Ever see someone with dozens of coupons for one product and wonder how they collect them all? Newspapers are a popular source for coupon inserts, but buying multiple copies of the daily paper almost defeats the point of collecting the coupons. If you’re just getting started with couponing, you may not yet have room in your budget for purchasing extra papers. Fortunately there are many other ways to get extra inserts. In fact, getting extra coupons is easier than most people think. It just takes a little persistence and knowing where to look. Below, I’ll list 20 of my favorite methods for finding extra coupons.
1. Collect extra coupon inserts from family and friends
Ask your friends, family and acquaintances to give you any Sunday paper coupons they don’t plan to use. You may be surprised how many people throw out coupon inserts just because they don’t want the hassle of dealing with them.
2. Get coupons in store
When out shopping, keep an eye out for free coupons on tear-away pads or in flashing dispensers. Grab as many copies of these coupons as you can. If the item goes on sale, you can use your coupons for even greater savings. Also, be aware of catalina's, the receipt-like coupons that you get from the cashier at checkout, which give you discounts on future purchases.
3. Find coupons online
Many stores accept printable coupons. Printable coupons are a great source of savings and will cost you little more than the cost of paper and printer ink. Printable coupons are often found to offer better deals than the coupons you’ll find in newspaper inserts. To find coupons online, search for the product name and “printable coupon”. Your search should return many different options.
4. Check coffee shops and diners
Many people read the newspaper in public places like airports, cafes, and restaurants. Ask management if you can collect any Sunday newspaper left behind by patrons.
5. Trade with friends
Swap coupons you don’t use with those of a friend or family member. They may have coupons for products they don’t need, such as food for your dog, while you may have the baby product coupons they need. Everyone wins!
6. Don’t forget magazines
Check each issue of your magazine subscriptions carefully. Lots of magazines give away coupons.
7. Buy extra newspapers
It’ll cost you a bit of extra cash, but buying extra copies of the Sunday newspaper is one of the easiest ways to get more coupons. Save money by buying unsold Sunday newspapers on Monday.
8. Use mobile apps
Download coupon apps to your smartphone to get the latest coupon offers on the go. One such app is known as "Milk", and it helps you save on groceries without clipping coupons.
9. Get to know your newspaper carrier
If you’re friendly with your newspaper carrier, he or she may be willing to give you any leftover coupon inserts from their delivery route. You might also be able to get extra newspapers from the carrier’s recycling center.
10. Check the library
Almost all libraries have a newspaper section. They will often allow you to take the coupon inserts from the Sunday newspapers. Be sure to ask first!
11. Write directly to companies
Product manufacturers always enjoy hearing how much people love their products. Write to the manufacturers of your favorite products and politely ask them to send you any coupons that are available. Many companies provide a contact form on their website, and will send you coupons simply because you requested them. In some cases, you may even receive free products!
12. Go dumpster diving
Checking trash bins really isn’t as gross as it sounds. In fact, it’s one of the best ways I get my coupons. If you’re squeamish, stick to clean newspaper recycling bins. In minutes, you can pick up a handful of coupon inserts. I stay away from public garbage bins...can't stand the smell of dumpster juice!
13. Join a trading forum
Coupon trading forums allow members to swap coupons with others around the world. Since different regions have access to different coupons, this option is well worth the cost of postage. Trading coupons with people from other cities helps you diversify your coupon collection.
14. Reward programs
Join a reward program that offers high-value coupons in exchange for completing quizzes or surveys. Often, these coupons are for free products. Some programs you may want to check out are Vocalpoint, BzzAgent, Kraft First Taste, and Recyclebank.
15. Use eCoupons
Digital coupons allow you to enjoy great savings without costing you any printer ink. Simply load an eCoupon into your shopping cart to receive an automatic discount at checkout. My favorite eCoupons are SavingStar, Kroger, Cellfire, Upromise, and Target Cartwheel.
16. Check schools
Find out if your local schools participate in a recycling program. Many schools now provide newspapers to get kids interested in local and national news. If you find a school with such a program, you could be collecting coupon inserts from recycling bins in almost every classroom.
17. Check the free local paper
Some towns offer a free local newspaper that has coupon inserts. Yes! Newspaper, a publication found in several cities, can be delivered to your door free of charge. Run a Google search to see if Yes! Is delivered where you live. You can also find free local newspapers around the city on Sunday mornings.
18. Visit convenience stores and gas stations
In some places, gas stations are only required to give the first page of an unsold newspaper back to the carrier. They then discard of the leftover papers. Ask the station or store manager if you can have any extra newspapers they would have otherwise thrown out. Be aware, however, that this doesn’t work in all cities - some carriers collect all unsold papers.
19. Knock on some doors
Do you live in an apartment building, condo, or townhouse complex? Try going door to door to collect unused newspapers and coupon inserts from your neighbors. If you feel uncomfortable knocking on your neighbors’ doors, ask management if you can post a notice in the main office. Another option is to check your apartment or townhouse complex for a newspaper recycling bin.
20. Join a coupon train
A coupon train lets people in different cities and provinces to share coupons with a wider group of individuals. The larger the group, the more the coupon train is able to leverage each member’s coupon to share great savings with the larger audience. If you’re interested in joining a coupon train, Hot coupon world is a great one to check out.
Follow the above tips, and in no time you’ll have a pile of extra coupons to use for your favorite products. Happy shopping!