For those of you following the Grand Coupon Experiment here at Punny Money, I figured it’s time to update my status.
We took a trip to Safeway over the weekend looking mainly to pick up a couple of staples (milk, bread, waffle syrup) but also to use a few coupons to grab some items we may need in the future. We completed our regular shopping first and then went back to see if any of the coupons we had would help us cash in on a great deal.
The first item up for bids was one of our regular purchases: granola bars. I love me some granola, yes I do. This is one of the few items where the brand name product is often cheaper than the store version because the brand name version is on sale half the time. This time was no different, but instead of spending our usual $2 to pick up a box of Quaker Granola Bars, we picked up two boxes and used a $1 off coupon.
Next we decided to stock up on salad dressing since we had also made a stop at the farmers’ market that weekend and had enough salad fixin’s to last us a while. Normally the store brand of dressing would pulverize the price of its name brand competition, even if the brand names were on sale. Indeed, without coupons, that would have remained the case. Kens offered some of their higher-end dressings (you know, Creamy Lite Italian Dijon Raspberry Balsamic Walnut Vinaigrette) at $2 a bottle (regular price $3.29). The Safeway brand was a tiny bit cheaper, but once we applied a $1 off two bottles coupon to the Kens, we walked away with a better deal.
Finally, we made a trip to the… um… girly aisle, and we looked for some… er… girly products. Uh, we used a coupon and saved $1 okay bye.
Sadly, that was all the coupon savings that was in store for us on that trip. In all, coupons saved us three bucks, but we probably spent an extra five minutes working out what deals would be better with or without coupons. We also picked up a copy of the newspaper (-$1.58), but I found even fewer worthwhile coupons in it (and spent five minutes cutting them out).
Grand Coupon Experiment Net Savings: -$0.16, -30 minutes
In coming weeks, I’m going to take Brian’s advice and use The Coupon Mom‘s website to work out the best grocery/coupon savings combinations ahead of time. It should help us save some time, though I wish that website included Safeway instead of just Giant for our area.