Our Europe Trip: Part One

Nerdboy and I went on our first trip to Europe this May and June. I’m going to blog about our trip and the planning process leading up to it. I’ll be including some money saving tips and helpful information along the way! We spent months prepping for this trip; it was a full time job practically planning for it. I’m mostly writing this so I have the info for myself to look back on in the future, but if you like reading, I hope you enjoy it too! 😉

For the first post, I’m just laying out the basics. Where we went, how we got there, our favorites, etc. Future posts will share some more details!

We celebrated our first anniversary at the end of May so I wanted to plan our trip around that. I also wanted to avoid the summertime vacation rush and heat (that backfired a little because we had plenty of 90 degree days in May still!). Our trip was the most incredible thing I have ever done. As much as I loved our wedding (weddingmoon in Jamaica last year), this trip was far superior. We have both been to the Caribbean multiple times, stayed at Sandals and all-inclusive resorts before, traveled with family before, and we’ve been together for 9 years so the married life really wasn’t new to us (it’s great, don’t get me wrong). But Europe, Europe was new. It was exciting, it was far away, it was scary, it was just us, and it was totally unknown to the both of us. Thankfully, it turned out to be the greatest thing I’ve ever done and not a complete nightmare.

We both had dreamed of Europe most of our lives. Our first step when planning out or trip was writing down the countries, cities, and sites we wanted to see.

My list: Santorini (Hello, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants!), Paris (Eiffel Tower, duh), London (Harry Potter Studio Tour), and Italy (mostly Rome because of the Colosseum).
Mike’s list: London, Paris, Barcelona/Spain (He wasn’t picky, he just wanted Spain), Italy, Athens.

Like any old, married couple, our hopes and dreams overlapped almost perfectly. After lots of research we decided a cruise would help us get to more countries and cities without worrying about planes/trains, hotels, and food everywhere. We found a fantastic cruise that covered Athens, Santorini, South France, a few stops in Italy and ended in Barcelona. It was a luxury cruise (so you didn’t have to pay for sodas and alcohol separately!) and we planned to fly into London, train to Paris, fly to Athens to catch the cruise and then end in Barcelona. While waiting for Mike’s work to approve our trip, the cruise booked up and we were back to square one, with two months left until I wanted to travel. We are both also procrastinators which isn’t always the best when planning a big trip. For best results, I’d recommend planning more than two months out. While we didn’t have too much trouble booking flights and hotels a month (and some hotels were booked as little as 2 weeks) before, the selection and prices may have been better if we booked earlier.

Now that we we were on our own, we picked our top places (5 countries, 7 cities), had to narrow some down (sorry, Venice), looked at a map of Europe, and started looking at flights (Santorini to Rome for instance only flew twice a week and I really wanted to be in Santorini on our anniversary. And we had to book our tickets for the Harry Potter Studio ASAP as options were already extremely limited, so we had quite the challenge to figure out!). Two months before travel time, we finally found the perfect route based on the days we wanted to be gone. We made sure to include two weekends and a federal holiday which saved us 5 days off work. We came home on a Friday evening which gave us a whole weekend to recover (best idea I had). Here’s the itinerary:

  • Day 0 (Left Dulles airport that evening)
  • Day 1 (Arrived in London, England around 11am – Spent the day exploring London)
  • Day 2 (Harry Potter Studio Tour!)
  • Day 3 (Left in the morning and took the Eurostar train to Paris – Spent the day exploring Paris)
  • Day 4 (Full day in Paris)
  • Day 5 (Site see in Paris until afternoon then go to the airport for Athens -landed after 1am)
  • Day 6 (Full day in Athens)
  • Day 7 (Site see in Athens until afternoon then go to the airport for Santorini -landed after 11pm)
  • Day 8 (Our anniversary – Full day in Santorini!)
  • Day 9 (Full day in Santorini)
  • Day  10 (Site see in Santorini then go to the airport for Rome – landed after midnight)
  • Day 11 (Full day in Rome)
  • Day 12 (Took the train from Rome to Naples/Pompeii then back to Rome)
  • Day 13 (Full day in Rome)
  • Day 14 (Site see in Rome then go to the airport for Barcelona- landed after 11pm)
  • Day 15 (Full day in Barcelona)
  • Day 16 (Full day in Barcelona)
  • Day 17 (Left Barcelona early, flight to London, flight back home to Dulles – awake for over 24 hours!)

