Understanding 'Couponese' – the language of couponing

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By Darby Dugan, the Coupon Goddess

If you’ve ever overheard couponers conversing about their deals, it’s likely to have gone something like this:
“So, I went to WM, Pm’d BL’s ad on the games, used two IP’s on them, used two IP’s on the razors which was a MM, used an IP on the wipes and the butter, used Cats from Wags and Kroger on the tweezers and floss, more MM’s and got it all for $2.85.”

“Cool! I went to Wags, stacked an IVC and Man Q, got the shampoo and a RR for $3, hit Kroger, got 6 toothpastes free and an ONYO for two bucks. MM’s!!!”


This is known as "couponese," and there are many new items in our vocabulary, thanks to couponers. If you’re serious about saving, you will be visiting Internet forums that deal with coupons and deals and you will need to know what these terms mean. I’m going to translate a few of them for you, enough to get you started. There are tons more, so be aware this is just an intro …

Cat — Coupon triggered by a purchase and dispensed by the Catalina Machine near the register. It states a specific dollar amount off a specific item. You will, on occasion, see the term “This Cat will roll.” In normal circumstances, you may use this Cat on the same item that triggered it, however, it will not produce another similar Cat. When it rolls, that means that you can use it on the same item and it will produce another Cat like it. And you can keep rolling it until the promotion is over. FYI: Wal-Mart and Kroger will accept Cats from other stores. (Yay!)

ONYO — On Your Next Purchase. Again, this is produced by the Catalina Machine. How it differs: It is for a dollar amount off your next purchase and it will state “$5 (or whatever) Off Your Next Purchase.” This can be applied to your next shopping trip regardless of what you buy, however, it excludes tobacco, alcohol and prescription meds. These may be used only in the store from which they came.

RR — Register Reward. Walgreen’s ONYO.

IP — Internet Printable.

MM — Money Maker; when a deal produces overage.

PM — Price Match. Wal-Mart and Target will price match other stores’ ad prices. These must be advertised deals and in the sale ads. Their policy states that you do not need to bring in the ads, but just to be safe, I recommend you do so. If you don’t have the ad, you may print it off the Internet, just be sure the date of the sale is visible.

YMMV — Your Mileage May Vary. Although each company has its own policy, it is often up to individual store management to determine certain protocol. For example: How many coupons may be used in a transaction, how many items may be purchased in one transaction, etc.? It is your responsibility to keep abreast of the changes and what your stores allow.

For a detailed list of coupon lingo, visit a great site: www.coupongeek.net/-category/resources/coupon-lingo-list. Check it out and you’ll soon be a pro at couponese.