FAQ/Basics

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JUST GETTING STARTED?

IMG_21012014_181203We were all new to couponing at one time or another and I can remember just feeling overwhelmed in the beginning. But I hope this page helps to explain things a bit more and gets you started on the road to keeping more of your hard-earned money in your pocket.

Saving money by couponing goes way beyond simply clipping a coupon and using it on something you need. The best way to maximize your savings is to wait to use your coupons against a sale or a special deal and to buy several of the item if the price is right.

While I do maintain a stockpile, I don’t believe in letting my stockpile overtake my house. Sales usually cycle around every 3 months, so purchasing enough to last you through to the next sale is a good bet, especially if you are short on space. Be patient- building a stockpile takes time, it does not happen overnight, but little by little you will find yourself being able to grab something from your stockpile when you normally would have to run out for something.

FINDING COUPONS

coupon-insertsNEWSPAPER COUPONS: One of the most popular resources are the coupon inserts that can be found in the Sunday Newspaper. There are 4 main types- the PG- usually put out once a month by Proctor & Gamble, the RMNE or RetailMeNot Everyday insert and the SS or Smart Source Insert both usually found in most papers every Sunday, and the GM or General Mills which can usually be found every 4-5 weeks.

Every Saturday I post a Sunday Newpaper Insert Preview with highlights of what will be coming in the Sunday paper and I also list resources for obtaining inserts and coupons that come from them. You can go HERE to check out the most recent preview with a list of Resources.

PRINTABLE COUPONS: Another popular way to get coupons is to print them. There are several sites that consistently offer printable coupons: Coupons.com, Red Plum, Savings.com, & SmartSource are good places to start. Lots of manufacturer’s sites also offer coupons and a good way to check and see if there is a printable coupon for something you need is to check My Coupon Database. If there is a printable– there will be a link provided to lead you to where you can find the coupon.

OTHER COUPONS: Coupons come from many many sources. Many manufacturer’s place Hangtag Coupons or Peelie coupons found on products on the shelves or Tearpads usually located on a display or shelf near the item.You may even spot coupons in magazines or at the office of your doctor, dentist, pediatrician, vet and more. Once you start looking for these valuable little pieces of paper, you will be surprised at just how many places they turn up!

COUPONING LINGO

We couponers use lots of abbreviations and terms, and you will catch on soon enough, but if you are just getting started- here’s a few terms to familiarize yourself with…

$1/2 etc: One dollar off two items. (1st # = Discount/2nd # = Quantity required for discount)
B1G1: Buy 1 Get 1 FREE, or B2G1: Buy 2 Get 1 FREE and so on
PSA: Prices Starting at
GC: Gift Card (Target offers Gift Cards as a reward for buying specific items, see Special Deals Page for extended Gift Card deals)
ETS: Excludes Trial Size or , or ESS: Excludes Single Serving
MIR: Mail In Rebate (You can check my Rebates Page to see current offers available)
TMF-Try Me Free. Another form of a rebate or sometimes a satisfaction Guarantee
OOP: Out of Pocket. The amount you actually spend.
Q: Coupon, MQ: manufacturer coupon, TQ: Target Coupon
WYB: when you buy
YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary-this means that it may or may not be the case in all instances.
x: Expiration Date of a coupon

ORGANIZING YOUR COUPONS

There are several different ways to keep your coupons organized so you can easily find them. Many people use a binder method- where you can split up your coupons into pages with pockets and organize how it works best for you. Sometimes people organize by item type- ie Frozen, Snacks, Canned, etc, or some prefer to alphabetize. You have to do what works best for you. Some people like to just grab baseball card type album sleeves fitted into a binder to keep them organized. A binder is very nice in that it’s a way to have your coupons with you at all times which comes in handy for Target Clearance- it can be a time-consuming method- but wonderful if you can keep it up.

