Oct 07

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What is the 8c Fee on Coupons?

“What is the 8c handling fee on coupons? Is my store making or losing money because of my coupons?”

If you read the fine print on your coupons (and you should!) you’ll see wording that  says the store will be reimbursed the face value of the coupon plus an 8c handling fee. What does this mean? The 8c fee covers the cost of sorting and handling. In small grocery stores, they will handle their own sorting and invoices to the manufacturer. Small stores usually keep the handling fee in addition to the coupon value when they are reimbursed by the manufacturer. Large chain stores often use a clearinghouse for the legwork of sorting and invoicing and the store will be reimbursed for the coupon face value and the clearinghouse will collect the handling fee.

A common myth is that your store will either make or lose money because of coupons. Most stores break even once you factor in the cost of shipping or clearinghouses. While stores may lose some money by doubling or tripling your coupons and “eating” that extra amount, they encourage coupon usage because they are counting on you purchasing extra items while in the store. For example, you buy 11 products with 50c coupons that are doubled up to $1. While you’re in the store you buy an additional five items with no coupons. So while they ate $5.50 in doubling coupons, they made $10 on the additional items you purchased. Make sense?

Have you encountered this myth from non-couponers? How did you react?


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