I received an email from a reader which prompted me to write a post about coupon manners. There has been an influx of new coupon users recently, so I thought this post would be good for newbies (and veteran coupon users). I need reminders on some of these too.
We all want stores to remain coupon friendly and to be viewed as assets to their stores.
1. Skip the express lane. First, remember that the express lane has a limit of 15-20 items depending on the store, don’t count that as per transaction. Even if you’re just under this limit, consider using a different lane. Your coupons will take longer to ring up & other shoppers with only a few items could be lining up behind you.
*Sometimes my store only has the express lane open so that’s just all you have to work with.
2. Let other shoppers go first. If you have a cart full of items, consider letting the person behind you with 3 items, go ahead of you.
*I’m not saying let everyone in the store checkout first just because you have coupons.
*If someone comes up after my transaction has started, I tell them that I will be awhile. The cashier may suggest another lane.
3. Head to the checkout lane prepared for your transaction. Before you get to the register, find a quiet aisle and get your coupons and purchases in order.
- Separate transactions and coupons in your cart (sort in reusable shopping bags for even more accessibility)
- Organize and count coupons
- Consider alternating between printable and insert coupons to avoid the printer paper sticking together
- Confirm your products versus coupons and verify all items if doing a promotion where you need a certain product value or number of items
- Place Free Product coupons on the top of the pile and place those items on the belt last – cashier can find the product value more quickly
4. Hand all coupons for the first transaction to the cashier. You don’t need to hand each coupon individually. Watch the register to make sure coupons come off
*I count the coupons as they are scanned
5. Avoid peak shopping hours. Stores tend to be busy on the weekends and in the early evening when everyone is getting off work. Shop early in the morning or after the evening rush, if you’re schedule allows. This will also benefit you, as the customer service line won’t be as long if you have a problem with your order.
6. Be respectful to cashiers and other shoppers. Smile and say “good morning” to the cashier. If there is a mistake with your purchase, you will get further by keeping your cool.
* If the line backs up due to a problem with my purchase or coupons, I apologize to the person behind me. This usually goes a long way and the other shoppers are usually impressed with my total instead of irritated that I held them up.
What do you think?