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I'm in Coupons Scholarship 2014. Entry-Jennifer De.

Every Sunday morning in my slippers and pajamas I sneak outside to the front driveway to grab the Sunday paper. I have done this ritual since I was 5 years old and really enjoy getting this treat on Sunday mornings. After I am inside my house, I rip past the stories and end up in the glorious coupon/ad section of the newspaper. When I was a child my job was to cut out all coupons and put them in the coupon envelope for my mom. Now as an adult I do exactly the same and use them as often as possible to save money at the stores. Needless to say, coupons influence almost all of my shopping decisions.

One of the reasons I enjoy using coupons is for the obvious reason of saving money. I will purchase one brand over another simply because I can save 50 cents. Eventually, saving 50 cents on 10 items will add up. Over time, you end up saving up to 500 dollars a year! Coupons also allow me to get brands of items I wouldn’t normally be able to purchase for their retail price. In-store coupons in addition to newspaper coupons end up saving me a lot of money and allows me to buy higher end products . It doesn’t get any better than that!

Another reason coupons influence my shopping decisions is that they remind me of what I need. Scanning past the coupon’s I am suddenly am reminded of an item that I needed to purchase but forgot to write on my list. How many times have you gone to the store and forgot the toothpaste? Having coupons pre-cut and with you when you go to the store will allow you to never forgot the essentials.

One of the greatest benefits of using coupons is that you get to try new products you normally wouldn’t. Often these coupons are for a free sample of a new item on the market. I often use these free items, and sometimes the company gains a new lifelong customer. If the product didn’t work out, oh well, it was free!

Although coupons help me save money on what I need, they allow me to indulge in purchases for the things I want. Suddenly the splurges become more affordable! These types of coupons are normally not found in the Sunday paper. Thus, as time moved forward technology has advanced I got a smartphone and a wonderful app called the Coupon Sherpa. If I ever enter a mall or major retail store for the “want” items, I have Coupon Sherpa open. I find coupons on this app that are not even available on the retailers website. I am now known as the coupon Queen among friends and family and have recommended everyone to get this app! Coupons should be in everyone’s wallet (or phone) to help making shopping a bit more affordable.

A note from us at I’m In: we’ve got a wonderful app, too!  Download to have instant digital savings delivered straight to your smartphone.  

Newspaper coupons and phone coupons aren’t the only coupons that catch my eye and that I utilize. When any business has a sign for % off, I automatically am more inclined to check out their products. For example, I was researching to get my hair professionally done before starting Graduate school. I found many places, but was also looking for a good deal. While at lunch one day I saw a salon across the street which had a 20% new customer sign. Because of that sign, I am now a new customer who is willing to pay for a good salon haircut. I am always looking for a good product or end result while saving money.

Coupon-ing and deal searching is a daily integral part of my life. With being a coupon-er and bargain hunter I have saved myself thousands of dollars, found new amazing products, tried out new places, splurged a little all the while feeling good about my purchases! Every week I look forward to the Sunday newspaper and the wonderful coupons I might find and the wonderful products that soon will be mine.

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