In todays economy everyone is trying to save where they can, and the idea of couponing has not only lost its stigma but it has become the cool thing to do.
A few years ago, after watching countless couponing experts on every daytime talkshow go to the grocery store and buy hundreds of dollars of groceries and watch their total dollar amount on the cashier's screen dwindle down to a few dollars... or cents... I decided I would give it a try. After looking over several websites, I decided to try a free subscription to Terri Gault's The Grocery Game. It looked easy and kinda fun. Here is a basic rundown of how this website works:
First grab your Sunday paper and pull out the weekly coupon inserts. Next, login to The Grocery Game and select the grocery and drugstores that you shop at (I subscribed to Giant and Harris Teeter), and the website generates a color coded list ("Teri's List") of deals happening in your stores.
The color of an item indicates the type of savings:
- White is a good deal, but only buy it if you need it now.
- Blue deals are for investing in products you can store and use over time, as the prices are the lowest in the product's cycle. Obviously, the more you invest in things you'll buy anyway the more you'll save in the long run.
- Green items are free!
What I really like about The Grocery Game is that it makes the couponing process very easy and it feels like a game rather than a chore. Instead of spending hours blindly searching for deals, it highlights the best store deals and tells me what specific insert has the coupon. It takes me approximately 20-30 minutes to create my list for the week and cut out the coupons. Remembering to pick up the Sunday paper was the hardest part for me, so I bought a discounted subscription to The Washington Post through livings social and now it arrives at my door. Not a lot of time when you consider it has the potential to save you hundreds of dollars. When using The Grocery Game, my average saving is between 55-65% off those items, and yes, I have gotten Green items for free. And if you are worried about holding people up at the check out line, no worries! Coupon codes no longer need to be manually typed in, they are quickly swiped through by the cashier or automatic checkout machines so it doesn't take long at all.
Things you should know about the regular subscription.... After the 28th day of your free trial (cancel at any time) you will be charged $10 every 8 weeks. You also need to add $5 for each additional store you select. For instance, I selected Giant and Harris Teeter so I pay $15 every 8 weeks. In order to break even and have the subscription pay for itself, I need to save $15 every two months. You most likely will recoup the cost of your bi-monthly membership and obtain significant savings in your first shopping trip. Today (5/4/12) I went to Giant and bought 5 items: 1 Sargento Shredded Cheddar (8 oz), 2 Ken's Blue Cheese Dressing (16 oz), and 2 Huggies wipes (64 ct). The total before my savings was $15.97 and after my discounts the total was $9.05 (pre tax) so I saved $6.92 (43%). Note: I saved 55% from the 3 items on Terri's list (the cheese and the dressing) but my percentage dropped with the addition of the wipes which were not on her list. Still pretty good huh? For full disclosure I've posted the receipt.
After you sign up and try the game, post a comment here to tell me what you think and how much you saved!
I absolutely recommend trying out The Grocery Game and I have a coupon code so you can try six weeks for free! Go to The Grocery Game and subscribe for a four week free trial and enter the code WWMAG for an extra two weeks. Hurry this offer must be redeemed by June 30, 2012. Watch this video and see the game in action.