Monday, January 17, 2011

Extreme coupon clippers open my eyes

I watched Extreme Couponers on Slice the other night and was at first impressed, and then offended.

There's nothing wrong with saving money. I don't clip coupons myself, but after watching the first few minutes of Extreme Couponers, where shoppers saved 90 - 95% on grocery bills consistently, I asked myself, why not? But, my positive impression gave way to offense when I saw how one 'extreme couponer' stockpiled thousands of items (we're talking enough underarm deodorant to last 100 people a life time or 1,000 boxes of cereal) in his garage. Did he really need all that? It was a show of excess that offended me. How much does one family need? He couldn't consume everything he'd bought before the expiry date. Why not donate the excess items to charity?

The extreme couponers are, well, extreme, to be sure. But could I learn a lesson here? Could I be saving more? Absolutely. But I wonder if people in Canada can get the same coupon deals as people in the US. Do we have stores that double your coupon savings? How often do marketers offer coupons for free items? I really don't know as I've never really used coupons. But it does make sense to keep your eye open for them. You don't have to go to extreme lengths but you can save money even if you use a couple of coupons here and there.

Coupons aren't as hard to find as I think. In fact, I need only go as far as my own magazine to see coupons. urbanbaby & toddler has coupons in the pages of its current Winter 2010 issue -- they're from all sorts of businesses, from toy stores to cloth diaper retailers. Why aren't I using coupons like this to save on toys for birthday presents or clothes? If you want to save, I guess you can't be lazy about it.

For food, my grocery bill runs between $125 - $200 per week. Is that a lot? I don't know. Do you use coupons to shop for your family? If yes, what are you secrets to getting the best deals?

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