At the end of the trip, we were tired and ready to go home. It probably didn’t help that our last two steps (Rome and Barcelona) were my least favorite by far! I’m so glad we got to see the Colosseum, Pompeii, Sagrada Familia, etc., but the cities didn’t bring me great joy like the others, totally a personal preference. I was also missing my bed, tacos and Costco. But, about a week after returning home, I was already planning for our next trip! Right around the 10 day mark is where we started to feel it. I don’t think I’d go anywhere for over two weeks again. Europe is huge obviously, but we were able to check off a lot of major places. We have lists of new places we’d like to visit (including some in the US that we’ve never seen) and places we can’t wait to return to (Paris, Greece, Greece, Athens, Santorini, Greece, Greek Isles, and Greece 😉 ) Can you see what our favorite was?

17 days

7 cities (London, Paris, Athens, Santorini, Rome, Naples/Pompeii, Barcelona)

7 flights (5 within Europe)

5 countries (England, France, Greece, Italy, Spain)

2 trains (3 if you count the return back to Rome)

In the next post, I’ll share more about booking flights, hotels, and finding places to eat, while being mindful of money! If you have any questions, feel free to let me know in the comments here or on the Facebook group!


Amazon: Baby Trend Sit and Stand Ultra Stroller just $44.48 shipped!

Amazon has a huge price drop on Baby Trend Sit and Stand Ultra Stroller just $44.48 shipped!

You must clip the $39.43 coupon! Price shows as $83 before coupon at checkout.


Amazon: Graco Car Seats, Strollers and Gear 35% off!

Here’s a great Amazon Deal of the Day for those of you with kiddos or with one on the way!

Gold Box Deal of the Day: Up to 35% off select Graco car seats, strollers and gear
The Graco Nautilus seat is only $92!

Amazon: Great Deals on Alex Toys! (Great for Easter baskets!)


I’d you’re looking for some non-candy Easter basket fillers, check out the Alex Toys on Amazon! Tons to choose from for all ages and some prices are over 50% off! I listed some above, but click through and find what works for you!

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Savvy Shopper’s Updates (Couponing, Gardening, Chickens & More!)

This is been the longest blogging break I have taken since I started blogging in 2010 (has it really been that long?). Things have been absolutely crazy here. I graduated in December, went on many vacations, and then started working. I work 50-60 hour weeks and when you tack on my commutes and sleeping, I have virtually no free time ever. I set aside Tuesday nights at 10 PM to catch the new Teen Mom (why is that show so addicting?). Multiple days go by each week where I don’t even open my laptop, which is absolutely crazy coming from the girl who used to be on it non-stop. I’m no complaining though, as I am so thankful to have a job, but it’s tiring. Most of the time, I don’t even have time to shave my legs, let alone blog! I really hope to be able to add at least a few new posts each week so I can stay connected to the great readers I had. I want to keep everyone updated on my shopping trips, my garden, the chickens, and my thrifting. I might even be able to throw in some good deals here and there. I highly, highly recommend you join the Savvy Shopper’s Group on Facebook. It is much easier for me to share on there, you can ask questions at any time. We share Swagbucks codes, our shopping trips, and anything else.

As you can see, the blog really needs a new lift. As of December, I am no longer a student so some things need to be updated. Nerdboy, the boyfriend and techie behind the blog, will work on it once he finds some free time. He’s still in school and working and he seems to have less free time than I do.



