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Oh Wait!!! Are you done with that paper???

August 28th, 2007 at 01:01 am

I think sometimes people must think I'm crazy. I have shaken off any sense of notions about being shy or timid when it comes to asking people for their newspaper.

It's not that I can't buy a newspaper of my own - quite the contrary, we get one delivered daily to the house.

It's not that I can't get a copy from a co-worker, family member, or a neighbor. In fact, they are all quite pre-disposed to handing over the paper (albeit, minus the funny pages, jumbles, and crossword puzzles)!!!

But the strangers in the Starbucks, McDonald's Playplace, a hotel lobby or airport when we travel, or pretty much anywhere, is always a little taken aback with my request. And if there are two people together reading their own papers (like at a cafe on a Sunday morning) then they are even more shocked.

But there's glossy gold in those papers in the form of valuable coupons and offers.

Last week, my paper had free canned dog food coupons. My pooch, who normally gets dry dogfood, loves the paperboy for bringing him this delightful treat.

My favorite deals this week are going to combine coupons from the beginning of August ($1 off 1 Ball Park hotdogs) with an instore ad from this week (2 for $3 - (2) $1/1 coupons = 2pks for $1 + $2free on your next purchase of ANYTHING!!!). And with our little clippable double coupons, the hotdogs are free - the catalina register coupon for $2 on my next purchase is bonus money.

How many papers did I scrounge up for those coupons? Enough that if I can do the deal multiple times this week, I wind up making $40 in the on my next purchase coupon (cash) from the register.

I'll use that money for milk, protein items, and produce that I either don't have a coupon for, or that I can combine with coupons for an even better deal.

I have to admit, I almost thought I was a little nuts about asking people for their papers when I started doing it a few years back. I got my Mother-in-law to take up a coupon collection from her entire neighborhood on my behalf. I think her neighbors think we're poor as church mice....little do they know that their Friday recycle is my next trip to Hawaii. And the let the money slip right through their fingers and into mine.

August has been a good month for savings. Between reading the ads for all the back-to-school loss leaders (.25c color pencils at office depot is the next deal to chase!) and the scorching hot deals that have been rolling through the catalina machines, it's been a month to pocket money. Even better are the super high profit rebates like Kelloggs cereal - buy 10 items, get $10 back - but buy the items for free or little cost with coupons. I should net $20 from those rebates alone this month. The rebate forms were of course, in the paper.

Then the office supply deal where the items were Free After Rebate - like 3M's post-it flags highlighter pens. $5.99 - .90 for buying a backpack and getting an extra 15% off - $2 off any post-it product (a printable coupon I believe was posted on our website) = $3.09 for a 2pk of highlighter pens with post-it flags. Net profit to me - $2.90 + free pens.

This month was also a good month for donations. Our local foodbank struggles in the summer time, so with all my extra free coupons and coupons that yielded me free items because the sales were aligned the right way, our foodbank scored on hygiene items, food items and snacks for kids - about $500 in all if you added up the retail value.

The point is, there is so much you can do with coupons and shopping smartly. But it starts with having a stock of coupons and to do that, you need to get a little more social with strangers and simply ask, "Are you done with that paper?" Inevitably, they do hand over the parts I'd like out of the ad section, and I am on my way to saving more at the store.

It never hurts to ask if it will gain you more coupon inventory - the worst they can say is no!

Happy Shopping!!!

5 Responses to “Oh Wait!!! Are you done with that paper???”

  1. fern Says:

    When you have multiple coupons for one item like that, can you use them all in one visit?

  2. HOTCOUPONWORLD Says:

    Fern,

    If your store doesn't impose limits, then yes, you should be fine. Usually a store's ad will specifically mention that there is a limit. If there is, I tend to make smaller trips more often between more stores. But if there's not, I will use as many as I can without being a pest about it.

    GUM Toothbrushes were $10/10 last week and I had 69 coupons when all was said and done. I knew I wasn't going to get them used, so I passed them onto the local foodbank and explained to them how to do it. They were going to divide the coupons amongst a handful of themselves and hit multiple stores and restock the pantry with a hard-to-get item.

    I wouldn't have had a problem using between 20-30 at one store as the stores around here are pretty coupon-friendly.

    Best key is to ask your store manager or director if the store has a policy on coupon limits. When all is said and done, the coupons help them turn inventory, and they do get reimbursed the face value + .08c per coupon, so they are usually pretty good about redeeming them for you.

    Hope that helps!

  3. miclason Says:

    lol! the few coupons that you see in ES always have this legend (or something very similar): "valid on regular-priced items only. One coupon per purchase (or per person). Not valid with any other sale or promotion. No refunds, no returns. Coupon has no monetary value."

  4. LuckyRobin Says:

    The last two times I've gone to Freddy's I've gotten my best coupons ever, $3 off on Organic Valley milk if I buy 2 half gallons. This brings the price on a gallon of organic milk down to $3.58. The cheapest I can get a gallon is $5 and with how regular milk prices are running I actually got a gallon of organic milk for less than a gallon regular milk. I've gotten them twice and I love getting them printed out at checkout.

  5. Amorphous Says:

    Ditto on the crayons.
    Thank you so much for your post.

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