Did you watch TLC’s “Extreme Couponers?”

by LisaB on December 30, 2010

Since we’re in the business of saving money and using coupons you know the three of us had to watch “Extreme Couponers.”

Last night at 8 p.m. on the The Learning Channel’s newest show, “Extreme Couponers” we met:

Nathan Engels – Villa Hills, KY (bought 1,100 boxes of Total cereal)

Amanda Ostrowski – Cincinnati, OH – (spends 70 hours a week researching her deals/organizing coupons)

Joanie Demer – McKinleyville, CA (dives in dumpsters to find coupons)

Joyce House – Philadelphia, PA (couponing for 34 years)

What’s our take on the show?

It was great to see all the guests reach saving levels in the “90% or higher” categories. We really admire that.  We average between 70-90% savings on our grocery bills. Their effort and organization prior to shopping were key to their success.

We liked (and could relate to) their advice about choosing your cashier.  This part of the show was humorous! It’s true. The young, carefree male cashier is so much easier to deal with than the gray-haired one with her glasses on a chain. (No offense, Grandma!)

But…(there’s always a but)

We were disappointed in how the guests were portrayed as hoarder-like  (And we call ourselves “Obsessive,” remember?) But we know not all coupon users fill up nine carts, clear store shelves and have a 40-year supply of toilet paper at home.

It would have been better if the show portrayed more savvy and consumer-smart shoppers (but then would they have to rename the show to “Above-Average Couponers?”) which we believe represent the majority of coupon users.  Stock-piling is acceptable (we all have stock piles of a variety of items) but the “extreme” stock piling displayed on the show leans more toward hoarding.

And the other component missing on the show?  The guests seemed “greedy.” In our opinion most couponers are “extremely” generous. They give back, donate, support charities and churches because it’s so much easier to do when you use coupons. Not enough of that was mentioned on “Extreme Couponers.”  That, to us, is probably more rewarding than any part of couponing all together.

The three of us at Obsessive Coupon Disorder live by our own “coupon ethics.”  Some of these codes include: using coupons within the store’s policies (ah, buying 40 bottles of soap at one time or any other item is not being coupon friendly to your fellow shoppers who might want that product too), never using questionable Internet coupons (and they’re out there), never resorting to obnoxious or aggressive coupon tactics and never using coupons in a fraudulent manner.

Many of our Blog Friends are writing posts about this topic. We like what the Happy Housewife wrote about Extreme Couponers.

So, what did you think of the show?

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Marie December 31, 2010 at 12:42 AM

I agree the show was a huge disappointment. Thanks for this post on such a hot topic.

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jen March 17, 2011 at 4:51 AM

I’m a couponer myself and i know how to get items practically for free at drug stores and so on with doubling coupons but grocery stores i don’t understand. how can they get everyday grocery’s for next to nothing? i look at the deals in the grocery store everyday and compare them to my coupons and even look on the stores website for more deals to double with and they don’t exist. I just don’t think it’s possible for them to get 600 worth of everyday groceries for next to nothing. please tell me what you think?

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Obsessive Coupon Disorder® March 21, 2011 at 4:37 PM

The stores allowed the “excess” purchases for the sake of TV. In real life we cannot go into the stores and use that many coupons to get that many items! Many store have a limit of 3 like coupons per like items…

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