You can also use a filing system for your inserts. You can use either drawers or a filing box meant to hold the complete insert and file them by date. Since I and other sites you may start to follow usually list where you can find a coupon- it is just as easy to go find what you need and cut when you are ready to shop. So for example – if I list the following coupon as a matchup-

-$1/3; .50/2 Campbell’s Microwaveable Bowls or Soup At Hand 1-8-12 SS x3/15

it means it can be found in the January 8th Smart Source Insert. The different amounts in the front mean that some areas will have a $1 Off 3 and some areas will have gotten a .50 cents off 2. The x followed by the date is when the coupon expires. But finding the best way to organize is a process – and you may go through several different ways before you figure out what method works best for you.

TARGET COUPONS

multi_coupon_nobleedTarget can be a great place to save money in several different ways. For starters- Target allows you to stack coupons- this means allowing the use of one manufacturer’s coupon AND one Target Store Coupon AND one Cartwheel Offer on EACH item. Target Coupons can be found in a variety of places….

TARGET INSERT COUPONS: Target store coupons can sometimes be found in the regular Sunday inserts on occasion. Target Insert coupons are always regional though and not everyone will get them. I do maintain a Target Coupon Page with a list of the available Target Coupons with matching manufacturer’s coupons you can stack.

MOBILE TARGET COUPONS: Mobile coupons are Target Store Coupons that can be sent to your phone to be used for in-store purchases at checkout. You can pull them up on your phone’s screen and the cashier can scan the bar code. These coupons are meant to be used only once but can be stacked with manufacturer coupons. You will need to have an internet-capable phone in order to retrieve the coupons. Keep in mind- text messaging & data charges will apply depending upon your phone’s plan. We don’t see many of these any more, but you can see a current list on my Target Coupon Page HERE.

cartwheelTARGET CARTWHEEL OFFERS: There’s also a savings program called Cartwheel by Target offering even more opportunities to get great deals! You can get as much as an additional 50% off, occasionally even higher, on items at Target including grocery, health & beauty, baby, clothing and much more. You can redeem all offers on your Cartwheel in one transaction and an identical offer can be applied up to a maximum of four times in a single transaction. You are allowed one Cartwheel offer with one manufacturer’s coupon and one Target coupon for triple the savings!

You can sign up thru email or your Facebook account and you will need a smartphone to redeem savings in stores, although you can bring a printed bar code with you in lieu of a smartphone. This bar code never changes, no matter what you delete or add to your cartwheel, so if you laminate it or find some other way to protect it, you can use it over and over.

IMG_21012014_181327OTHER TARGET COUPONS: Target also sends out various mailers with coupons – home mailers are random – there is no 100% fool-proof way to get one. Sometimes having created a baby or wedding registry may help, or spending on a REDcard helps, or filling a prescription, and the list of theories goes on. But none of these things are a 100% guarantee you will start receiving them and unfortunately there is no definite mailing list to get on. When you check out at the register you can check the coupons that print from the Catalina machine that you get with your receipt. Sometimes they are Manufacturer coupons, but sometimes they are Target Coupons!

You can always see a complete list of ALL Types of current Target coupons on my Target Coupon Page.

CASH BACK & OTHER REWARD PROGRAMS

cash-rewardsThere are a couple of great savings apps out there for both iPhone and Android users to earn cash back for shopping in-store. The first one, ibotta, is a fun & easy way to earn extra money while shopping for buying products that most likely you were going to buy anyway. Plus, the Ibotta app offers lucrative Bonuses. The second one, Checkout 51, is also a fast and easy way to earn cash back on the brands you love, yet it also has some unique features and… you do not need to have a smartphone to take advantage of this great app! Watch the blog for new offers and matchups to be posted, plus you can read about each of them in more detail as follows…. for more info on ibotta, go HERE and for more info on Checkout 51, you can go HERE.

GIFT CARD & SPECIAL PURCHASE DEALS

IMG_21012014_180857Another way to save at Target is by taking advantage of their Gift Card Deals where a Target Gift Card is awarded at checkout in return for buying a specified product or products. Gift Cards cannot be used in the same transaction you earned them, however they can be rolled into the next transaction. If you do more than one Gift Card Deal in a transaction you WILL receive both Gift Cards. There are usually several Gift Card Deals in the Target Ad every week, that usually only last that week. However sometimes quite a few Gift Card deals remain unadvertised and extend for longer periods of time.

