Coupons zone

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What is Coupon Fraud?

With the increht_doritos_coupon_real_100621_fake_mnase of coupon usage, grocery store chains such as Publix are finding it necessary to provide the cashiers with more training on detecting fraudulent coupons.

With coupon usage almost up by 50 percent at Publix, training cashiers to spot fake coupon is the preferred choice rather than to stop accepting coupons that fall under the high risk categories, such as online printable coupons.

“It costs everyone money,” says Publix spokesperson Shannon Patten, “I mean, it costs Publix money. It costs our manufacturers money.”

Spotting Fake Coupons

Cashiers at Publix are trained to look out for certain industry standards that are not met when accepting coupons such as:

  • Coupons that are far more than the actual price of an item.
  • Coupons without UPC codes.
  • Coupons where a purchase is not required to redeem the coupon.
  • Coupons that do not have conditions of usage in small print.

The Importance of Being a Responsible Coupon User

Couponers have more sources than ever for finding coupons to use on a variety of grocery products, medicines, clothing, restaurants and other services. Coupons can be found on product packages, in newspapers, online, with cell phone applications and in magazines.

There are so many legitimate places to find coupons, coupon clippers should simply not use any coupon that looks questionable. Why? Because stores can only absorb so much of the loss that comes with accepting

 

Blowing the Whistle on Fake Coupons

A good source for finding out which fake coupons are being circulated is to check The Coupon Information Corporation (CIG) which keeps an updated list online of counterfeit coupons. It is also a good source for reporting a coupon that you think could be a fake.

You can also report suspected fraudulent coupons to:

  • Federal Trade Commission
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • Internal Revenue Service
  • U.S. Postal Service: US Postal Inspection Service (USPIS)

What You Shouldn’t Do

What you should not do is confront anyone who you feel is involved in distributing fake coupons or running a coupon scam. Let the authorities deal with it – it’s safer. But do report coupons you see that look questionable by sending the link to where the coupon is posted online, or any other valuable information you have about where you saw or you received a questionable coupon.

Afraid of Getting Someone in Trouble?

The authorities are looking for the big coupon scammers who make a lot of money, not the people like us who could innocently post a fake coupon link. Most responsible coupon users and those who post coupons online to help others find the good deals would want to know if a coupon was a fake.

It is people like us that can help protect this invaluable way of saving money by being alert and by helping curtail the distribution and use of fake coupons.

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Going From Coupon Klutz to Coupon Queen

Grocery Shop Like a Pro

 

Do you cut out coupons and never use them? Do you organize your coupons inside a pocket of your handbag? Do you save coupons on your window sill and find them again months after they have expired? If you answer yes to any of these questions, chances are you are a Coupon Klutz. But do not despair. By making a few changes you can be on the road to becoming the next Coupon Queen.

If you save coupons chances are you have seen articles about the shopper that bought three grocery carts full of food and paid under $50 for it all. Do you ever wonder how those people do it? For one thing, those who accomplish such miraculous coupon success are what we refer to as Coupon Queens and chances are they spend a lot of time perfecting their skills.

If you do not have a bunch of time to devote to couponing, you can still advance your skills by adding just a few strategic steps to your collecting process. Will you have the success that the real Queens have? It is possible!

  • Shop at Stores That Double Coupons

If you do not have a store in your area that doubles coupons it may be worth it to organize a shopping day in a town nearby that does have such a store. Buddy-up with a friend and make the trip together. Two eyes are better than one and your friend may spot a deal that you may miss.

  • Learn To Spot When Generic is Better

Generic food products are made at the same companies that produce many of your favorite brand-name products. The packaging is all that is lacking. By pulling out your calculator and adding up the difference in using your coupon for a brand-name item versus buying generic, you will quickly figure out what direction will save you the most money. Remember, just because you have a coupon does not mean you have to use it. Always use the method that will save you the most.

  • Double-Up Your Savings

Combining your coupon with other promotions going on in the store will save you a bundle. If you have a shopper’s card, look for those items that you have a coupon for that are also discounted with your shopper’s card. Double-up on 2-For sales, such as two cans of soup for a discounted price, plus your coupon. This is also an excellent time to use the coupons that specify that you save only when you buy two of the same product. Always shop with the grocery store printouts of what is on sale so that you don’t miss any of the super buys.

