San Antonio group says coupons can help fight inflation – mySA

Remember those news segments that showed people carrying those big binders of coupons in grocery store lines right around the last devastating recession in 2008? Local savings and coupon experts Brenda Anz and Jennifer Kind remember. And even though experts won’t say if we’re in a recession or not, inflation has hit the market and both Anz and King say couponing has returned in a big way. 

King says there is still a need for the age-old process of clipping and saving, but couponing has changed drastically with the jump in technology, and a pandemic that forced a lot of people to rely more on that tech. From 2008 to 2009, coupon redemption jumped 23%, according to a Valassis report. In 2021, consumers redeemed 865 million coupons, according to Valassis. 

Anz and King say the need is back as they’ve noticed inflation has caused grocery prices to rise between 10% to 15%, but they have also seen coupons combat those increase in prices, allowing people they teach to save around 30% to 40% on their basic needs. 

“So we’re bursting that inflationary trend by teaching them how to shop differently,” King says. 

Right at your fingertips

Anz says couponing is now combination of digital and paper clipping. Anz operates a savings site called SavingOurWay.com where she points out deals and teaches free online couponing classes with King, who also has her own coupon and savings blog, JenniferSaves.com.

Anz’s program has a sponsorship with the San Antonio Express-News, which she says is still a trove for traditional coupons. There are also stores that offer deals and coupons right through their apps. The biggest purveyor being H-E-B, which does allow you to clip coupons as you add items to your cart, especially if they’re H-E-B products. 

H-E-B allows you to clip coupons on items before you send them your cart. 

H-E-B allows you to clip coupons on items before you send them your cart. 

Screenshot H-E-B app

Anz says that she and King are seeing coupons they’ve never seen before. The couponers have noticed an uptick in “basket deal” coupons from H-E-B. These are given check out with your receipt and can chip away at your next tab. Hold on to those. 

Then there are the apps Ibotta and Fetch, which are essentially rebate programs that give money back through PayPal accounts after shoppers purchase a product that and scan their receipt. Those PayPal accounts can then be linked to your bank. 

“This is cash, green money that you can touch, that’s coming back to you,” Anz says. “You’re then taking that money and you’re doing what you can. Make a car payment. Help with your light bill. Or you can just save that money for the end of the year.”

The people who are couponing have changed. 

The people who are couponing have changed. 

Steven Santana | MySA

Changing spaces, changing faces

The coupon gurus say couponing is really for everyone. It’s not just moms and families with kids, as its often perceived. That’s proven through how much the makeup of their classes have changed.

King says she is seeing single people, older people and even Zoomers attend their courses, all trying to break into couponing to save some money. 

King says that’s partly due to their presence on social media. Anz runs the Saving Our Way Facebook group, which currently has over 51,000 users who collaborate and share deals among each other. Anz also has a TikTok where she shares ongoing deals and tips for saving money when shopping for basic needs. 

You can also find out when they hold their next session of classes. 

@savingourway #donationdrive #gluesticks #crayons #gluebottles #clearance #helpinghands #fundrasier #southsidefirst #BrendaAnz #clearance join fb page @Savingourway #forourkids #schoolsupplydrive #HEBclearance #schoolsupplyfundraiser #savingourway ♬ original sound – Brenda Anz

King and Anz encourage everyone to get into coupons especially as Texas families are headed out to the stores to capitalize on tax-free weekend. King says they recognize that a lot of new people come into the class with a fear of trying this new skill in public. For some, pulling out these coupons at the check out lane can be nerve-wracking. 

“We really try to break it down and make it as simple as possible for people,” King says. “Just do that one deal and get that confidence under your belt.”

She says the confidence only snowballs from there once people see the type of savings they can score. 

Anz and King are currently teaching classes up until this Sunday, August 7. The classes can be watched for free at the Saving Our Way website

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