Every store has its own policies regarding coupon redemption. Good couponers know just how important is to be aware of the coupon policies of the stores at which they shop. Knowing the best store to redeem which coupons will help you maximize your savings. Here are three store coupon policies to which coupon users should pay attention:
Double and triple coupons: Many stores entice shoppers to shop with them by offering to double — or even triple — the value of manufacturer coupons redeemed. In these cases, the store not only deducts the coupon’s face value, but the store matches it — or even gives the shopper double the amount the manufacturer offers — out of its own “pocket.” Double and triple coupons represent a huge savings opportunity for all shoppers and especially those shoppers who redeem a large number of coupons.
Often, the store limits the value of doubled or tripled coupons by capping the total you may redeem to $1.00. Even so, turning virtually every coupon redeemed into nearly a dollar can really make a difference in your grocery bill.
The doubling and tripling of coupons is not practiced in every state and sometimes it even varies from town to town or from store to store. Double and triple coupons can either be a regular feature of a store’s marketing strategy or part of a promotion. It can certainly pay to find out if there are stores in your area which double or triple manufacturer coupons.
When you find a store that doubles or triples coupons, check out it’s prices before you shop. Make certain that they are not charging more for products to compensate for their generous coupon policy – otherwise, you may be better off shopping at a more economical store and receiving only the face value for the coupons you redeem.
Coupon stacking: This is the term used for redeeming a manufacturer’s coupon and a store’s coupon in the same transaction for the same item. It may never have occurred to you that you could do this, but since they are offered by separate entities (one from the manufacturer and one from the store), they are considered different, even when they are for the same item. Coupon stacking is not allowed at every store but it is worth checking out a store’s coupon policy to determine which stores in your area allow it. The savings can really stack up!
Expired coupons: Some grocery stores do legitimately accept expired coupons. Often this policy is for a limited time past the expiration date (30 days, for instance). While it is poor couponing etiquette to pass off expired coupons at stores who do not accept them (in fact, it is considered coupon fraud to do so), it is perfectly fine to redeem them at stores whose policies state that they will accept coupons beyond their expiration date. In my area, one chain accepts expired coupons as a concession to local shoppers because in this state it cannot double coupons as its sister stores can who operate in other states.
These three coupon policies carry a common precaution — use reason when bouncing from store to store to take advantage of the savings offered at each. Take into consideration your time, effort and gas which you don’t want to waste in exchange for a few dollars. Plan your shopping according to your local stores’ couponing policies for maximum coupon savings.