Friday, October 30, 2009

Is Using Coupons Really Green??

So as some of you may remember Hubby has been out of work since June and I've really started to dabble in the fine Art of Couponing. I didn't realize how much many mom's and people just lust after the allure of Couponing.

Part of the whole coupon thing has been good and sometimes I can see why its such a waste and is NOT very green. Here are some of my reasons why....

1. Coupons are printed on paper. You can't escape the fact that they are either printed in Newspapers, given away somewhere or printed off from online sources -- paper in some form or fashion has be involved to get the savings.

2. If you do print @ home, you use a lot of printer ink. Now hopefully you recycle your ink cartridge or refill it somewhere, but printing these coupon suckers uses a lot of ink. Because I have a color printer it naturally prints colored ink all over some of my coupons which in turn makes me use more ink then I want to even THINK I'm using. And no, I haven't figured out how to print only in black and white when I print from online sources.

3. If I don't use the coupon or it expires before I use it, I wasted what I printed from offline. I don't even want to think about how much I've wasted in this area. Yes, I'll admit at times I printed off coupons in "hopes" I'll use it, but then it doesn't happen

4. Coupons are generally for items wrapped in WAY too much packaging or are for items that are just plain NOT good for you. There never seems to be a shortage of coupons for junk foods like Pop Tarts or Corn Syrup laden cereals. I wish that more "natural" or Organic food producers would be more generous with their coupons!! But because major manufactures out there fill the market with foods we can't seem to get enough of which makes their prices lower, it pushes the little natural food coupons out of the running and they can't offer such savings. Don't even get me started on items wrapped in too much packaging. That's a given RIGHT there. I can't let myself fall into that trap!!

5. Coupons make us spend more money then we originally intend to. Now I'm not one of those consumers that buys something just because I have a coupon, for me the coupon has to be worth it and none of this "buy 2 save $0.50" junk. I want my coupons to be at least $1 or more off the item. Doubling a coupon is great if I could figure out a store that does that around here.

So while I do think using a coupon can be effective for many people, please consider what you are buying first before you either print off a coupon or buy that Sunday paper just for the coupons.
Here are some great things about coupons or ideas on what to do with them!
*Coupons can be used to get things for free! Follow coupon blogs or sites to find the best deals. There are truly people out there that scour ads and then tell you where you can find the best deals, including Free items.
*Coupons that you don't use while at the store just set them next to the item for someone else who might truly use it. Consider it as "Paying it forward" for that next person and bless them with something you might otherwise throw out.
*They are recyclable! ;)
*Coupons are a great way to teach kids to save money. Noah is really into finding great deals and he's started to grow accustomed to seeing us use coupons at many things.
*There are coupons out there not just for grocery items. Consider searching for coupons for local activities and events. We usually find coupons for things like the Zoo all the time. Its worth it!
*Coupons can save you money! I don't deny that one and I'm getting really into seeking out coupons while using the grocery ads at the same time. That way I can find a coupon for the items I need and no more unnecessary printing or spending.
Happy Couponing!!


Cagle Clan said...

Just a little tip from a fellow coupon user :-)....
At you can select coupons and upload them right to your grocery card so there is NO printing or paper involved! Great, huh? You just get the discount automatically the next time you purchase that item. It's very cool.
Also, if you want to print without using color just go into your print options just before printing an item and select to print in Greyscale.
Hope that helps.

MKD said...

Great Tip Cagle Clan!
I heard you can do this as well with and link your Safeway card with coupons on there as well. Haven't tried it yet, but heard its out there!!

Cagle Clan said...

Sweet! I will check that out too. Thanks for all the great tips and info!!