  • Save and Trade

Save all coupons, even those you do not need, and begin trading with friends and relatives. To find others interested in trading in your area, check the classified section of the paper. Also, do not be afraid of proposing the idea to any groups that you belong to or start a group and see if your local library will sponsor meeting times. Meeting one evening every two week’s for a few hours should not be too over demanding for a busy schedule.

There are online groups that you can trade with as you become more comfortable with the concept. A cautionary note – do not pay for coupons. The most you should ever spend to trade coupons is the postage it takes to send it in the mail.

  • Keep It Organized

Keep your coupons organized. Everyone seems to have a slightly different approach to how to accomplish such a task. The best approach is to come up with your own than stick to it. Being consistent in how you file your coupons is the most important piece of the coupon organizational puzzle. If you keep switching your method you risk forgetting where things are when you are pushed for time at the grocery store.

  • Plan Your Menu

Menu planning will help you use the coupons that you have before they go out of date. I have planned many a week’s meals based on what products I have coupons for and the savings is always substantial.

  • Know What Is On Sale

Know what the grocery stores are offering on a weekly basis. Either subscribe to your local paper or pick up the paper on the day that generally offers grocery store inserts. You do not want to miss capitalizing on using coupons on your favorite items that may be on special nor do you want to miss a special triple-coupon promotion. The Sunday paper generally carries food coupons and the Thursday paper will carry grocery store inserts, but check your local paper to make sure those days are the same where you live.

By planning out your weekly menu in advance, setting aside ample time to do the grocery shopping, and keeping your coupons organized so you can get to them quickly, you will be able to maximize your coupon potential and make leaps and bounds down the grocery aisle to becoming a Coupon Queen.

 

Source : http://couponing.about.com/od/rebates/a/storessayno.htm

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How to Coupon Effectively

A Beginner’s Guide to Couponing

 

If you’re interested in couponing, but aren’t sure how to get started, this guide’s for you:

Where to Look for Coupons

There are lots of coupons up for grabs, if you know where to find them. By far, the best places to look are:

  • Newspapers- the Smart Source and Valassis coupon inserts appear on a near-weekly basis. The Procter and Gamble insert appears at the start of each month
  • Magazines- women’s publications such as Woman’s Day, Red Book, Family Circle and Good Housekeeping frequently carry manufacturer coupons
  • In store- look for coupons on store shelves, on products and on the back of your receipts. Also look for coupons to print out at the register

Additional places to look:

  • Online- look to free grocery coupon sites for loads of printable coupons. Not all stores take them; but if yours does, you’re in luck
  • Junk mail- high-value manufacturer coupons have started to appear in junk mailers, so be sure to look before you toss
  • Direct from the manufacturer- check manufacturer websites for printable coupons or contact companies (by mail, e-mail or phone) to request coupons
  • Store mailings- get a frequent shopper card for the grocery stores that you shop, and you may be rewarded with special coupon mailings
  • On products- look in and on the packaging of the products that you buy for special loyalty coupons

How to Keep Coupons Organized

There are lots of ways to organize coupons; the key is to find the approach that works best for you. Three options to consider:

  • Clipping out all coupons
  • Clipping out just the coupons that you intend to use
  • Leaving the coupon inserts intact, and clipping coupons on an “as-needed” basis

Whichever approach you choose, there are several things that you can do to ensure that your coupons remain neat and accessible:

  1. Develop a filing system. Many couponers organize their coupons by grocery category–dairy, frozen foods, deli, etc. – but it’s not the only way to go. Find a filing system that works for you–by aisle, by expiration, etc. – and put it into action.
  2. Find a container to hold your coupons. Use a shoebox, a storage container, a coupon binder, a coupon wallet or a recipe box – it doesn’t matter what you choose – but it’s important to have a landing spot for all of those coupons.
  3. File coupons the same day you get them. Okay, so you may not always have time to file your coupons right away, but try to file them as soon as you can. This will prevent them from getting lost, and save you the hassle of having to sort through a big mess of coupons all at once.
  4. Purge regularly. Expired coupons won’t save you money, so don’t let them hog space in your coupon file. Set a schedule for purging expired coupons, and stick to it.

 

Source :http://couponing.about.com/od/groceryzone/a/finddoublecouponstores.htm

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