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Save Money on Groceries with Curbside Pick-up

save money on groceries with curbside pick up

Unlike other coupon blogs we’ve always preached that coupons alone aren’t enough to help you save money at the grocery store.  You also have to adhere to a budget, and you have to have a game plan every time you shop.  The pandemic, though, threw a monkey wrench in that game plan. But it also showed us how you can save money on groceries with curbside pick-up.

Let’s talk about curbside pickup

Grocery stores offering curbside pick-up is nothing new but have you ever used it?  Have you ever really even thought about it?  I hadn’t.  I never even looked into it because I assumed there was some additional cost involved that would make it more of a luxury, an unnecessary, expensive luxury.

And then one day, shortly after our governor locked us down, I was loading my digital coupons in my Kroger app when I noticed the banner at the top of the page advertising curbside pick-up.  It caught my eye because I had just been in my local store a few days before and noticed that tempers were beginning to flare and I was concerned about fights breaking out over toilet paper.

No additional charge for curbside pickup

So I clicked on that banner and the first thing I noticed was that there was no additional charge for curbside pick-up.  The ad did say that the fee would be $4.99 after the trial period and that you could use curbside pick-up 5 times before that charge kicked in.  However, I’ve used it 7 or 8 times now and Kroger says they don’t think they’ll ever put that charge into effect after seeing how successful the program is.

You can use coupons on your curbside order

Yes, you can use coupons on your curbside pick-up order.  You are not charged for your groceries until you pick them up.  When you arrive in the parking lot they ask you if you have coupons.  If you do, they’ll come out and get them and deduct them from your total before you’re charged.

Your order is also connected to your Kroger card (or whatever store you’re shopping at) so any digital coupons on your card will also be deducted before you’re charged.  So don’t forget to load those digital coupons!

You can change your curbside order

I usually start my online order 2 or 3 days before I plan to pick it up.  This gives me time to delete that bag of flour because I just found 2 bags in the pantry.  Or I can add butter and chocolate chips to my cart when our chocolate chip cookie stash runs low.

You can schedule your pick-up any time

This is one feature of curbside pick-up that’s really helped save me a bunch of money.  You choose what day and time you want to pick up your groceries and you can change your order any time up until midnight of the day before you’re picking up.  I keep tweaking that total right up to the last minute!

The Best Reason to Use Curbside Pick-up

Now that we have all the little details out of the way, the best reason to use curbside pick-up is that it allows you to manage your budget.  In fact, I usually come in under budget when all is said and done.

As you add or delete items in your cart you can see your total.  That total, though, is based on the advertised price of the item, not the price after your digital coupons are deducted.  And it also doesn’t include deductions for any physical coupons you plan to use.

I watch that total while I’m adding items to my cart.  When that total equals the amount of money I have budgeted for that shopping trip I know it’s time to take a good look at the items in my cart and start whittling out the impulse items to make room for necessities.

Once I’ve moved items in and out of my cart to hit that budget number I usually end up spending less than my budget because physical and digital coupons don’t come off your total until you pick-up your groceries.  It’s like a little bonus!

Shopping online allows you to plan

Now, think about it.  When you go over your budget at the grocery store it’s usually because you’ve picked up a few extra items that weren’t on your list.  Those are ‘impulse items’.  Spending on those impulse items is what puts you over your budget or prevents you from being able to purchase the things you really need.

But who has time, in the middle of a busy grocery store, to take everything out of the cart and sort out what’s necessary and what’s not?  And more important, who has time to do all that calculating and re-calculating?

We’ve always said that coupons alone will only help you save so much money at the grocery store.  Planning and budgeting will up your game to the next level  When you shop online for curbside pick-up you have all the time you need to look at each item and decide if you really need it.  How will it work in your weekly meal plan and your weekly budget?  If one menu item is too expensive this week and it’s throwing off your budget, you have time to shop for a replacement.

Curbside Pick-up After COVID-19

Obviously, curbside pick-up is a great idea during this pandemic.  You don’t have to go into the store and you’re maintaining social distancing.  But I’ve found it to be such a great way to manage my budget that I’ve continued to use it even though most restrictions have been lifted here.

It’s also saved me a huge amount of time I used to spend strolling up and down aisles, looking for the best bargains.   As a bonus – somebody loads all the groceries into your car for you.  I actually have time AND energy left after grocery day!

