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Couponing 101 – How to Coupon Stack

This lesson on how to coupon stack is broken down into two videos. Keep scrolling down for the second video.

1. How to Coupon: Overview

First, a quick overview of how “couponing” works.

The basic gist of couponing is buying items at the right time such that you can get the item, at low, or rock bottom prices (lowest price possible).

What we do is wait until an item goes on sale and pair that sale with any existing coupons, such that it will be the lowest or close to lowest price on the item. We then buy multiple units of the item, so that we have enough until the next sale cycle. In this way, for many common household items, we never have to pay full price.

Every item in stores has a sale cycle. For grocery stores and consumable products, the sale cycle happens every 6-8 weeks, where you will see rock bottom prices.  For other seasonal items, the cycle may be longer. And for things like toothpaste, sale cycles happen much faster.

The couponing game isn’t about getting everything for free – even though that is always nice. The game of couponing is about paying near rock bottom prices on items we can stock up on for the future. Our families can often enjoy name brand products at below generic brand prices by simply rocking the sales cycles with coupons..

Here are the basic steps to couponing (we’ll cover each of them in detail later):

  • Collecting Coupons
  • Watch for Sales
  • Stack Coupons with Sales

Couponing 101: What is Coupon Stacking?

There are two major categories for coupons: “Manufacturer Coupons” and “Store Coupons”.

A “manufacturer coupon” is a coupon issued by the company that makes the product. For example, P&G issues the coupon for Pampers. So when we use a manufacturer coupon for Pampers diapers at a store, P&G will then reimburse that store for the value of that coupon.  These coupons will say “Manufacturer Coupon” on the actual coupon.

A “Store Coupon” is a coupon issued by the specific store. For example, the coupon will say “Target Coupon” or “CVS coupon” on the actual coupon. The specific store is not being reimbursed for these coupons by another company. The stores themselves (ie. Target) absorb the cost of these coupons as a way to attract people to visit and spend money at their stores.

Generally speaking, stores typically will allow one Manufacturer Coupon and one Store Coupon to be used on one item. We call this “Stacking Coupons” or “Stack Coupons” because we are using multiple coupons on the same item. However, you cannot use two Manufacturer Coupons on the same item.

how-to-stack-coupons-example

In the picture above, I had stacked a $1 off Manufacturer Coupon with a $2 off CVS Store coupon, and used it on a bottle of Tide that was on sale for $2.94. Thus making it free.

Note that Stacking Coupons is not the same as “Doubling Coupons”. Doubling coupons is a concept not available to every region. Some grocery stores and regions allow double coupons, which is simply a store promotion where the value of a manufacturer coupon is doubled (Up to a certain amount. Usually the amount is under $1).  For example, you have a coupon for $0.50 and your store allows doubling of coupons up to $0.50, then your $0.50 coupon will take off $1.00. Doubling Coupons is very regional and typically only at grocery stores; you’ll want to check with your local grocery store to see if they offer coupon doubling near you.

Every store will have their own coupon policy and some stores may not allow stacking of coupons.

Example of Stacking:

  • Target has Dial hand soap on sale this week for $2 per bottle.
  • There’s a $1.00 off one Manufacturer coupon and a $0.75 off one Target Coupon.
  • You can use both coupons on the sale price of the soap. Thus taking $1.75 off $2.00 and you can get the bottle of soap for $0.25.
NEXT: Couponing 101: Where to Get Coupons?

42 good-looking people commented…

Add your comment!
  1. 27

    Hello can you please tell me how to print more manufacturer coupons . My computer is only letting me print one of the gain laundry detergent 75 cents off. Or can I make copies of the one I already printed? Also I would like to know what” SS” means on a coupon I see they have a lots of avrebiations that make it really hard to understand.
    * I’m teying to start coupining . Thanks

    • 28

      Hey Debora. For most coupons you can get 2 prints per computer/device. Some coupons are limited to 1. If you want more coupons then you will need more devices. It is illegal to make copies of coupons so please don’t do it. You can get in big trouble for it. 🙂 SS means that coupon came from the SmartSource insert. If you have any other questions let me know. 🙂

  2. 29
    Yvonne Trujillo says:

    I’m really looking forward to getting started

  3. 31

    Okay.. so if I print 2 copies of a coupon from my computer, and then 2 copies of that same coupon from another computer, and then 2 more copies from a friend. I now have 6 copies of one coupon. Let’s say the coupon is for a candy bar. Could I then go buy 6 candy bars in one transaction and apply one coupon per candy bar and receive the discount per candy bar?

  4. 33

    Hello I am.New.and.I.So.wanna.learn.how.coupon any one.can give me.more tips thank you all
    Can this coupons be.sent thru mail ?

  5. 35

    Ty for the video link.
    I struggle lots trying to get my needs vs wants.
    I’m interested in learning how to become an effective coupon user.
    I appreciate all the hints too…
    Hopefully, I can figure all this out.

  6. 37
    Mary Ramos says:

    Hi Tina,
    My name is Mary and I was told to check your website out. My son is going off to college in the fall of 2017 and that’s the reason why I started to coupon. I am not a pro at it and have yet to learn so much and I hope to learn from you. So far I like what I see and read and feel its simple enough and I will try to use that knowledge when I go to store.
    Thank you for making it simple

  7. 39

    Hello Tina, I’m a silent reader of ur blog and really appreciate ur hard work and amazing deals u post. I have questions reg. stacking coupons at Rite aid. I got a $ off purchase coupon and KC catalina, do I need a fillers to use them?? Also can I use both together in one transaction?? Does these kind of coupon affect total spent towards Starting Point promotion?? Also if I use the KC catalina to repeat buy another $25 products will I still get another Catalina?? I will really appreciate ur response:)

    • 40

      Hey. The nice thing about Rite Aid is that they do not require filler items. You can stack those coupons together in the same transaction and they do not affect the total towards the Starting Points Promo. I’m not quite sure if the catalina will roll or not. Most of the time they do roll out Rite Aid. 🙂

  8. 41
    Claudia delgado says:

    Hello Tina I’m new in couponing i saw your website in instagram and was really excited to learn . Having 3 kids is a lot to spend hopefully this page and videos help me how to save and coupon . Thank you !!❤️

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