Target also offers Special Purchase Deals. These are usually a B1G1 Free type of deal or instant savings when purchasing 2 or more of a specific product. Again several of these are advertised each week, but some are not and last for 2 or more weeks. I do my best to keep track of as many unadvertised longer-term Gift Card & Special Purchase Deals as possible on the Special Deals Page. On that page you can find the details, coupon matchups and some Deal Ideas so be sure to check it out.

TARGET’S LOW PRICE PROMISE

Target has a price matching policy which they refer to as a Low Price Promise. This can be another way to save Gas, money & time, since Target will honor local competitor’s ads, however there are quite a few rules and restrictions. You can view Target’s official price matching policy HERE.

TARGET COUPON POLICY

You can find the official Target Coupon Policy HERE. It’s always a good idea to print it out and keep with you when you shop.

387211_10151581781563120_690736138_nTarget will accept printable coupons with a scannable bar code except one that is for a FREE item when no purchase is required. Target does not accept competitor’s coupon or expired coupons.

Target does not give cash back – if the coupon is for more than the value of an item, the coupon amount may be reduced to meet the cost of the item. Target also has specific rules about using B1G1 coupons. You can check out this post HERE for more details and examples.

MORE QUESTIONS?

I hope you have found this page helpful, but if you have more questions or you have a deal you would like to share with me, you can contact me at [email protected].

680 Responses to “FAQ/Basics”

  1. Megan says:

    Yes Paige Mott’s is still 1.99 at my target.

  2. debbie keltner says:

    Kerry, have you changed your email format? The last two days your email updates are different. I prefer the ones that give me the links and deal ideas rather than having to click through to your page. Thanks…

  3. Sherrie says:

    when I get my Target mobile coupons on my phone – it says add to passbook – where is the passbook – where are my coupons going and where can is this mysterious passbook I can retrieve them from?

  4. Lori rose says:

    The neat nix basket looks very useful.

  5. Lori rose says:

    The neat nix basket looks like something I would use for my hair products.

  6. Purple87 says:

    So target mobile coupons can only be used once period?? I’ve been waiting for mines to reset or something but its been about 2 months

  7. Brenda says:

    Passbook is on your iPhone, should be on the 1st page. I find its helpful to keep all the Target mobile coupons in the same place

  8. Wanda says:

    I just got an android tablet (Nexus 2) but only have a simple “dumb” cell phone. Is there a way I can get Target mobile coupons on my tablet?

  9. debra young says:

    I love shopping at target and would like to win the target coupon booklet. thanks Debbie

  10. Candra says:

    I have a question on this target policy regarding coupons
    Limit of 4 identical coupons per household, per day (unless otherwise noted on coupon).

    So can I essentially use 4 of the same target coupon, on one item?

  11. Kerry says:

    Hi Candra- yes unless a coupon states otherwise in the terms. h=for example- all unilever coupons limit you to 2 per transaction. if there are no limits stated on the coupon you can use up to . hth!

  12. Sheena says:

    Do I have to be a Redcard holder to receive free $ gift cards?

  13. Sue says:

    What is PSA?

  14. TIna says:

    I was wondering in giveaways it says post a comment where do you post that comment?

    Thanks Tina

  15. Bella says:

    Hi, thanks for this basic guide on couponing at Target. There is a $1 off Loreal Paris Ever hair care item labelled Target Coupon on Red Plum 10/13. and Target Web coupon has $1 off Loreal Paries Ever hair care item. Does this means that both coupon are redeemable only at Target? Can I stack this coupons and get $2/1 ? Thanks for answering,

  16. Kerry says:

    Hi Bella- these are both target store coupons so you cannot stack them together- however you can stack one of the target coupons with a manufacturer’s coupon. you can find matchups listed on the Target COupon Page of my site. hth

  17. Anna says:

    Do you know how many Target MOBILE coupons you can use in a single transaction? Not all of mine are coming off, and I contacted customer service and got conflicting answers. One person said that you can only use 4 mobile coupons in a single transaction, but I couldn’t find this anywhere on their website, and the other customer service rep said something completely different.

