so refreshing for me to receive a compliment on my well-planned couponing trip, rather than a dirty look or negative comment, the latter are not an every day occurrence, but I have received more negative feedback than positive overall. Even though I plan ahead in order to have smooth transactions at check-out, paying with a dozen (or more) coupons necessarily takes more time than just swiping a card, but the extra time is worth it to my family. Several of the items that I purchased at Target this week will be gifts for friends, extended family members, and as donations to children in need at Christmas time. My bargain shopping tendencies allows my family to fulfill our own wants and needs, as well as share with others. In today’s current economy, it makes us very happy to be able to do so.

Has couponing helped you (or helped you help others) in ways that you didn’t originally expect?

*This is why I will never say that printing coupons is too expensive. I don’t spend $50 on paper and toner over the course of an entire year for everything that I print. I print coupons nearly every day.

**This particular Target allows customers to use more than one Target store coupon per transaction, but not every Target allows this (as Target coupons state that only one coupon may be used per guest). Additionally, I have noticed that sometimes the register will recognize that more than one of the same store coupon was scanned and will only deduct the amount of the first coupon. Thus, I recommend doing separate transactions if you want to use more than one of the same Target coupon and don’t mind the extra transaction.

***My intention was to buy items that were $2.50 or less so that they would be completely free (other than sales tax), but this Target was completely wiped out of all Revlon tools in that price range.

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Responses

  1. Good job! I love shopping trips like that! I had a great one recently where I got several items for free (tofu and luna bars) because my grocery store was doing triple coupons plus had some great sales. I spend $35 and saved $45! I usually don’t have trips like that though, like you I love using coupons but aren’t quite an “extreme couponer”!


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