Quick Tips to Help You Spot a Fake Coupon
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5 Quick Tips to Help You Spot a Fake Coupon

Posted on Thursday, February 11th, 2016 at 7:00 am
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Are you sure that amazing coupon is real? Here are some tips to help you spot a fake coupon.How can you tell a fake coupon from a legitimate one? There are several clues that can help you spot a fake coupon. Experienced couponers might already be aware of some of these tips. For them, the trick is to prevent themselves from getting so excited over a coupon that looks too good to be true, and realize that it is actually a fake.

How to Spot a Fake Coupon

1. No Expiration Date
What is the expiration date on that coupon? There should be one.! The only exception to that rule is with coupons that come directly from the manufacturer. Even those have the words “No Expiration Date” on the front of them. Typically, it is not easy to find those kinds of manufacturer coupons. If you found a coupon with no expiration date – it is probably a fake coupon.

2. It Wasn’t Free
Coupons are supposed to be free. They come to you via the inserts in your Sunday newspaper, or through an email from a legitimate brand. You can find a bunch of free coupons on the website of the grocery store that you have a loyalty card with. It doesn’t make sense to spend money in order to obtain coupons.

If you are asked to pay for coupons – say no! It is not legal to sell coupons. There is no consumer protection option for people who buy coupons and end up with ones that are expired or fake.

3. It Looks Photocopied
It is not legal to make additional copies of a coupon. (Doing so is called coupon fraud). Most coupons are printed in two or more colors. If the coupon you found is black and white, that is a sign that it is a fake coupon. There is no good reason to try and use that coupon because the cashier isn’t going to accept it.

4. It Came from Facebook
Ok, that probably sounds a bit cynical. However, there is good reason to avoid the coupons that you find on Facebook. Thieves have started using Facebook to trick honest people into giving the thief their personal information by offering what appears to be a fantastic coupon. It may be safer to just skip the coupons that are on Facebook and stick to more legitimate coupon sources.

5. It Came From a Pop-Up
Have you ever been online, browsing the internet, when a pop-up ad appears? It might cover over part of the website you were looking at, or it could appear after you close your browser. That pop-up might have what looks like a great coupon on it. The pop-up may tell you to click a link in order to get the coupon.

Don’t do it! There is no way to know what that link is connected to. You may think you are about to receive a coupon, but could end up with a nasty computer virus instead.

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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.