I pay $7.25 per month to have the Sunday paper delivered to my house, specifically so I can get the coupon inserts. I would guesstimate that I typically save around $80 per month from these coupons in conjunction with playing The Grocery Game, so it’s a good investment. My neighbor also brings me her inserts, which helps when I am stocking up on something.

You can also print coupons from the internet.  These coupons are often higher values that what comes in the paper, but you do have the cost of the ink and paper you use to print them.  There are hundreds of websites that have printable coupons available. Some are brand specific.  For example, you can print coupons for Betty Crocker products from http://www.bettycrocker.com/coupons-promotions/coupons/coupons.aspx.  Other sites offer a wide variety of coupons.  A good place to start is the Teri’s Coupon Center section of the Grocery Game website, which is free for anyone to access.  From there you can branch out to other websites based on the products that you buy.

If you don’t want to deal with the newspaper, or even with printing and cutting out paper coupons, there are some other ways that you can save money grocery shopping.

There are now several websites that offer electronic coupons.  Electronic coupons are coupons that you load directly onto your store shopping card with a click of your mouse.  There is nothing to cut out or sort. The savings are automatically applied when you swipe your card at the register (and buy the appropriate product).  In general, these coupons save me $9-$12 per month, which isn’t a ton, but they’re so easy to use, it’s worth it.  If you have a store shopping card, you can load electronic coupons at the following websites:

In my phone interview with Teri Gault, the founder of the Grocery Game, she shared a few non-coupon related shopping tips with me:

  • “Limit” is a magic word – anytime you see something on sale and there is a limit on the quantity, that is a rock-bottom sale.  Stock up!
  • Whatever meat is in the biggest picture on the grocery store’s ad is usually the best deal.
  • Meat is good for at least 5 days past its “sell by” date.  If you find meat in the case that is on it’s sell by date – ask the butcher for a mark down.  You’ll usually get a 50% mark down.  You can also talk to the butcher to find out what days of the week they usually do their mark downs.
  • For the best sales, shop for groceries on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday.  That is when the 3 days sales run.

Finally, many grocery stores are now offering a discount if you use reusable shopping bags.  Ask your cashier, and if they don’t know, ask at the service desk.  At Kroger, the discount is three cents per bag. My reusable bags cost $1 each, which means that after nine months of grocery  shopping, I’ve paid off the cost of my bags, and I’ve saved approximately 540 plastic or paper bags from that landfill.

If you have found other ways to save on your grocery bill, please leave a comment and let me know!