The Art of Random Willy-Nillyness: During Tough Economic Times, Coupons Make a Difference
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Friday, September 20, 2013

During Tough Economic Times, Coupons Make a Difference

Keep the Coupons, Skip the Hassle

Tough economic times make everyone more eager to save their pennies, whether out of hard need or just prudent planning. With a whole family to take care of, however, it can seem like an impossible task. You can't just not buy food for a week, or skip out on other essentials that your spouse and kids need. One time-tested way to help lower everyday expenses is to use coupons, but it seems like a hassle, especially for folks who are moving more and more of their lives away from paper and into their computers and phones. Searching for coupons, clipping them out, keeping them organized, and making sure you have them when you go shopping sounds like a lot of work for not a lot of savings. It doesn't have to be such a hassle, though. Just a little bit of planning and effort can get you started on saving money now.

A World of Coupons, Right at Your Fingertips

One of the hassles of coupons has always been finding them. If you wait on the grocery store flyers or advertisement section of your newspaper, you have to flip through a bunch of papers, and maybe not even find anything useful. The Internet is helping to change that. You don't have to wait for your local coupon sources to come out now just to see if there's anything good this week. You can go looking for your own coupons, target exactly the brands and stores you want, and pick out the best.

There are multiple ways to go about it. If you know the specific store that you want to find coupons for, then use that as your search term and see what is available. Many stores also offer coupons you can sign up to receive by email, which means you can get coupons for your favorite stores right in your inbox. If you are looking to find the best deals across multiple stores or on specific items without needing to worry about where they come from, try generalized searches based on those items. Not all offers are listed as coupons, either. You can use a search term like "clearance savings promo codes" and the name of your desired item to find other examples of great offers.

Keeping Coupons on Your Phone

While most coupons are still of the paper variety, other forms are working their way into public use. If you have a smartphone, you may be able to take advantage of coupons that you never need to print out, right on your phone. These may come in the form of special offer codes which you can use for shopping online, or they may take the form of QR codes which are scannable by other smartphones or possibly by the cash register systems in some stores. With this kind of coupon in your pocket, you never need to worry about clipping or keeping track of paper. No binders, folders, or special drawers dedicated to coupons are needed – they stay in your phone until you want them. You don't have to remember anything special when you go shopping, either, because you've got your phone with you anyway. It's an all-around win.

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