The true test of the transformation from coupon box to coupon binder would come when I actually went shopping with it. After yet another two hours of organizing, one of those in the vehicle on the way to Cedar Rapids, my husband and two younger daughters and I hit a Walgreens to use up those three $10 catalina coupons that were ready to expire yesterday. Of course we had to stop at my favorite thrift store where three cart loads of books were waiting to be put out. Priced at 6 for $1 I can easily find books to resell for a profit, either at a garage sale, my sister’s consignment store, or HalfPrice Books. We found 126 books, 30 of them Grace Livingston Hill paperbacks for me.
So, how was shopping with a binder? It sat nicely on my purse and I liked being able to have the ads laying inside, along with my lists. The coupon box always took up the whole seat and ads didn’t fit on the side.
Score one for the binder.
My husband did one order and I did three, two of them just Reach toothbrushes. My husband’s order looked like this: 2 Finesse shampoos on sale for 2/$7, 4 2-packs of Reach Advanced toothbrushes on sale for 2/$5, and a Gillette Fusin razor on sale for $9.89. He used a $4 coupon on the razor, $1 coupons on the Finesse shampoos and $2 coupons on each Reach 2-pack. Out of the register popped a $5 catalina from the shampoo, a $5 coupon from the razor and TWO catalina coupons for Reach, one a month-long offer and one a weekly offer, $3 and $4 respectively. A woman behind him saw the catalinas come out and asked how he got so many. She had a coupon binder and said she was just learning how to use coupons. I came over and explained the Reach offer to her and gave her four $2 coupons so she could do it herself. I did a total of three Reach transactions, one of them combined with other merchandise, including 6 Gillette deodorants that I had Buy One, Get One Free coupons for. With the purchase of 6, I got a $10 catalina. I also bought the Finesse shampoo, one Bic Solei razor, Revlon clippers that were on sale for Buy one, get one half price and I had a $3 and a $1 coupon on, as well as several toothbrushes I found on clearance for 99-cents that I had $1 coupons for.
It was fairly easy to flip through the pages to find my coupons. Score another for the binder, or maybe it was simply because I organized specifically for this trip. Unfortunately, I didn’t get everything transferred from box to binder, and I knew I had a few coupons still in my old box that I might have been able to use on items that I spotted on a clearance shelf.
Our total for all our transactions was $67.52, minus the three $10 register rewards= $37.52. And we have $60 in register rewards to use on our next trip.
And all this stuff either to stock in our own cupboard or to fill Christmas baskets for our adult children.
Could I have done as well with my coupon box?
But I wouldn’t have looked as cool doing it.