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I'm in Coupons Scholarship 2014. Entry-Maleika F.

Coupons definitely influence my shopping! This is not to be confused with controlling
my shopping, because they definitely do not do that! When I first moved to Los Angeles,
I would spend roughly an hour every Sunday clipping coupons and sorting out which
family member to give them to and which coupons I would keep for myself. My family
grew to enjoy my weekly envelope of savings and even bought me my own coupon
caddy to sort my little paper savings. This went on for a couple of years. Let’s go back a
little bit first, before I get too far ahead of myself, this routine really began as a teenager
in college, as I would find ways to help my parents save money any way they could!
After those couple of years continuing my habit and solidifying my knack for saving
pennies and finding good deals, I slowly stopped the weekly search for coupons in the
Sunday paper as I no longer had the time to sit and read through it and truly enjoy the
paper and its wealth of coupons, and of course The Funnies! However, my ear is
constantly in tune with a good deal as they are certainly plentiful! I use coupons on a
regular basis as they often arrive in the mailbox, which I find extremely convenient!
Many of the items don’t interest me because they are for foods that have gluten or sugar
in them, two ingredients I avoid. Sometimes they are for products that serve me no
purpose, so saving the money on them is still wasteful if it’s not a product I will actually
use. Many times, the coupon is for a product I will use, but a different brand or size than I
would typically buy. In these instances, I will quite often make the purchase with the
coupon. Of note, my sister taught me years ago, that often you can buy any brand of
toothpaste with the “Crest” coupon, for example, because, as she says, “You are still
buying toothpaste!” Quite a true statement, and I often take advantage of that
opportunity! This will not work in all situations, however, so feel free to try it out, but
don’t count on it every time. Sometimes coupons arrive in the mail for a particular
grocery store that I don’t typically frequent. This will often encourage me to go check out
the store and see what they have and if it might be a store of interest to me in the future.
However, many times what actually happens is that the product at this new store is more
expensive even with the coupon than it would be at my usual store without a coupon. In
cases like this, it just makes more sense to walk out of the new store and chalk it up as a
good try, and head to my usual stomping grounds! Or shopping grounds as it were!
Sometimes coupons will arrive offering a discount at an amusement park such as
Disneyland, for example. Not that Disney really ever sends out coupons, but the idea is
the same. “$10 off your next visit!” however, when tickets are nearly $100 per person
these days, ten dollars is a great savings, but I probably don’t need to be spending the
other ninety! Restaurants send out coupons a lot! It is rare, however, for me to find a
restaurant coupon worth using. This is because the most common coupons are for cheap
fast foods that do not interest me, while others are for really expensive places where the
amount of money I would be required to spend in order to use the coupon is much too
high and pricey for my student wallet. All in all, I will continue to use coupons and they
will continue to sometimes influence my purchases, while other times not so much.
Basically, and in a nutshell, coupons will influence my purchases if they are for a product
that I can deem useful and beneficial and somehow serving a purpose. If none of these
perks can be met, then I simply leave the coupon available to someone else who can use
it, like right by the product itself! Always a nice surprise to grab what you do want, and
see a lovely coupon sitting next to it! Now, if there is a coupon for a product and the
product is thus free well, then I will usually grab it and, if I can’t use it, I will give it to
someone who can. After all, getting free stuff feels like you just won something! Who
doesn’t want that?!

A note from us at I’m In: Maleika used to spend time clipping coupons and we want to make sure that you don’t  have to, either.  All of our coupons are delivered to you instantly through our mobile app, so download today!

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