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Jessica's Kroger Mega Event Haul 11/8/2014

  Jessicas Kroger Haul Earlier this year all the Kroger stores in our area decided to stop doubling coupons so Jessica and I did what any other couponers would do – we started shopping somewhere else. We have Giant Eagle stores here in Columbus and they not only double coupons, they welcome couponers with open arms. Now, Giant Eagle stores are nice and the employees are all wonderfully helpful, but they’re sometimes lacking in variety. But, instead of crossing the threshold of that traitorous Kroger store we usually decided to do without. We rationalized that we were saving even more money at Giant Eagle because they still double coupons and the few items they were lacking really didn’t make that much of a difference. But then we thought to ourselves, “Most of our customers have to shop at store where they no longer double coupons. What kind of couponers are we, anyway, if we’re relying on double coupons to make a good haul?” So, with the Kroger Mega Event fast approaching, Jessica started putting together one of her famous Kroger Hauls. This Kroger Mega Event is one of the Buy 10 Save $5 Instantly events. Buy any combination of 10 participating items and you save $5. You can buy as many as you like as long as you buy in multiples of 10. And what really kicked off this major Kroger Haul was that $.35/1 Pillsbury Baking Mixes and Frostings coupon. With the Mega Event pricing and the coupon we knew we could get these for just $.14. BUT… there were a couple of glitches: Kroger only allows 5 like coupons in a single transaction. That meant that we could only get 5 cake mixes in one transaction BUT if we wanted to get the Mega Event pricing we had to buy 5 other participating items. And, if we wanted to buy 20 cake mixes (which we did) we’d have to come up with 4 separate transactions that each included 5 cake mixes and 5 of some other participating item for which we also had a coupon. Whew! But we did it. And we got $351.78 worth of groceries for only $142.89. We saved $208.89 and nary a coupon was doubled. This Kroger Mega Event runs through 11/18/2014. Check out our haul, grab your coupons and head for your nearest Kroger!    

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How to Save More Money With Coupons – Let's Talk!

Would you be surprised to learn that 43% of American shoppers are happy to save 25% or less at the grocery store? We were, and our first thoughts were, “Good lord! Somebody needs to talk to these people!” And you know what? If you want to save more than 25% on your grocers – a LOT more – that’s exactly what you need to do – Talk about it! It’s not a typo. That 43% number is an official statistic published by RetailMeNot, the largest digital coupon site in the U.S. According to their polls, 92% of American consumers use coupons, yet a whopping 43% of those coupon users are happy when they save 43% or less on their coupon purchases. How to save money with couponsWe wondered why so many would be happy saving so little and suddenly it came to us: Most people don’t really understand how to use coupons. They clip a few here, clip a few there, but they’re not really into it. If they trip over a coupon they can use, yay! If not, they don’t even think about the possibility that there might be a coupon out there somewhere that would save them some money. And yeah, they’re happy that their efforts were rewarded with a $5 savings at the check-out stand, but they’d be just as happy if they only saved $3, and if they saved nothing at all they wouldn’t even notice. Let’s face it, it takes a lot of time and energy to really save money with coupons. It’s an expenditure that most people aren’t willing to make. Everybody’s busy with work and kids and life in general so you really have to be committed to couponing if you want to see more than a 25% savings.

And what’s the best way to stay committed to a goal? Talk about it!

Think about it. When you’re trying to lose weight or stop smoking the first thing the experts tell you to do is tell everybody you’re on a diet or you’ve smoked your last cigarette. Telling everyone around you that you’re trying to achieve some specific goal accomplishes two things:

  • Everyone around you joins in to support your efforts
  • You work even harder because you’d feel like an idiot if you didn’t achieve your goal

So what’s the best way to join the 57% of Americans who are saving 60, 70 and 80% a week – every week – at the grocery store? Talk about it!  Tell your friends and family members how much you saved at the grocery store this week with coupons – even if it was only $5. Take some of those free cookies you got last week into the office and pass ’em around. Won’t you be surprised when one of your co-workers pipes up and says, “I saved $100 with coupons last week. I’ve been using coupons for years. Let’s get together and start a coupon club!” Your Aunt Mary will offer to give you her Sunday coupon inserts. Your mother might chime in with some shopping tips. And your neighbor, who’s also secretly been couponing for years, might offer to be your shopping buddy so you can both bring home bigger and better stockpile hauls. When you start talking about couponing you’ll be even more motivated to see just how much you can save with coupons because everyone around you will be boosting your excitement. It won’t take long before you’ll wonder why you were ever one of the 43% who were happy to just save 25% or less.

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Are You Making This Huge Mistake With Your Coupons?

