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HOUSTON -- Take the words group and coupon and you'll get the latest way to save money.

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Saving Cents with Groupons
September 23, 2009

?"Groupon" is a social networking site that requires a group in order to get a coupon.?

The coupons are posted for one day for specific businesses in select cities.? Houston is on the list , as are most major metro areas. The types of businesses offering Groupons in Houston recently have ranged from Ruggles Green Restaurant to Unlimited Go-Karts.

At The Chocolate Bar, a recently offered $5 Groupon was worth $10 of sweet treats in either Houston store.

"They can have ice cream, cake, chocolate, cake, combination," said The Chocolate Bar co-owner Eric Shamban. "Whatever they want."

Every day, the business selected for the Groupon deal changes, so if you see something you like, jump on it. The Groupons are typically good for a year or more, so there's no rush to redeem them.

In order for a Groupon to be distributed, it has to be purchased a certain number of times on the site. If the day's offer does not draw the minimum number of takers, then the deal is off.? If it does, Groupons are e-mailed the next day and credit cards are charged.

"I think it's a great concept," said Shamban.

Hundreds bought the recent Groupon for The Chocolate Bar, but one couple tried to game the system and printed out the e-mailed coupon more than once. ?

"Now what we will do is we will check the list every time somebody comes in," said Shamban.

To see today's Groupon deal for Houston go to:? http://www.groupon.com/houston/

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