  18. Johanna says:

    if Target is having a gift card deal, can I also use coupons? Like if they have a buy two items of a product and get a $5 gift card. Can I also use the Target printable coupon? so, I would save with the coupon, plus get the $5 gift card?

  19. Kerry says:

    Hi Johanna- yes you may use coupons on gift card deals.

  20. Kerry says:

    HI Anna- there is no limit as far as I know- but each mobile coupon offer can only be applied once.

  21. claire says:

    I received a message that the other day that Target was no longer doing the Daily Deals. Does anyone know if they are going to continue sending out the Target mobile coupons via text? Thanks!

  22. Jessie says:

    On the Aveeno Lotion Deal, you only list the deal scenario as using one Target Q, Could you use three Target Q to make it a better deal? Thanks in advance (newbie)

  23. Kerry says:

    Hi Jessie- the printable TQ states 1 coupon or offer per guest- so my deal ideas always follow the terms stated on the coupons. hth

  24. Brettany S says:

    Targets couponing website must of changed their format. When you right click the photo and look at properties, they are all the same. So how do you now figure out which are Target q’s and which are Manu q’s? (other than the wording)

  25. Amanda says:

    Hi Kerry!
    Not sure if anyone has asked this yet and hopefully I won’t ask in a too confusing way. I’m planning my shopping trip to purchase some clothing. I have a $5 off $25 Women’s apparel purchase (Xhilaration, Mossimo, Mossimo Supply Co.), a $5 off $20 Women’s apparel purchase, and a Target Mobile coupon for $3 off $15 Women’s apparel purchase. I know their policy is that your items have to match the description on the coupon and that if you are using more than one category/department coupon you have to meet minimum requirements for each coupon individually. It also states that you can only use one Target coupon per item. So, I’m wondering if you might know if I could use all three of those (I plan on spending at least $30 on the clothing), since it almost seems to contradict itself. Thanks and sorry for the lengthy question!

  26. Kerry says:

    Hi Amanda- it’s one Target coupon per item- so imo you would need to spend $60 on the items speciified within each coupon to use all 3. hth!

  27. EJ says:

    Hi Kerry,

    I noticed the info on Cartwheel says up to 30%. I remember a 50% off for bakery items a month or so ago and some others in that range.

    Actually stopped by to say I won a $50 Target card from HGTV and gave your weekly contest a mention:
    http://www.itsallaboutthejacksons.com/2013/11/i-won-50-target-gift-card-in-hgtvs.html

  28. Kerry says:

    HI EJ- yes ocasionally they come out with a few high ones but they are few and far between and WOOHOO on winning the HGTV contest! That’s awesome- congrats and thanks for the mention too! 🙂

  29. Danielle says:

    Does anyone know if Target will price match AND do the manufacturers coupons and cartwheel coupons?

  30. connie says:

    For the cartwheel deals, I notice that you don’t subtract paper coupons first. I read on the bottom of the printed cartwheel, % savings is taken AFTER all paper coupons are deducted.

    Example:
    Gevalia Café Cups 30% off, in your senerio you took the 30% off the 10.99 price, but it should be taken off AFTER the coupons are deducted.

    at my store, they are sticklers for waiting on Cartwheel until AFTER all coupons are scanned, including phone coupons.

    Just checking on this. You can reply to my email address as I probably won’t see it here.
    Thanks

  31. Daisy says:

    Does it matter what order you present your MQ, TQ, mobile TQ, Cartwheel to the cashier? Thanks!

  32. ericka says:

    Hi kerry- just quick question I tried to price match blu ray/dvd Planes this morning ang guest service told me I had to have the walmart ad stating the price but walmart doesn’t have an ad that I know of, and their online price is high. What can i do? TIA

  33. Kristen Skaugen says:

    In search of a toy for Christmas…no Target stores around me have it in stock and I can’t order online. Would Target be willing to ship from one store to another? I want to be able to use coupons and gift cards I have….so I hate to go elsewhere.