Be PreparedEvery day we clip thousands of coupons and we see so many people making the same mistake, over and over again. We know exactly what you’re doing because we used to do it, too. Every Sunday morning Mary sits down with the ads from her Sunday paper and plans out her weekly shopping list. She then turns to her favorite coupon clipping service – The Happy Couponer – and orders up 2 coupons for this and 2 coupons for that, may 3 of this one and oh wait, I only need 1 of those this week… Before she clicks the Paypal button, Mary leaves us a little note in her shopping cart:

Please, please PLEASE ship my coupons today. My ad expires on Wednesday!

But Mary must have forgotten that we don’t ship coupons on Sunday.  The Post Office isn’t open on Sunday therefore we couldn’t ship her coupons on Sunday even if we wanted to.  She’ll have to wait until Monday and that means she might not get her coupons in time to hit that big sale. [box type=”info” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Mary could save herself so much stress and worry if she’d only plan ahead and order her coupons when they first become available instead of waiting until the products go on sale.[/box] In every household there are certain items you purchase on a regular basis. Whether you shop weekly or shop to build a stockpile, it only makes sense to always have coupons on hand for these staples. You never know when you’re going to trip over a great sale, and even if the product isn’t on sale you’ll still save money when you use the coupon. It’s also safe to assume that almost every product you have a coupon for will go on sale before that coupon expires. So if you’re thinking, “Wow! That’s a great coupon, but I’m not going to waste money ordering it right now. What if XYZ product doesn’t go on sale?” then you’re thinking wrong. It’s almost a sure thing that it will go on sale and you’ll miss out on the deal because you waited too long to order your coupons. But even if XYZ product doesn’t go on sale before the coupon expires, you’re going to need to buy it anyway. It might have cost you a few cents to order that coupon, but having it handy when you need it will save you a few bucks. Plan Ahead and Be Prepared! [box type=”tick” border=”full”]If you see a coupon for a product you know you’re going to need to buy sometime before the coupon expires, order it now and put it in your binder.[/box] [box type=”tick” border=”full”]Almost every product in the store goes on sale 4-6 times a year. Order enough coupons to meet your needs until the next sale.[/box]  

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How do I find out about grocery store deals in my city?

Dog on GoogleAt least once a week we think, “Man! Wouldn’t it be great to live in XYZ City? Their grocery store is having a Triple Coupon Event this week!” We try to alert you when we see these announcements but there’s no way we can keep up with every sale in every grocery store in the country. But you can. Here’s how! Use Google to Find the Best Bloggers There are thousands of bloggers all over the country who cover grocery store, pharmacy and department store deals. Some also cover online shopping deals, freebie offers, giveaways, and frugal living advice. Somewhere out there is a blogger who covers exactly what you’re looking for, you just need to find her. And that’s where Google comes in. Just go to your Google search bar and type in whatever it is you’re looking for. If you’re looking for deals at a specific store, go to your Google search bar and type: Name of store, followed by the word “deals” followed by your city or state. For example, “Target deals Columbus Ohio” If you’re looking for deals on a certain product, type in the name of the product, the word “deal” or “sale” the name of your city or state. The general date also helps narrow down your search. For example, “Pampers deals Columbus Ohio 1/5/2014” In most cases the first few listings you’ll see will be store or manufacturer listings. Scroll down the page though and even go to the second or third page, and you’ll start seeing all the different blogs pop up. Don’t stop at the first blog you see – check out three or four or five. Read some of the posts, bookmark them and come back a few times, heck – subscribe to their newsletters and see just how informed they really are. Before you know it you’ll have all the information you need to shop and save money at any store in your marketing area.

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You don’t need coupons to start saving money at the grocery store

If you’ve been clipping your little heart out, don’t worry. We’re not going to tell you you’re wasting time. But if you’re hestitant about using coupons – and many people are – we’re going to tell you how you can start saving money without all that clipping and sorting. And once you do – you’ll happily jump into couponing with both feet!

Now, prepare yourself. Don’t reach for that mouse so you can click away. But…

The secret word is: Budget.

Here’s what you’re doing wrong

We know. You’ve been putting off couponing because you think it’s going to take a lot of time and effort, and in the beginning it does. But we’re not here to talk about couponing (yet…) Let’s talk about one easy little step you can take to start saving money.

Way back before we started couponing we’d just go to the grocery store every week and pick up whatever we needed. Most weeks we spent around $200 – sometimes more, sometimes less, depending on what was on sale and what caught our eye that week. But we never actually set out on our shopping trip with the thought: This week we’re only going to spend $200.

