Last night, reader Anita left this message on The Coupon Project Facebook wall:
The ULTIMATE tragedy has struck…. My coupon binder was stolen out of my vehicle on Friday. And Yes, i actually cried over it! What is this world coming to? I’ve couponed for 3 years and never leave my home without my 3″ overflowing binder. I had to pay full price on everything I purchased this weekend – that was painful. I’m so bummed and lost without it. Any suggestions on how to rebuild? Better yet, anyone have any inserts from the last couple of weeks?
The Coupon Project- What would you do if your binder was stolen?
Anita, let me offer my condolences! Putting a coupon binder together requires a lot of time, care, and love. I imagine part of your upset wasn’t that you just had the coupons stolen – but that the work you’ve done to carefully save your family money was taken away. Your tears are understandable.
I wanted to share this in a post today because unfortunately, I’ve heard of this happening before. I have a few ideas for rebuilding your binder, but I also wanted to give readers who have “been there, done that” a chance to offer their tips and advice, too. (And maybe a virtual hug!)
Rebuilding your Binder
Tip #1. Buy something cute. If I were to lose my binder, I’d definitely be upset. So in order to look for the silver lining, I’d look for a new binder in a bright color or fun pattern. Something that would lift my spirits, or give me a positive new outlook. This is an opportunity to start fresh, so give yourself something pleasant to look at. I’m afraid if I bought the same kind of binder, I’d be feeling even more the weight of having to start all over. This doesn’t mean you need to spend a fortune – consider Target (which usually has sales & coupons) – or a store like Fred Meyer. If you’re a Rewards customer, you likely just got a 40% off any one stationery item in the mail!
Tip #2. Build a “wish list” of coupons. I would also begin to think – what are the coupons I frequently reach for in my binder? The ones that make a dent in my budget? Write them down! Instead of feeling like you have to come up with a binder full of coupons overnight, consider the ones you most need/want – right now. Then begin to tackle your list. Some ideas for getting the coupons you need, fast:
- Phone or write the manufacturers. Explain that your insert coupons were stolen and that you love their products and are missing their coupons the most. Can they help you?
- Visit the manufacturers’ websites and/or try to locate printable coupons via a coupon database, such as the one at HotCouponworld. Try to fill in the gaps of insert coupons with great printables.
- Ask your couponing friends & family! Remember, you might have better luck if you can be specific in what coupons you are looking for.
Tip #3. Shop at stores that offer low prices. Until your coupon binder is back up and running, why not take it as an opportunity to put your super shopper skills to the test? Check out a new store or two! I’d wholeheartedly recommend Grocery Outlet, for starters. They offer fabulous prices, plus they don’t take coupons – so you won’t feel like you’re missing out! Another store worth checking out is WinCo Foods for their bulk foods section.
Readers who have been through this before – what advice or encouragement would you offer? And if you’d like to reach out to Anita, you can find her message at The Coupon Project Facebook wall.