Who doesn’t love a deal?
You don’t need to be a die-hard coupon maniac to enjoy the thrill of BOGO (buy one get one). You don’t need to spend hours pouring over multiple copies of the Sunday paper to get a little rush as your grand total is reduced at checkout, either. Saving money just takes some savvy.
Here are five coupon hacks that can save you money from the comfort of your laptop or smartphone.
One thing to consider? Be careful about potential coupon fraud. It is easy to get fraudulent coupons or coupon codes online. If you don’t trust a site don’t continue, or you could open your computer or email address up to hackers. By following the official store brands and websites and using legitimate couponing websites or apps you can prevent fraud.
What’s sweeter than local honey? Honey the browser-based coupon-finder! That’s because Honey is a free coupon search engine that works with just a click.
Honey is a free extension that automatically searches for and applies coupon codes when you shop online. Honey works for over 100 online
stores so far, and growing. Here’s a video that shows Honey in action.
Fan & Follow
Don’t neglect to “like” or “follow” your favorite stores and brands in social media. Giving a simple “like” will put the store’s specials into your Facebook news feed. So will following the brand on Twitter. Monitor both for savings by checking in periodically, or keeping a notepad nearby to write down savings codes.
SavingStar Grocery Coupons
How would you like coupons automatically loaded onto your store loyalty cards? No cutting coupons and no need to remember to bring them with you. That’s the premise of SavingStar, a free service.
The savings here go on “behind the scenes” — you don’t get a discount at the register or see the discount on your receipt. You do, however, accrue your savings into a SavingStar account. Then you are paid via your bank account, PayPal, or Amazon gift card.
The money accumulated here can be spent at a number of online retailers or donated to your favorite nonprofit, like American Forests. If you choose the nonprofit route, you can effortlessly give to worthy causes without changing your shopping habits.
Rethink What You Really Need (Free!)
Coupons are great, but so is living with less and consuming less. One of the best coupon hacks is to focus on changing your lifestyle. Get off of as many treadmills as possible and your savings can be significant. Who says you have to live like everyone else, anyway?
Start at home. Reduce your family’s overhead costs by moving into a smaller house or getting rid of one of your vehicles. Plant a square foot garden to offset some of your food costs. Commute to work on your bike. Make your own laundry detergent and hang your laundry to dry on the line to reduce your utility costs.
These and multiple other changes do add up. Simplifying your life can also be deeply satisfying, too — and that’s worth just as much, or more, than any coupon savings.
Katie McCaskey is a freelance journalist writing for Vistaprint Deals, the official website for Vistaprint coupon codes. Besides running a small business in Staunton, Virginia, Katie has covered personal finance and small business marketing topics for over 10 years.