I’ve been couponing every week! As long as I stay on a routine I can get things done. CVS has been really sucky since Black Friday, do you agree? We used to walk out of there with free Gilette razors and money makers all the time. Now we’re lucky if we see one measily freebie each week. Maybe I’m being greedy, but the deals have been so slow. My mom has been doing ShopRite each week (Glen Burnie, MD ShopRite is still doubling $1 coupons) and we usually go to Safeway for a small trip when we can. My goal is to start posting my shopping trips, at the very least. I also need to update everyone on thrifting, chickens and the garden!


I got these shoes at Value Village for $13. They are practically new. I’ve been looking for a pair of shoes just like this for years and finally found a pair that my cheap butt would buy 😉


Some stuff Nerdboy picked up for me!


This was a GREAT thrifting day in February.

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Probably about a third of my collection of Vintage Pyrex

I still continue to thrift every week. Now that I’m not going to school, I’m far from my favorite thrift shops that I used to frequent. Nerdboy so graciously goes for me every once in awhile. I go to flea markets when possible (snow and cold make this difficult). I pick up Pyrex as much as I can. I collect vintage Pyrex for my personal collection, which has grown SO MUCH over the years and I also pick up stuff to resell. I have a pretty good eye for things I can flip and make a buck off of, whether it be Pyrex that I don’t personally collect, other vintage kitchen items, or even kid’s toys. I use money that I make from my personal sales (whether it be reselling items I thrift or make/craft) to pay for all of my expenses. I use Paypal for selling, so all my profit lies in my Paypal account. I use a Paypal Debit card (highly reccomend) for all my purchases so it’s a great cushion to have. I haven’t had to touch the money out of my actual bank account for months, probably a year, with the exception of student loans that I pay off in large chunks from my paychecks. If you’re into the Instagram thing and don’t mind pictures of my thrift finds (mainly Pyrex), chickens, and me selling stuff (yes, mainly Pyrex or old stuff), follow me @brandilabarre. I even post my shopping trips sometimes!


Tilling my garden

The chickens are doing well. If you remember from the Fall, Luna (our littlest Barred Rock) wasn’t doing well. She was so sick that she lived in my bedroom for a month or so. We nursed her back to health and she has been living outside since December. She’s still a bit slow and will not hang out with the other girls. Luckily they don’t really pick on her anymore, but they certainly aren’t friends. When they sleep at night, Bonnie, Biscuit, and Ginger all snuggle together and Luna is by herself at least 2 feet away. Poor girl, but she’s hanging in there. Only two chickens are laying eggs. I think the cold weather and shorter days convinced Ginger and Luna to stop laying this winter. Bonnie and Biscuit lay an egg almost every single day. They rock! I hope the other girls step it up since it’s March already! Now that the snow is melted, they get to play outside as much as possible. They till my garden all up and that makes me so happy (until I have plants in there)! We’re still talking about bringing some new babies into the coop in coming months.

As far as gardening goes, it has officially started for 2014! I got seeds planted already and my lemon and lime trees are here in Maryland. I planted lettuce, spinach and green onion seeds in pots. It’s still a bit nippy here, but I’m hoping they’ll grow. The left half of my garden is looking really good. Last year it was filled with a good bit of yummy compost, I just recently added some horse manure that I got for free off Craigslist months ago from a lady 3 minutes away (thank you, ma’am!), and I’ve been constantly tossing in the mess from the chicken coop. The right side of the garden still needs a lot of work. I’m thinking of adding 3 raised beds and filling with good dirt and more manure because I’ve struggled with that sandy soil for just too long. I’ll update with more pictures when I can.

So, if you got through all that, I just want to say thank you for sticking with me. I thought I was busy when I was in school, but working is just so much more time consuming. I headed out for another vacation next week, but I’ll hopefully stay in touch from now on 🙂

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Savvy Student Shopper – Updates: Vermont to Florida, Publix, CVS, and Citrus Tress!


