Monday, April 6, 2009

Krazy Coupon Guy: Chapter 2

Dear Krazy Lady(s):

My second trip in earnest to see how the couponing (verb to me) would play out at Wal-Mart. The comments from others seemed to imply difficulty at times depending on the store, the manager, the clerk, the product, the coupon (real or "fake"), the time of day, or the phase of the moon (for you ladies out there).

The attached photo shows my purchase this evening. I used coupons for everything shown. While not as impressive (to me) as my earlier foray into Couponville, I think I did okay. And, I believe I discovered at least 2 - perhaps 3 - aspects of the coupon game as it relates to gender and marital status.

First, let me say again, I am not a lady but a gent, guy, or dude. And I am single (divorced). This is not a complaint (nor a brag), but a fact that will factor into part of the psychology I will share.

The first issue of the session this evening was that some of the products were not easy to find (for me). After a couple of loops around the aisles, I realized I would have to ask for assistance or be stuck in Wal-Mart all evening. Not knowing which fate was worse, but knowing I had less time than ego, I did ask and did find the items that allowed best use of the coupons I had. Gender issue identified and mulled over until the marital status issue arose.

Let me mention that yesterday when I told my brother about the couponing success I seemed to be having, and showing him the KCL website with Wal-Mart's pricing and coupon pairings, he laughed and asked how many Kotex products I planned on buying.

So, issue number 2: I had no real "need" to buy the Kotex products other than I had the coupons which made them free and my brother didn't think I would do it. I did it.

Additionally, having no children (or grandchildren) made the purchase of the Johnson's products somewhat unnecessary (issue 3), but I do have friends with a new grandbaby and these will make the perfect gifts. The Kotex may too, but I need to figure out how to get them in the gift basket without seeming odder than I probably already appear.

To the financial impact. All the items rang up pretax to $30.81. I had $22.00 worth of coupons. The product price after coupons was $8.81 plus the total tax of $1.85 for an OOP cost of $10.66. I will mention that our Wal-Mart didn't have the smaller 20 ct. Hall's bags mentioned on the coupon. They did have the 40 ct. bag at the 30 ct. bag price of $1.32, so I paid $.32 for 40 cough drops instead of the $.16 mentioned on your site. And there were some coupons that rang up for more than the items without adjusment (overage of $.18).

I could have reduced the OOP cost but I did need or want the other items even though they didn't maximize as well, but for which I had coupons.

The last thing I'll mention is the clerk did not question any of the coupons. About half were IP and half from SS. So, overall in Jerome, my Wal-Mart experiment was successful.

I'll share more of the gender/marital/pschological consequences of a male shopping for non-male things, using coupons, asking for directions, and buying on a dare to shame your brother at a later date. Time to put away the stuff and wrap a care basket for a baby.



Brooke said...

I love that you bought the Kotex!! If you ever have a girl spend the night you can show her how thoughtful you are that you are prepared for anything! (Ok don't really EVER show a girl that you have Kotex in your bathroom "just in case".)

Emily C. said...

Krazy Coupon COMEDIAN guy--very funny post! I needed a good chuckle after the hassle I received at Albertson's today. . .thanks for that!

Niki said...

Oh no Emily! I hate hassles, once I nearly cried leaving a Walgreen's after being scolded by the Manager regarding his percieved "coupon fraud" whcih was bogus. But then I remembered all the money I save, and that I was right, and that the guy was a creep, so I complained to walgreen's and never heard of it again!
As for are CRACKIN' ME UP.

Brian and Lindsay said...

That was great!!

The Coe's said...

I totally thought you were my dad! And by that, I mean.. When I read your first post, and you being "Rick from Twin Falls", made me immediately pick up the phone and call my Dad, who is also, "Rick from Twin Falls"... and ask him if he posted on the KCL blog... since I have totally got him and my mom and 2 sisters there in Twin Falls shopping with coupon binders now and checking the KCL blog daily!!!! He assured me he handn't posted, but did save money that day at Albertsons with their coupons!
And I am sure you will all be excited when Walmart opens up so you dont have to drive to Jerome anymore!

Rachel said...

Too funny...glad you are secure enough of a man to purchase "feminine products" just because they are free. And to the dilemma of what to do with could always donate to a women's shelter or the Idaho Food bank, I'm sure they need health/hygiene/sundry items as well as food. You are an inspiration to all of us just starting this coupon thing.

Anonymous said...

Can someone explain how the Kotex was free?

Michelle said...

I got a good laugh from this post! Too funny!

