Carefully Check that Coupon for Restrictions
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Carefully Check that Coupon for Restrictions

Posted on Thursday, January 14th, 2016 at 7:05 am
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Grocery CouponsDid you find an excellent coupon that you are excited to use? Everyone loves to save money, and coupons are an easy way to do that. Make sure you take the time to carefully check that coupon for restrictions. What looks like a great coupon at first glance might turn out to be so limited that it isn’t very useful at all.

Some coupon restrictions are easy to spot. Coupons that say “buy one, get one free” in big letters on the front of the coupon make it clear that in order to get the freebie, you need to buy one of the same kind of product. Coupons have expiration dates that restrict the time frame under which it can be used. Most people understand how those restrictions work.

Unfortunately, not all restrictions are easy to see. Companies are making coupons that have a ton of teeny tiny fine print on them. In that small, hard to read, portion, are additional restrictions. This tactic is a mean trick played by stores.

The stores know that people will come in if they have an excellent coupon that they want to use. They know that consumers who visit a store in order to use a coupon will very likely make additional purchases. So, the store produces what appears to be a really good coupon.

Unfortunately, the store also chooses to be sneaky and load up that coupon with tons of restrictions. Those restrictions are listed in very small print that is frequently located on the back of the coupon. Consumers don’t learn about those restrictions until they are already at the register. Obviously, the result is a lot of angry people who feel like they were tricked by a coupon.

Here are a few things to look for in the fine print restrictions part of a coupon:

Restaurant coupons might restrict what days of the week the coupon can be used, or may restrict use of the coupon to dinner, only.

Department store coupons might have restrictions that prevent a consumer from using that coupon to get a discount on items from certain sections of the store. Often, the coupon cannot be used on electronics – but it is not unheard of for other sections of the store to be restricted as well.

Is the store having a sale or a big clearance? The awesome coupon you got that influenced you to come into the store more than likely has a restriction that prevents you from using it on items that have already been discounted.

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.