The Show Everyone Loves to Hate Returns: TLC’s Extreme Couponing

One week from tonight the show that most couponers love to hate returns to TLC. Extreme Couponing makes its triumphant return to T.V. on September 28 to a coupon storm of criticism and controversy surrounding the show and the practices of the people featured on the show. Most of the backlash directed at the show comes from avid couponers themselves who are worried that TLC’s Extreme Couponing is giving couponing a bad name. Couponing blogs are abuzz with anger and upset at the show for what these practices are doing to the real world of couponing. Since the debut of the show, couponers have seen stores cracking down on the use of coupons in their stores. Many stores have dropped the practice of double coupons which once allowed most couponers on the show to score massive amounts of products for next to nothing. People who coupon on a much smaller scale are feeling the effects of these extreme practices, and retailers are finding ways to put a limit on the amount of merchandise and coupons that people can now use. Many stores have also rolled out new or updated coupon policies that make it harder for everyday people to use coupons to save their family money on groceries and everyday items.

How can a TV show have such an effect on people that it causes whole retail chains to revamp their policies? The answer is simple, people love to save money, and the prospect of getting so much for so little easily hooks people and keeps their attention. If you didn’t already know, each week the show features two couponers who take viewers inside their homes and gives them a glimpse of their massive stockpiles. Viewers are captivated by the amount of stuff these extreme couponers have accumulated just by using coupons. Seriously, some people on the show could be running a small grocery store out of their homes with the amount of stuff they have accumulated. The show also takes viewers on extreme shopping trips where the extreme couponer purchases hundreds or even over a thousand dollars worth of products and is able to get the stuff for next to nothing seatgeek coupon code . And, when I say next to nothing, I mean almost nothing. Some of these extreme couponers even end up with negative balances which means they get all that stuff for free. It’s every struggling family’s dream come true. That’s why, since the shows debut, there has been a sharp increase in the number of people who use coupons. I for one am one of those people who started using coupons because of the show. I saw the people on the show getting so much for so little, so I decided to look more in to it. Here I am seven months later with a little stockpile of my own, and I couldn’t be more happier that my eyes were opened to all the great savings and deals I was missing out on. Before I started using coupons I paid over $3 for a bottle of body wash or, even worse, over $8 for a razor! If I had only known then what I know now I could have saved myself so much money.

In conclusion, I have to say that I am not mad at TLC’s Extreme Couponing. If fact, I am looking forward to its second season premiere next week. I am fascinated by the people who are featured on the show. It must take so much time and dedication to plan out those extreme shopping trips and my hats are off to those who are able to do it. That being said, I do hope that more emphasis is put on the fact that the show is not something that is very realistic in everyday life. These shows depict extreme shopping trips that only happen for a T.V. show. Sure, you can do similar shopping trips on your own, but, I believe, you would have a hard time trying to do shopping trips like this at most stores. It is also important to remember that when using coupons you want to use them responsibly. You don’t have to accumulate a massive stockpile over night, and you are not the only one in your neighborhood who is looking for a good deal, so don’t be a shelf clearer! Nine times out of ten the same product will be on sale again and you will be able to score it at the same price at another time. You don’t really need more than 10 of any one item, so be considerate of others.

In order to be the most effective couponer you can be, you must be organized. You have to do what works best for you. That being said, I will share my own tips here.

There are many reasons to stay organized when it comes to couponing. The most important reason is that coupons expire. You don’t want to be sitting there looking at a bunch of expired coupons, +Up Rewards and Extra Bucks. There is nothing worse. It is basically like tossing your money in the garbage.

Coupons have varying expiration dates. Most Extra Bucks (CVS), Register Rewards (Walgreens) and +Up Rewards (Rite Aid) expire in a set amount of time from the date you get them. Walgreens only gives you 2 weeks to use their Register Rewards, so you really have to be on top of your dates to not let them expire.

However you organize your coupons, I recommend you put the Register Rewards, ECB’s +Ups in the forefront of whatever you have. I use binder clips to put them right inside the front cover of the binder. I see them every time I open it.

One of the most common ways to save money on your grocery bill every month is by using manufacturer’s coupons collected from the Sunday newspaper. People are saving hundreds of dollars a month by simply taking the time to collect and cut these coupons out. It can be time consuming but doesn’t have to be and the rewards are more money in your bank account while still creating healthy and great tasting meals for your family.

Extreme couponing is a full time job. People spend many hours a day searching for and collecting coupons from many different sources. Dumpster diving, asking friends and family, writing companies and searching the internet for printable coupons are the daily activities of an extreme couponer. These are the people that will save thousands of dollars a month but unfortunately for those of us that work full time with families there usually isn’t enough time in the day to perform these extensive tasks

Luckily there are coupon cutters that will do the work for you for a small fee. These individuals collect coupons from many different sources and offer them for you to purchase for a handling fee. It is illegal to sell coupons so you have to remember, they are not selling the coupons to you. You are paying them a small fee for the time that it takes for them to put your coupons together and send them to you. These services are extremely valuable if you would like to become an extreme couponer but don’t have the time to collect the coupons that you want. Handling fees vary but can be as low as 6% of the coupon’s face value.

Matching up the coupons for the best deals is another time consuming task for the extreme couponer. The easiest and fastest way to do this is to take 15 minutes to examine a sale ad when it arrives and circle the deals that you are interested in. Match up the coupons with the deals for each store that you plan to visit. Write on the ad how many coupons you have, the value and the final price of the item. This will help you determine the savings you will receive as well as know how many of that particular item you need to put into your cart. It will also help you determine the amount that your bill will come to so you know how much cash you need to have on hand for your trip.