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Top coupon-using frugal cities

Online printable grocery coupons are part of savers' strategies.

By Teresa Mears Jan 8, 2010 5:14PM has released its list of the 20 most frugal cities, or at least the ones that are the biggest users of its online coupons.


Whether coupon use equates to frugality is one of the most debated topics on frugal blogs and bulletin boards, along with strategies to get the most from your coupons.


Online coupons have certainly grown in popularity, both for online purchases and for printing out and taking to local stores. The most tech-savvy stores are using coupons tied to loyalty cards or sending coupons via cell phone. But most of us are still clipping coupons with scissors or printing them out at home.

You’d be crazy not to check for online coupons when purchasing apparel, electronics and other items online. But what about grocery coupons?


Jennifer Chait at Blisstree’s Thrifty Mommy doesn’t use grocery coupons because she thinks it takes too much time and most of them are for products she deems unhealthy or a waste of money at any price. But the superstar grocery shoppers say they save hundreds and thousands of dollars a year on groceries with coupons.

Online printable coupons are more widely accepted than they were a few years ago. The Coupon Resource Center has a free service to check the validity of online coupons.


You can check your supermarket’s Web site for coupon acceptance policies. Here is Harris Teeter’s policy, for example, plus the news that the chain is doubling manufacturer’s coupons through Jan. 12.


Coupon Mom has some tips for dealing with cashiers who won’t accept your legitimate grocery coupons, plus a message from Wal-Mart about that store’s policy on online coupons. (Wal-Mart does accept coupons printed online.) The Coupon Mom site also has forums where readers trade tips about how best to save using coupons.


Coupon Mom is one of several sites that match your newspaper coupon fliers with sales at your local store, so you can stack coupons with sale items and increase your savings. Another major, similar site is The Grocery Game, which charges $5 per month per store.


The Grocery Coupon Guide has a number of tutorials on different aspects of couponing, including a guide to the best places to find coupons online.


It takes a pragmatic approach to couponing:

There are a lot of sites and ebooks that claim you can reduce your grocery bill by 90% or more. Although this can be possible, you would have to approach shopping as a full time job to achieve these results. Since that is not an option for most of us, we have put together a practical guide that can reduce your grocery bills by 30% to 50% with a minimum effort. It's a practical guide for the everyday person who wants to save, but not make couponing their life quest.

The 20 most frugal cities, based on online coupon use?


They are, in order:

  • Atlanta
  • Tampa
  • Cincinnati
  • Saint Louis, Mo. 
  • Minneapolis
  • Nashville
  • Charlotte, N.C. 
  • Cleveland, Ohio 
  • Pittsburgh
  • Kansas City. Mo.
  • Raleigh, N.C. 
  • Boston
  • Oklahoma City
  • Miami
  • Washington, D.C.
  • Indianapolis
  • Denver
  • Dallas
  • Wichita, Kan.
  • Columbus, Ohio 

What’s your coupon strategy? Do you find significant savings by using coupons? Are printable online coupons part of your strategy?


Related reading:

Jan 21, 2011 6:40PM
Those of you who live in Kansas City might want to check out muncharoo for coupons. I love that site!
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