The Savvy Student Shopper survived skiing and negative temperatures in Vermont last week and is now spending time in Florida!


Yesterday was pretty rainy so we went shopping! I went to CVS (twice this week) and to Publix! Publix is similar to an amusement park for any seasoned couponer. No matter the week, there’s always a super deal (or 15) there! Their BOGO sales allow you to use 2 coupons per pair, there are many, many Publix store coupons for extra savings, plus most of their stores accept competitor coupons, and some even double Manufacturer’s coupons. You just can’t go wrong shopping at Publix. I wish they were in Maryland! I spent about $14 on everything pictured above.

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Before leaving for Florida, I went to CVS to grab some deals. I think I paid just about tax for the items above. Christmas clearance was 90% (inlcuding candy) so I grabbed the Hershey’s Kisses for $0.39 — score! I got $10 back from the Bayer Contour, $4 from Sundown, $5 from PediaCare, and $3 from Colgate.

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And then when I got to Florida, I grabbed 6 packs of Tena ($9 money maker!!) and my mom wanted those Green Tea diet pills. They were $19.29 each originally, but I think we got them all for like $12 after coupons, ECBs, and overage from the Tena. I have absolutely no faith in those pills (or that entire section of ‘As Seen on TV’, ‘Dr. Oz sponsored’, or ‘Jillian Micheal’s’ products for that matter) but she has been wanting to buy them. The instruction booklet that comes in the box gives you a 2 week diet and exercise plan to follow. Mom said the reviews on their website were great (well, obviously) but she’s also not understanding that the pills aren’t magic and the results are only shown in the people who follow their diet and exercise routine for an extended period of time. She has zero intentions of following their suggested plan. Oh well. At least she didn’t pay full price for them, right?

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This morning also started off kind of rainy so instead of heading to the pool, we spent the afternoon at the huge flea market nearby. It’s mostly indoors and it’s mostly filled with junk. I’m a flea market junkie and this is not my kind of flea market. It’s filled with new stuff, cheap plastic toys, refurbished laptops, fake jewelry, As Seen on TV items, leopard print leggings, foot massagers, body vibrators, Bath Fitter’s salesmen, and items from a drug store that closed 11 years ago. But, there’s a great aisle that’s filled of produce and at least half of it is local. We like to get oranges, strawberries, peppers, tomatoes and herbs. I also found a nice man that was selling plants. I purchased a Meyer Lemon and Lime tree (technically it’s a centennial kumquat tree, but he said they just taste like limes) from him for $12 each. I’ve been eyeing up a Meyer Lemon tree that I was going to buy online but that would have run around $100 shipped, so I figured I’d buy it here and save the money. I fly back to Maryland next week, but my grandparents will drive my trees home when they come back to Maryland in April. The trees will enjoy their Florida weather more than Maryland weather anyway. Both varieties are pretty cold tolerant so I’m hoping they’ll survive back home, but I’ll bring them inside for the winter next year. Both trees already have baby fruit on them. I’m pretty excited to add some new fruit to my back yard! I have 2 varieties of apples, a cherry tree, mulberry tree, blueberry bush, strawberries, blackberry and black raspberry vines, and now citrus!

And that’s all for tonight! Time to get some sleep because there’s another (better) flea market I’d like to hit in the morning before we spend the day poolside.

Savvy Student Shopper = No Longer a Student! + Updates on Everything!


Hello! Is anyone still reading? 😉 My last blog post has been way too long ago. As the semester came to an end, I had papers to write, projects to finish, and then exams to study for. I was making and shipping ornaments like an elf, plus I’ve been reselling a lot of the vintage finds I’ve accumulated and have no space for. Then, I graduated! And then there was Christmas, which included parties, family, friends, and lots of food. Now that I am no longer a student (what do I do with myself after being a student for like 16 long years?) I think I need to make some changes to the blog, most importantly, the name! One of these days, I’ll be changing the name and blog decor (actually, Nerdboy will). I’ll keep everyone posted on the new link and all that jazz. I’ll also have to change the name of my Facebook Page and probably the Group, too. And Twitter. Oh, what a headache.


