Sunday, June 12, 2011

Extreme Couponing

I watched a few episodes of the Extreme Couponing show. At first, the amount of money saved amazed me. How can someone purchase $400 worth of groceries and only pay $40? After a couple of episodes, I was no longer impressed. Why would someone need 24 bottles of fiber medication? Is the intent of manufacturers to provide 24 bottles of their product to one person free? Especially since that one person bought every bottle in the store? I don't think so. Manufacturers want consumers to try their product and become a repeat customer. They don't want to provide free product to one person for the rest of his life. How long does it take for someone to go through 24 bottle of medication anyway? Probably a lot of product expires and goes to waste. How much extra is average customer paying because of all the products that has been received free by extreme coupon people?

As a large family living on one income, we try to budget our money and resources carefully. We need to stretch each dollar as much as possible. In the past, I've tried to use coupons. The coupons were clipped out of newspapers and printed on-line. When I reached the store, I discovered that I could purchase other similar products cheaper without a coupon. Too many coupons are for over-processed, heavily-salted items that my family doesn't eat. Almost all of the coupons that I had clipped remained unused at the end of the shopping trip.

The people on the Extreme Couponing show shop at stores that double and triple their coupon value. There are no local stores that double coupons. The only double coupon store in our county is 40 minutes away. The Extreme Couponing people use in-store coupons and manufacturers coupons on the same item. The store that doubles coupons in our county recently changed their policy. Store and manufacturer's coupons may no longer be combined. I think that the show is actually making it more difficult for the extreme coupon people to continue to use abuse coupons.

I learned a few things watching the television show and will probably watch more carefully for the few items that we actually purchase normally. Maybe, I'll be able to save $25 each week. There is no point in hoarding items simply because they are free or only a few cents each. My family doesn't need poor health due to eating nominally nutritious foods nor do my children need to drink tons of sugary drinks.

The Extreme Couponing show will probably not be watched again at my house. The practices used by the participants seem unethical and wasteful. Not something I want to emulate in my life.

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