Coupon your way across Vermont

A local coupon website makes it possible to have fun and support the local economy.

Localvore Today is a website that offers discounts to local restaurants, shops and businesses strictly in Vermont.

A typical coupon offers half-priced vouchers to redeem at businesses.

A recent coupon on the site featured a $16 meal for the price of $8 at Our House Bistro.

Localvore Today functions similar to other coupon websites such as Groupon.com and LivingSocial.com, said senior Marissa Villegas, a LocalvoreToday.com employee.

Localvore TodayÕs mission separates it from other coupon websites, Villegas said.

ÒThose companies donÕt really have a strong social mission or none at all,Ó she said. ÒA huge portion of your money [from other websites] is actually going out of state.Ó

LocalvoreÕs philosophy aims to keep the dollar in the local community, Villegas said.

The company is committed to the growth of local businesses, according to the website.

ÒWe are really into supporting your own local community while also saving money going to your favorite spots, becoming a regular somewhere,Ó Villegas said.

The companyÕs founder, Dan White, estimates that Localvore has kept approximately $100,000 in the Vermont community, Villegas said.

Localvore is a way students can live out the Òbuy local mantraÓ while staying on budget, she said.

Some students in the UVM community agree with the Localvore TodayÕs mission.

First-year Marianna Mead said she would be willing to try Localvore Today.

ÒSince I live in Vermont it makes sense that I use coupons for Vermont companies,Ó she said.

ÒUVM is a very progressive school and we are very conscious about what we are doing,Ó Villegas said. Ò[Localvore Today] makes it affordable.Ó

As a student, Villegas said she recognizes the pressure for students to save money.

ÒWe totally understand the youth culture,Ó Villegas said. ÒItÕs a great way to experience the local culture and support it, otherwise it would be difficult [for students] to.Ó