My Coupon Solution

>> Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I've been a serious coupon user for over a year now. When I first started using coupons I just had one of those little cardboard coupon organizers. I soon realized I needed a better system. Twelve or thirteen categories just weren't enough given the number of coupons I had. I knew it would be easier to plan and organize my coupons if I could break them down into many categories. So I began to look for better ways to organize my coupons.

So along came the big, massive binder. It was perfect in so many ways. I bought a couple of packs of photo holders. I divided them into grocery, organics, health & beauty and household categories. And then I labeled each one with the subcategories. I had space for sales flyers, my calculator, pens and much more. It was beautiful. And it was big and bulky. I wouldn't take it with me everywhere because of it's size, just taking the coupons I absolutely knew I was going to use with me. I often would miss out on a great deal because I didn't have the coupon I needed with me. I decided I wanted a smaller, more trasportable solution.

Enter the 4x6 photo album. The size was perfect, the capacity was not. It held 100 photos so there were plenty of pages for all my categories that I like. However, with all my coupons in there it was not very compact and I found it hard to slip all the coupons in and out when I was at the store and ran across an unexpected deal because of the way the pages were. And, well, it just looked kind of messy which I didn't really like either.

After a lot of thought and walking the ailses in Staples looking for a better solution, I finally came up with something that I think is going to be all that I want. I am using an old check holder that I used to use to organize my bills. It's size is compact enough to make it very portable. It has a side pocket to hold sales flyers and a zippered pocket where I can store my calculator and pen.

It only has thirteen pockets but I used envelopes to create the sub-categories. They are alphabatized and arranged by departments: grocery, health & beauty and household. I do still need to add the tabs to mark those divisions. And while it is crammed full, I can still zip it closed so it looks nice and tidy.

So I'm very happy to say, I have finally found what may be the best solution for me. What about you? How do you organize your coupons? Have you tried lots of different ways or have you always organized them the same way?


Jennifer July 15, 2009 at 5:40 PM  

I have a dual system. The Coupon Binder and a “no cutting” folder system.

I am a very visual person so I enjoy having the Coupon Binder with me in the store which is sorted by categories. I am not embarassed by it at all and it goes with me all the time with my reusable bags. Often I am mistaken for a store employee and it opens the door for me to share the benefit of using coupons with other shoppers.

I spend the time cutting my coupons at my inlaws over Sunday dinner while the children play. (Because this is where my papers are delivered) So, it doesn’t seem time consuming or like a waste of time to me. :) Plus, seeing, cutting and filing the coupons helps my brain register what I have and what I’ve used.

I also use the “no cutting” folder filing system for any extra inserts that I am given by friends and family. Even though I love my Coupon Binder I find it to be a timesaver to not clip the extra inserts until I need them. The folder filing system enables me to find them as needed for additional trips to the store when I know there is coupons I want to clip & use.

So, a dual system is what works for me. :)

Here is what I have and here is what I’d like to have when mine falls apart, LOL. This one has an exterior flap and expandable sides.

Happy organizing!

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