My favorite Thrifty Thursday post from last week was about a thrifty activity: Geo-caching!
The following is a guest post from Susan!
Using Coupons at Fabric and Craft Stores
It is no coincidence that many of us who use grocery coupons look for bargains in other areas of our lives because we love finding great deals and saving money. However, if you have traditionally focused exclusively on grocery and drug store coupons, making your way into the craft and fabric scene may be daunting. While you can save money with craft store coupons, you need to understand the similarities and differences between them and grocery coupons. Here are a few tips.
1. Coupons from places like Michael’s, JoAnn’s and Hobby Lobby are store coupons, not manufacturer’s coupons. They will only be honored at the store who issued them, or another store that accepts competitors’ coupons.
2. Craft and fabric store coupons are typically good for 40-50% off one REGULAR PRICED item. Sometimes there are limitations i.e. 40% fabric or 50% scrapbooking supplies, but most fliers contain at least one coupon for anything.
3. Because the coupon is only good for a percentage of a regular priced item, it can be tricky to find a bargain. A typical JoAnn’s Fabrics will have most of their fabric already “on sale” for 20-40% regular price. You may not use your coupons on these fabrics.
4. Instead, you must choose from an often limited choice of regular priced items. If you don’t find something you want or need, it is tempting to go ahead and buy something because you are already there. This is what the store is hoping for, but you should resist this temptation.
5. JoAnn Fabrics will allow you to use multiple but not identical coupons in the same transaction. So if you have multiple fliers, plan on doing more than one transaction, or bring someone else with you.
6. Because you can only use one or two coupons per transaction, you must ask yourself if it’s really worth it to make a special trip. If you have to drive right by anyway, why not stop in? However, you have to factor in the wear and tear on you and your car if you make a special trip.
7. One great way to use the 40% off one item coupons is for gifts. You can pick up anything from art supplies for teenagers to paper dolls to model airplane kits to framed posters.
8. Remember that these stores usually have at least one active flier out at any time, so if you miss out on one coupon transaction, you’ll see that the next one will be along pretty soon.
Stick to your plan and you can walk away with a deal in your bag and smile on your face.
What do you do to save money at the craft stores?
Susan Mathis is a black belt tightwad with more than 30 years’ experience getting $1.50 out of every dollar. She lives outside Washington D.C. with her husband and her two youngest children. She is a regular contributor to www.thecouponcupboard.com.
Do you have a Thrifty idea? Did you save a ton of money this week? Do you have a Thrifty deal you want to share? If so, please leave a comment or link up below! One link will be chosen to be featured next week!