I haven’t been couponing in ages! I’m also headed out of town until late January so I can’t see too much couponing in my near future either. I have 3 trips planned, with less than 2 days home in between, but I’ll keep you guys posted on my whereabouts. I’ll end my adventures in sunny Florida! YAY! I’m sure I’ll make a few trips to Publix while I’m there since it’s only a golf cart ride away 🙂

My hope is to continue this blog in whatever free time I can get a hold of after I get back from my trips. I’m accepting a job that starts when I get home that’ll be 50 long hours a week. I’m already exhausted just thinking about it. I’m hoping I can find a blogging routine like I used to have. My goal is to focus less on the short term deals (i.e. not posting every freebie or hot store deal) and focus on writing posts that share a bit about what I enjoy (i.e. thrifting, canning, raising chickens, frugal living, getting things for free, and of course, couponing). I got a chicken cam for Christmas so now I can watch my babies LIVE from inside and outside the coop. Maybe I’ll be able to share some chicken streaming with you guys soon?! I hope you’ll stick around to see what’s in store for the Savvy Student Shopper (can I even say that anymore?)! If you have any creatives names for my “new” blog, feel free to shout them out! You can also email me ([email protected] or post on the Facebook Group). I haven’t even begun to think about my new name!

Although I have been totally MIA on here, I have been continuing my frugal ways out in the real world! All my gifts from Amazon were paid for with Amazon gift cards thanks to Swagbucks! Love them! I used credits from online websites to pay over $150 worth of gifts. I used eBay to score a lower than retail price on a gift for my sister. And, of course, I took advantage of sales and coupons for many other gifts in store! I gave out dozens of homemade jams, jellies, canned peaches, relishes, and more. All that canning craziness over the summer paid off because it took me less than minutes to have numerous gift baskets made for people.

I also want to thank everyone that ordered personalized bottled cap ornaments for Christmas presents this year. I worked my butt off getting them out! I got at least 20 TIMES the number of orders than I did last year, and it keeps going up every year! I think we’re on year #3 of making ornaments! Next year I might need to hire an elf because I’m not sure how much longer Nerdboy will work for free. The profits helped me pay for Christmas gifts for my family and friends (as that money went right into Paypal and I never had to take from my bank account this month!) and also towards college.

I’m leaving right now for my adventure #1. I hope you all have a fantastic New Year!

Join the Savvy Student Shopper’s Facebook Group!


Just a reminder! 🙂

Hi friends! The Savvy Student Shopper has expanded into a Group on Facebook and would love if you could join!

Facebook is making it awfully hard for pages to reach fans, so I’m hoping this group will make it easier for us to connect.

In this group, I will post all the deals and even more, including my pictures, clearance deals, hot deals, and questions. I want this to be a space for everyone to connect. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to ask questions, share deals, trade coupons, and post trips.

Just head on over HERE and request to join the group. For now, I’ll be keeping the group “closed” (meaning I have to accept all new members individually) so what you post and “Like” in the group doesn’t show in your news feeds. I know not everyone in your 500 Facebook friends want to know your crazy couponing stories 😉 so this is a place you can join people like you!

If you haven’t already, you can like my Page on Facebook, follow me on Twitter , Instagram (@brandilabarre) and Pinterest.


Savvy Student Shopper’s Updates & More!


Hi everyone! I hope you guys are enjoying summertime. I just got back from a little beach vacation; it was much, much needed. In the coming days I’ll have some new posts up, like garden updates, chicken stories (have they laid eggs yet?!), thrifty finds, and more.

