Beginner Tips – How to Spot a Fake Coupon


Do you sometimes wonder if a coupon you printed is actually real?  Sarah over at A Thrifty Mom has a great post about how to spot a fake coupon and what happens when people use them.

Here are some ways you can tell a coupon may be fake. But, you’ll want to head over here (part 1) and here (part 2) to read it her whole post.

* All numbers under the bar code are the same

* 6 of the same coupon print on one page!

* The image looks homemade on the coupon

* No size limits listed on coupon (some legit coupons don’t have a size limit either)

* No watermark printed on the coupon

* Only one set of Bar codes

* Too good to be true!

Want to check on a particular coupon?  Head over to the Counterfeit Coupon Alert at Cents Off.  You’ll be able to see the most recent counterfeit coupons.

You don’t have to worry when coupons come from legit sites like or  You usually can print 2 coupons per computer from these sites.  However, as with any coupon, it’s illegal to make photocopies of the coupons.  Companies have a limit of how many coupons they want to allow.  That is why great coupons go fast!  They reach their limit and are taken away.

Some companies are still using PDF coupons, like the recent Scotch sponge coupon.  These coupons have no print limit and can be printed as many times as you want.  I’m not sure why some companies still use this way of distributing coupons, but as long as it comes directly from the company’s website it is legit!


  1. I was starting to plan my Giant Eagle shopping trip and went to Saving in Akron blog, like I always do and found that this week she linked to your blog. I am glad of this, because I found this post! I recently had a friend who sent me some coupons that seemed way too good to be true and I was not aware of this website, but it is a terrific resource. The coupons were indeed too good to be true…trust your gut as well!! I am glad I found this post, thanks!


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