Couponing 101

New to couponing? It takes a little while to get the hang of things. but the time you invest will really pay off!

First I want to say welcome!  This site is not just for those that are on a budget. I also feature all sorts of freebies and great online deals to get you the biggest bang for your buck!

The world of couponing can be a little overwhelming at first. If you are willing to dedicate a little time and a little energy to learning the basics, you can easily start shaving 50% or more off your grocery bill each week (and you will probably start buying higher quality products!)

So how does it all work? You want to keep 2 key principles in mind:

1. Buy Low
2. Stock Up

Simple. You want to buy at the lowest price possible for the products that you need. And once they reach that rock bottom price, you simply stock up to last until the next sale!

Once those products hit that low price that you like, well then you add on the coupons and get an even better deal! Once you get the hang of it, using coupons can actually be really fun and very simple to do. At My Frugal Adventures, I hope to make the entire process very easy for you. If you are willing to invest a few hours a week, you should be able to put a few hundred dollars back in your savings account each and every month.

So here are the very basics that you need to get started:

1. TIME. I really suggest you set aside a little time each week and start reading as much as you can to learn about how to pull everything together. I have tons of resources for you listed below.

2. GET A PRINTER and a NEWSPAPER. You will need to start getting coupons! So the two best ways to do that are via the internet (and I post tons and tons of printable coupons each week) and in your Sunday Paper. The coupons will be different and you really want to have access to both types of coupons. This is also the point where you need to consider how much time and energy you want to put into using coupons each week. For our family, I have 3 newspaper subscriptions and that is more than enough. If you have a large family or if you live quite a distance from stores etc.. you might want to consider more newspaper subscriptions- because obviously the more coupons you have the more products you can buy!

3. START CHECKING THE ADS! Then you will want to start watching for the deals at stores that are in your area. I typically do matchups for CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, Target, Safeway and Raley’s Bel Air stores. There are lots of others that I post match-ups on a weekly basis- so you can click on the “Stores” tab at the top of the web site to find a store near you.

4. The weekly coupon matchups for each store will tell you exactly where you can find the coupons and will highlight the very best possible deals. So you can just print the deals you are interested in and collect the coupons and you are on your way!

So here at My Frugal Adventures, my philosophy is that you put in a little time and a little energy and you can really save big.

Here are a few articles that might help you get started:


5 Lessons I Learned Using Coupons

What the heck is SS and RP?

Your Guide to Couponing Acronyms

What is a Catalina?

Regional Differences in Newspaper Coupons


How to Determine a Grocery Budget


How to get free item coupons!
Creating a Price Book (and my personal price book)
Don’t feel like bothering to use coupons? Save at the grocery store without any coupons.

And finally, if you have a few minutes to watch these videos- here are a few topics I have covered:

How to get the best coupons…
How to Save Big at the Grocery Store
U-Promise: Free College Savings Program

{ 56 comments… read them below or add one }

Michelle January 7, 2012 at 8:09 AM


Hi my name is Michelle, and I’m having a baby. I’ve been to other areas in the state and I’d say that my county is relatively inexpensive compared to others, however I want to maximize my savings as much as possible because I’ll be out of work when the baby’s born (single parent household). I have not completely finished reading all of your articles for couponing but I’m not sure that I’m really getting it. I feel like I understand the process, but starting is my problem (hopefully that makes sense). Getting coupons and finding sales is not too hard, because those are seemingly separate things …. applying them as one is where I get confused :-( . Any advice, tips, etc would be extremely helpful, PLEASE!?!?! I apologize for being repetitive, and please sign me up for your newsletter.

MARLA S. August 13, 2012 at 11:01 AM

My name is Marla, and I’m new to “couponing”. I’ve heard so many different ways to do this and it always seemed confusing till now. I really like the way you explain everything. However, I do have to ask… Do you have an icon that can be downloaded for easy access to this website? I use the internet on my Android phone more than any other way. It would be nice to just tap an icon to access this site. Especially while I’m learning all of this.
I can’t wait to let you know how great I’m doing after I really learn how to do couponing. Please sign me up for your newsletter as well. Thank you in advance for all your help.
Sincerely, Marla S.

Charlene August 13, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Thanks for the suggestion Marla, I will check on that. I signed you up for the daily emails- they go out at noon PST so just note anything that pops up after 12.00 will go out the next day. You should have an email that you need to click to confirm the subscription.

ladonna November 25, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Hey my name is ladonna. I have being hearing so much about couponing.im starting to get really confused.i end up forgetting what i just learned about couponing.but you made it very clear for me. So im going to do it your way and see how your way helps me.but anyways please sign me up for the newsletters to. Ill keep putting update on here to let you know how well im doing with the couponing. Thank you again

Tameka February 21, 2013 at 9:43 PM

Thank you for breaking everything down, making it very easy to understand. I do have one question. How do you know when something is a Stock up price? Especially, baby diapers and wipes, razors, shampoo and conditioner, etc.? Thanks again.

Charlene February 21, 2013 at 9:55 PM

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