Even the rich use coupons to save money, survey says

February 20, 2005|By KNIGHT RIDDER/TRIBUNE

NEW YORK - Clipping coupons just makes sense - even wealthy people do it.

Seventy-two percent of consumers with annual household incomes of at least $125,000 said they clip coupons, according to a new survey by Visa. Nationwide, an estimated 65 percent of consumers use coupons.

The National Council on Economic Education recommends that you clip coupons and sort them into three piles: brands of things your family typically purchases, brands other than what your family typically purchases and items your family doesn't usually purchase.

Take advantage of sales and coupons to stock up on items your family uses. If you know that you need to buy peanut butter because your children want peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches every day, it makes sense to buy several jars on sale.

For coupons for different brands, consider your brand loyalty. Do you always buy Brand X over Brand Y because X is cheaper? Or does X taste better? Or have you always bought X, without a thought to other brands? A coupon doesn't save you anything if you've bought a product you won't use.

Be wary when it comes to coupons for items you don't normally buy. The coupon can cause you to lose money because you're adding to your shopping list rather than spending less on the items on it.

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