Missy Code: Couponing Basics

Posted by Thrifty Missy on

Couponing is more than flipping through the inserts on and cutting them out. You have to be familiar with the parts of a coupon. Being knowledgeable in this sense will ensure that you are using your coupons correctly. It will also help to maximize your return. I’ve put together a list of common terms and phrases to help you get started on your couponing journey.  I’ve also included a coupon breakdown brought to you by Midwest Clippers. Let’s start there.


There are many kinds of coupons. The most common types are manufacturer coupons, store coupons, and Catalinas. 

    • Manufacturer Coupons: These coupons are issued by the company who creates the product. They are typically found in newspapers and weekly ads.
    • Store Coupons: These coupons are issued by the store selling the product. They are typically found in the store’s weekly ad or in the store’s app.
    • Catalinas: Catalinas are checkout coupons that print from the Catalina machine at the register after a purchase. They can be either manufacturer or store coupons.

      1. Inserts - Inserts are the coupon booklets that come in the Sunday newspaper. There are (3) different inserts that may come in your Sunday paper. They vary by region.
        •  P&G: Proctor and Gamble coupon insert
        • SS: Smart Source coupon insert
        • Save: RetailMeNot Everday Coupon Inserts
      2. Terms and Conditions: The terms and conditions noted on each coupon can be easily misinterpreted. I have listed a few of the most common terms and their definitions. This information usually has an impact on the variety type and quantity that you can purchase
        • One Per Transaction: This means that no matter how many qualifying items you are buying, you can only use one identical coupon in this transaction 
        • One Per Purchase: This can be translated to “one per item”. It means that you can use one coupon for each qualifying item that you are purchasing.

      I want to take a moment to emphasize the important difference between a purchase and a transaction. A purchase is the individual item you are buying.  A transaction is a collection of one or more purchases. 

      There are also lots of acronyms and abbreviations that fellow couponers use. You will need to familiarize yourself with the lingo. Unfortunately, that is beyond the depth of this post. However, if you have any questions, leave them in the comments and I’ll be sure to respond. 




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