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Expert tightwad shares coupon strategy

Tops2

We knew that would grab everyone's attention!

This week, Tops has that special going where they double your $1 coupons. You present the coupon, along with one of their Coupon Doublers, and instead of $1 off something, you get $2 off. Why are we explaining this? You all know what we're talking about. That is a Tops checkout pictured, by the way, in the News file photo above.

Buzz contacted our resident coupon expert, Ryan Lysarz, who gave us advice once when we wrote a story on coupons for The News' business section. We asked him what his strategy was this week for capitalizing on this special.

"Funny you should ask about this, Buzz, because I was just working on organizing my coupons. I got rid of expired ones, and then separated out the $1 coupons. Then, I wrote down all of my $1 coupons on paper, separated into categories. When I go to Tops, I will check prices/sales for the items on my list, and purchase the 4 best values. I will do this at least 2-3 times this week, as you can print more doublers online. I also have some Tops register coupons that can be combined with manufacturer's coupons. My dream is to use a doubler, a Tops coupon and a manufacturer's coupon on the same item."

Ha, ha! This guy is 30 years old and already he is a coupon expert! He analyzes supermarket sales the way most people analyze Sabres games. What else, Ryan?

"I also plan to use as many lower value coupons as possible at Tops this week, because I want to beef up my gas points before the 9th."

Questions began pouring in. 

"Is a Tops Bonus Plus card the same as a Tops Bonus Card?" A legitimate query!

And one that Ryan is the master of. "Yes, it's the same thing," he says. "I actually have a Martin's card that I enjoy using. Sometimes it throws the cashiers off." Remember Martin's? For a while it replaced Tops at the location on Maple Road in Williamsville.

He adds: "I think the old Quality Markets cards still work, too."

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