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Savings Challenge

5 Ways to Save Big With Coupons

No need to go to extremes. Plenty of discounts are found in newspapers and online

3.  There are usually a lot more coupons available on a store's website than in the newspaper or in the store's weekly sales circular. Again, the key is to go to the grocery store's website before you go shopping, and check for printable and downloadable coupons available only on the website. An increasing number of supermarket websites also allow you to download coupons directly to your loyalty or club card, so the savings are deducted automatically when the cashier swipes your card. No risk of paper cuts there.

4.   Loyalty pays when it comes to shopping at drug stores. "Most people think of drug stores as an expensive place to shop for a lot of items — and they can be. If you make it a point to pick a favorite drug store chain in your area and shop there regularly, there are some real bargains to be had — including occasional free items, Nelson says. Enroll in the store's loyalty card program, which typically qualifies you for automatic rebates and coupons that can be used on top of the store's weekly specials and other sales.  

5.  Contact the manufacturer of your favorite products. What if you never see coupons for your favorite brands or products, even things like organic products and food staples? "We did a little experiment at Coupon Mom and contacted the manufacturers of a wide range of products that are rarely advertised using coupons," Nelson said. "When we contacted them via their websites and simply asked about coupons, nearly 60 percent responded by sending us some type of 'consumer relations coupons' for their products, including some that sent coupons for free products."

As Roman philosopher Marcus Tullius Cicero famously said, "Never go to excess, but let moderation be your guide." I didn't' know they had coupons way back then.

Also of interest: Join the Savings Challenge. >>

Jeff Yeager is the author of The Ultimate Cheapskate's Road Map to True Riches and The Cheapskate Next Door. His website is www.UltimateCheapskate.com and you can friend him on Facebook at JeffYeagerUltimateCheapskate or follow him on Twitter.

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