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I'm in Coupons Scholarship 2014. Entry-Ahna M.

With having to go through the process of searching for the coupons, then, cutting them out of the magazine or newspaper, and finally taking them to the store to use, coupons can be seen as just an unnecessary hassle. However, many individuals seem to forget how powerful a single piece of paper can be. From personal experiences, I have seen some of the benefits of using coupons. According to the U.S. Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG), nearly $470 billion were distributed through coupons in 2011 for various items such as food, clothing, and other household items. With this much money available through coupons, it is hard to believe that many people do not use them to save money. One of the biggest complaints when it comes to using coupons is that shoppers cannot find a coupon for the product they want to buy. In most cases this may be true, but shoppers must remember that they may not find a coupon for every product they want to buy. However, this does not mean that they will not be able to find a coupon for the next item on their list. In my opinion, through watching my aunt and grandmother shop with coupons, I believe that coupons are the most beneficial to those shopping for families or groups of people larger than two or three. This is because many coupons require you to buy items in bulk. A common coupon I come across when shopping in the grocery store is the “buy two get one free” coupon. Many individuals feel that they are wasting money when they buy more of an item, but they must remember that in the long run, they are saving money on that third product they have just gotten for free.

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When shopping for myself, I tend to use coupons, but not as much as I would like. I do not use as many coupons when shopping for food as I do when shopping for clothes or other personal items. Many times the coupons I find when shopping for food are not beneficial for me because I am shopping only for myself. If I were to buy food in bulk, I would waste food, and in the long run I would also waste money on food that was not eaten. Though these types of coupons may not be beneficial to me, I still search for other coupons that may help me more. When searching for coupons, sometimes one can find a coupon to get something for free. Though this food item or whatever the coupon is for may not benefit you personally, you can always donate it to a local food pantry. Once I am older and have a family I am shopping for, I would like to use more coupons on food items. On the other hand, when I am shopping for clothing, I almost always use coupons. One of my favorite places to shop at is the mall. Though this is my favorite place to shop, there are many disadvantages to shopping there. One of the biggest disadvantages is the prices are relatively high for my budget at the stores in the mall. This is where using coupons comes in handy. I have had countless times where I have used coupons and it has got me up to $30 in savings.

In conclusion, when I am shopping for myself I do use coupons. Mostly when shopping for clothes, but also for some food items. In my opinion I would recommend coupons to everyone. I think that they have the capability to save a person a lot of money if used correctly. Though it may take some time to find the coupons you want, using them enables you to save a lot of money. For me personally, money has never come easy. Any chance I can get, I try to use a coupon to find a great deal.

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