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5 Tips for Holding a Successful Coupon Swap Party

Posted: 04/04/12 6:00 AM (Modified: 04/04/12 6:00 AM)


As most of you know, we host coupon swap parties both in Tulsa and Oklahoma City on a farily regular basis. However, every single time I announce one of those parties, I get multiple requests to host them in other cities and towns too.

Since I am just one person, it is much easier for me to host two major parties than it is to host several little ones. But, what I try to encourage folks to do is host their own swap parties at their own schools, churches, MOPS groups or whatever. Gather a few willing participants and you're ready to plan a swap party.

You will need a room, tables, a room and coupons. That's it. Once you've got that, you are good to go.

{Top 5 Tips for Holding a Successful Coupon Swap Party}


1. Spread the Word: If you are doing this event at your church, ask them to help you advertise it. Print up your own flyers and get it out on Facebook too. Facebook is the easiest (and cheapest) way to spread the word about anything. Advertising your event is very important, the 'if you build it, they will come theory' does not always work.

You would be surprised how many events I have been invited to and when I got there the host told me they just didn't have time to advertise. If you go to the trouble of hosting or creating an event, having people show up is important and advertising it is key.

2. RSVP: I'm a HUGE advocate of the RSVP as you've probably seen on our site and the reason is just so we can keep count of attendees.  We have ran into this problem multiple times in Tulsa, we had way more wanting to attend than we had room for. Many times, the places that allowed us to come would restrict attendance even when there was room for them, so we would have to go back and ask for more tables and chairs, etc or change locations all together.

If we would not have had people sign up, I never would have known that and breaking the fire code is not a good thing. You want to make sure you are in a location that can handle the attendance or someone may close you down.

Remember, even if you start it out with just 5 of your friends, they might tell their friends and so on. If you were doing this at your home, you could end up with 50 people easily. So, be sure you get a feel for attendance and ask people to RSVP so you know if you need to find a bigger room.

3. Feed the People: We ask people to bring a snack food to share and we have always provided the drinks, plates, plastic ware, etc. This will lighten your load up a bit. Since we do not charge for these events, it is a little difficult for us to pay for 150 people to eat so having folks bring a snack has worked out really well for us.

If you have a small group though, you could always keep it simple and order pizza or whatever you would like. Treat this like a regular party though, your guests will get hungry. After all, coupon clipping can wear a person out!

4. Timing is Everything: I have played around with the times of our swaps and days several times just to see what worked well. As of right now, Friday nights are our best times for a swap. But, it might be different for your church or organziation. If you are just starting, I would encourage you to ask around first before you plan the time. Many times, kids events, graduation, soccer games and such can drastically effect your turn out.

Recently, I held a swap in the mid-morning on a Saturday. That was a bad idea. My own son had a soccer game so that was not the best time for a swap. Be sure to feel out your audience and also have a clear start and finish time so you don't end up stuck.

5. Coupon Crazy: You HAVE to have coupons. No way around it. Do the best you can to encourage people to bring coupons that they won't be using or you'll end up buying them. I bring tons of coupons with me, most are my own and many of them I purchase. I can't tell you how many times I have literally emptied my binder and brought everything in it for the swap to ensure we have coupons.

We put stacks of coupons in the middle of every table and let people go from table to table getting what they want. We ask the people who attend to place their coupon in the middle of the table as well, whatever is in the middle is up for grabs!

 If you have an audience of brand new couponers though, you may want to plan ahead and pick up extra newspapers or order online.

Recently, I was e-mailed by someone in New Hampshire who was getting ready to hold a coupon swap and asked for advice. I told her what I just wrote above and here is what she wrote back:

"Thank you so much! We had our swap last night and everyone who attended had a great time! They want to meet every month and I will be sending out all expired coupons to military families!"

I love that! You can have  a successful swap at your church or organization too! And, when you do, be sure to send us the pictures and tell us all about it at info@moneysavingqueen.com.

Old to new | New to old
May 10, 2011 01:58 pm
 Posted by  crazyboutcouponz

Thank you again for your advice!!!! We had a great time last night and it was so EASY!!!!

Jan 11, 2012 01:41 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

Hello dear friends,

What you do with the left over coupons on the table?
Thnak you.

Jan 12, 2012 09:24 pm
 Posted by  Anonymous

The coupons on the table are either donated to a military base or put in a recycle bin. Many times the people at the end will bag them up and take them home too.


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