Simple Savings: Save junk mail envelopes.

Today’s tip is one that I’ve been doing for quite some time. I don’t know how or when I started doing this but it’s a handy frugal tip.

We all get too much junk mail. I recommend unsubscribing from as much as you are able to save yourself time and frustration. Even after doing that, junk mail still trickles into our daily mail. Before you throw it away (or recycle it), take a moment to open it up and pull out the return mail envelopes. You know what envelopes I mean? These.

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Junk Mail Envelopes

Go through all your junk mail and save the junk mail envelopes. Put them in a basket or drawer with your other mailing supplies. Next time you need to send a book order to school with your child, use a junk mail envelope instead of a new one. Dropping off a local bill? Use a junk mail envelope. Want to organize your coupons? Use junk mail envelopes. For what else could you use junk mail envelopes? Any ideas?

My absolute favorite way to use these envelopes is for my grocery shopping trips. I write my list on the outside / back of the envelope and tuck any coupons that I will need inside the envelope. It keeps everything together for me as I shop. I cross out list items as I go through the store, hand my coupons over at checkout and recycle the envelope when I get home.

I often scribble over the address and write the intended recipient or purpose before using the envelope, especially if I’m using it to hand deliver a bill. It’s nice to be able to save the new envelopes for actual letters.

Now, please note that these junk mail envelopes cannot be used in the mail – unless you want to send something to the printed recipient! I hope that is obvious to everyone, but I just wanted to clarify! At the very least, you will save yourself from buying one box of envelopes a year (if not more). That’s another $1 to $2 to add to your savings. Remember, every little bit counts!

Do you have lots of junk mail envelopes? Then, give the extra envelopes to your young children – or a local preschool – for them to play with in their writing center. As a former preschool teacher, I always requested junk mail envelopes because children love to write letters and use envelopes. This makes for a frugal way for the children to do so without me worrying about the cost of envelopes!

To read the other 31 saving tips in this series, you can do so here.

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  1. Wow, I’d never thought of doing this! If you are the crafty type, you could probably cover them in scrap paper and make them pretty before sending a letter to a friend. Think I might have to adopt this habit :).

  2. When I was teaching I also used extra church offering envelopes to organize little stuff like each letter for my bulletin board letters. I still find myself using those for small items. I often use an old offering envelope for stuff that my MIL would use a small baggie.

  3. Oh what a good idea! I also once read someone protesting all the envelopes he or she got from credit card companies, they would stuff it full of junk paper and mail it back to the company!

  4. My grandma would write her shopping list on an old envelope and put the coupons inside the envelope. I do that too. Once she mailed some letters and she accidentally mailed her shopping list too. It must have been on an old envelope addressed to her because the next day she received her list back in the mail!

    1. Oh, that is too funny! I do the same thing with my envelopes. I should add to the post because it keeps everything so organized.

  5. This is a great tip! I started doing this when I would get bills in the mail. Since I can pay most of them online, the utility companies keep me well stocked with extra envelopes!

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