But shopping like that inevitably causes two problems:

  • You have a week every month or so where you only have $100 bucks to spend at the grocery store so you have to cut back to balonga sandwiches and meatloaf.
  • You and your family feel deprived because you couldn’t buy everything you wanted that week.

When that happens, you tell yourself “I’m going to set up a budget so this never happens again” – and we all know how well that works. The next week, when you have money again, you go right back to your same old shopping habits and forget all about that lousy week they just had, living on mac & cheese and ramen noodles.

Start small and take baby steps

The mistake most people make with budgeting is that they try to reach their goal in one giant step. It’s like trying to lose weight. If you tell yourself you’re going to lose 50 pounds this month you’re only setting yourself up for failure.

The best way to achieve any goal is to break it down into small, manageable, bite-size pieces.

This week, when you go to the grocery store, give yourself a strict spending limit and make it small, so it’s hardly noticeable. For example, if you typically spend around $200, tell yourself you’re only going to spend $195 – period. Not around $195, but $195 exactly – no more.

It’s easy to reduce your grocery spending by 5 bucks without feeling the pinch when you open the cupboard. You skip one package of cookies and give the kids a banana instead. You take a pass on that top-shelf pasta sauce that makes you feel like a gourmet chef and reach for the Prego or Ragu instead. Anyone can shave $5 without blinking an eye.

Now saving $5 this week may not seem like much but here’s what happens:

  • You gain a sense of achievement
  • You realize that it’s possible to set a goal and reach it
  • You start wondering how much more you could save now that you see how easy it is

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time

Right now reducing your grocery spending looks like a huge task. That’s why it’s important to start small and get some wins under your belt. If you typically spend around $200 a week, tell yourself this week you’re only going to spend $200 – period. Next week limit yourself to just $195. The week after that set your limit at $190.

Eventually, though, unless you change some habits, you’re going to reach a point where you do feel like you’re depriving yourself and your family. But by the time that happens you’re going to be hooked. You’re going to start looking for ways you can still provide the same tasty meals, treats and snacks and still keep decreasing your spending.

When you reach that point, come back here and we’ll tell you how to start using coupons!

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How to Stop Saving Money and Start Reducing Your Spending

save-money-with-couponsTake a close look at your grocery spending over the last two or three months. Are you spending lots of time and energy clipping coupons so you can “save money” but still spending the same amount at the grocery store every week? If so, then you’re doing something wrong. There’s no question about it – Yes, you can save money when you use coupons. But what are you doing with the money you save? There’s a big difference between “saving money” and “reducing your spending.” Are you really saving it or are you just spending it on more stuff?

What it means to “Save”

You walk into the grocery store and pick up a box of cake mix that costs $1.25. You hand the cashier a coupon for 25 cents off and you pay only $1. That means you spent 25 cents less, but it doesn’t actually mean you “saved” 25 cents. The definition of “save” is, “To keep and store for future use” and this is where a lot of couponers make a big mistake…

They’re dazzled by the word “Save”

How many times have you seen a sign that says, “You SAVE $.25!” and thought to yourself, “Wow! If I buy 10 of these cake mixes I’ll save $2.50!” But you really won’t “save” anything. In fact, you’re probably spending money you didn’t plan on spending simply because you think you’re “saving.” You may even be buying something you don’t need just to “save” a few bucks, or after you’ve “saved” that $2.50 you turn around and spend it on something else you never planned to buy. So you never really saved $2.50 at all.

That $2.50 you saved is only imaginary money unless you can put it in your real wallet to keep for future use.

What it means to “Reduce Your Spending”

Over the last 8 months we’ve actually reduced our grocery spending by 60 percent – every week. That means we no longer spend $150-$200 every week at the grocery store. In fact, some weeks we don’t even go to the grocery store. Now, when we average it out, we’re spending $60-$70 a week. We’re not just saving money, we’ve actually reduced our spending every week. 

How to Stop Saving Money and Start Reducing Your Spending

Set a Budget for Groceries

When we first started couponing we’d come home with bags and bags of groceries. As our stockpile grew we’d pat each other on the back and shout, “Look how much we got and look how much we saved!” It was only at the end of the month, when the bills started rolling in, that we realized we’d spent a lot of money just so we could see a big number in the “Savings” column on our grocery receipts. Now, we set a limit on our weekly spending. Before we head to the store we know how much we’re going to spend and exactly what we’re going to spend it on. The key here is to stop thinking that you’re going to “save money” when you use coupons and start thinking that you’re going to “get more for the money you spend” when you use coupons. And as you gain experience your money will go even further.

