Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Couponing 101: How to Organize Coupons

This is a day late...sorry.  Things got busy.  If you missed my last 2 Coupon Class posts, you can find them here:
Store Coupon Policies
Where to Find Coupons

Today, I'll talk about organizing your coupons.  I have 2 favorite options:

Dating Inserts:  This was my method of choice when I was new to couponing:  I'd write the date on the front of each newspaper insert with black permanent marker.  Then, when I needed to find a coupon that was mentioned in a database, I could easily find the insert that the database was referring to.  T/his was the major advantage to this method.  The disadvantage was finding a way to organize all of my printable coupons.  I found it easiest to have a purse-sized coupon accordion folder in my purse.  I'd only print the coupons I knew I was going to use, so I was able to put these in the folder for safekeeping, as well as any of the others I'd clipped from the inserts, until I got to the store.  This is very easy for beginners.  Once your coupon "collection" grows, however, you might find this next method more reasonable.

A Coupon Binder:  I found a zippable binder (much like the Trapper Keeper that I had in grade school) at a rummage sale, but you can find them at Walmart, Target, etc.  I then headed to Rainbow Sports Cards (3310 S. Minnesota Ave).  They have used baseball card holders (the kind with 9 or so pockets on each page) 20 for $1 or so.  I cut out the coupons each week, and place them in the pockets.  I organize them so that all of the coupons of the same type are together (drinks, snacks, breads, breakfast food, etc.).  They zip nicely in the binder so i don't lose them, and there's room for other stuff like scissors, etc.

There are many other methods of organizing coupons, but these are the two that have worked well for me.  What method do you use.  What do you see as that method's pros and cons.  Please share your thoughts or ideas in the comments...

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