Most full-time budgeters often turn to couponing as a way to save big on everyday purchases. Couponing is the process of finding discounts or deals on certain purchases to lower the overall price of the payment. In the old times, coupons were found in newspapers and cut out to be brought to the store and shown to the cashier. In today’s time, most coupons can be found digitally and used online, for online and in-person stores alike. This is a wonderful way to save, but what are the advantages and disadvantages of couponing?
Pro # 1: Cutting Back on Price
Of course, one of the most obvious benefits to couponing is that you can save quite a bit of money on everyday purchases. This is one of the best ways to up your budgeting game and get a shortcut to saving quick money. In most cases, you wouldn’t believe how many people are unaware of how much they could be saving if they just paid attention to the deals and coupons that are often offered in the ads they come across on a daily basis.
Pro #2: Couponing Gives You a New Insight on Value
If you’re a frequent couponer, you often get an idea of what price is reasonable and what isn’t. It gives you an insight on the real value of most products in the stores you go to. You’ll find that you get better at spotting something that is overpriced versus something that is incredibly undervalued. This skill will also help you save money in the future, as you’ll be better at seeking out cheaper alternatives to pricey products as well.
Pro #3: Using Your Saved Money on Nice Things
After about a month of couponing, you might find that you’ve saved quite a few hundred dollars, if not thousands of dollars. If you’ve managed to save this extra money you used from couponing, you might be able to contribute this money to a big goal like buying that dream car or upgrading to a better rental in your area. Maybe getting a nice haircut or updating your wardrobe. This goes for any money you manage to save.
Con #1: Couponing Can Be Time Consuming
If you’re super dedicated to lowering the cost of everyday purchases, it can be pretty time consuming to search out a deal on every single item you’re planning on buying. Whether you’re looking for coupons in the newspaper, online, or even at the store, it can take a lot of time and make your shopping trip take twice as long, if not longer. Also, once you get in line to actually pay for your items, handing out 100 coupons to the cashier might irritate those behind you and the cashier herself depending on how much you have.
Con#2: Some of Your Favorite Items Might Not Be Coupon-able
If you’re a huge fan of organic fruits and veggies or other products that are usually pretty expensive, you might find that some of these items are either not offering discounts at all, or they are offering discounts that don’t really take that much off at all. In order to avoid frustration, don’t go in thinking that you’re going to cut the price of every single product in half, especially if you’re in any other store than a grocery store. Some deals are offered weekly, while some are only offered during certain occasions. Some are only offered once a year.
Con #3: You’re Not the Only One Couponing
Extreme couponing has grown quite popular over the last decade. More and more consumers are becoming dedicated to slashing their grocery bills, gas bills, etc. If you’re searching for coupons, be prepared to find that most of them have already been taken by other couponers! It can be quite a competitive task if you’re not experienced in finding deals and discounts quickly. You can attain this information, but so can they. Even people that don’t really invest time in couponing will quickly take advantage of a deal if they see it.
Conclusion While couponing can have it’s cons, it’s still one of the best and easiest ways to save money during your shopping trip. Take these tips into consideration and try to get access to deals and discounts as soon as they are available to the public. You can also try asking the clerks at any store if they know of any current discounts on their products. You’d be surprised by how many hidden gems there are in the store!