Find Free Coupons - Coupon Organizer Binder - Coupon File Folders

By Prev Info - October 17, 2022

 Find Free Coupons–At the Grocery Store

Previously, we covered where to find free coupons in your neighborhood.  Now, let’s move on to another hot area for finding coupons.

Find Free Coupons - Coupon Organizer Binder - Coupon File Folders

Free Coupons at the Grocery Store

Some grocery stores regularly put coupons in their weekly ads.  You have to cut them out and present them to the cashier just like regular manufacturer coupons. These coupons are unique, though, in that you can often use them along with a manufacturer coupon on the same item, which leads to extra great savings.  An example from a Safeway weekly ad is to the right.  Check your local grocery store’s ad online before you go, to help you plan ahead.

Blinkies and tearpads

Stores will often place coupons right next to products in the stores.  These coupons can take the form or “blinkies” or “tearpads”.  A “blinkie” is a coupon that spits out of a little box, which often has a blinking red light.  A “tearpad” is a coupon stack that you tear off one-at-a time.  When you see these, take a coupon, even if you don’t want the product right then.  Keep it and wait to combine it with a good sale price.  We keep a running list of blinkies and tearpads found at Safeway here.

Some stores work with manufacturers to put out special booklets filled with coupons (photo, right).  When you see one of these you are in luck!  Often these manufacturer coupons can be used anywhere, not just the store you got it at.  Safeway also has a free monthly booklet with produce coupons.


Electronic coupons are the new frontier of coupons that bypass paper completely.  You go to a website provided by the grocery store and enter the number from your store card.  Then you see a list of coupons, and when you click one, it is automatically loaded onto your card.  When you buy the item at that store, and swipe your card at check-out, the coupon should come off automatically.  

When you check-out at grocery stores, the cashier will often hand you the receipt and a bunch of other paper slips that spit out of a machine.  Some of those slips are advertisements, but some of them are coupons, so check them carefully before you toss.

Once you start looking, you’ll see coupons everywhere.  The next topic in this series: ideas for organizing your coupons.

Coupon Organizer Binder

A coupon organizer binder is for those who are serious about couponing.  With this method, the clear pages give you a quick visual overview of your coupons, making it easy to find any coupon you need.  On the other hand, the organizer binder is not as portable as the previous methods (the envelope and purse sized organizer), and can be time-consuming to maintain.  If your time is limited, consider coupon file folders.

To make a coupon organizer binder, you’ll need a high quality 3-ring binder, category dividers (plastic will last longest), and baseball-card plastic pages.  Keep your eyes open for sales at your local stores, or from Amazon: binder, dividers, pages.  Altogether, a coupon organizer binder setup might cost from $10-$30.

When you fold your coupons to put it in the binder pages, let the expiration date on each coupon show outwards.

With a coupon organizer binder, you can have any number of categories, as many or as few as you like.  Organize them alphabetically or according to your store layout.  Here are some category ideas to get you started:

Store loyalty cards                    Frozen foods

Store coupon policies            Hair products

Store and double coupons        Laundry

Baby                                            Meat

Baking                                           Medicine

Beverages                                     Miscellaneous

Breakfast                                   Office supplies

Candy                                          Paper products

Canned goods                          Pasta, rice

Cleaning                                 Pets

Condiments                               Produce

Cosmetics                                Restaurants

Dairy                                          Skin care

Dental care                               Snacks

Deodorant                                Vitamins

Feminine                                         products 

Coupon File Folders

Put coupon inserts into file folders if you have limited time to cut and organize coupons.  With this method, simply put each week’s coupon inserts (uncut) into their own folder.  Before you go to the store, check a website list of which coupons go well with weekly store sales, find those coupons in your coupon file folders, and only cut out the specific coupons you need.  This method can save time, but on the other hand, you are less open to finding deals on-the-fly, since most of your coupons are sitting at home in folders, rather than in your bag.

File folders are easy to find at local stores, and you may already have some around.  If not, Amazon has basic colorful file folders here or file folders with lovely prints (here, here) and possibly a file folder holder (here).  Alternately, you could use a big expanding file (like this or this).

To set up coupon file folders, you need to find the date on the coupon insert.  It is usually on the first page of an insert, near the edge.

Look real close, grab your glasses if needed, and read off the date.

Write that date in pencil on the file folder tab, or in black marker on the coupon insert itself.

When you’re getting ready to go to the grocery store, check a website that lists weekly deals for your specific store.  If you don’t already know of a site, try web-searching for “Safeway weekly coupon deal” or “SaveMart weekly coupon deal” or whatever store you’re interested in.

These weekly deal websites will have listed items that look like this.



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