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Revised ‘online’ coupon policy strengthens exchange benefit

DALLAS -- With a simple click of the mouse, saving at the exchange is easier than ever before thanks to a decision to accept manufacturers' online coupons.

"Frankly, the economy has spurred increased interest in electronic coupons," said Maj. Gen. Bruce Casella, the Army & Air Force Exchange Service commander. "This, combined with industry projections showing 'online' offers accounting for 8.7 percent of all coupons sent out in 2010, made it necessary to find a way to let exchange shoppers apply some of the estimated $12.7 billion in savings said to be out there to purchases made at their Base Exchange or Post Exchange."

Sites and services that offer manufacturer coupons range from companies' own websites to online discount portals. What a manufacturer's coupon says actually takes priority over its source as AAFES requires the words "manufacturer coupon," a bar code, expiration date, redemption address, usage policy and stated face value to all appear on the coupon in order to redeem it.

In most instances, AAFES' new coupon policy even allows for one manufacturer's coupon to be combined with an AAFES-issued coupon for the same item.

"Unless either offer specifically prohibits a combined discount, coupons available through AAFES' Mobile Marketing service or sale fliers can be combined," said Casella.

Some things just get better with age. Such is the case for the 115-year-old exchange benefit troops, and their Families, have come to depend on. From coupon clipping to discount clicking, online, email and text message coupon acceptance, combined with tax-free shopping, is helping ensure the military's exchange benefit is no "limited time offer."

(Courtesy of Army and Air Force Exchange Service)
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