It cannot be denied that most people have to survive on finances that afford them few luxuries, especially if they plan on saving for the future as well. The key to living on a fixed budget is to stretch the budget as far as possible. Most people do not like the idea of stretching a budget, since that often means sacrificing quality for quantity. However, there is another way to buy the products you want, and need, while saving money. The best way to manage a domestic budget is via couponing. Traditionally, couponing was scoffed upon as a waste of time. However, with prices constantly on the rise, couponing has become one of the few ways a person can sustain a lifestyle without breaking the bank. As more people learn about the benefits of couponing, stores are being overwhelmed by stacks of coupons from customers looking to get the most out of their money. For consumers, the key is to ensure that they have the right coupon at the right time.
Check the expiration dates
We all know that coupons have expiration dates, but few of us ever bother to find out what they are. The expiration date should be very first thing that you should check. Sure the coupon may have arrived that morning itself, but it may still have an expiration date for the same day; that is how companies run one-day offers. There is no feeling worse than standing in the long checkout lines and then being burnt by an expired coupon. After clipping coupons, stack them by expiration dates so that you always know which ones need to be used first. Also, check the expiration dates before setting off for the store.
Location, location, location
People forget that not all coupons are created equally. The main purpose of the coupon for the manufacturer is to give a push to sales figures whenever and wherever required. Normally, while cutting coupons people simply assume that it will be valid anywhere within the city or town. However, it would be a huge mistake to assume so. Many times coupons have restrictions over which locations they are valid at. Manufacturers maybe trying to give a bump to sales in just a few select areas and the coupons will reflect that. In every other location, the coupons are treated as void. Always check the coupons for any mention of locations unless you want to be left high-and-dry at your local store.
Single coupon, multiple brands
In the modern market, many brands are owned by a single corporation. If a single brand is being sold at discounted prices, chances are that the other brands will also be up for grabs at reduced rates. While clipping a coupon, the brand being advertised may not be the only product that the coupon is good for. Check the fine print to see if the same coupon is also applicable for other brands. This is a very common occurrence for coupons promoting various brands of soft drinks.
Just like anything else in life, simply couponing cannot be helpful if you do not do it in a smart manner. Hopefully, these tips should help customers keep a sharp eye on the contents of their coupons and help them use coupons more effectively.
Molly Biggs is an avid blogger and the author of this post. She has been providing various money saving and frugal living tips and uses the site www.quickpaydayloans.co.uk to fulfill all her financial needs.