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New Jersey mom can feed her family ... for free

Tips to Getting Your Groceries for Free?

Is the cost of food turning your grocery shopping plans into a stressful weekly event?

A New Jersey mom named Cyndi has figured out how to get a whole week's worth of groceries -- for free. 'I got started couponing because in our family we had some layoffs, our grocery bill was huge, and I had to make the cut somewhere,' Cindy explains.

Motivated and creative, she came up with a system that has her going beyond savings so she sometimes even gets money back from the store on purchases. Now, she keeps her budget in check and finds healthy foods for her family at the same time.

She starts by downloading coupons at home and then checks which stores (if any) in her area are offering double coupons.

Next, she writes a strict shopping list. If she finds a coupon on a manufacturer's website, she says she can 'stack' that in addition to a store coupon and get an overage of savings.

'Some stores will even give you cash back,' she said.

One of her other secrets goes against what might seem obvious: if you have a coupon for a specific product, don't think big. 'Buy the smallest package, because you're going to get the best bang for your buck,' Cindy explains.

'Taking the most money off on a smaller package is much better than buying a larger package.' That strategy helps her feed her family for a lot less money.

Do you have any great couponing tricks? Let us know in the comments below.

Join the discussion

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sharonsharky February 18 2014 at 3:11 PM

eveytime i use coupons i spend more money thats why i never use themfrom sharonsharky

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gidupgo February 18 2014 at 11:58 AM

Where we live, the grocery stores do not double the coupons, and all the coupons I see actually say "do not double" on them. Like someone else noted, most coupons tell you what size product you can use the coupon on, and even how many items you can use the coupon on. My wife and I do use coupons, and we do save on groceries, but it is a hassle and you have to have patience. We get only the Sunday paper, and I go right for the coupons and cut the ones we can or might use. Our local store does one thing for it's customers, well, actually two. We are allowed to use the store coupon plus the manufacturer's coupon on the same item. They also will accept manufacturer's coupons up to one month past the printed expiration date, so if the item does not go on sale during the life of the coupon, there is an additional month to use it just in case it goes on sale. It is usually our luck that after the coupon expires completely, then the item goes on sale. But, all that being said, we save close to $1,000.00 a year in coupons for groceries, so I do think it is well worth it to sit down on Sunday afternoon and clip coupons.

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1 reply
summerchaser gidupgo February 18 2014 at 12:52 PM

first when u get coupons online change your zip code........

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Julie February 18 2014 at 5:06 PM

I don't do much shopping. hate to cook ...prefer to go out and have someone else do the cooking and dishwashing. Works 4 Me

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kentarawolfe February 18 2014 at 11:21 AM

That's great....but our problem is, we have so many food allergies in our family, we can't buy the items that are normally on sale or have coupons. Since dairy and eggs had to be cut from my family's diet, our food bill has tripled if not more! Not to mention that when I do find coupons, our area Walmart will fight me on using the printed ones. It's such a hassle, I don't even try anymore :( I love Publix, but again, we just can't afford shopping there all the time. They do have great sales, but not on all the special items we have to buy. Sure wish we could find a way to save more $$$

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1 reply
creginalan kentarawolfe February 18 2014 at 1:32 PM

Go to your local Publix and tell them what you said here and they will try to help you. They are the most discount & coupon friendly store around. Sometimes, they even substitute a healthier alternative on their store discounts if you explain your health and economic challenges.

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georgettec28 February 18 2014 at 11:17 AM

Why are older, and acceptable comments cut? By doing this, the natural flow of the posting conversation is stymied.

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desmoi225 February 18 2014 at 11:01 AM

That's fine if you can find a grocery store in your area that takes double coupons. Here in South Florida there are none. As far as this lady is concerned, what is she doing getting groceries for her grown children who look to be in their mid and upper 20's?

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2 replies
boricua92579 desmoi225 February 18 2014 at 11:08 AM

Just because they look it, doesnt mean they are...

