WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Extreme Couponing - let's hear it!

Posted April 6, 2011
Updated April 7, 2011

The Extreme Couponing series aired tonight on TLC and it was full of register surprises...especially for some of the "experts"!

In the two episodes they showed this evening, there was everything from a woman who did 18 back to back transactions to another who spent 5 hours in the store because she didn't know the coupon policy before they started ringing up her items. She didn't realize that she could only do the "get $10 off when you buy $50 deal" once per person. She had 7 transactions and she had only brought her boyfriend to the store with her. In order to do her 7 transactions and get the $10 off each one, there needed to be 7 different people (1 per transaction). She solved her dilemma by calling her friends in a panic and begging them to come to the grocery store so she could do five more transactions.  Another couponer on the show said it felt like the walls were closing in around her because her overstock had seeped into nearly every room in the house.

I did learn something new while watching the show.  I didn't realize there were cool canned goods shelving units that automatically rotated your stock when you rolled the item to the back of the shelf, pushing the oldest cans to the bottom of the unit.  When you have hundreds of cans of soup and veggies, I guess you need a gadget like that!

Of course, I loved seeing all the coupon binders! If you don't have your coupons with you, you can't take advantage of any unadvertised deals. And if they aren't organized, it will take you forever to find them. Love seeing those organized binders!

In the end, the thing to remember, is that we will NOT be able to see those kinds of savings in one shop in this area. No stores are going to let you do 18 back to back transactions or call in your friends so you can break the rules. Also, keep in mind that the Houston Kroger that was featured in one of the segments, no longer doubles coupons, since they taped that segment there. It would be horrible if, as a result of highlighting this extreme level of couponing on national television, that stores stopped doubling all together.

Did you watch the show? What did you think? I am looking forward to next week when I hear Nathan (from the original Extreme Couponing episode in December) will be back.


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  • stmedlin Apr 10, 2011

    How in the world were these people getting all the meat and chicken for free? I never see any coupons, except for chicken, but it is never enough to get it for free. With the limit of 20 coupons in most places, doubling/tripling only to the price of the item, etc... I don't see how it is possible to buy $500 of groceries for $8.

  • shaigetz20012 Apr 9, 2011

    Here is another great way of getting and using coupons, which i found in the following link,


    I find it more useful, since i`m the one deciding which couons to use instantly, and it`s free too.

  • leahp Apr 8, 2011

    The thing that bothered me most about the show was that I didn't see any fresh fruits or veggies! Only instant potatoes ect...Maybe they just didn't feature these b/c there aren't coupons but lets be realistic...if you survive off couponing alone, you are missing out on soooo many good foods and vital nutrients!

  • knobers Apr 7, 2011

    Can't see purchasing that many of an item (cereal, potato chips) if it could go stale, even in a sealed package. YUCK

  • knitterma Apr 7, 2011

    At my local HT, a cashier told me one woman had 11 different VIC cards! (she claimed she was buying for neighbors).

    However, most of us play by the rules, and obviously the stores give a LOT of slack for these shows.

  • purplepat777 Apr 7, 2011

    You are sooo right, Amanda! I won't watch the show because I don't want to be responsible for supporting their addiction. I would hate for stores to stop accepting coupons due to people like these.

  • Amanda1971 Apr 7, 2011

    I thought it was interesting that ‘Hoarders’ came on right after. (It was mental illness night on TLC.) They bring in therapist for the folks on ‘Hoarders’ but not the folks on ‘Extreme Couponing’ who need counseling just as bad. Just because they are able to organize their chaos into categories & keep things neatly stacked doesn’t mean they’re not addicted to shopping. But it’s great that if their house burns down they can file an insurance claim of $20,000 worth of groceries that they only spent $5 for.

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Apr 7, 2011

    Sandi, Thank you for sharing your story with us. I am thrilled you have been able to feed your family more comfortably and I think your idea of writing to HT is excellent. Sounds like a good thing for all of us to do. Keep up the great work!

  • Oxymoron02 Apr 7, 2011

    Did anyone else LOL when that one girl's boyfriend said they had plenty to survive the zombie apocalypse?

    Find the extreme stockpilers near you so when the zombie apocalpyse happens you know which houses to raid for supplies? :D The zombies will only be interested in brains, not 100 cans of veggies.

  • sandrablankenshiprn Apr 7, 2011

    I am not embarassed to say that I struggle with the price of food. There have been times in my life that I honestly did not have enough to feed my family and had to do without just so my kids would have enough. I managed to get myself through college and now can afford food more easily. I am not saying any of this for sympathy. Since I attended the smart shopper workshop, I have saved almost $2000 and my son came into the kitchen the other day and said "mom, it is so nice to still have food left to eat after the weekend when we didn't have enough before" this should not happen in America but sadly it does. I thank God for couponing and have written to Harris Teeter today to thank them for allowing me to coupon. Shows like this put our couponing in jeopardy and for those of us who do it as honestly as possible it makes me want to throw up. I hope everyone will overwhelm Harris Teeter with thank you's so that we don't lose our coupon priveleges. Sandi