Learn How to Combine Coupons and Food Stamps for Savings
For every $100 in food stamps a household receives, that household increases the amount spent on food by anywhere from $50 to $60 each month. In the traditional economic models, households with a specific budget for groceries, such as $300, who received $200 in food stamps benefits would then have $200 freed up to pay for other goods not included in groceries. However, that is not how individuals or families on food stamps tend to spend money. Instead, those who receive food stamps tend to increase spending on food rather than spend that additional money elsewhere. In addition, individuals who are on food stamps tend to begin purchasing name-brand products and not clipping coupons once food stamps are available.
Using coupons at the grocery store will help stretch food stamp dollars further, as well as help free up more money to use on bills or other necessities. It is possible to purchase food items with coupons and use food stamps at the same time. In fact, stores must honor all sales, coupons, and store saving card rewards as they would a customer without food stamps, as long as the item is allowed to be purchased with food stamps.
Find Out About Electronic Coupons and Coupon Apps
Many individuals on food stamps do not want to stand in line with a stack of coupons and the EBT card for food stamps because some view it as embarrassing. Therefore, electronic coupons and smartphone applications may be the best solution for these individuals. Electronic coupons include coupon codes, store loyalty card, and card-linked offers.
Coupon codes are used for online shopping in most cases. A code is used in the discount or coupon field while shopping online for groceries. When placing an order, the code will give the shopper an automatic discount on items in the shopping cart.
The store loyalty cards must be signed up for at the customer service desk, or an online application can be filled out. Once a loyalty card is received, it can be scanned at the register to receive credit for purchases, special discounts, and coupons. Many stores now allow the store card to be stored on a smartphone and scanned right at the register. That way, shoppers do not have to worry about losing a store card. Card linked offers can be loaded directly onto store loyalty cards, debit cards, and credit cards directly from the store’s website, as well as the debit or credit card’s website. While checking out, these savings are automatically deducted as soon as that card is swiped.
Smartphone coupon apps will help a shopper track down and manage his or her digital and printable coupons. These apps work in different ways, so be sure to research the app before using it. For example, one app allows a shopper to view saved coupons and upload them to a store loyalty card. Email notifications are sent so a shopper knows existing offers as soon as he or she steps into the store. Another app might be for a specific store and allows a shopper to choose coupons to add to the store card from that app.
How to Find Electronic Coupons
Instead of having to spend hours clipping coupons from a store flier or from a magazine, there is an easier way. It is clipping coupons online. Savvy coupon shoppers use different methods to find coupons for products, and one of those methods is online. Many popular online retail and grocery store websites will offer coupons directly on the website, as well as coupons on specific coupon websites. Another method is to sign up for a monthly newsletter from the grocery store of choice, where coupons are automatically delivered or added to a store loyalty card.
Tips for Getting the Most Out of Coupons with Food Stamps
First, be sure the product for that specific coupon is one that the shopper normally purchases. If it is not, then do not be tempted to keep that coupon and purchase something that is not really needed. If the groceries being purchased are not going to be eaten by the family or they are not a healthy option, then that coupon is not worth having and that money is not worth spending, even if it is a really good coupon.
Second, try to keep track of the normal price being paid for items. Staples such as paper towels and toilet paper are a good place to begin because most people purchase the same brands repeatedly. Coupons for items on the grocery list not being purchased with food stamps should still be considered for coupons. Just because something is on sale does not mean that item is a good price or it cannot be found at a lower price somewhere else. For example, do not purchase name-brand products with a coupon if the store brand is still cheaper.
Be sure to purchase items that are used all the time, even if the shopper is not out of that item at home, when there is a good deal or a good coupon and food stamps can be used. Products that do not go bad, such as canned foods, pasta, and boxed foods are all good items to purchase when they are on sale, the shopper has a coupon, and food stamps will cover them. Otherwise, be sure to stick with the lowest cost option, even if that means the item is not on sale or does not have a coupon.