Starting today, November 1, 2013, the average family of four receiving food stamps will have their benefits cut by $36 a month. There has been a benefit cut for every SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) household across the board (cbpp.org).
With families needing to stretch an even smaller amount of benefits further, it is more important than ever to know the basics of couponing with your EBT card (SNAP).
How to Use Coupons with Food Stamps
Step One - The first place to start is with the coupons. Where to Find Coupons will show you all the places you can find coupons.
Step Two – If you don’t have a system to organize your coupons, it is easy to get overwhelmed. Read Keeping Your Coupons Organized
Step Three - Use the coupon match-up for your local store. The work of finding what’s on sale and which coupons will match the sale is done for you each week. The coupon match-ups are completely FREE. Just choose your store from the list of coupon match-ups. You can also use the check boxes to mark the sale items you want to buy, to create your shopping list. The list can then be printed or emailed.
Step Four - Coupon match-ups all use abbreviations that you may not be familiar with, so use this Coupon Acronyms, Abbreviations and Lingo Guide until you get the hang of it all.
Step Five - Coupon policies vary from store to store. Knowing your store’s policy can help you save. Find your store’s Printable Coupon Policy.
Step Six - Remember all the ways to save without coupons too! Read 10 Ways to Save on Groceries without Using Coupons
EBT / SNAP Specific Coupon Tips
Use store coupons as often as possible. When using a manufacturer coupon, you will be still charged tax on the full price of the item. However, store coupons are considered a store discount, so the tax is taken on the lower, adjusted price! (This applies in states that charge sales tax on food items.)
Separate Food and Non-Food items into different transactions. It is not unheard of for registers to have problems telling the difference between your food coupons and your household coupons. This can cause even the non-food item coupons to all be deducted from your food total. Which means you would end up paying full price for all non-food items. You can check to see if your registers make this mistake by purchasing one food item and one non-food item together. Next, use a coupon for the non-food item. Then, check to see where the coupon was deducted.
These coupon tips can help the average family save at least 50% on their groceries (which we can all use). Share this with a friend or family member to help them save too!