Saturday, April 11, 2015

Expired Coupons? Don't Trash Them!

I recently found out that those old, expired coupons that I throw away every week can be put to good use. I think I throw away about 20-30 coupons every two weeks. It always feels like such a waste when I put them in the trash and the are no longer useful. Well, despair no more! If you come across your expired coupons don't throw them away. They can be donated to the overseas military and their families to be used up to six weeks after their expiration date. There are a few different sites that do this but there is one in particular that really stood out to me.

Coupons to Troops will match you to a base to send your coupons to. The website has some very helpful information about how the website works. Look through their FAQ page to learn some more about them. Here is a bit of info about them from their website.

"Some groups say ‘Adopt a Base’ and provide you with an address on base to mail to them, often a Family Support Center. Other groups are a collection point and ask you to mail your coupons to a location here in the US, where they will repackage and mail them overseas.

We are one of the few websites that from Day 1, have recommended sending directly to a military family. The most important reasons for that are because when you send coupons directly to a family overseas, the coupons arrive much quicker than when they go through any other avenue, and you know that your coupons are getting right into the hands of the families who will use the coupons, and you are more likely of receiving an acknowledgement that your coupons have been received

When you ‘Adopt a Base’ or mail to a collection point, your envelope or box is one of hundreds or even thousands, and you may never know if your coupons are getting to the families in time for them to actually use them. The Adopt A Base program takes extra time and effort as it is required to sort your coupons by category, tally up the values and then report in to them. CouponsToTroops does NOT require you to tally up the values to report to us and it is not required to sort the coupons. If you are mailing a large quantity, we suggest sorting as it makes it easier on your family to go through but it is not required!

When you go through a group that acts as collection point, they ask you to mail to them (either to a central location or to one of their branch locations) so that they can repackage them and then mail them overseas. This way actually ends up costing more in postage overall since the same coupons are going through the USPS twice (once from you to them and once from them to the families.)
Another disadvantage to the other groups is that often there is a lack of manpower available to physically handle the coupons quickly and too often the boxes and envelopes sit in a pile in a backroom waiting to be processed by staff and volunteers. Coupons can not help our military families save money if they are not being received before that 6 month expiration point is reached."

I thought that this is such a neat idea and it is a great opportunity to help out our military. I want to try this out and I will report back to let you know how it goes. If you try this out let me know how your experience was. The links below gives information about donating to the military.

Upcoming: If you think you are a thrifty shopper, I would love to feature you in a blog post sometime this month! Please email me a picture of yourself while you are out doing some thrifty shopping or a picture of your stock pile to show it off! If you would rather not show a picture that is perfectly fine. Tell me some tips you would like to share with others and anything else you would like to share about yourself as a thrifty shopper! I am looking for 4-5 people to feature this month, so if your interested email me at Subject: Thrifty Shopper!

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Questions For YOU!
Have you ever been apart of a group that donates coupons to the military? Did you like it?

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