How to Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board

One of the best ways to maximize your savings is to get the best coupon values for your weekly matchups. Newspaper coupon insert values are regional, so one region of the country will get a different value from another region for the exact same coupon. Aside from coupons, there are many other opportunities to save money. You can join and be a part of a coupon message board website to get these deals from others whom have the same budgeting goals as you.


  1. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 1
    Read the message board rules thoroughly. Each message board is different from another, so don't assume that you can magically start trading automatically even if you know couponing basics. Some boards may have posting minimum requirements before a person can start trading, limitations until a person has a certain amount of trading ratings, etc.
  2. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 2
    Get to know your fellow couponers. Aside from trading, the entire point of these message boards is to get and share knowledge with others about scoring great deals. By interaction, everyone can gain trust and knowledge about others and their budgeting lifestyles.
  3. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 3
    Learn the message board lingo. Besides the general couponing lingo, there are abbreviations and phrases applied to coupon trading.
    • CC: "Concealed Cash" - Actual money in an envelope; always "concealed" by a card or folded paper from prying eyes in the mailing process.
    • Envie: "Envelope"
    • FSOT: "For Sale or Trade" - The deals that a person is willing to sell or trade with others.
    • GC: "Gift Card" - Many people will trade gift cards for a cash value, coupons, or other deals.
    • H: "Have" - This is what a person has in their possession.
    • ISO: "In Search Of" - This is what a person is search of for their needs.
    • IVSO: "In Very Search Of" - This is what a person really needs as soon as possible.
    • Potluck - This is an envelope with a mixture of coupons. It can be either a specific category (Baby, Food, Pet, etc) or the seller will offer a list of the available coupons they have for the trader/buyer to select from.
    • PP: "PayPal" - To avoid additional costs, most people request a PayPal gift. To their discretion, they might add in the shipping costs in their deals.
    • RAOK: "Random Acts of Kindness" - By performing this, you are giving away coupons and deals without wanting anything in return.
    • W: "Want" - This is what a person wants in a trade.
  4. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 4
    Connect with others about deals. If you see someone offering a sale or trade with something you need or want, work things out in private messages.
    • Make sure that both of you agree and confirm to the trade.
    • Trade mailing addresses and/or PayPal email addresses after it's been confirmed.
    • Mail any envelopes as soon as you can, preferably the next morning. If there are any delays, always notify the other trader so that they can estimate on when their trade would arrive.
    • If you are new or do not have trading experience on that particular forum, you may be required to send/mail your trade first. This is on a trust factor in trading. There are lots of times where two people make a deal, but one party does not hold up to their end. This results in trust and savings loss.
  5. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 5
    Leave feedback and ratings on your trade. Be very honest when doing so. If you received your envelope/trade in a timely manner, always leave positive feedback through their profile. Please know that majority of the trades are mailed are sent on a first class post office schedule, so it might take anywhere between 3 to 7 business days, depending on the distance between the traders. If you have not received your trade in 1 1/2 to 2 weeks, private message the other person to inquire about the trade. If there's no response, you may private message the moderators of the message board. Never leave negative feedback if you received something that you agreed on, but decided you didn't want.
  6. Image titled Trade Coupons and Deals on a Message Board Step 6
    Save all private messages. When a trade is official between two parties, the messages can be treated as proof for any trading concerns/disputes. It is also useful for future trades when you have someone's mailing address.


  • It is illegal to "sell" coupons, however, you are paying for the person's time and effort in clipping, organizing, and mailing them.
  • Box Tops for Education are rewards that can assist schools in funding. On trading message boards, you can either trade them for their full value (10 cents per) or offer it half off at 5 cents.
  • The most effective way to get your trade rating up is to offer lots of RAOK envelopes.
  • Coupon trains are an efficient way to give and receive a more specific list of what you want out of trading.
  • When coupons are involved in a trade, they are calculated at 10% of their face value at the most. People will request the minimum trade to be at least the current price of one stamp, as this will make it worth mailing an envelope. This can either be the total amount of traded coupon values or by weight. A one ounce envelope covers one stamp and anything heavier will require additional stamps or worth more to mail out.
  • Always tape up the envelope seal. This is important because mail goes through a machine at the post office and the tape is used to ensure that the envelope stays sealed.
  • Insert a small piece of paper in the envelope with your message board username and what board you are sending it from. Many couponers trade on numerous boards and especially in coupon trains, people get and mail more coupon envelopes than a casual trader. Without your information, they will not know where it originated from and it will be harder to keep track of.
  • A traditional coupon envelope can hold around 50 to 60 newspaper inserts and a traditional non-insert potluck can typically hold around 20 coupons. If there are mailers (coupons/offers you get in the mail) and other non-paper offers, there can be less quantity coupons due to the weight.
  • Trading Internet printed coupons need a lot of caution and are solely up to the provider. They can easily be copied and because each coupon also prints out the IP address from where it was originally printed from, ISPs can be traced and be notified of any suspicious fraud.

Article Info

Categories: Couponing | Internet Forums and Message Boards