Where were the coupons last week?

There was a lot of disappointment and frustration about the coupon situation (or lack thereof) last Sunday.

I thought I would take a moment to share what I know.

The coupons are not great every week. Some weeks, we will get three or four inserts. In my experience the start of the month tends to be pretty hot. P&G will put a monthly insert out at this time too. However there are other weeks when the coupon inserts will be scanty. This is particularly so on a holiday weekend.

Some papers do not carry Red Plum. In my area, the Seattle Times does NOT carry Red Plum in their Sunday paper. This is exactly why I’ve personally decided to subscribe to the Tacoma News Tribune. Last week, the only insert that was issued was a Red Plum. Seattle Times subscribers would have gotten nothing.

Coupons and their values DO vary. Even though the Seattle paper doesn’t get the Red Plum, when we get SmartSource inserts the selection in the Seattle paper is generally better. Sometimes you may see me refer to a coupon you didn’t get in your insert. Unfortunately, coupon selection and/or their values may vary from region to region. When I know that a coupon weekend is particularly “hot,” I may try to nab a copy or two of the Seattle paper on top of my Tacoma News Tribune subscription.

Know what’s coming. Incidentally, this is exactly why I take the time week after week to give you a “heads up” through my Coupon Preview posts. I gather my information primarily from Taylor Town Preview. Knowing what to expect can be very helpful to the avid couponer. If you know there is only a Red Plum coming, then you won’t head to the store and buy a Seattle paper. Conversely, if I tell you we’re getting 5 rockin’ inserts, you might want to prepare for ways to snag a few extra papers. Make sense?

I truly do think the Sunday paper is still the best source of coupons and I hope you don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater (so to speak) if we run into a disappointing weekend of coupons.

If you’re local I would encourage you to consider the awesome Tacoma News Tribune subscription deal I keep harping about! You pay just $1 per Sunday paper when you order between 3-6 copies. This is half off of what you’d pay at the stores AND the papers are neatly delivered to your house every week. I easily recoup the cost of my four papers with the coupons I use. For more information, please read the post I’ve written on the Sunday Tacoma News Tribune subscription deal.

I am also curious to learn about other Pacific Northwest newspapers. Do they contain the Red Plum inserts and/or have a good selection of SmartSource coupons? Other tips for getting the paper for cheap or free?


  1. Vee says

    The Federal Way Mirror generally has the SmartSource and Red Plum coupons in the Saturday issue. I think a copy of this is fifty cents, but not sure.

  2. Lindsay says

    The Everett Herald carries both the Smart Source and the Red Plum. And of course P&G and GM when they are released. It does not carry the Parade Magazine, like the Seattle Times does, which I have noticed sometimes has high value coupons.

  3. says

    Hmm…that’s interesting. I didn’t know that some papers don’t even carry some inserts. I would not have been pleased if I’d have gotten no inserts this past weekend. Thanks for the heads up!

  4. says

    In the Tri-Cities, we get all inserts but not all of the coupons. Sometimes the coupons are a lower value than other regions too. I wonder if the Spokane newspaper gets good ones? I purchase my papers at the local Dollar Tree because the Tri-City Herald doesn’t offer discounts to subscribers and the DT sells them for $1 each. But, in my area you have to get there early because they usually sell out within an hour of opening!

  5. Kristy says

    Good to know about the Everett Herald, I will be switching to them because I have missed out on too many RP deals it seams with the seattle Times!

  6. says

    I get the Yakima Herald. They have an incredible deal of $20 for a year of Sunday papers which comes out to $0.38 a paper! We never have the high-value coupons that all of the blogs rave about and we never have the coupons that Rite Aid and Walgreens advertise as “extra savings” in their ads. It sucks! I know a lot of people around here who go to the store and pick up a Seattle paper (I don’t think anyone in town sells the Tacoma paper).

