Coupon Booklet Promotions - Are They Worth the Money?

1/14/2003

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Coupon booklets may offer you savings on a variety of products and services. But before purchasing one, the Better Business Bureau advises you to consider whether or not you will be able to take full advantage of the savings offered.

Local businesses participate in coupon booklet promotions in hopes that they will be able to attract new customers. The booklets, which are designed, developed and sold by marketing companies, may offer discounts or free services. They usually have a retail value equal to the maximum possible value of all the coupons combined.

In deciding whether or not to buy a booklet, you should add up the cost of any shipping, handling or "processing" fees and determine whether you will use enough of the coupons to make it worth your money. Some of the participating businesses may not be conveniently located to you or they may not be able to redeem a large number of coupons before the expiration date.

It is also important to understand the terms and conditions of use, such as whether or not a purchase is required in order to receive a "free" gift. Other restrictions may apply to the date or time a coupon may be redeemed. To find out more about the restrictions, you should call in advance to double-check the coupon acceptance policy of the store or restaurant.

Coupon booklets may save you money and at the same time introduce you to new stores in your area. But you should be wary about any claimed savings that may be misleading or exaggerated. You should also check the marketing company out with the Better Business Bureau or your local consumer protection agency before buying a coupon booklet.

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