Reader Nancy Sanchez from California asks the following question:
Dear Coupon Girls,
I have 5 coupons for (example) $1off each for a box of cereal can i buy all 5 boxes and use a coupon for each and buy all at the same time?
This is a common question among new coupon users and the short answer is, yes you can!
If you have 5 coupons for $1.00 off one box of cereal then, unless the fine print wording on the coupon says otherwise you can purchase 5 boxes of cereal and use your 5 coupons to save on each box of cereal.
As a smart couponer though you are responsible for double checking the fine print on your coupon as well as knowing the store coupon policy at the stores you are shopping at to make sure you are following the terms and policies.
When it comes to the fine print on coupons and restrictions on how many coupons you can use at one time look for the following type of wording…
“Limit one coupon per purchase” – this means that you can use one coupon for each item that you purchase. So if you have three coupons and three items you can use all three coupons at the same time as long as you are meeting the purchase requirements for each coupon.
“Limit one coupon per transaction (or shopping trip)” – this means that the manufacturer is imposing a limit in that you can only use one like coupon per each time you check out at the cash register. If you have multiples of a coupon with this wording then you will need to check out separably for each coupon in order to stay within the limits on the coupon.
“Limit one coupon per household” – this means that you are limited to one coupon total for your entire household. I have no idea how that is enforced but that is the limit imposed on the coupon…
“Limit 4 like coupons per shopping trip” – this means that you are limited to using 4 (or whatever number is printed on the coupon) of the same coupons per shopping trip. A shopping trip is defined as each time you walk into the store. So technically you would need to buy 4 items, use your 4 coupons and check-out. Walk out of the store and buy 4 more items, use 4 more coupons, etc, in order to use more than the limit on the coupon. Sort of a pain. Some stores will just allow you to check-out with your 4 items, then ring up your next 4 items in a separate purchase.
Another thing that you need to be aware of is that some stores impose their own limits on how many coupons you can use. This is especially true at stores that double coupons. For example the store coupon policy may read “Limit of 3 like coupons doubled, all other coupons redeemed at face value”. So it is best to familiarize yourself with the coupon policy of your stores. We have a list of store coupon policies that you can check out and if your store is not listed speak to the store manager and ask what their coupon policy is and if there are any limits on how many coupons you can use.