Thursday, May 14, 2009

Coupons 101: Lesson 1 --Finding Coupons

So my blog was mentioned by the lovely Alicia
Sweet Nothings

She listed me as a resource for information about coupons. So I figured I better not let her down and get started with the coupon lessons I promised. Over the next month or so I will share my secrets and tips on couponing.

How it began...

When I lived in Arizona, I attended an enrichment night at church where a good friend of mine taught about couponing. I remember leaving that class, thinking it just sounds like a lot of work that I don't have time for. As the week went on I kept thinking.. hmmm maybe I should try. I did not want to invest any money into it. I wasn't getting the paper and didn't really want to, as I wasn't sure how this coupon thing was going to go. So I decided to try freecycle.

I put out a want for Sunday coupons. I asked if there was anyone in my area that would be willing to let me pick up their Sunday coupons every week. I got a few bites, including my dear friend Rita, who in the end helped me take my couponing to an insane level (best result spent $11.57 saved $110.68)... but before I get way ahead of myself,

today's lesson is: Where to find coupons
  1. Local newspaper--if you already get the Sunday paper start saving those coupons. There are some papers, such as the Arizona Republic where you can get deals to get multiple Sunday papers for a great price.** You can always sign up for just Sunday's paper
  2. Free newspapers around town--example, La Voz, Hispanic free paper in AZ (outside of Food 4 less) has coupons in it on Thursdays usually
  3. site with printable grocery coupons
  4. Specific food company sites:,, (sign up for these sites for great member only coupons)
  5. to load coupons on to your Store shoppers card
  6. Neighbors, friends, or (my current city for freecycle has policies about not asking for coupons but most don't)
  7. Grocery stores recipe/advertising booklets at front of stores
  8. Dumpsters-especially recycling ones (might get in trouble for this one though--so look at your own risk)
Something I have learned is that not all newspapers are created equal when it comes to what coupons are available. The Arizona Tribune and Arizona Republic would both have the Red Plum and Smart Source coupon inserts, however, the ones in the Tribune were different and have only about half of what the Republic has.

So to check out what paper in your area has coupons available check this page here.

So start getting your coupons, in our next lesson I will teach you how to know where to use them. I know lots of great sites that make the work so easy and all free.

Alternative Name
For lessons on coupons click the pig!

**If you live in AZ, join Pinching Your Pennies, then you will be able to access the page which gives you a great discount on multiple copies of the Sunday Arizona Republic


  1. Last week I only used two, but the deals were good just the same. Rice-A-Roni on sale at Stater Bros 5 for $5 if you bought five. And a coupon for a $1 off if you bought 3...I think it worked out to 80 cents each. The other was $1.20 off Bisquick. Works for me.

  2. Oh, I collect the coupons; I've got a whole drawer filled with them. Now I've just got to learn how to use them.

  3. Emmy, this is Great! I never thought to try freecycle for sunday paper coupons! I am too "cheap" to buy the Sunday paper... I'm going to try this!! Thanks!!