A smart coupon strategy cuts bills

Published 9:18 pm Tuesday, September 11, 2012

By Dana Zeliff

Hampton Roads is a wonderful place for coupon users to live. Stores know that by offering coupon events they can get shoppers in the door. The biggest money-saving event is Super Doubles, when coupons up to and including $2 are doubled, meaning your $2 coupon is worth $4.

Two local grocery stores, Farm Fresh and Harris Teeter, offer coupon events every four to six weeks. If one store holds a coupon event, you can bet the other store’s announcement is just days away. Stores increase sales, and shoppers walk away with amazing bargains.

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But it might surprise you to learn that walking into the store with a coupon stack is not the best way to shop.

You can maximize your savings with these eight tips:

  • Check blogs to find the best deals for your shopping list. Someone has spent hours researching every sale, the coupons that go with it and the final price. There is no need for you to do the work again.
  • Make a shopping list, and organize your coupons before your trip.
  • Shop early. The sales start typically start by 7 a.m., so you could shop before work if you’re an early riser. This way you are sure to get everything you want.
  • Grab free items first. When entering the store, head straight to the best deals. Free products always go quickly.
  • After you load your cart with free items, purchase items with the lowest in-store stock. Products with low quantities can be cleared out in a hurry by just a few shoppers.
  • Get a VIC card for Harris Teeter and register it on their website for e-VIC. You will need to scan your loyalty card or provide your phone number for the coupons to double at check out. Farm Fresh does not have a shoppers’ card.
  • Know the store’s coupon policy. Harris Teeter and Farm Fresh both limit customers to 20 coupons doubled per day. Harris Teeter has a limit of three like coupons, with two like printable coupons. Farm Fresh has a limit of two like coupons per transaction.
  • Be respectful of other shoppers. Consider letting other shoppers check out ahead of you, and either limit your quantities in each store or special order. We all have a common goal — saving our family money.

Now that you know how to make the most out of Coupon Events, get ready, because Harris Teeter Super Doubles starts today.


Dana Zeliff lives in Chesapeake and writes a blog full of money-saving tips, coupons and advice. Visit her blog at www.thecouponchallenge.com.