Orracle and Family

Orracle and Family

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Pushing The Lines of Honesty?

Jess and I made a decision to be better shoppers for consumables and groceries. This means planning meals and shopping trips, etc. Through various coupon sites, the Sunday ads and the store specials, it has been amazing watching the savings multiply. Our last 4 grocery trips have yielded savings of $95.00, $48.79, $49.52 and one just over $50 (did not have this one written down).

Add in gas coupons (Cub gives coupons for Holiday gas that are based on your total pre-coupon sales amount so $210 in groceries would give you a 12 gallon coupon for 21 cents off per gallon). The last 4 gas coupons saved us a roughly $11.00 at the pump.

Lastly, the yucky part - mail in rebates (General Mills, etc) have yielded $12.50.

All summed up, it equates to over $266.00 in just about 2 months! That is amazing. It means stocking up on things that are good deals. Combining a store "loss leader" with coupons, etc. For example, we rarely eat Hamburger Helper but bought 6 boxes tonight since combining the $1 per box store loss leader with the coupons brought them to .63 per box**. When we need a quick dinner - now we have it on hand rather than just going out somewhere.

OK, good for us right? The title has to do with honesty. What's that all about?

Well, I have to admit - I squeeze in extra coupons. Not a ton but usually in situations where I am buying a higher quantity of something. See the ** by the Hamburger Helper line? Well, I had 3 coupons for that product. $1.10 off of 3 boxes x 2 and .75 off of 3 boxes. I used three coupons for $2.95 which would have required purchasing 9 boxes but I only bought 6. So - technically, my price per box was .51 at the checkout. I "screwed" them out of .75.

My justification goes like this:

  • I will use extra coupons when I buy a ton of something like the HH example above.
  • I will sometimes do it when it requires 3 but I only buy 2 or buy 1 instead of 2.
  • I will not throw in coupons for things that I do not actually buy.
  • If a coupon requires the "21 oz size" I might buy the 15 oz size and still use the coupon.
  • If the store has a set of coupons that are activated by "one additional $25 purchase" and "limit one per household", we will get 2 carts and double up on them if those deals are plentiful and exceptional. For example, today- they had about 8 items that were $1 if you spent $25. They all were savings of 50-65% so we did those items 2x and checked out separately.
  • Always seek out the youngest checker, preferably a guy. They'll never question you.

The way I see it, for every guy like me that cheats a little, 10 other customers don't use a single coupon. If you combine my order with the next guy, we comply with the coupon's requirement PLUS the store gets reimbursed for the coupons anyway. I guess that logic works for everything except the loss leaders.

Am I wrong? Is this just shades of gray? I don't think so but maybe someone else does.


Jennifer said...

To me, it was very tempting to do this. When I first started couponing I did do a couple of things that might have been pushing the line. At the time I didn't really understand that I wasn't supposed to be doing what I was doing, so when I did find out I had to decide if I should continue, or stop. I thought about it hard, and I realized that I want to save money. There are plenty of ways to save money without doing anything dishonest. Stores have been having a lot of problems with dishonest people, so they give everyone using coupons a hard time. At Wal-mart once they wouldn't let me use my coupons, and I was using them correctly. They just gave me a very hard time. In my mind if people use coupons the wrong way, then they will make it harder to use them, or stop accepting certain ones such as the printables. That is just my take on things.

Anonymous said...

No Lyle. This isn't even close to gray. My hair is a different matter.


The ORRacle!

The ORRacle!