I have not been able to spend much time blogging lately. I have very little free time, and most of the time I’m too tired in my free time to do anything productive! We’ll see what this semester brings, come September. Sometimes it’s easier to blog around classes but we’ll have to see. Have I mentioned this is my last semester? I’ll have my Bachelor’s degree in just a few short months. Paying off these student loans is the only thing on my mind though. On a similar note, SavvyStudentShopper.com will need a new name! In the near-ish future, I’ll probably have some sort of giveaway or suggestion opportunity to name my new site. I have no idea where to begin! The Savvy Super Shopper? Smart Savvy Shopper? Frugal Savvy Shopper? I’m not even close!

My wonderful assistant, Nerdboy, did some work on my blog recently. He changed something with the server or something like that. As you can tell, I don’t run my own site; I have a lot of help! If you do run into any problems (links not directing, pages not loading, etc.) please let me know so we he can fix it.


Coupon Rules: For the Newbies

I dug this post out from deep down in my blog world; please read if you haven’t already! 🙂

As a friendly reminder, I wanted to give all the new couponers a heads up on coupon usage. I think it’s absolutely wonderful that people want to start using coupons but you cannot go crazy.

My advice to you: pick one drugstore and one grocery store to start out with. Please don’t try to do CVS, Rite Aid, and Walgreens every week, you will get more than enough for your family with just one or two drugstores, PLUS your OOP is going to be more with an added drugstore. (You’ll also be known as the lady that runs around trying to tackle every deal every week, and that’s really not so cute. I promise, within a few months you’ll have plenty of things your family needs that you were able to get cheap). Also, pick stores that are conveniently located near home, work, school etc. I love ShopRite, but if ShopRite (or another great grocery store) is 40 minutes away, don’t count on that being your go-to store! We have very busy lives, and couponing needs to be convenient if you want to stick with it. Get familiar with a more convenient store, you’ll score the deals one way or another.

And now I’ll move onto the “legal” issues with the coupons. First of all, if you break a coupon “rule” the store might not get its money back! That’s stealing, people! And it’s wrong! Be very, very cautious starting out. Don’t go crazy and start using and buying without knowing what you are doing. The reason some stores are not coupon friendly is because of people like this that abuse the system. Those people are the reason I struggle to coupon shop at many stores without being looked at as a criminal. We shouldn’t have to go through all this crap because some people can’t respect the coupon rules.

LIMITS: Some coupons have limits. Almost all Procter and Gamble coupons state: Limit one per purchase. Limit 4 like coupons per transaction. This means you can buy 4 toothbrushes and use 4 coupons, not 5, that would be wrong. Some coupons state: Limit one coupon per transaction/customer. This means you need to get in line again to be able to use more than one coupon. ALL coupons say limit one per purchase, which means if you have a $1/1 coupon and find a $1/1 peelie on that product, you choose ONE OR THE OTHER, not both.  Only one coupon can be used per item bought.

Some store policies limit you the number of like coupons. The ShopRite coupon policy limits 4-like coupons per transaction. It doesn’t matter if your store/cashier enforces it or not, it’s the policy, and we should respect it. The new Rite Aid coupon policy has the same limit.

Restrictions: This may seem silly, but I hate to see people abusing this. Many coupons have size/variety exclusions! If you aren’t allowed to use the coupon on anything less than the 10 oz size, then don’t! It doesn’t matter if the register “didn’t beep” or if the cashier didn’t notice. That’s wrong. Use the coupon on what it says. If the coupon is for “Quick Cook” pasta, don’t use it on the normal stuff! Also, read the coupon. If you have $1 off any Tide, then yes, it can be used on travel size, even if the picture is of a bottle. If the coupon says $1 off 2, then you must buy two. Read it carefully.

