If you’re new to the world of using coupons, you’re probably excited about saving money but might be overwhelmed by all the ways you can use coupons to maximize savings.
One way to use coupons that may seem confusing is doubling your coupons. You might have heard this mentioned on a blog or two, and thought “Doubling my savings?! That sounds great!”
But then you realize you have no idea where to begin. Doubling your coupon savings is actually much easier than you might think. In this post you’ll find out what to do to ensure you are getting the biggest bang for your buck (literally!) when you’re clipping those coupons.
Defining Double Coupons
First, let’s define the term double coupon. Some people may use this term to refer to different things.
A double coupon is when a store doubles the value of your manufacturer’s coupons (up to a certain amount).
However, a double coupon could also be the combination of a manufacturer’s + store coupon, thus increasing the amount you are saving. This is not technically “doubling,” but can have the same effect as a store doubling the coupon value, in that it can save you twice as much.
The main difference is that in the first case, you’re doubling the savings on one coupon. In the second, you’re doubling amount of coupons used.
Know when the deal is being offered.
Some stores offer double value on coupons every day, but many only offer to double on spe
I’ll talk a little more about that second notion of double coupons later, but let’s start with the store offer of double coupons. There are several things you need to know in order to make sure you’re making the most of your coupons when a store offers to double their value.
Stores only offer to double coupons up to a certain amount.
That amount is usually 50¢, 99¢ or $1.00. You’ll want to make sure you know this information about your particular store, as this will impact which coupons you use. For example, if the cap at your local Harris Teeter is 99¢, your 75¢ coupon is actually of more value than a $1.00 coupon, because it will end up saving you $1.50.
cific days. You might find that your Kroger offers double coupons every Tuesday, or your Winn-Dixie offers them the first week of the month.
There are usually restrictions that apply to this deal.
The store may have a limit on how many of the same coupon you can use at double value. You’ll want to know this ahead of time, because you wouldn’t want to get to the register with your four bottles of ketchup only to find that the double coupon value only applies to two of your 50¢ coupons. You’ll still save money, but you don’t want to be disappointed when the savings don’t add up as anticipated.
You may need to be a member of the store’s loyalty program.
in order to take advantage of the double coupon offer. You know what I’m talking about – that handy little card you’ve got attached to your keychain that you use at stores like Winn Dixie or IGA. Check with your store to see if this is the case. If it is, make sure you have them scan your card before giving them your coupons.
The “DO NOT DOUBLE” coupons.
You might be asking, “But what about those coupons that have DO NOT DOUBLE printed on them.” It’s important to know what that means. That message is for the store, not for you.
When your grocery store uses a manufacturer’s coupon, the manufacturer reimburses the store for that amount. If your store has offered to double coupons, they are offering to lose that amount of money on your purchase. The store cannot ask the manufacturer to reimburse double the amount of the coupon.
So, what does all of this mean for you?
Well, in many cases your DO NOT DOUBLE will ring up doubled anyway, and you don’t have to worry about it. If it doesn’t ring up, your cashier may go ahead and override it for you. However, there is the chance that your store simply won’t double that coupon that has that phrase printed on it.
Check with your preferred grocery store to see how they handle these coupons. It will be helpful to know this before taking advantage of the double coupon deal.
Whether or not your store offers double coupon deals will vary based on where you live.
There are many lists to be found online that will tell you which stores in each state offer double coupon deals. For example, Publix, a major southern grocery chain, offers double coupon deals in some states and not in others. Things like this are good to know when vacationing or moving to a new place. You’ll want to do your research to make sure you’re getting the best deals available.
There’s one last thing you’ll want to keep in mind when doubling your coupons.
As I said before, a store loses money when they offer to double your coupon. Why are they willing to do this? It’s done in the hopes that someone will come to their store for the coupon deal and stay for all their other shopping. In this sense, it can make them money. So, for instance, if Susan normally shops at Publix but decides to go to Harris Teeter for the coupon deal and does all of her shopping there, Harris Teeter comes out ahead. Even if they lost an extra $5.00 or so on Susan’s purchases, they’ve gained a shopper.
You want to keep this in mind, because your store didn’t intend for you to only come in for the things you can double all of your coupons on. That’s just a loss to them. Does this mean you can’t do this? Absolutely not! Any good coupon user knows this is how it’s done. It is just good to know the store’s goal in making that offer. So when your cashier looks at your stack of 25 coupons and seems less than thrilled, go out of your way to thank them and show how grateful you are for their store. It might make your shopping trip more enjoyable!
Now, let’s get back to that second idea of doubling your coupons.
While this isn’t technically what is meant by that term, this is another way to “double” your savings when shopping. Certain stores offer weekly or monthly store coupons. These are different than manufacturer’s coupons.
As I explained in number 5 above, a store takes a loss on the double coupon offer. In the same way, that store will take a loss if they offer store coupons. You know all of those coupons that print out at Target that are (no pun intended) targeted at you based on your purchases? Well, those Target coupons are an offer from Target to cover the amount of the coupon.
The manufacturer’s coupon is an offer from the manufacturer to cover the amount of the coupon. When you go through your Sunday paper and clip that coupon for 75¢ a particular cleaning spray, the manufacturer of that cleaning spray pays the store for that discount.
What does all of this mean for you as you use double coupons? Typically you can’t combine two store coupons or two manufacturer’s coupons. However, you can combine one of each. If you’ve got a coupon for $1.00 off paper towels that printed at the end of your Target purchase, and you combine that with your $1.00 paper towels coupon from the manufacturer, you’ve just saved $2.00! So, in effect, you’ve doubled your coupons, not the value of your coupon, but still come out with double the savings!
Whether or not you are taking advantage of a store’s double coupon offer or stacking two coupons together to double your savings, you are able to save more. Now that you’ve got the basics of doubling your coupons, you are well on your way to saving twice as much when you shop! Way to go, shopper!