I really thought TLC’s Extreme Couponing show would be over after all the fraud and abuse that has been exposed on the show. Really, nothing on the show shocks me anymore. There is more talk of participants using counterfeit coupons on the show.
Saving 50% on your grocery bill doesn’t make exciting television, I suppose. Then again, maybe the producers of the show should be at some of my coupon workshops to hear the excitement that attendees get at the prospect of saving 50% on their grocery bill without dedicating their life to couponing.
Here’s why I don’t “Extreme Coupon,” I coupon realistically:
- Time. My time is valuable. To create these shopping trips portrayed on the show takes hours upon hours. I have a life. I have a job. I have a blog. I have my family. I can 50% or more on my grocery bill by only spending a couple extra hours a week. It actually all works itself out in the end because when you stockpile reasonably, you will be making less trips to the store when you shop your stockpile. Less trips to the store means less unnecessary purchases being added to my cart as well as the time it takes to make those additional shopping trips.
- Money. To get all the coupons in the show, you probably have to purchase coupons, which costs money. There is also the matter of catalina coupons. How did the person get those? Did they have to spend out of pocket money to get a catalina coupon to use on their next purchase? Smart couponers will “roll” catalinas, Extra Bucks, Register Rewards from week to week. Most realistic couponers do not have thousands of dollars of these in their stockpile at one time. These costs need to be factored into the total cost.
- Space. We don’t have the space for some of these massive stockpiles. As it is now with a reasonable stockpile, I feel a little overcrowded. We don’t have room for a whole room of stockpile items so at a certain point you have to stop stockpiling items.
- Use. Will I ever use the product? Can I donate this product? Does anyone want this product? These are some things you have to consider when stockpiling. Yes, maybe I can get a whole truck load of Gas-X but will I ever use that? There are some items that are just a little too personal to start handing out to friends and family without them taking offense! ;)
- Ethics. There are so many deals out there to get that I don’t need to resort to using coupons unethically or illegally. I’m saving 50% or more on every grocery shopping trip and more at the drug stores so why would I even ever consider using coupons in a unethical way? The couponers are the show are encouraged to make their shopping trip spectacular so they often have to resort to purchasing coupons on Ebay without doing research on the coupons they are purchasing.
Those are the reasons why I don’t “Extreme Coupon.” However, the fact is most stores aren’t even going to allow you to coupon the way they are allowing participants on the show. Let’s take Coupon Doubling as an example. Most of the stores in Central Indiana will double up to 2 like coupons. On the show, the stores are relaxing their coupon policies and allowing unlimited doubles. If normal folk try to do this in their store, they aren’t going to get that extra doubling. This makes it a bit harder get that huge score.
What do you think? Are you still watching this show?
Most people can save HUGE on their grocery bill but a realistic goal is going to be 50% saving. You can see my methods and learn how to get started in the 15 Days of Couponing. You can also get started by printing coupons or searching the Coupon Databasefor more coupons.
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