This post was written on April 6th, 2011, before the premier of TLC’s Extreme Couponing. My how things have changed! I remember this night so vividly, while I clipped my coupons and watched “The Show”. I still can’t bring myself to say the name out loud.
Read my CURRENT thoughts on the show, and what we are doing here at Deal Detecting Diva. Changes, they are a comin’!
Tonight is the premiere of the series of TLC’s Extreme Couponing. It starts at 8:00 CST, and you bet I’ll be watching, popcorn and face masque included. I’ve got mixed feelings on the show, and I’ll tell you why.
Couponing for me is about providing for my family with the lowest out of pocket expense. I always donate what I can to food banks, shelters and family members/friends in need. To me, couponing is not about being extreme, or about pushing the limits of your store’s coupon policy. It is and has always been my conviction to supply the things that my family needs until the next time that item goes on sale. There are certain things that I do buy a lot of. I use my experience from couponing as long as I have to judge the next time an item will go on sale, the average price after coupon, and how cheap I should be able to get it in the future. If the price at a specific time is rock-bottom, I will buy enough to last for a while, making several trips to the store if need be to purchase a reasonable amount at a time.
The show might actually turn some people off to couponing. In order to get several thousands of dollars worth of grocery and HBA items for less than a couple hundred dollars, one would have to use hoards of coupons. I am all about flying under the radar, myself. I don’t want the managers to go running when they see me walk through the door, and I don’t want the cashiers to turn off their lights when they see my handful of coupons and my cart overflowing. In my experience, the less extreme you are, the more friendly and helpful the staff are.
Within the last year or so, I have noticed a great influx of couponers. I can’t help but think that this is a result of our economy, lay-offs and pinching pennies in general. Why spend more if you don’t have to? I get that, trust me! What I don’t get is why the show Extreme Couponing showcases couponers buying hoards of one itme, possibly clearing the shelves. Which, in turn, encourages other couponers to do the same. There is no reason to buy hundreds of the same item, especially if they are wiping out the store’s stock completely. What happens to the non-couponers that just wanted a box of cereal? It’s just plain rude to take everything the store has in stock, but of course that is my personal opinion. There will always be another deal, there is no reason to wipe them out.
This show leads me to ponder the different styles of couponing. It is definitely an art and a lifestyle change, and everyone has their own style. From organization, to planning the execution of your store route, to what you actually purchase, what coupons you use (following the rules, of course) and how you store your stockpile.
I do have a pretty impressive stockpile, but I want to stress that I buy small amounts at a time. I rotate my stockpile based on expiration dates, and if I find I have items expiring soon, this helps me plan a donation trip.
So who’s watching the show tonight? I just can’t not watch it.