Shop with a List

Before we head to the store we create a detailed shopping list. Our list includes:

  • The items we’re going to buy with coupons
  • The number of each item we’re going to buy with coupons
  • The items we’re going to buy without coupons

When we create this list we have our store’s ad in front of us, along with all of our coupons so we can calculate the exact cost of everything as we go. Then, we juggle our needs, the items on our list and the number of each item until everything we want to buy fits within our budget.

Know your prices

Stores and manufacturers know they’re going to get your attention with those big, bold SAVE! signs. They know the only thing you’re going to look at is how much you save. But you need to look at how much you’re going to have to spend. If you spend $2 for a bottle of dish detergent because the sign says you’re saving $.50 and you can get that same detergent at another store for the regular price of $1, then how much have you really saved? Nothing. In fact, you’ve spent $1 more than you need to. Know the regular prices for the staple items you buy on a regular basis so you know if you’re really “saving money.”

Know Your Needs

When you see a sweet deal on toilet paper you’re tempted to pick up enough to last for a year – and that’s great. By all means – do it! BUT… Remember, it doesn’t matter how much you save. What matters most is how much you spend.  Do you need to buy a year’s worth right this minute: Every product goes on sale 3 or 4 times a year. Maybe you only really need enough to last until the next big sale. Do you have room in the budget: If you’re over-spending when you take advantage of these great deals then you’re going to need to cut back somewhere else. Otherwise you’re not really reducing your spending at all. Can you make room in the budget: We talk a lot about learning how to Think Outside the Box here at The Happy Couponer. If you want to take advantage of that great deal, take a look at your list and see where you can make some changes. For example, when we had the opportunity to pick up Betty Crocker cake mixes for 25 cents each we jumped on it with both feet . We picked up 30 cake mixes that week because we knew we could use them to make cookies, donuts and other desserts – things we could now remove from our shopping list because we got such a great deal on the cake mixes. Now, instead of spending $4 for a package of donuts, we just open up one of our 25 cent cake mixes and make our own donuts. If your goal is to reduce the amount of money you spend at the grocery store then it only makes sense to focus on how much you’re spending – NOT how much you’re saving.

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10 Simple Steps to Writing the Ultimate Coupon Shopping List

10 Simple Steps to Writing the Ultimate Coupon Shopping ListIn our guest blog post at last week, Jessica explained the importance of making two shopping lists – one for your stockpile coupon items and one for your “regular” and non-coupon purchases. Since that article was published we’ve been flooded with email, all saying the same thing: It makes sense, but HOW do you do it? So today, we’re gonna break it down into 10 easy steps. This example we’re using is an actual list we used just a few weeks ago.  We didn’t make up products and coupon values just so we’d have something to show you.  So yeah, this works. Of course, our real first step is always to study the ads and do the coupon matchups, but doesn’t everybody already do that?  So let’s get right to the actual shopping lists! Colgate toothpaste – On sale 10/$10 (Free with coupon) Coupon – $.50/1 any Colgate Toothpaste (3.5 oz or larger, excludes 1.8 oz, 2.8 oz bonus, .75 oz and .85 oz trial)(3/8/2014) – Doubles to $1 Want to purchase: 24 Manufacturer limitations: Only 4 like coupons per transaction Store limitations: Must by multiples of 10 qualifying items to get the sale price – Limit of 5 like coupons per transaction First, we look at how many we want to purchase. In this case it’s 24. We based this number on our household usage.  Because the manufacturer limits us to 4 like coupons per transaction, that means we’re going to have to perform 6 transactions to get the full 24 tubes of toothpaste.

Step #1: Set up six individual shopping lists and put 4 tubes of toothpaste on each one.

(Remember: We need to buy 10 participating 10/$10 items to get that sale price, so we’re going to need to add 6 more participating items to each transaction.) Maruchan noodles – regular price $.99 (Free with coupon) Want to purchase: 25 Coupon: $.50/1 Maruchan Noodles – Doubles to $1 Manufacturer limitations: None Store limitations: Only 5 like coupons per transaction We want to buy 25 of the Maruchans and we can only use 5 like coupons per transaction.

Step #2: Add 5 Maruchan noodles to the first 5 transactions.

