WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Did you watch the new Extreme Couponing on Monday?

Posted May 29, 2012

It's back! Yes, the show about extreme couponers making coupon magic on a massive scale is back! Did you watch the new episodes Monday night on TLC? What did you think? Are you boycotting the show because of questionable couponing practices? Are you watching every episode with pen and paper in hand to take notes?  Share your thoughts!

Most of you know my thoughts about Extreme Couponing. Over the last couple years I have blogged about it more than once. For those newer to the blog, basically I think it's a good concept gone bad. There are some very good techniques described in the show but it's taken to a level of excess that I find hard to believe is healthy for any family. The amount of time, effort, space in the home and hoarding that many of the couponers exhibit is disturbing. The stores consistently break their coupon policies to allow the show to film these massive shopping trips and NO stores in the Raleigh Durham area will let you do that kind of shopping, using that many coupons.

Here are a few things I noticed from the episodes Monday night. I did not watch the full hour of the show, but I saw plenty.

* Kmart let a woman do 23 back to back transactions using a ton of coupons. Kmart's policy here in the Triangle is to let shoppers use 5 coupons per day per customer with a purchase of $25 or more. Yes, 5 coupons per day. I guess Kmart in her state doesn't have that policy. Or maybe they do. She and her husband and daughter spent 10 hours shopping in the store during that shopping trip. By the way, I believe I saw a commercial for Kmart during the show. And, the show rarely mentions a store by name but they  were very obvious about mentioning Kmart's name in this episode and showing the entrance to the store with the Kmart sign.

* They showed a lot of people clearing the shelves buying 20, 40, even 60 of an item and using a coupon for every one of them. Again, no stores here in the Triangle will let you do that.

* A number of shoppers got overage for their coupons. If the product was $2 but they had a $3 coupon for the item, the coupons were accepted at the $3 value and the overage was applied to the rest of the shopping total. In our area, the only store that will do that is Walmart. It is their policy to give you the overage on a coupon towards the rest of your transaction. No other grocery stores in the area will let you do that, as a policy.

* Most shoppers used massive amounts of free product coupons. Those coupons had to be obtained from somewhere. The young college students saving up for their toga/Jello-O wresting party (I wonder if the Jell-O people were happy about this type of free advertising) went knocking on neighbors doors in togas to request February. I am officially not going to knock on your door in a toga to ask for coupons. I draw the line there. My guess is that many of the free product (or huge value) coupons people used so happily in the segments came from coupon clippers and cost a fee. Regardless, the amount of time spent procuring those massive amounts of coupons is more time than I am willing to spend. Time with my kids is much more important than having a mountain of free soda, as one woman had.

What are your thought son the show? Will you continue to watch it?


Please with your account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • bonnie1967 May 31, 2012

    I did watch the full hr of the show, but I taped it. I fell that in our area that many of the stores will not let you use that many coupons. I do some shopping at HT, Lowes, Food Lion & some at Wal-Mart and do us my coupons. I do not have a very big home & could not put everything in my home if I had all of that food to non-foods. I know that when watching the show some of the people take the groceries to a local food bank or church to donate. I will watch the show for saving but these people are just out there and do not think that many of the items have exp. dates on them. This my two cents worth.

  • Oxymoron02 May 30, 2012

    ronsphotos: "I coupon and save money that she throws away."

    It sounds like your spouse and mine are cut from similar cloth. Doesn't matter how low I get our groceries down to, he's found a way to spend my savings. You have my simpathies.

  • Oxymoron02 May 30, 2012

    Didn't watch it, probably would have DVR'd it had I known it was on.

    Faye, if you showed up at my house in a toga asking for coupons, I would *GLADLY* share some with you. :P

  • ronsphotos May 30, 2012

    A couple of things: I don't worry about people in line behind me. They chose to pull into the line behind me. They can go to another line just as easy as they pulled in behind me if they are unhappy. Computer on the fritz? Won't scan my coupons? Sounds like the store has a problem; not me. If the manager has to come to the register to over-ride one or 100 coupons, so what; it's his/her JOB!

    Discourtious cashier? Call her/him on it. They have no reason to treat you with disrespect. Attitude doesn't improve, call the manager. It's their job.

    I still watch Extreme Couponing because I get a laugh out of most of it but I still learn something new that I can use when I shop.

    My wife has never been able to grasp couponing as a way to save so I watch it to diss her off. Works too.

    My wife still insists on going to 5-6 different stores weekly. That's her thing. I coupon and save money that she throws away.

    It is what it is.

  • LAXMom12 May 30, 2012

    pirategirl - don't let that show keep you from saving money. I hear it all the time from folks, but I get their attention when the cashier gives me my total. Sometimes I repeat it back just to make sure they heard it. :) As long as we follow the rules and policies, they can't say anything about it. The ones that have positive attitudes get any tips and extra coupons I have.

  • HappyGirl08 May 30, 2012

    Well, I'm not sure how anyone knows that the coupons used were fake but I don't do a lot of research in to what goes on with the show. I watch it for amusement value only. What struck me was that the lady who went to kmart was putting herself and maybe her baby at risk by doing it. I mean clearly they stated she was having a rough pregnancy and she was about to be put on bed rest. Did she really think 10 or 11 hrs @kmart was worth possible consequences? I guess she did but I can't imagine needing anything ever that badly! I wonder what TLC compensates those folks for their appearances. That woman has been on the show multiple times.

  • msgooch2000 May 30, 2012

    I was able to watch on Monday while visiting my family in New York. (Normally, I don't have it was a treat to have it for a few days!) It is completely ridiculous and, as others have said, is giving the real couponers a bad name to those that do not know any better. I had to educate my family and friends this weekend and explain the difference between the "extreme" couponing they see on TV and what the "realistic" couponing is, which we do. I also post my more impressive hauls on my FB page to encourage questions and education on what couponing actually is. This show is sensationalism and is hiding up the real motivation to those of us that do realistic couponing: saving money for more important things.

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper May 30, 2012

    pirategirl - although some cashiers and stores are definitely not coupon friendly, I have been shopping the same stores for many years and have become friendly with the employees. Many of these same folks have been at these stores since I have been shopping there so they know I am not trying to do unethical things. I get no grief from any of them and they are as friendly as ever. My goal is always to get to know the folks at the stores so they are not suspicious of my couponing and understand that I am following the policies.

    Cutecape - I agree that there have been a number of very questionable couponing practices profiled on the show which is why I turned them down when they asked me to apply. Not only do I not have a stockpile that rivals a Walmart store, I don't expect everything to be free and I don't buy $1000 worth of product at a time...ever. It would be a boring episode with me on. lol

    empcrafter - I also wonder how much family time they sacrifice for couponing.

  • pirategirl12 May 30, 2012

    I have never watched more than 10 minutes of the show due to what I have read about it. Because of this show, I hardly coupon anymore at all due to the bad rep these folks have given us. :(

  • cutecape May 29, 2012

    The coupons used were known counterfeits. OF COURSE you can save hundreds of dollars with fake free coupons. Only the coupons werent free themselves, he had to buy them from a counterfeiter on Ebay.

    These same counterfeit coupons were used by a teen on the show last year. The producers caught flak for it. They KNOW those SAME COUPONS are FAKE. But they filmed it anyway.

    Extreme fraud. This is not real couponing. This is a mega media corporation just sneering at regular people who are gullible enough to believe that you can honestly come up with many multiples of free item coupons at ridiculously high values just so easy.....when in fact it takes some work to come up with LEGIT free item coupons, and these on the show are FAKE.

    Why is no one in the lamestream media covering this?