Pros and Cons of Using Coupons
Little Savings Slips
Comparison Shopping Sites
Do you sometimes wonder if it is actually worth the investment of time that clipping and using coupons and comparison shopping takes? If the hours of your day are filled with numerous work and family obligations, you probably think you simply don't have time for coupon clipping and bargain hunting. But, if you divide the task into small increments of time, you may discover clever ways to incorporate coupon clipping and comparison shopping into your routine.
Have you ever considered how much clipping coupons, comparison shopping, and perfecting your frugal shopping skills pays? Just for a few moments consider the following ideas and you might be surprised to discover how much the hourly pay rate can be for practicing frugality.
Shopping with coupons is a popular frugal shopping strategy. It really is a good way to save money. You can begin saving money with coupons simply by devoting a small amount of your time to the process.
During an average week, you will have devoted about two hours to clipping and filing coupons, browsing sale circulars, and creating a shopping list. By using coupons, buying sale items, using store loyalty cards, and possibly taking advantage of rebates, you could save $25, $30, or possibly more on your weekly shopping trip. That translates into an average pay of around $12 to $15 per hour for the time you spent preparing for a frugal shopping adventure. While you won't actually receive cash in hand in that amount, that is money that can remain in the budget and will be available for future use or savings.
I usually shop at local stores where I'm familiar with their sale cycle and can plan my shopping accordingly. However, once in a while, it pays to take advantage of great deals at a different store. Recently, I knew I would be driving through a town with a different grocery store from those I usually shop at. I had acquired a loyalty card while passing by on a previous trip because I knew that at times this store offered great "buy 1, get 1 free," "buy 1 get 2 free," or even some "buy 2 get 3 free" deals. I spent about 30 minutes checking their circular online, going through my coupon file, and making a shopping list. As it turned out, this store had items that I had free product coupons for but couldn't find the product locally. Using coupons and taking advantage of their fantastic "freebies," I bought over $100 worth of groceries, pet food, and household supplies for $54. The return on that 30 minute pre-shopping time invested was great.
Some of my best saving opportunities come from patiently waiting until stores with loyalty cards offer sales on items I have coupons for. For example, I will clip a coupon for $1 off $2.99 breakfast bars, wait for the week they are on sale as BOGO offers with card and end up paying $1 per box. Using the strategy of combining store sales and coupons, I can easily increase my savings per shopping trip.
Not only are coupons helpful to the budget, so is comparison shopping. The time invested in reading customer reviews and comparing prices online for big ticket items can save you a lot of time and money by helping you make good choices.
Considering money saved as payment for time invested in coupon clipping and comparison shopping can give you an entirely new perspective on frugality.
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