Matt and Erin said...

LOVE that we have someone on here from Twin Falls. Me & the gals were just starting to get into the coupon craze (aka kraze)....and then we had to move away from Twin last week. Keep up the fun stuff Rick--!

AJJ said...

Okay Rick! You cracked me up! Too funny about the Kotex! Don't give them away....think of all the ways you could use those pads? Keep some in your glove box...great for checking your oil! Keep some in your desk at the office...great coffee coasters! Just time you wash your car...a quick wipe and your car is dry!!!! Rick...come on, think of the possibilities! hee, hee, hee!

Its All Good Ya'll said...

Love it, all of it!!!! You could always keep the Kotex and use them as a white elephant gift for Christmas or stick them in your first aid kit because they work really well if you get cut and need something bigger than a bandaid.

Marie said...

Kudos to you for buying the Kotex! You can always donate them to your local food pantry or shelter. I'm sure that they will put them to good use!

E. Poole said...

Here's a question - I am somewhat new to all of this coupon craze and check KCL regularly - but I wonder if Rick really did save any money considering the fact that a lot of the stuff he won't use (Kotex) or use very often (cough drops). I understand that he did a great job using his coupons so that he saved about $20.00, but he could have saved the $10+ dollars he did spend out of pocket by not buying any of it. I spent a lot of time in Alberstons/Walgreens today redeeming coupons - it takes a while to find what you're looking for, then they don't have it, and then I realize that if I just buy the store brand at Winco or Walmart, it's cheaper anyway and without all the hassle. (Case in point: Prilosec at Walgreens - I could have saved $3.00 with a coupon and got $7.00 back on a rebate - or I could buy the store brand for the same end price without all of the hassle). Any thoughts anyone?

Kristi said...

He may not need it at this moment but sometime in the near future he will need it. I can buy stuff for super cheap now or pay full price in 2 weeks when my husband suddenly comes down with a cold and needs some cough drops.

Anonymous said...

Free Kotex? PlEaSe explain. Anyone?????

Neva said...

I agree with you E. Poole, that sometimes it isn't worth driving ten miles out of the way so I can use a double coupon to save four cents on somethng I didn't really need in the first place. On the other hand, I have had some killer deals lately on some things I DO use by combining coupons with sales. I think you need to do the math and find your own personal balance with all of it. Some things I see on this website are not worth my time, but they might be worth it to someone else, so I think KCL is right in acting as a clearinghouse for ideas. She gives us the information and we can decide for ourselves if it's right for us.

Rick said...

Some questions I'll try to answer.

I have used or will use most of what I have purchased. The Kotex and baby things I gave to a friend to give to his daughter and granddaughter. I also dropped off five boxes of cereal to feed mom directly and baby indirectly.

I hope she (the baby) likes Cranberry/Vanilla Trail Mix Crunch!

My goal so far has been to see how much free stuff I can get using coupons, Catalinas, RR's, rebates, etc.

A few weeks ago, I was someone who would buy one or two of something at full retail because I needed or wanted it then. Now, I am buying in bulk at a savings for future needs while prices are in my favor.

The Kotex were free because I had a $2.00/2 coupon and I found packages at Walmart that were $1.00 each. The Johnson's Buddies baby sponges were free with the coupons I had. The other Johnson's items totalled about $3.50 after coupons.

The mustard I needed as I am almost out. I won't buy ketchup (it's the evil condiment). I do eat salads and the dressing is already being used. I was out of V8 juice and needed to restock. And don't suggest that V8 is just runny ketchup, because it is so much more.

So far, the game has been fun. I'll keep reading this site - and others - to hone my skills. If having a larder that is better stocked means I won't be "forced" to eat out because I don't have food in the house, I have saved enough to buy the items in the pantry and still have money to spare.

One thing I have done that is different is to buy and use things that were not part of my normal pattern of purchases. This means changing brand names, sizes or quantities of products, or the timing of usual purchases.

I have also had to rearrange and reorganize my pantry. Will empty the pantry tomorrow and restock to better use the space.

It's all a process and I'll get better.

Blue said...

Rick you're a total metrosexual! I ♥ it. Go organize your pantry now. :-)

I'm a flight attendant, and at 38,000 ft. in the air, you have to improvise at times. A little Club Soda on a sanitary pad makes a perfect sponge to get out stains in a pinch. And they don't pill or leave behind bits of white paper on fabric like paper towels or TP does.

I'm sure there are handy uses for them around the house too.

Great post!