Sunday, March 7, 2010

Coupon Trains and "Train Envies"

Ok, almost every day I'm introduced to something new in the couponing world. This does not mean I have the time, patience, organization, or general wherewithal to follow through with them. This is one of those things I came across on a couponing blog and said (aloud), "What the heck is that?" To spare you from this same fate, I will introduce YOU to Coupon Trains.

The general idea is to send a stack of coupons through the mail to a circle of 3 to 6 other couponers. The person who starts it is called a "conductor." There is a list of addresses called a "routing slip" that travels with the coupons to tell each person in the train where to send it next. When you get the envelope (aka "envie" hence the couponing term "train envie"), you take the coupons you want and replace them with other coupons that are the same value as the ones you took. This way, you can get extra copies of coupons for things you like to buy and share coupons for things other people like to buy. You MUST turn that envelope around within 1 to 3 days of receiving it so that coupons don't expire before other people get them.

Sounds kind of simple, but I imagine you have to be selective about who you want boarding your train. I would probably requiring a couponing passport of some kind in order to guarantee they will stick with, follow the rules, and not steal all the coupons. Which makes me think I'd need a local train - like a hi-speed commuter coupon rail.

Anybody do this? Have you been successful or do you end up with an envelope full of, like, coupons for polydent and offers for seasonal dog flags for your front lawn?

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