Shelf Clearing: Shelf clearing is wrong. With the economy the way it is today and the “Extreme Couponing” show I’m seeing new couponers pop up everywhere. It’s really difficult to watch some people in the store try to shop like them. The show is staged. They don’t make those trips every week. And they order stock and coupons to make the show “extreme”. With some time, an ad-preview, and lots of coupons, anyone could do what they do, I promise. Clearing the shelves isn’t cute. There are so many other shoppers out there that would really like that item. It’s really not their fault if they can’t wait in front of the store at 6 AM every Sunday for it to open. Why do you want to be known as the “lady who waits for the drugstore doors to open every Sunday morning”  anyway? There are so many better things to be known as in life, really. I love my deals as much as the next couponer, but sales cycle all the time! If the store is sold out, get a rain check or wait for the next sale. It’s okay. And if you do get there early, don’t clear the shelf!

Expiration Dates: Another simple rule, but one that may get looked over. Coupons expire, some within a week after you receive them! The majority of places will not let you use expired coupons because the store doesn’t get reimbursed for them after awhile! So just double check the dates before you use them. If a coupon isn’t listed in my match-ups, make sure it isn’t expired before you think you got yourself a deal.

Copying Coupons: Copying coupons is a big, big, big NO-NO! Every printable coupon has its own ID Number. Copying a coupon means there are multiples of the exact same ID# floating around, and that’s wrong! Copying coupons is FRAUD; the fines are hefty; and you’d be a criminal (We’ll add that to the not-so cute list, too). Typically, you’re allowed 2 prints on each printable coupon per computer. Of course, some coupons are limited to one per computer, sometimes more, but NEVER copy them. You can print your coupons in Black and White, I do it all the time, I’m frugal. Yes, many times I’ve been accused of copying my coupons, but when I point out different numbers on each coupon the cashier needs to stop their accusations. Do they realize they make color copiers too? Jeeze. Anyway, don’t copy your coupons. Don’t ruin it for the rest of us.


Doubles: (And Triples!) My local readers and I are extremely lucky that the majority of our grocery stores double. Many, many states/regions are not this fortunate. Do not take advantage of the store with these doubles and triples. With Triples, your store could potentially be paying for two thirds of your grocery bill! Please be respectful! Doubles/Triples is a very, very kind gesture these stores are doing for us. Yes, it gives them more business, but it’s their own money they are losing. It’s even more money loss for them if you use those coupons wrong. Also, some coupons say “Do Not Double”, if the barcode starts with a 5, they should automatically double. If the barcode starts with a 9, they will not double, like the Excedrin coupon pictured.

Store Policies: Almost every store has a corporate coupon policy. Print them out and bring it every time. (CVS does not have a coupon policy, fyi). When there’s a problem at checkout, pull out the policy and let the cashiers know. The cashiers (and even managers –Walmart-) may not know the policy. I can’t guarantee that they’ll listen to you or even look at the policy in your hands (Good ‘ol Walmart, right there) but keep the policies in your binders, purse, bags, etc at all times. Better to be safe than sorry. And when all else fails, call/write/email corporate. Don’t let the stores get away with treating you that way for trying to save your family money.


I hope this will help the newbies out there start out their savvy coupons adventures, while couponing with integrity! Always start small (BABY STEPS) and cautious. Don’t jump into every store and every deal. Take some time to read deals and skim coupons before even heading to the stores. Get familiar with coupons, deals, and policies before taking the plunge. I researched couponing for months before making my first appearance with coupons at the stores, and it paid off very well. I wasn’t afraid to do anything wrong and I knew the policies well because I researched first. And always remember, your OOP (how much you spend) is ALWAYS more important than how much you saved. If buying huge quanities and going to 7 stores every weeks means you saved $758, how much was your OOP? Did you really save any money? Or did you still spend the same last week without coupons? Stick to buying what you need and you’ll see a difference in your spending in no time.

As always, Happy Couponing! And if you have any questions shoot me an email. I’d much rather you ask me a “silly” question before doing something wrong at the store and hurting all of us. Next up, a post on how to organize those coupons!