By Suzie Mitchell
Clipping grocery coupons has been a Sunday morning ritual for me since I was a young girl.
My Mom and I, armed with our sharp scissors, would scour the weekly coupon sections searching for our favorite brands. We cut the coupons, placed them in piles according to product type, and then put them in the special envelope marked "Groceries" in big red letters.
I didn't shop with my Mom, so I'm guessing she remembered to take her special envelope to the store with her. Not so with me.
Oh, I clip the coupons alright, and like most Boomers I hear the family mantra in my head "why pay full price for something when you don't have to." I even file them in a fancy coupon case I bought years ago. But eight of 10 times when I get to the market and realize I left the coupons at home.
Guess I'm not alone, because a mobile coupon clipping app has arrived to help folks like me. New in the App Store is SmartSource Xpress, an iPad application that gives shoppers the ability to easily find and digitally "clip" coupons.
SmartSource Xpress uses direct-to-card paperless coupon technology that electronically links coupon discounts to consumers' frequent-shopper cards. A single 'tap' on a SmartSource Xpress offer sends the discount to the consumer's registered shopper cards and will be waiting for the consumer at the checkout of a participating retail outlet.
How cool is this? No more clipping, filing, storing and then forgetting the coupons. Once you tap you're done. You can also check for products by name to see if there is a coupon that you missed.
For instance, I typed in "napkins" and it scanned all of the coupon inserts for napkins.
There are a few drawbacks however. You have to possess a frequent shopper card at one of the registered retail stores. Currently there are only 20 retail outlets signed up, so that's limiting, but it's probably sure to grow in time.
And while there is a great list of your clipped coupons along with their value and expiration dates, finding the print button is pretty tough. It's there, under "My Coupons" - but you won't see it at first. (We had to ask for help to find it.)
This mobile app has great potential-especially when it arrives on a smartphone. Have you found an app or a website that helps you find or save coupons? Tell me in the comments!
Suzie Mitchell loves to write about Baby Boomers. She is a professional journalist and public affairs and public relations consultant. She also is the co-author of the book Growing Into Grace: Adventures in Self Discovery through Writing. Follow her on Twitter here.