6.10.2011

Extreme Couponing

So how many of you have watched the show Extreme Couponing on TLC?  I know I have, and it's madness.  I started couponing years ago, but until I watched this show, I had no idea of how intense it could be.  I decided it might be cool to try to really get great values and took some of the tips that they gave on the show.

I started with my coupon book, a three ring binder with baseball card inserts to seperate each coupon so that I could see them. I would cut my coupons as usual, keeping ones that I might not usually need, but if it looked like a good deal,  I would consider trying it.  I sit with my coupon book and the weekly flyers from my local stores.  I write down what is on sale that have a coupon for, how much the item is without the coupon, and how much it will be after the coupon.  I know at Kroger and Giant Eagle they double coupons up to .99 cents, where Walmart doesn't double any coupon.  With my notebook and coupon book in hand we go to the store and buy what's on sale.

I have two problems with this method.  1. if you don't have a huge stack of each coupon, you are buying one item, not 26 or whatever the insane amount is on the show.   Not that that's a problem, truly who needs 24 toothbrushes in one visit besides the Duggars and some of those other large families? These people on the show dumpster dive, which where I live is illegal, and do whatever they can to get a huge stack of coupons, and problem number 2. unless the item is already dirt cheap, that 1 manfacture coupon isn't going to get you anything free.  So I researched that.  At Kroger you used to be able to stack coupons, meaning you could use several manf. coupons on one item, making it free, but thanks to the TLC show, they no longer let you stack coupons.  I went the other day to test the theory, I had 22 diaper coupons, and was going to use 8 on each diaper, it would have taken $8.00 off of each making them free.  I went to ask how many could be used, just in case, one lady told me 4 the other said 3.  To not have to figure it out, I used 3.  I went to the check out and pulled out the coupons, and the the lady that told me I could use 3 said no, I guess I didn't understand your question, you can use 1 manufacture coupon, 1 digital coupon and 1 store digital coupon.  So that busted that theory.  There is no way to get free diapers using coupons, if there is, I still haven't figured it out.  I went back the next day to try get another item cheap.  I went to Coupons.com and printed out a coupon for a smoothie.  The store had them on sale, and I also had a manf. coupon, it would have taken $1.50 off the item, making it $.75, not bad.  I got to the check out, went to use the coupons, and they told me I could only use one of them, not both.  So how the day before the manager told me I could use 3 different kinds of coupons, but the next day only one of them worked.  Not only was I confused, apparently the manger is too.

I did find one great deal.  I bought 6 gallons of milk for $.99 each, they were marked as Manager's special.  They weren't to expire for 1 week so they were perfect.  I buy at least 6 gallons at a time and freeze it.  If you've never done that, they taste just fine once thawed.  Great deal, right?!

There are several coupon websites that you can print coupons if you don't get a paper, here are just a few.
http://www.couponnetwork.com/
http://www.couponmom.com/
http://www.thebag.com/live/content/index.html
http://coupons.smartsource.com/smartsource/index.jsp?Link=5S2ZUA6PWPEPO
http://coupondivas.com/

The list goes on and on. In your google bar, just type coupons.  You can also go online to find the weekly deals at your stores.  I would suggest you also find their policies on coupons being that each store is different and with this lovely show, they are catching on and changing their policies. The idea of getting stuff for free is nice, but like I said, I really don't see that happening to much longer.  I can deal with getting things cheap though.

If you have any tips or suggestions, leave me a comment, I would to hear them!

Have a beautiful day!

4 comments:

KBraden said...

Yeah thanks to the show coupon values have really dropped. You could get $1 off 2 cereals now you get a $1 off 3? Ugh! Then you can't get toilet paper coupons with much more then a $0.25 unless it's the Scott's brand. I don't forsee getting many free things in the future either. It's a shame that this show has to ruin it for those of us that are just trying to save money for our family. I am really getting tired of trying to find the sale item I need and the shelves being cleared!

Pamela said...

I do love the show. I think the thing that bothers me a bit is the incredible stockpiling they do. I can understand wanting to save money but a lifetime supply of deodorant? There are so many who could benefit from the excess. There are a few who do give to pantries and church pantries. I love that.

Anonymous said...

I just caught my first extreme couponing show the other day ... amazing {and intense and a bit extreme ... guess that is why extreme is in the title, huh?}! Def. makes you want to grab a scissors and start clipping like crazy!

To be honest, I am just too overwhelmed with everything else in my life right now to add couponing to my list :)

Good luck!

xx Cat brideblu

Sarah said...

What great ideas! I've wanted to try and do this. As a college student, I probably should be saving more money than I have been. Thanks for the resources though. Maybe I'll start now ;)