• Savings Mom Answers: Find Big Savings in Small Cities

Savings Mom answers viewer question: 
How to get grocery coupons in states with small coupon circulars
by Stephanie Nelson, GMA Savings Mom
November 2005 
From Kevin in Honolulu, Hawaii:  “Aloha, Stephanie!  I find your site very interesting and I love your appearances on GMA!  But I would find your site even more interesting if you included Hawaii! Is there any chance that Hawaii might be included in your site?  We especially need good deals here because the cost of living is so high. Can you help us here?”
Aloha, Kevin!  Yes, you are right, the Sunday grocery coupon circulars in Hawaii’s newspaper do not have as many offers as other cities.  Believe it or not, the Sunday grocery coupon circulars (from the two companies, SmartSource and Valassis) have over 300 different versions every week.  Offers vary by city, and larger cities tend to have more coupon offers than smaller cities in their newspaper’s circulars. 
With smaller circulars, it makes sense to preview the offers before you buy the paper.  Some weeks may have enough coupons you like to justify buying a couple of extra newspapers, and some weeks may not have any coupons you would use.  Therefore, your first step in getting more coupons is to check the Virtual Coupon Organizer on Sundays at www.couponmom.com to help you decide when to purchase multiple copies of the paper.
You can also use the Newspaper Coupon Database along with any of your store's sale ads to create your own "best deals" list each week.  Simply alphabetize the Newspaper Coupon Database, review your store’s sale ad and circle items you plan to buy.  Search the Newspaper Coupon Database for coupons that match your circled items to save even more.
Because the Hawaii coupon circulars do not have many offers, you will need to be creative about finding new sources for grocery coupons.  Fortunately, there are many ways to find good grocery coupons, such as: 
  • Send email messages requesting coupons directly from the manufacturers of your favorite items.  Visit their websites and find their “contact us” page.  Tell them how much you like their product and ask if they have coupons available.  Be sure to include your mailing address.  Many companies distribute their coupons in response to customer requests. 
  • You can also call the 800 numbers of your favorite manufacturers to request coupons.  I have heard that this method gets faster results.
  • Sign up for the email newsletters on your favorite manufacturers websites.  Most likely, they will include printable coupons in their email newsletters.
  • Check your products’ packages for coupons inside the labels or boxes. 
  • Sign up for your store’s loyalty card and include your complete address.  You will receive coupons for products you have purchased in the past.
  • Watch for the coupons that come from the register as you check out.  These coupons may be for products you buy, or for their competitors’ product.  In some cases, the coupon may even give you a free product. 
  • Check your store’s weekly advertising circular, which may include store coupons or manufacturers’ coupons.
  • While shopping, be on the lookout for red coupon boxes attached to the shelf by your products, or for coupon pads on special product displays.
  • Check the printable coupon sites on a regular basis.  .
  • Watch for grocery coupons in other magazines such as Family Circle, Woman’s Day, and Good Housekeeping. 
  • If you have babies, be sure to sign up for your grocery stores’ Baby Clubs and the email newsletters for manufacturers of diapers and baby products.  They will send you many lucrative coupons. 
Good luck and have fun saving! 

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