While every couponer is free to choose their own favorite grocery store, Publix is one of mine, as well as that of many other couponers. The funny thing is, I always considered it to be one of the more expensive stores, and for years I would spend an unnecessarily large amount of money there.
That is, until I discovered their weekly BOGO (buy on, get one) deals, coupons, and sales. I know, its strange how sometimes we don't notice the obvious, but here I am. Better late than never, and I can now say truthfully, that with Publix deals + coupons, I have saved hundreds of dollars on groceries in the past 3 months.
How do I do it? Well, for starters, I patiently wait for my little christmas (or for the rest of the world - Thursday). Every Thursday Publix puts out their new BOGO deals, which you can check on their website: www.publix.com.
You can search the ad by your location, to make sure that you are looking for the correct ones. Once you joyfully find awesome stuff on BOGO sale, and realize - hey I have coupons for lots of these items, that's where the fun begins.
If Publix is the store of your choice, please make sure to check your local stores coupon policy. Generally speaking, Publix will double the value of coupons that are 50 c and less. Which means, that every 50 c coupon is actually worth a whole dollar at Publix. A 45 c coupon at Publix is more valuable than a 65 c coupon there. Because you will be saving 90 c on that coupon.
My next step is to check my KCL ladies - they provide the awesome service of matching the coupons to the deal. They will not only tell you from where the coupons come (and provide links to websites that carry them), but also estimate the prices after the coupon.
Two of the most common arguments against this practice I heard, is:
1) These are not the brands I usually buy.
And they won't be. 80% of the time the sales are on stuff I never even tried before. And that's one of the core principles of couponing - you will need to set aside brand loyalty and dive into the wild world of gustatory and culinary adventure. Personally, I am thankful I tried. I've actually tried so many products I would never consider buying before, and many of them are now some of my favorite stuff.
2) Its all junk food, never fresh produce.
While its true, coupons and discounts on fresh produce and meat are hard to come buy, many of the items on the list are not junk food. You certainly don't have to buy discounted soda, or candies, or crackers. I frankly don't, because I just don't want that stuff in my house. Unless I REALLY like the candy (oh, Skinny cow, what have you done....). But a lot of them are things that I would use as sides or lazy meals: Canned products, bread, sides, cereal, condiments etc. Things that would make up the bulk of my grocery cart and the bill. After buying things that I would need to go with the "real food", I would end up with a ginormous bill.
But it doesn't have to be like that. Try the sides you never bought before - if they are discounted 75%, what's the harm? You can put your savings into buying your fresh produce and meat guilt free!
One other thing that I absolutely love about Publix is that you can use the coupons on the free item. You buy one, get one, and use two coupons. And this is completely allowed by their coupon policy. In fact, lately, Publix started to make radio commercials geared towards couponing shoppers. So, while some stores take a while to catch on, and try to make it more difficult to use coupons, Publix realized the goldmine and is probably raking the dollars in like crazy.
Oh, and http://www.iheartpublix.com/ is actually a cool site, that caters specifically to their shoppers. Coupon matching, deal seeking, and everything you might need to know about how to save most there - is there.
Wow, I sound like I should be paid by Publix for endorsement but in all honesty, thanks for the savings I'm making there and the awesome staff at the local Publix - I feel like I have been in a way.