Let me just say, I am no expert at this couponing thing. I am learning as I go, and making my fair share of mistakes along the way.
For instance, last Thursday I went to Target, armed with a TON of coupons. I was going to get trash bags, toilet paper and some other items for a killer deal by combining their sales with both a Target coupon and a manufacturer's coupon. I was so proud of myself! Until I got to the cashier. She rang up all my items, and then I handed her my stack of coupons. She obviously got a bit overwhelmed because she rang up about two of them, and then put the eight or so rest of the coupons in her drawer without ringing them up! I tried to get her to go back through and ring them up, but she was so flustered that it was useless. When I got my receipt, I realized I had paid at least $4 more than I should have because she hadn't used my coupons!
I was so frustrated. I actually made myself sick to my stomach. (Over $4???) Super Crafty Sister was with me and gave me the idea of taking back two of the boxes of trash bags since I ended up paying way too much for them, and I only bought them because I was planning to get such a great deal. So everything ended okay, but it was frustrating in the meantime!
My lesson learned here? Don't buy things just because you have a coupon. Buy things you would normally be willing to buy full price. And then the coupons are just a bonus! Yes, still plan your trip around the coupons and sales, but don't make yourself sick if it doesn't work out the way you planned. :)
After Target, we went to Walgreens where I had a much more successful trip. They had a deal last week (in small print in the ad!) where you could get Honey Nut Cheerios at 2 for $4. When you bought the cereal AND a gallon of milk (already the cheapest price around that week at $2.79), you got $2 in Register Rewards. I had two printable Honey Nut Cheerios coupons (found here), each for $1/1 box. So I got 2 boxes for $2, and got $2 back in Register Rewards. Not bad!
I'll try to post my shopping lists this week - we'll see how that goes!
In the meantime, do you have any couponing mistakes/lessons learned to share with the rest of us?