I distinctly remember Oprah saying she didn’t clip coupons, because if she clipped coupons she would have to use the coupon, regardless of whether she needed the item or not. So clipping the coupon wouldn’t save her any money in the long run.
She may very well be onto something there, but she’s also Oprah. I think for some of the goods and services she’s using, there are no coupons yet invented. Unless being Oprah is kind of like being a coupon in and of herself, but that’s a little too meta even for me.
I don’t have the luxury of not using a coupon if there’s even a remote possibility of one being available. I have kids. And it’s amazing how they constantly need stuff. Like all the time. As they get older, it’s only getting worse. The clothes. My God, the clothes alone. And, yes, I do shop at thrift stores, and garage sales, as well as accept used hand-me-downs from friends and relatives, but sometimes there’s a special piece of clothing they need or pants without holes in them. Don’t get me started on shoes.
We get coupons in the mail all the time; little magazines full of them as well as coupons from individual stores. Every time a Kohl’s coupon for 30% off shows up, my husband groans.
I’ve started to get regular mailings from Lands End, which makes me happy because I like their stuff, but can’t justify the expense when I have to pay full price. For those in search of really good Lands End deals, every August they have a huge warehouse sale in Dodgeville, WI. I forget how it works, but as days pass, the percentage off keeps growing until the last day when it’s an extra 75% off or something like that. They also have flash sales at certain times throughout the week in different departments. And when I say it’s in a warehouse in the middle of August, I mean it’s in a warehouse in the middle of August. It’s hot. They have fans going and a few vendors (hello kettle corn) outside selling refreshments, but that’s it. Come hydrated or risk succumbing to the heat. Yes, there are fitting rooms to try things on and it is well organized. Worth the trip? If you love canvas totes or a good deal in general, perhaps. How much do you like Lands End?
I use coupons, but I don’t have to use coupons. I keep a running list of things I need in the back of my head, or on a piece of paper because my mind is no longer a steel trap. That way the next time a coupon shows up at my door, I’ll be ready to use it and perhaps by then, the item I needed may even be discounted further. Sometimes it works out that way. Time got away from me a while ago and a coupon I had expired. Thank goodness another one turned up a few weeks later. The key is waiting.