ConsumerWatch: Making Coupons Work For You

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Man shopping for groceries. (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

Man shopping for groceries. (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS 5) — In effort to save a few extra dollars many consumers turn to coupons. But extreme coupon shopper Claire Williams manages to get all her drug store products for free. In fact, she often gets money back on each of her purchases. Claire says the trick is combining weekly drug store deals with manufacture coupons. You can find both in the Sunday paper.

For instance, Arnicare Pain Relief retails at $10.99. But last week it was on sale at Walgreens for $5.99 with a $5.99 register reward. Register rewards are printed out at the time of purchase and can be used to buy anything at Walgreens. But Claire combined that deal with a 2 dollar manufacturer coupon and walked away “making” two dollars on the transaction.

If coupon clipping is too much trouble, Claire posts a printable list of the best deal each week on her blog at www.savingmoneyplan.com.

A few other tips from Claire to help get your drug store products for free:

- Plan ahead: You may not need deodorant this week, but buy it now if you can get it for free.

- Stock up: Coupons rarely limit you to just one item and you may be able to buy enough of the weekly deal to last you for months.

- Shop early in the week: The deals are posted on Sunday and are often sold out by midweek

- Multiple transactions: Buy the discounted items first. Then go back and use the register rewards to buy everything else on your list.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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