This was supposed to be a completely different post.
I was going to write about plastic and how you can minimize using it, but then I checked my email and I saw that I had a comment on my post from last week about going green with coupons. The comment said that she wished that there was a way to download coupons to your phone, because the paper element was frustrating and she had trouble remembering coupons anyway.
I totally felt her. I mean, I have pregnancy brain coupled with mommy brain, I’m lucky if I make it out the door without forgetting something vital, like my wallet.
So I did a little investigating and, as it turns out, there IS a way to get coupons on your cell phone. I have to be honest, this thought had never occurred to me, because even though I do have a Smart Phone, I have only figured out about 20% of what it does, and downloading apps and such isn’t something that I normally partake in.
So how do you get coupons on your phone, and cut out the need for paper coupons entirely? Check out one of the following apps:
1. Yowza—Actor Greg Grunberg (he was on the show “Heroes”) is the co-founder of Yowza, the concept of which is pretty brilliant. It’s an app for the iPhone, and it’s very simple to use. It gives you coupons based on location—you type in your zip code (or the zip code of where you shop), and it shows you all the stores in your area that have an agreement with Yowza and any coupons that they’re offering. When it comes time to check out, all you have to do is let the cashier scan the image that pops up on your phone.
2. MobiQpons—This is a free application for both BlackBerry Phones and iPhones, and it’s a similar principle to Yowza. It uses the phone’s GPS to find stores nearby that are offering deals.
3. Cellfire—Cellfire is one of those websites where you can download coupons to your grocery shopping card, or to your mobile phone. It will save the coupons on your phone until you are ready to use them.
The only potential problem I see with all of this is some cashiers at stores may not be trained/equipped to scan your cell phone. Some stores require that the cashiers collect the coupons and I wonder how they would respond to having a coupon that is scanned but not collected. When I was at my local grocery store this morning I asked the woman who was scanning my groceries, and she had to call her manager to ask him what she should do should the occasion arise. He said that was fine, but it did make me think that perhaps a lot of the local grocery stores aren’t quite equipped for how smart our phones are.
But I do believe that any reduction in paper use is definitely a good thing, so hooray for the mobile apps!
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