Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Coupons--How to keep them Organized

There are a great variety of coupon organizers out there. When you start clipping coupons you may get one of these:



But you will quickly find that once you start getting 4 or more newspapers a week and keeping all the coupons that this will only hold about two weeks worth of coupons. Since coupons and sales often go in 6-week cycles you will need something much bigger like this:



Or a lot of people use photo albums or collector card binders. I use a box similar to the second but it only holds about half of my coupons. I use a plastic shoe box for the rest. So really you could get by with something like this:



You can find these for about $1 most places and they do hold a good deal of coupons. I have put the coupons into small envelopes and made tabs for them or you can just make tabbed index cards that keep the coupons sorted.

Also, there is a faction out there of coupons who don't clip. They just keep file folders within a small file container and label them with the insert date for easy reference. They then clip coupons right before a shopping trip. This makes it harder to match up clearance or unadvertised sales with coupons on the fly but it does keep everything neater and ready for planned trips.

Once you know how you want to keep them then you may wonder about how to sort or divide them up. I organized mine by the order of my local Wal-mart store for easy shopping there. Here are my sort labels:

Box #1--my www.couponfiles.com box:

Free Items (coupons that are for free items)
heartburn
pain medication
bottoms-laxatives and hemorrhoids
1st aid
allergy
colds
vitamins
other health items
office supplies
air fresheners
carpet
wipes of all kinds--bottoms and cleaners
cleaners
cleaning accessories
pets
shaving
deodorant
teeth
women
soap
shampoo
lotion
housewares
dish soap
laundry
baggies and trash bags

Container #2--a plastic shoe box
paper products
drinks
yogurt
dairy
cookie dough
refrigerated dough
cold food and meat
salty snacks
sweets
cereal
baking, sugar, spice and mixes
dried fruit
crackers
oil and vinegar
soup
boxed and canned food
sauces
PB&J
bread
pizza
frozen foods
frozen treats
fresh food
I am allergic to make-up but keep all these coupon and others I am unlikely to use in the back of this file under these labels:
make-up
perfume
diapers
clothing
hair color
nutritional drinks
dish washer
adult items
diet
eye care
hair things
pictures
CVS
hallmark
magazines

You may find that you need different topics or that you combine some of these and add others.

I hope this information is helpful.

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