Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Coupons: To Cut Or Not To Cut Is The Question

There are several ways to organize your coupons but one of the first decisions you will have to make before organizing them is  whether you will cut your coupons or leave them as a whole insert and only cut them before you shop.  I am a proponent of cutting them but there are benefits and cons to both:


  • This does take time weekly to cut and then organize into a system.(Coupon folders, plastic boxes, and 3 ring binders are among the most popular options)
  • If you have multiple copies this means cutting and filing all of them each week.  Also, there is somewhere between 1-3 weekly inserts(Proctor and Gamble, Redplum, and Smart Source).  There are also lots of printable coupons online that are available.
  • I have found with cutting and organizing them in one of the above systems typically you know what you have easier because you had to cut and file them.  Also they are easier  to access if you find a great clearance or deal because you know what coupons you have.
Whole Inserts:
  • This takes little time to organize because you keep the inserts whole until you need them. You can just  write the date on the front of the insert boldly and file them away in a expandable folder organizer. Most of my friends who do this organize them by the month.
  • If you are using a website that has grocery/drugstore deal match ups you can just read what coupons you need out of each insert and only cut those individual coupons and save lots of time.  (When I have done this it took about 30 minutes before the shopping trip to cut them and get organized before shopping)
  • Because your inserts are whole you probably will not be as familiar with what is in them so that is one complication to getting a good deal without the assistance of a website.  The other thing is that you probably don't want to carry the whole insert wherever you are shopping and search for a possible coupon for a clearance item and cut it.  I say this simply because I usually shop with my toddler and baby and this would be a disaster for us!
Final Personal Thoughts-
I have tried both, cutting and keeping whole inserts.  When the inserts were whole I never knew what coupon I had and I was mostly frustrated.  I am a clearance shopper if I can get items on clearance so it is worth it to me to cut the coupons.  I like to know what I have and have them at my fingertips.  This was my example from Bi-Lo recently:

Clorox brand Green Nature Laundry Stain Remover was on clearance at for $1.89 down from $3.97.  I had a Green Nature Laundry coupon for $1.50 so I ended up getting 3 bottles of stain remover for $.39 each.  I can't get a store brand for that cheap anywhere! So for now I am sold on being a cutter! 

 What method do you use for organization?  I would love to hear what you do!

Photo Credit: Gutter


  1. i thought i would start out by cutting. now im slightly overwhelmed with cutting all of those.. but.. i think i am going to set aside a time to do it once a week.

  2. Great plan! We can cut them together on Friday if you want.