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Meet your New Year money saving goals with digital coupons | Chucktown Couponer

Chris Potter / CC BY 2.0

Is saving money part of your New Year's resolution plans?

Or maybe you’re just a bargain hunter, who’s always hungry for a good deal.

If you don’t coupon, start.

You can save anywhere from a few dollars or even cut you household expenditure in half or more.

You might be thinking: couponing is a waste of time. I don't have time. I’ve tried it before, and all I ended up with was a binder full of expired coupons.

Couponing can be time consuming, especially if you’re what people call an ‘extreme couponer.’

But digital couponing is a great way to save money and time. It gives you many or the benefits as clipping, without the scissors.

Here are some of my favorite apps.

  1. Ibotta
    This is a great app that pays you back for the money you spend on things you buy. All you have to do is download the app, select the item you purchased or plan to purchase, and scan in your receipts. You can use your rebates on gift cards for your favorite stores or get cashback through Venmo or PayPal. Ibotta will usually let you combine app rebates with any coupons you use in-store for extra savings. Deals will generally renew themselves after a few days so you can use them again.
  2. Checkout 51
    Works similarly to Ibotta. Download the app, select you rebates, scan in receipts. There are drawbacks. You can usually only do each deal once per week, and most deals state you can’t use Checkout 51’s rebates with any other app or in-store coupon. Checkout 51 works like a digital manufacturer’s coupon. Deals do have limited redemptions, an once the limit is reached, the deal is dead. But the app offers free or BOGO items.
  3. Target formerly Cartwheel (CW)
    The Target app is a frequent couponer favorite. If you are a Target shopper and you don’t have this app, you are THROWING MONEY AWAY. The CW app is specific to Target (obviously) and offers exclusive store discounts that are only redeemable through the app. Sometimes as much as 50 percent off an item. These store discounts can be stacked with manufacturer paper coupons you bring in with you. The CW app has the added benefit of allowing you to scan items for price while you’re shopping. When you scan the bar-code, the CW app will automatically add any discounts for your digital wallet in the app to scan when you check out. If there isn’t a discount for that item that week, it will suggest similar items that have discounts. Target will also offer gift card rebates when you buy specific products marked throughout the store and you can save your gift cards on the CW app. Many people will refer to the Target app as Cartwheel app. The deals on the Target app are under the Cartwheel tab.
  4. Store apps
    Most stores offer their own app. Any store you frequently shop, you should have their app. Drugstores will offer app-only offers and will let you track point to get extra store credits. Walgreens will give you points for your steps and tracking other healthy behavior. Walmart will let you scan the QR code at checkout to save your receipts and search competitors for a lower price. If the Savings Catcher function discovers a lower advertised price from a competitor, it will credit your Walmart app account and you can use that money like a gift card on your next shopping trip. Grocery stores also offer apps with their own coupons, some even track your spending and let you save up points or credits to be redeemed as cash on future shopping trips.


Desirae Gostlin is photojournalist and news producer for ABC News 4. She's an avid couponer and dog mom. You can follow her on Instagram at Chucktown Couponer for more sweet savings.

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