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1 reply
desmoi225 boricua92579 February 18 2014 at 1:04 PM

Baloney, you'd have to be blind not to know they are well over 21

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georgettec28 desmoi225 February 18 2014 at 11:15 AM

I think it's a business now so she makes money from it. Her grown kids are just the lucky recipients for some of her savings.

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nordengto February 18 2014 at 10:53 AM

Coupons take time but are worth it. Drugs stores like Walgreens , CVS and Rite aid have store reward programs that often can pay you for buying certain items. What is nice too is the grocery stores have furl points and you still get points for the free items.
I love coupons. Rachel Ray is awesome too with all her recipes and making dressings it is not only great tasting but saves money.

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1 reply
jteasdale nordengto February 18 2014 at 12:33 PM

A lot of stores do offer those fuel points but sometimes that sounds better than it really is. What I found is that I can shop at the store in town that has cheaper grocery prices and save more money than I can by shopping at the higher priced place that gives fuel points. If you get 20cents off per gallon for example, and your vehicle uses 15 gallons, you have only saved $3 on that fuel purchase but you can usually save a lot more than $3 on your groceries by shopping at a lower priced store. Fuel points are just a marketing technique to get you into the store.

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Cisco February 18 2014 at 10:40 AM

I admire anyone who is creative enough to survive on less and still live relatively well. We are too ofren told by Madison Avenue that he HAVE TO HAVE so much of what does not make our lives more worthwhile.

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CouClipper February 18 2014 at 5:28 PM

It doesn't take a lot of time to do couponing like it appears on the "Extreme Couponing" show. That is the "Extreme". You can go smaller and save significantly on a smaller scale. I buy the early addition of a large city newspaper here on Saturdays. It already has coupons in the inserts. I go through the coupon insert before I ever get out of the store because there "might be" something in there I could use and get at reduced price or free. I would rather put my $$ into the item then into the paper and with luck there will be addition coupons in the inserts I will/can use at a later date. If the coupons are good that weekend then I buy a package deal on Sunday of the local newspaper with the big city. Another price save because I get a better price then buying separately. I cut out ONLY the coupons I KNOW I will use or "Might" use. From years of shopping I know what sometimes goes on sale at a good price and I want to be ready for it. If I don't use the coupon,. so be it, I throw it away because I know there will be others. You don't have to shop like the shoppers do on "Extreme" and it doesn't take a lot of time if you just do it on a small scale. Last May or June I purchased enough Paper Towels on sale that I didn't have to buy any until after Christmas. Same goes for Laundry Detergent. We are still using Liquid Laundry Detergent that I got for $1.60 a jug. In 1999,. I was going through $10,000 worth of coupon inserts a weekend taking what I wanted and discarding the rest. Krogers was doing "Turkey Bucks" that year (their last year),. Buy $30 worth of product get one Turkey Buck. Collect enough Turkey Bucks and get a Free 10-12 lb turkey. I collected enough "bucks" to get 28 free turkeys. Some I kept or gave family members and the rest I took to the local Food Center. I didn't spend more then $3.00 each time I collected a Turkey Buck because I bought in multiples and I bought......On Sale, Tem;orary Price Reduction and Reduced for Quick Sale. That year I was also able to donate 100 lbs or more of margarine EACH Summer Month to the local Food Center. I got the margarine Free. Eventually I had enough product collected that we lived off of it for about 4 years and I gave stuff away to family and people who needed help.

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waterbonesmama February 18 2014 at 7:03 PM

Grocery store goe through 12 week cycles with their sales, try to keep track of them to increase your savings. I "only" save 25-35% each trip to the store, that includes savings with my store card. I think I am a more typical couponer. I get what I need and only stock up if the item is really cheap, like cereal is on sale 4 for $10 and I have two coupons for 75cents off two boxes which are doubled at our neighborhood grocery store, so I get 4 boxes of cereal for $7, which normally go for $3.89 each, so I end up paying $1.75 a box. Combining sales and coupons, keeping track of cycles, only buying what you need, using a store loyalty card, these are ways for us "normal" people to save money on groceries. I can't believe it when people get groceries without at least a loyalty card, and pay full price for things they could save money on.

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