There is a lot of hype right now about extreme couponing. We have all heard the tales about the woman who got a cart of groceries for only $5. Yeah, in a perfect world we would all have that luck. Now living in an area where my supermarket choices are pretty limited, I will admit I more often than not end up at Walmart or Sam's club to do my grocery shopping. I also don't use coupons mainly because Sam's won't take them and Walmart usually has a cheaper generic.
Really it has been my experience that the store generic item can taste just as good as the brand name. Thanks to the wonderful late Mrs B who taught me 5th grade grocery store math, I am also able to determine looking at the labels on the supermarket shelf which is a better buy: 2 of the smaller items or the larger item (most of the time it is buying the 2 smaller items, bigger does not always mean you are getting the best price). When you look at the shelf label check out what the price per ounce is for the two items. Sometimes it is only a difference of about .02, but all those pennies add up.
So what do you do if there is a brand name item that you really want or need (like Chocolate Cheerios which is really a bit of both. Mmmm...chocolate)? This is where coupons come in handy. The Sunday paper is the best place to look for coupon inserts on brand-name items. Store or product web sites can also be a great place to find coupons since many stores are now accepting print at home coupons. Be sure to check out the stores policy.
You have to love Walmart because they are really competitive for your business. Competitiveness is good for the consumer. You may have seen those "Match It!" commercials, well, it's true.
Not only will they price match, but they will also accept coupons from other stores as long as they follow the following criteria:
Perhaps you don't have time to scan all those ads and websites to find the deals. This is where wonderful sites like SavingsAngel come in very handy. This site costs about $20 a month or $7.99 for a day pass. I was able to get a free 10 day trial to test the site out and I am kicking myself that I had just finished my shopping for the next two weeks because the site it just that awesome. You can choose among major chains to check out their sales for that week and the site will match it up with available coupons for even more savings (in some cases you do need to have those Sunday circulars as the coupons are not always available for direct download). You just click to add items to your grocery list and it will divide that list up by store.
Remember when scouting out the best price you will sometimes have four different stores listed on your grocery list, but you don't always have to drive around town because Walmart has that price matching option available to you (though you will need the original store circular in most cases. It might be a good idea to subscribe to the Sunday edition of your paper). Maybe next time I go to the grocery store I will have joined the coupon game...then again knowing me...maybe not. But it is nice to know that even not living in a major consumer area like up north, I still have my options. ;)