Skinny Cow Candy – Buy 3 get a Catalina coupon for $3 off your next purchase (Avg. price: $3 each) Coupon:  $1/1 box Skinny Cow Candy (4.65-6 oz) Want to purchase: 18 Manufacturer limitations: None Store limitations: Only 5 like coupons per transaction We could buy 5 boxes in each transaction but we get that Catalina coupon every time we buy 3. We want to buy in multiples of 3 so we get that Catalina coupon and we’re going to use those coupons to help pay for our final transaction. Note: We already know we’re going to end up with $18 in Catalina coupons to help pay for our final transaction. Yayyyy!

Step #3: Put 3 boxes of Skinny Cow Candy on each of the six shopping lists.

Hungry Jack Hash Brown Potatoes – On sale 10/$10 (Free with coupon) Coupon: $.50/1 any Hungry Jack Hasbrown Potatoes – Doubles to $1 Want to purchase: ??? (We don’t really care because they’re free!) Manufacturer limitations: None Store limitations: Only 5 like coupons per transaction We still need 6 items in the 10/$10 sale in each of our 6 transactions, but we can only use 5 like coupons per transaction.

Step #4: Add 5 Hungry Jack Hashbrowns to each of our 6 transactions for a total of 30 boxes.

Remember: We need to buy 10 participating 10/$10 items to get that sale price. We have 4 toothpastes and 5 hashbrowns, so we’re still going to need to add 1 more participating items to each transaction.

Step #5: Choose that 10th item carefully.

To take advantage of the 10/$10 pricing you only need one more item. Either add one participating non-coupon item from your “regular” shopping list, or choose an item that you don’t have to buy 2 or 3 of in order to get the coupon savings. Bird’s Eye Recipe Ready Frozen Vegetables – On sale Buy 6 Save $3 for total of $1.49 each (Free with coupon) Coupon: $.75/1 Bird’s Eye Recipe Ready Frozen Vegetables – Doubles to $1.50 Want to purchase: 30 Manufacturer limitations: None Store limitations: Must buy multiples of 6 qualifying items to get the sale price – Limit of 5 like coupons per transaction We want 30 and we can only use 5 like coupons in a transaction, so this one’s easy.

Step #6: Add 5 bags of Bird’s Eye Vegetables to each of our 6 transactions.

However, we still need to add one more item that’s included in the Buy 6 Save $3 deal or we don’t get these free. Sooooo… Dole Fruit Smoothie Shakers – On sale Buy 6 Save $3 for totoal of $1.50 each ($.50 with coupon) Coupon: $.50/1 any Dole Smoothie Shaker  – Doubles to $1 Manufacturer limitations: Only 4 like coupons per transaction Store limitations: Must buy multiples of 6 qualifying items to get the sale price – Limit of 5 like coupons per transaction We’re just buying these to make up that 6th item in each transaction. They’re only $.50 with our coupon and we like ’em, so this works for us.

Step #7: Add 1 Dole Fruit Smoothie Shaker to each of our 6 transactions.

Step #8: Make your “regular” shopping list

Label this list Transaction #7. This list is all your non-coupon items, like fresh meat, fresh produce, fresh baked goods, etc. It also includes those items you only buy once or twice a year – like spices, or some of those heavy duty cleaning supplies – or holiday items or new products you want to try. You’ll be surprised at how small this list becomes after just a couple of months of savvy “stockpile” shopping!

Right now, your shopping lists should look like this:

How to Make Your Coupon Shopping List

Step #9: Organize your coupons

Before you even leave the house, separate your coupons and use a paper clip to attach them to each transaction. You’ve already planned out exactly how many of each item you’re going to buy, so sort your coupons at home where you don’t have any distractions. To help organize your coupons and make your shopping trip a real breeze, check out Jessica’s Kroger Haul Video for one of her Secret Shopping Tips.

Step #10: Checkout time!

Pay for your first 6 transactions first. If you’ve done your homework, you should already be able to tell how much this is going to cost. In our case, we knew each transaction would cost approximately $9 for the Skinny Cow Candy, $.50 for the Dole Fruit Smoothie Shaker and approximately $1 for the extra item we had to buy to make up the 10 items for the 10/$10 sale. That’s a total of $10.50 for each of the first 6 transactions. Don’t forget, we also got a $3 Catalina coupon from each of those transactions, for a total of $18. Now pay for Transaction #7 and use those Catalina Coupons. Depending on how much you spend for this transaction you could conceivable walk out of the store with two carts full of groceries for $66! At the very least, when you add all your receipts together, you’ll finally see that huge savings percentage like those extreme couponers get on TV.