Photo licensed from Bright Star via Creative Commons
Although conventional wisdom and our sunny demeanors agree that the American economy is starting a healthy turnaround, the recent economic debacle has served an excellent purpose: reminding all of us to slow down, simplify and spend our money wisely.
Libraries have come out on top, of course, as one of the best ways to stretch one's ever-thinning dollar. Where else can you find free books, movies, magazines, newspapers, Internet access, computer classes, lectures, concerts and myriad social activities under one roof? It seems like the only thing your library can't do for you is put food on the table...and that's where smart shopping and coupons come in handy.
Now we can't all be Coupon Queens -- who has the time? -- but that doesn't mean we should avoid coupon culture altogether. There are many quick and easy ways to find excellent coupons and savings, even the familiar ones from the Sunday newspapers, available on any computer with an Internet connection.
If you do have the time and would like to use coupons like a pro, local coupon maven Louise has an excellent introduction to the art of maxing out your coupons. She recommends things like not cutting out coupons from circulars until you're at the store, creating coupon lists and trying to use multiple coupons at a time. Although it sounds simple here, she has refined and explains her method carefully to produce maximum savings.
If you have a printer and Internet-connected computer or come in to use ours at the library, you can download coupons from the Sunday circulars and Internet-only specials. Some of the best sites to find these coupons include, Coupon Tom, Consumer Queen, Sunday Saver, Deals 2 Buy, Grocio and Red Plum.
Many of these websites cover the same ground, so it's not a bad idea to check them all out and see which are the best fit for the way you like to browse and search.
Did you know that you don't even have to buy the Sunday paper to see many of the deals you would normally find in the circulars? Websites like Sales Circular comb through the paper to find all the best deals and even free after rebate items in many different categories including computers, jewelry, tools and more.
~By Darren Heiber