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Know coupon policies

One of the most important things I consider when picking a grocery store is its coupon policy. While there are many other factors to consider, a store’s coupon policy can make a difference in how much money you can save.

Coupon policies can be detailed and include a great deal of information. They can be confusing to decode, so the best thing to do is ask specific questions to determine what is allowed and what is not. By knowing the policy, you can plan shopping trips and be sure you are using coupons to the best of your advantage.

If you are unsure about what questions to ask, here are a few sample questions. Keep in mind there may be regional variations or even differences from store to store within the same chain.

•What is your store’s specific coupon policy?

•Where is this policy located for customers to view and print if needed?

•Does your store double or triple coupons?

•What day does your circular come out, and where can I find the circular?

•What day of the week does the new sale cycle start?

•Do you accept competitors’ coupons? If so, what stores does that include?

•Do you accept manufacturer’s coupons that have another store’s logo printed on them?

•Will you substitute your house brand for a competitor’s house brand?

•Do you match sale prices? If so, what are the guidelines?

•Is there a limit on how many coupons you can use per transaction?

– Kasey Trenum,