  7. says

    I am a shameless dumpster diver. My area receives the Seattle times so the Post Office is a great place to collect multiple copies of the Red Plum. I search through the recycle bins for as many copies as I think I’ll use. Since I have 4 kids, I got 8 copies of the insert with the McDonald’s free oatmeal coupon…. it’ll be a nice treat one day! And, I don’t know if this is normal, but I usually get the RP the week before everyone else!

    Coffee shops usually have recycle bins too…. but my husband is too embarrassed to let me do it when he’s with me :). Make sure you ask, though, so you don’t snag what someone else has been promised!

    And, lastly, our local community center has a stack of papers for the senior citizens that have lunch there a couple times/week. I’ve been told to take as many as I like because they always throw some away. Often, I’ll just pull out the inserts.

    Some of us coupon for fun, some of us coupon because we have to.

  8. Tina says

    The Bellevue Reporter is free and usually has all inserts but the Parade Magazine in it. Sometimes if there is only one insert that week, I have found the paper empty so make sure you check. It also comes out on Friday, makes it easy to get ahead on cliping!

  9. Julie says

    I’m on the East Coast, in a small market. My local paper gets an abbreviated version of the inserts. My nearest large market paper doesn’t get Red Plum. We subscribe to the local paper — it’s still hard for me to comprehend why so many people don’t subscribe to any newspaper, but that’s another topic — and I usually pick up at least one extra paper on Sunday.

    Sometimes half of my Sunday paper is delivered on Saturday, so I get to see the coupons in advance. I also turn to different preview sites to get a heads up.

    If I really want a lot of a certain coupon, sometimes I trade through one of the coupon/forum sites. I can often find a better value coupon that way, too.

    • says

      do you have a coupon trading site you recommend? there are several good ones i don’t have (dove deodorant and johnson and johnson baby) and several good ones i have and won’t use (gain and purex).

      • Julie says

        I’ve traded on Hot Coupon World, and A Full Cup has a trading section, too. On HCW you have to complete a trading training program, but it’s not difficult.

  10. Shellee says

    Oregonian and (Vancouver, WA) Columbian both get Red Plum. Smart Source appears in both papers but the Oregonian has a different set with more pages.

  11. Svetlana says

    We are in Salem, we have Statesman Journal it carries both Red Plum and Smart Source, but I prefer Oregonian it has more coupons, then Statesman.

  12. Jen says

    The Skagit Valley Herald has both SS and RP, P&G and GM. However, I notice that we do not get all of the coupons shared in many “deal scenarios”. This can be really disappointing at times. I get all excited about a scenario and cannot find the Q.

  13. stacy says

    The Bellingham Herald carries both RP and SS and the P&G. I’m not sure about GM as I haven’t seen one yet (but I just started couponing a month or 2 ago). Our RP and SS are pitiful. Very few coupons, mostly contains just the advertisements. Took me weeks to figure out that these differ region to region. I was getting very frustrated trying to find coupons that kept getting referenced and they weren’t in the inserts I had. Anyway, switching this week to Seattle Times.

  14. Stephanie says

    If you live in Federal Way, you can actually receive the FW Mirror delivered at no cost. All you have to do is call their office and request it. I did this a year or so ago and it took a few weeks to actually receive it (and an extra call or two).

  15. says

    Great article Angela. The Red Plum inserts are sent directly to me via mail, but you only get one insert this way. Like to snag the deals when they are promoted on the daily deal sites (like recent Times deal on Groupon).

  16. says

    thank you for writing this post. I have had people like freaking out on my blogs facebook page how we should all call our newspapers and ask why they stopped putting the smartsource, and i was thinking….nobody got it, there just wasnt one…chill out! I forgot about it being a holiday too. I live outside the dallas area and have a sunday only subscription to the dallas morning news, which gets all of the coupons. I was talked into taking out a thursday subscription to the mesquite newspaper, which they told me had all the same coupons that came out on sunday, so i could have an extra copy. that was not true, because it only has the smartsource, not the redplum. I have family in Louisiana who save me their coupons, but they get very few compared to what we get in dallas, sadly. But any extra helps 😉


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *