The Grocery Guru

Helping you save big so you can live large

In the Know: Common Coupon Lingo

Below is a list of commonly used coupon lingo.

  • $1/1, $1/2- Save $1 on 1, Save $1 on 2, etc.
  • 2/$1, 3/$1- 2 items for $1, 3 items for $1, etc.
  • AC- ‘After Coupon’
  • BC- ‘Before Coupon'
  • Blinkies- These are the little red blinking coupon dispensers that some stores place near products.
  • BOGO or B1G1- This means buy 1 get 1 free.
  • BTFE- ‘Box Tops For Education’
  • C/O- ‘Cents Off’ or 'Cash Off'
  • Catalina, a.k.a. Cat- A coupon printed at the end of your receipt or separately with your receipt.
  • CPN- ‘Coupon’
  • CRT a.k.a. CRTC- ‘Cash Register Tape Coupons’ Coupons that print on the end of your receipt or separately with your receipt.
  • DND- This means ‘Do Not Double’. This is important to take note of if your local grocery store has double-coupon days. They will not double these.
  • ECB- ‘Extra Care Bucks’ A loyalty reward program at CVS.
  • ESC- ‘Easy Saver Coupon’ A coupon found in Walgreen’s Easy Saver Coupon book.
  • ESR- ‘Easy Saver Rebates’ A monthly rebates program at Walgreen's.
  • FAR- ‘Free After Rebate’
  • IP, a.k.a. IPQ- ‘Internet Printable’ or the online coupons that you print out.
  • IVC- ‘Instant Value Coupon’
  • MFR- 'Manufacturer'
  • MIR- ‘Mail In Rebate’
  • MQ- 'Manufacturer’s Coupon’
  • NED- ‘No Expiration Date’
  • One Per Customer- You can use 1 ‘One Per Customer’ coupon every time you enter the store. Most stores consider you a ‘new’ customer every time you enter the store. The only possible exception to this is when you use a customer loyalty card. Certain offers may be limited to 1 per customer loyalty card.
  • One Per Purchase- Nearly every coupon says this at the bottom. This means that you can use 1 coupon per said item you buy. If you have 5 coupons for the same item, you can buy 5 of those items and use 1 coupon on each within the same transaction.
  • One Per Transaction- You can use 1 ‘One Per Transaction’ coupon per transaction. If you have 2 of these coupons for the same item, you have to pay for the first transaction and start a new transaction to use the second coupon.
  • OOP- ‘Out Of Pocket’
  • OYNO- ‘On Your Next Order’
  • OYNP- ‘On Your Next Purchase’
  • P&G- ‘Proctor & Gamble’ A coupon insert found in the Sunday paper.
  • Peelie- A coupon that you peel off of the actual product.
  • POP- ‘Proof Of Purchase’. This is usually in the form of the UPC code on the package.
  • PSA- ‘Price Starting At’
  • Q- ‘Coupon’
  • RP- ‘Red Plum’ A coupon insert found in the Sunday paper.
  • RR- ‘Register Rewards’ A loyalty reward program at Walgreen's.
  • SC- ‘Store Coupon’. Coupons for a specific store can usually only be used in that store. They will have the store name instead of saying ‘manufacturer’s coupon’.
  • SCR- ‘Single Check Rebate’ A monthly rebate program at Rite-Aid.
  • SP- ‘Sunday Paper’
  • SS- ‘Smart Source’ A coupon insert found in the Sunday paper.
  • Stacking- Using a store coupon and a manufacturer’s coupon together on the same item.
  • SV- ‘Select Varieties’
  • Tear Pad- A coupon pad in a store, usually found near the product they are good for.
  • TMF- ‘Try Me Free’
  • UPC- ‘Universal Product Code’ The bar code on all products.
  • WSL- ‘While Supplies Last’
  • WYB- This means ‘When You Buy’. Example: Save $1 on milk WYB 3 boxes of cereal.
  • YMMV- This means ‘Your Mileage (or Manager) May Vary’ or your individual results may vary. Example: My Walgreen's no longer allows coupon stacking, but YMMV.


Never Pay Full Price Again (A How-To)

How it works:

Buying Things On Sale + Using A Coupon = Sweet Deals! I use a free online list (links provided below) that matches up local grocery store sales with coupons that come in the Sunday paper. I buy in multiples to hold us over until that item goes on sale again.

