I thought I’d take a few minutes to address something that we get lots of questions about. Its a disease in coupon world that I like to call “Register Anxiety.” Register Anxiety is that feeling that occurs during check-out when a coupon beeps and you start to feel the blood rushing from somewhere near your ankles or toes all the way up to your face, gathering mostly at your ears and thundering loudly, making it hard to hear anything else going on. Sweaty palms, shallow breathing, and narrowing vision are also symptoms of Register Anxiety… c’mon, I know you know what I’m talking about!
For me, I had Register Anxiety most when I first started couponing. I would confidently walk up to the register but once a coupon beeped, I was done for. Toast. Seeyalater,alligator. Open up a hole and let me sink right in. I wanted to hit delete, backspace, rewind – whatever!- to make the situation go away. I was embarrassed and often thought I heard music playing in the background to the tune of “Lions, and tigers, and cashiers, OH MY!”
This didn’t last long. Once I knew my “stuff” -and by stuff I mean what stores expected of me and what I was and wasn’t allowed to do, the coupon policy- I had fewer occurrences of Register Anxiety. Yes, sometimes my coupons still beep, and my heart flutters every so slightly at the thought of possible confrontation, BUT I am able to politely talk with the cashier, or manager, about what their store’s coupon policy says and 9.99 times out of 10, I am allowed to use my coupons and get my deal.
But, how? Is it my dashing good looks? My smooth sweet talking? The fact that I own my own couponing consultant business and website? NOPE. NOPE. and NOPE. It is simply because I know (and follow) each store’s coupon policy (and carry it with me!). This is such an easy cure for Register Anxiety, I really ought to patent it and make a lot of money 😉 Another tip I have is to call Corporate. Big, bad Corporate. If you feel that you are interpreting a coupon policy one way and the manager another, call Corporate to get their take on it. I’ve called in line before and gotten 20 containers of cereal for FREE 🙂 because I ended up being RIGHT and the cashier and manager didn’t correctly understand their own store’s coupon policy!
SO, on that note, here are all of the national store coupon policies and a few other popular local ones too:
Some local chains:
Other questions about Register Anxiety? Tips to share? Let us know in the comments section!