  34. Jenna says:

    Can anyone tell me if you can receive the Target mobile coupons on an Android tablet? Or just cell phones?

  35. Laura K. says:

    I have a question about the ” If you do more than one Gift Card Deal in a transaction you WILL receive both Gift Cards. ” does this mean like the Nexxus deal. I have 2-$5.00 coupons that I will use for the buy 2 get a gift card and also 2-$4.00 coupons to use. If I buy 4 of these products in the same transaction, will I get 2 of the $5.00 gift cards?

  36. Kerry says:

    Yes Laura you will 🙂

  37. Mary v says:

    Can you price match a Safeway in ad coupon at target?

  38. Martin says:

    I ran into this problem today… I go to Target about once every other week for deals! Made a $50.00 list (for $107.00 worth of stuff no less) then was told by a cashier that NONE of my internet printable coupons would be accepted. I told her to grab a manager and she walked a few lanes down and a group of people stared at my coupons for about 5 minutes… When she and the cashier came back the manager tossed 5 of my coupons ($5.15 off 1 purina cat food bag and $1.50 off 24 cans fancy feast) back at me and told me that they would take the rest except these… I told her I was confused as I went two weeks ago and used them… The fancy feast one even came from THEIR WEBSITE. She said they changed their policy. I pulled the policy up on my phone and read it to them and they still told me no! I have already sent an e-mail to their corporate office (waiting for a response)– I have never had an issue here before and I find it hard to believe that they would want to turn away money. I was embarrassed- and told them to take the dry cat food off my order as I did not want to pay full price for them- that is why we coupon… I’m hoping that a nice response from Target will come from the rather long e-mail I just sent them…

  39. Megan says:

    I have a question… Sorry if you have answered it already!
    Can you get more than just 2 gift card deals in one transaction? I want to get the 5$ gift card on 4 of the gillette fusion razors, and another 4 on the venus razors with the 3.00 off coupons that I have… Can I do that or do I need to separate these into several different transactions?
    TIA!

  40. Kerry says:

    HI Megan- you can get 2 gift cards in one transaction. hth

  41. liz says:

    Kerry-Do you know much about the return policy without a receipt? I wanted to know if you hit the $70 limit if that is based on calendar year or one year after the first return without a receipt?

  42. Yoona says:

    i was wondering if there is a sale stating 2/$12. And i have a man. and a target coupon, that both say $1/1. can u i use 4 coupons?
    2- $1/1 target coupons + 2- $1/1 man. coupons.
    is this allowed?

  43. Michelle says:

    I have a quick question: Is there a way to tell at the price checker if an item is included in a gift card deal? It’s not always easy to hunt down an employee to check for me, and I like knowing before I get to the register. Thanks!

  44. Swats says:

    Hi!
    I’m new to couponing and this is a great site! thanks for all the hard work u put in 🙂
    i had a question, pls help me out. Can I use a target gift card to pay for stuff that gives me a gift card again. Like the fiber one cereal deal giving 5$ gift card..can i do that using a target gift card of 5$ that i have from a previous day transaction?
    Thanks a ton!

  45. Kerry says:

    Hey Swats- yes you can roll like that- there is no interference- the GC is just like a form of payment. hth

  46. Swats says:

    Thanks Kerry! Appreciate ur help!

  47. Evie H says:

    Hi Kerry,
    Question about the gift deal where you buy some many products you get a $5 gift card. I noticed that I went and bought for example 3 products for $10 each and I was charged $35. I was given a $5 gift card and paid $35 dollars. Is this right??? If I do still want the three products but don’t want to pay for the card can I decline it so I don’t get charged?? Thanks for your time in advance.

  48. Taira says:

    Hi Kerry-

    I know you don’t get 5% off target gift cards or prepaid cards with your Target debit card, but do you know if you get 5% off if you buy the other gift cards such as Disny, itunes, or Olive Garden?

  49. Kerry says:

    HI Taira- yes you will 🙂

  50. Kalie gould says:

    If I purchase a giftcard product and get that card can I then immediately use it on another transaction or do I have to wait a certain amount of time?

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