Step 1: Getting Your Coupons

I receive 5 copies of the Sunday paper in order to get multiple copies of the coupon inserts. That way, when I find a good deal, I can get 5 of them. The 'rule of thumb' is to get 1 Sunday paper for every person that lives in your house. You don't have to receive multiple copies of the paper to start couponing. You can make do with one if you already get it, or you can do only online printable coupons. However, to maximize savings, I really recommend getting multiple copies. I pay $18.99 a month for a paper every week day and 5 on Sunday. I save way more than what the paper costs me. And for all you 'greenies' out there, I compost the leftover newspaper and use it as mulch in my garden.

If you live in Utah and want a deal on the Sunday paper, contact my home girl, Shauntell at The Obsessive Shopper. She'll hook you up.

Step 2: Organizing Your Coupons

When I get my Sunday paper, I pull the inserts out, sort them by type, and write the date in the upper right hand corner with a marker, and then I file them in a filing cabinet. You can use a hanging file folder or whatever system works for you.

Step 3: Making a List

You still with me? OK, good! When I am ready to make my shopping list (you DO shop with a list, right?), I go to Grocery Smarts. On this site, you can choose the store that you shop at, and they have already matched up the coupons in your inserts to the sales at the local grocery stores. This site matches coupons and ads in Utah, Idaho, Southern California, Las Vegas , and Eastern Washington,. You simply select your grocery store from the pull-down menu and it will bring you to a list of sale and coupon matchups. I also recently found a list for Minnesota.

Sadly, I have not been able to locate a matchup site for all my peeps in Wyoming. I am not giving up on you! And, you can still use this system, it will just require a little more effort. A little hard work never hurt anyone, right ;) You can also use the Wal-Mart list on any of the sites above. Keep in mind that Wal-Mart prices vary by region. They may not be exactly the same, but they will likely be close. The Wal-Mart list on the sites above only include online printable coupons, but you can use coupons from the inserts there as well. More on that later.

OK, moving on... after look over the list and check out all the sweet deals, I make my list. I write what I am buying, how many I am going to buy, and where to find the coupon. I write a separate list for every store that I am going to. No, you do not have to go to multiple stores. That is the beauty of this system. You take what works for you, and you leave the rest.

Step 4: Gather Your Coupons

Then, I clip all the coupons I need. It is easy to locate them, thanks to the lists (links provided above). They tell you what the coupon is, what insert it is in, when it expires.

It looks something like this:

Pace Picante Sauce, any $1/2 (8-31-09) RP 5/10

That means you get $1 off any 2 Pace Picante Sauce products. The date in parentheses is the date the coupon expires. RP stands for Red Plum (an insert in the Sunday paper), and 5/10 is the date the insert was in the paper (May 10). There are also Smart Source (SS) and Proctor & Gamble (P&G).

I put the clipped coupons into envelopes that have the store names written on them along with the list for that store. I put them all in my purse, and I am good to go! When I get home, I track my savings in an excel workbook, but more on that later.

What do I need to know before I get started?

You need to know if your local newspaper has coupon inserts in them. If they don't, then you don't want to get multiple copies. If they do have inserts and you are going to be getting multiple Sunday copies, ask them for a deal. More than likely they will give you a discount, and it never hurts to ask.

You will also want to know the couponing policies of your local grocery stores. All you need to do is call and ask them what their coupon policy is. Ask them if the accept online printable coupons. A lot of them do as long as they say "Manufacturer Coupon", they have a scannable bar code, and they are not expired. Ask them if they have certain days that they double coupons.

Wal-Mart has a corporate coupon policy. I printed one and keep in it my coupon envelope for Wal-Mart. I have never had any problems using coupons at my Wal-Mart, but your results may vary. To be on the safe side, it is a good idea to print it and take it with you. You can read and print it HERE.

A word about online printable coupons:

Printing online coupons does require installing a coupon add-on. I have it installed and I use online coupons regularly. Don't be scared. It sounds like a pain, but it is worth it.
Only print coupons from trusted sources. Believe it or not, there are people engaged in coupon fraud. I know, right? I will never post a site here that I don't trust and use regularly.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment, or feel free to email me. I am happy to help. I will also be posting a lot more information and sweet deals on this blog.


Spreading The Addiction

I have had many requests for more information on how to save big bucks at the grocery store. Rather than compile it and email it out to each individual, I thought it would be easier to compile it all here and then refer everyone to my blog. Be patient, there is plenty of coupon addiction to go around!


Spent $42.23. Saved $65.78.