Friday, January 08, 2016

Coupon Nerd-Out

That familiar bullseye logo!

I LOVED the reality TV Show Extreme Couponing. I binge-watched a set on demand, and marveled at the --well, how else do I put it?-- extreme lengths these amazing participants of the show went to, to get the most product for the least amount of money possible. It just floored me!

My favorite episodes were the ones where the people got this ridiculous -- no, seriously, it was really a RIDICULOUS -- amount of food and toiletries for very little money, but then they turned around and did the practical thing: they donated a huge amount to the local food bank to help others in need! It was really touching to see them do that. (I mean, really, we do have to be practical. There's only so much you and your family can actually use up before the expiration date on the product, you know?)

I super-enjoy the idea of couponing, and still buy the Sunday paper every once in a while to see if I luck out, but realistically I don't get to use many, as much as I try. Food sensitivities mean I have to avoid what most people enjoy (preservatives and nitrates for instance, cause me physical pain). Overall it seems the most popular stuff is what really get the bulk of the coupons. But back in November (when the schedule got super-slammy there for a while) I enjoyed a great (modest, but great!) coupon nerd-out moment.

I went to Target to buy toilet paper, because they usually have large packages where the resulting price-per-individual-roll turns out to be reasonable. I expected the "good" price to be $18 or less for 24 rolls. But when I got there it turns out they had a sale ...

Target was selling a package of 15 rolls for $10 -- and the package itself had a $1 off coupon that read "Use It Right Now!" -- which meant if I bought two packages, I could use both coupons and pay $18 for 30 rolls instead, and so it was a good deal. But then it gets better!

Target would give the customer a $5 gift card for buying TWO packages of the TP! So, okay, it's $18 for 30 rolls (already double the amount I was expecting to be able to buy!!) + I am ALSO $5 ahead!

So because of the great sale (and the $5 gift card I was going to get) I went back to the car, and got my $3 manufacturers coupon for a double-bottle package of contact lens solution. The solution wasn't on crazy sale (which would have been say, $11.99 or less for the package of two bottles) but at $13.99 it was still cheaper than it typically is (high is like $15.99.)

So to the cashier I went and $13.99 - $8.00 (because I used both the $3 coupon and the $5 gift card) meant I only paid $7 and change (after tax) out of pocket for the contact lens solution, and I essentially got 6 rolls of toilet paper for free when all was said and done. A very modest coupon victory, sure, (when compared to those amazing people who get so much on the TV shows) but it's a happy one, anyway!

WAHOO! I felt pretty good.

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