Where to Find the Deals

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(This is part five of my couponing series. If you haven’t been following this series, you’ll probably want to start here to get caught up.)

Once you’ve gathered your coupons and organized them, you’re going to want to know where the deals are and how to get them.

Now, here is where we get to the fun part. As I mentioned in my very first post, there are ladies out on the web who gather the ads for grocery and drug stores each week, and then match up coupons that correspond with the items that are on sale.

Today, I’m going to introduce you to a few of my favorites and explain how to use the information they are giving you.

The first thing we need to look at is coupon lingo. If you look at a coupon match-up blog, the first thing you’ll probably think is, “This doesn’t make any sense. What do all these abbreviations mean?”

Well, I’m going to get you started in the right direction by sharing a few of the most common types of abbreviations you’ll see and giving you a couple of examples of how you’ll see some of them written out.

Okay, here is the abbreviations list.

  • SS = Smartsource Newspaper Insert
  • RP = Red Plum Newspaper Insert
  • PG = Proctor & Gamble Newspaper Insert
  • $1/1, $2/3 = One dollar off of one item, Two dollars off three items
  • 2/$3 = Two items for three dollars
  • 1/31, 3/14 = Month and Date of Sunday insert (January 31st, March 14th)
  • BOGO, B1G1 = Buy One, Get One Free
  • B2G1 = Buy Two, Get One Free
  • CRT = Cash Register Tape
  • ECB = Extra Care Bucks (CVS)
  • Exp = Expires
  • IP = Internet Printable
  • MIR = Mail in Rebate
  • MQ = Manufacturer Coupon
  • OOP = Out of Pocket
  • PSA = Prices starting at
  • RR = Register Rewards (Walgreens)
  • SCR = Single Check Rebates (Rite Aid)
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • YMMV = Your mileage may vary (Depends on your store whether they will allow you to do the deal)

If you’d like, you can print this list for future reference. Click here to download the printable version.

Here are three examples of how you might see deals listed on a match-up blog.

Example 1 (Kroger Deal):

Dial Hand Soap 7.5 oz or Irish Spring Soap 3ct at $1
-$1/3 Dial Multibar pks, Hand Soap or Foaming Hand wash RP 3/07
-.35/1 Dial Hand Soap, or Washes RP 3/07

Here’s what it all means:

  • Line One: Dial Hand Soap 7.5 oz or Irish Spring Soap 3 ct is currently on sale for $1 each.
  • Line Two: There is a coupon for one dollar off the purchase of three ($1/3) Dial Multipacks, Hand Soaps, or Foaming Hand Washes. You can find the coupon in the Red Plum (RP) insert that came in the March 7th (3/07) Sunday paper.
  • Line Three: There is also a coupon for .35 cents off one (.35/1) Dial Hand Soap, or Washes in the Red Plum insert from March 7th.

These are both manufacturer coupons, so you would only be able to use one per purchase, or in the case of the first coupon, you would have to purchase three soaps in order to use that coupon.

Example 2 (Walmart Deal):

Pantene Nature Fusion Shampoo & Conditioner, $3
$3/2 Pantene Product, exp. 4-30-10 (PG 03/07/10)
$1.50 ea. wyb 2 after coupon!

Here’s what it all means:

  • Line One: Pantene Nature Fusion Shampoo & Conditioner are currently on sale for $3 each.
  • Line Two: There is a coupon available in the Proctor & Gamble (PG) insert that came in the March 7th (3/07/10) Sunday Paper for three dollars off when you buy two ($3/2) Pantene products. This coupon expires April 30th, 2010 (exp. 4-30-10).
  • Line Three: When you buy (wyb) two of these Pantene products and use the coupon, you will have paid only $1.50 for each.

Example 3 (Target Deal):

Starbucks Coffee 12 oz $7.99
-$1.50 off Starbucks Coffee printable (store coupon)
-$1 off Starbucks Coffee Bag, March All You Magazine

Here’s what it all means:

  • Line One: Starbucks Coffee 12 oz bag is priced at $7.99 each.
  • Line Two: There is a printable coupon for $1.50 off Starbucks coffee. You can click on the link for access to the printable coupon. This coupon is a store coupon (particularly a Target store coupon).
  • Line Three: You can find a manufacturer’s coupon for $1 off a bag of Starbucks coffee in the March edition of All You Magazine.

In this particular case, you can combine, or stack, the store coupon with the manufacturer’s coupon for a total of $2.50 off one 12 oz bag of Starbucks coffee, making the total $5.49 for one.

Keep in mind that even though the blog you’re reading may reference a certain coupon in a particular insert, it is possible that you may not have received that coupon or it may be for a different value because inserts do vary by region.

I hope these examples help make sense of some of the match-up confusion. At first deciphering the lingo on some of the blogs can be a little overwhelming, but soon it becomes second nature. It just takes a little practice. 🙂

Now, I know you’re interested in finding some of these blogs and checking them out to see what kinds of deals you can score.

My Favorite Match-up Blogs

First off, there are many, many blogs on the web that do coupon match-ups and you’ll have to decide which ones you like best and which ones work best for the stores in your area. Since I live in the southeast, I gravitate toward blogs that do match-ups for stores that are located in my area.

I’m going to list a few of my favorites and give you an idea of the store match-ups you can expect to find on each. All these ladies, in addition to store match-ups, alert you to various online samples, new printable coupons, deals and rebate offers.

  • Southern Savers – Jenny does match-ups for pretty much everything in the southeast it seems – Kroger, Publix, Target, Bi-Lo, Food Lion, Harveys, Winn Dixie, Ingles, Harris Teeter, CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid. She’s my all-time favorite.
  • Hip2Save – You will love Collin! In addition to tons of online deal alerts, she does “Follow Me Monday” videos that are fun to watch. You’ll just have to check them out for yourself. Collin does match-ups for Walmart, Target, CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid.
  • Deal Seeking Mom – Tara highlights the best deals for many stores including Aldi, Food Lion, Giant Eagle, Kroger, Meijer, Menards, Target, Walmart, CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid.
  • I Heart Publix – This site is devoted to posting Publix deals. Michelle generally has the ad and coupon match-ups available by Monday evenings. This is great because the ad doesn’t come out until Wednesday or Thursday, depending on the area.
  • I Heart CVS, I Heart Wags, and  I Heart Rite Aid – Michelle also does match-ups for CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens along with early ad previews.
  • I Heart Saving Money – You might have guessed, Michelle also keeps this blog up. Here you’ll find additional deals and offers.
  • Totally Target – Yes, this site is specifically devoted to keeping you up-to-date on the latest price cuts, Target store coupons, clearance finds and weekly ad deals.

Now, as I said, these are just a few of my favorites. If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, I suggest checking out The Grocery Gathering at Becentsable.

Well, I think this should get you started. I’m working on the drug store tutorials on how to take advantage of their awesome rewards programs. Stay tuned!!

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Posted on March 29th, 2010 in Money Matters | No Comments

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