Compared to other people who I follow on the internet, I am a weak couponer. But I was pretty happy to save $16.97 today including a pillow I found on sale AND had a 20% off coupon for. I could do tons better with my shopping and I do try to stay on top of the coupons but I haven't started the shopping 2-3 different stores to get the absolute best deals which is mainly because I normally shop on the way home from work on Mondays.
I am a tich ticked off at Target where I usually shop right now because they HAD Welches Fizz grape drink a couple of weeks ago and this is the second week in a row that they don't have any in stock and my coupon expires soon. I think maybe because there was both a Target Coupon and a Manufacturer's Coupon and so people were able to get it for FREE, Target just decided to not restock it until after the coupons have expired. *sigh And I am sure that the folks from Target would tell you that that simply isn't true but this has happened in the past with products that you could end up getting free/really, really low priced. For a while, they had Ozarka Sparkling Water out of stock which was, coincidentally, at a time when there were coupons that were buy one, get one free AND a coupon for $1/1 so you got 2 bottles of Sparkling Water for free. Now, I know some people probably only buy a product when they can get it free like that but the reality for me (since I don't have a SodaStream even though I DESPERATELY want one) is that I will buy the Sparkling water at it's normal price (albeit grudgingly). I will buy more of it if I have ANY coupon for it (even the 50 cents off two that I used today is still SOMETHING).
I think one of the things that gets coupon users a bad reputation is the people who go in and only get what they can for free. And I'll be clear about this, there is NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT but I think it leaves the cashiers feeling like the store isn't making any money (because they don't understand how the store DOES get paid for those coupons) and so they get a little surly towards all coupon users. The other people that become an issue are the folks who go through the store removing coupons from items they aren't even buying (I actually saw a woman one day at Target take ALL OF THE COUPONS OFF THE MEAT IN THE MEAT DEPARTMENT... meat she wasn't even buying....) And you know what? I haven't seen a coupon on meat at Target since then (thankfully, I eat pretty much salads and smoothies these days, so I don't buy much/any meat).
There are things that I like that, without coupons, are cost prohibitive. For example, Starbucks Double Shots (sold in small cans, in 4-packs). The shelf price was something like $5.79. That's something I will usually pass up no matter how much I like them because I just can't justify almost $6 for 4 small cans, but today I had a $2/1 coupon and I bought them because with the coupon, the cans were less than a dollar apiece.
Many times I will try a new product that I might not have tried if I have a coupon. Philadelphia Cooking Creme is one such product. A while back I had a coupon for it AND I had a recipe that someone said it worked well with. I might not have tried it but the coupon made the product a low enough risk that if I didn't like it I wouldn't feel I'd wasted a lot of money. Turns out it DOES work very well in that recipe.
Unfortunately, there is no coupon for a good night's sleep. I'd pay to get one of those! And it is way past bedtime so goodnight and happy bargain hunting!