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COMPETITION WORKS FOR THE CONSUMER

Dear Super Saver: I have some information that I'd like to pass on.

I wait for a cereal to be on sale and then use a manufacturer's coupon and a doubled store coupon to end up paying 50 cents per box of 20-ounce Kellogg's Raisin Bran. I look through displays to find a box with a good offer, which recently has been a coupon for buy-one-get-one-free two-scoop cone or sundae at Baskin-Robbins ice cream store.

My kids would be interested in the sundae, but the price where I live is $2.65. I know a sundae is a nice treat, but this is too expensive for my family at this time.

McDonald's in my area accepts competitors' coupons, so I take the Baskin-Robbins coupon in to them and pay 99 cents for two sundaes, plus the kids get to play in the McDonald's playground, since they are customers.

My 2-pound coupon bag (which I carry on all shopping errands) came in handy just the other day again as I looked through a clearance basket of Maybelline product and used two $1-off coupons toward two eye shadows that were marked down from $4 to 89 cents each. I brought them home for free. Happy shopping.
-- Odette Nielsen, Portland, Ore.
Dear Odette: We periodically talk about using competitors' coupons. When we speak of "comp ads" in Super Saver, this simply means clipping out a coupon for an identical name-brand product to use at a competing store that accepts the coupons of its competition.

I have often mentioned the advantage of keeping fast food coupons in your glove compartment, since we are primarily in our cars when we get a craving for french fries.

For example, I had been taking a carpool of 12-year-old roller skaters home from the rink. When I drove, we always stopped for a treat, often had at fast food restaurants.

The restaurant greatest savings I ever experienced area was when I had a coupon book for fast food items in my glove compartment and got large milkshakes for each passenger -- at three for the price of one.

Your suggestion points out what a little creative thinking can do for stretching your snack dollars while increasing your fun quotient. Keep clipping those competitors' coupons, and by all means, keep them in your car.

Today's offers

Up to $10 Kellogg's supply rebate. For $1, send the UPC symbol from a bag of Kellogg's Amend Flower & Vegetable Garden Mix. Limit: 10 per household. Receipt must be dated by July 31, 1997. Store form required. Expires Sept. 30, 1997.

$2.50 GE family fun video rebate. For a $2.50 refund, send the UPC symbol from a GE Soft White four-pack, any wattage, or Miser R30 or R40 Indoor Floodlight or Spotlight plus a dated and circled cash register receipt for the lights and a video rental. Store form required. Expires Oct. 31, 1997.

$5 Purina Kitten Chow veterinary savings. For a $5 refund, send the weight circles from at least 5 pounds of Purina Kitten Chow. Store form required. Expires Dec. 31, 1997.

Send any questions regarding coupons and refunding to Super Saver, along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope, in care of The Buffalo News, Box 639, Libertyville, Ill. 60048.

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