Food is a non-negotiable household expense, and something that gets more expensive too. While you should never compromise on nourishment, you also need not pay top-shelf price for something you can get for free. With a bit of resourcefulness and diligence, you can cut a good chunk off your food budget or otherwise spend those savings on fresh organics. Here are 9 creative ways on how to get free food vouchers and fill up your grocery cart or bag with zero cash outlay.
1. Be social, with social media, that is. With almost everyone on the Internet these days, chances are that your favorite brands of peanut butter, yogurt, milk, coffee, cereal, or fast food are online. It won't hurt to like their fan page or follow them on the blogosphere, as you might reap rewards upon signup or after a lottery or a contest.
2. Trawl the Internet for free food voucher sites. Some are legit, and some are not. However, if you chance upon popular blogs or aggregator sites, you will have something to download and print later to try at your local grocery stores. Vouchers found online may not always be accepted, but if your stores do, you can save more than a bundle.
3. Comb the periodicals. Companies like to maintain a traditional presence in mainstream media, and that still includes print publications like newspapers and magazines. Inserts do not regularly appear, but when they do, collect as many as you can for products that you would normally buy anyway. You can buy more newspapers to collect more coupons if the savings to be had offset the cost of buying them. To save even more, ask permission from friends to browse their newspaper piles for overlooked inserts.
4. Browse in-store shelves. Free food vouchers may altogether be staring right back at you in the aisles of your favorite grocery store. These coupons are often attached to the packaging or inside the package themselves. Keep a sharp eye for these freebies, and you may pay very little when it's time to ring it up with the cashier.
5. Talk to the manufacturers. Let them know what you like about their products. They may reward your effort with a coupon, or direct you to their website with a promo code. If you haven't used their products yet, you can also ask them directly for coupons, or you could even sign up as a product tester.
6. Sign up for a regular shopper's card. National chain stores often have customer loyalty programs, so take advantage of their perks if you regularly buy from them. You may get a chance to convert your points to free food vouchers, or get one in special coupon mailings.
7. Filter your junk mail. Not all junk mails contain trash. Some may hide really great bargains. In the same vein, keep an eye out for food coupons before you throw away unsolicited mail.
8. Be a secret shopper. What better way to earn free coupons and take home the food you shopped in the course of your assignment than shopping on behalf of the manufacturer? Mystery shopping may not be for everyone, but if you are the type who can pay attention to detail, assess your shopping experience objectively, and turn in paperwork promptly, then your meals in the foreseeable future may cost next to nothing.
9. Create a buzz. Do you have a blog devoted to consumer advocacy, fitness, health, stay-at-home parenthood? If you have a broad base of followers, you may want to build on that to get food vouchers in exchange for fair product reviews.
With the word “recession” still ringing in most peoples' ears, learning these 9 tips on waysto get free food vouchers and being prudent with the lunch money you save is doing yourself and the economy a favor.