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"extreme couponers" (or something)

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 

There was a show on this the other day on TLC.  It was fascinating and I wondered if anyone does anything similar.   They showed a woman who bought $623ish worth of stuff for $2.71.  It was crazy!  another woman spends about 70 hours a week updating her coupon binder, staking out sales, reading flyers, etc.  I don't have time for that, but it was really interesting.

 

Some of it was odd though.  People were buying like 100 packages of yakisoba noodles or some other sodium-laden foods that I cringed to see.  One guy bought 180 toothbrushes because they were free with his coupons.  He also got 1100 boxes of total cereal (free) but he at least donated them to a food pantry.

 

Anyone else get great bargains by cutting coupons?  I can't even seem to get my grocery bill down below $80/week.

post #2 of 36

That seems to be my issue with coupons- they all seem to be for things we dont buy!  I'm always seeing coupons/deals for things like Pepsi, home air freshners, chemical based cleaners, ect.  :/

post #3 of 36

 


YES!!! I saw that too! And all I kept thinking was how junky the food was that they were buying.

It seems like the major component is finding a store that doubles coupons... Don't know of any in my large urban city.
post #4 of 36

I watched it... it was really neat how much they could save but as I posted on facebook, I wouldn't be proud of my savings if THAT is the bulk of my diet.  It was seriously gross.  However I will say how much they DID pay for what they bought was at least in line with what I think its worth.  I wouldn't want to pay 250 bucks for that stuff... 6 dollars seems a lot fairer for what you get.

 

I can only assume that the products that have coupons for them are over priced anyway.  How much could it possibly cost to make a box of total?  Of course the company can afford people to use coupons... its not like they are buying real food.

post #5 of 36

The lady who got the $623 for $2 something donated the entire shopping trip to the food pantry.  The guy with the 1100 boxes of Total donated it along with the toothbrushes and tons of other food to his church food pantry.  I do get great deals with coupons.  I live an area that doubles and I carefully watch the sale ads.  We don't eat fat, salt and sugar laden foods or high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, etc.  Using coupons has helped me stretch our grocery budget.

post #6 of 36
Thread Starter 

I wish there were more coupons for natural foods.  Or fruits and veggies!  I need to start going on some websites for brown rice, etc. for coupons.  I used to get the mambo sprouts coupons in the mail but for some reason they stopped coming. 

 

I noticed some of the coupons are for products that we buy the generic version of and it is cheaper. But I am not particular about brands of pasta, sauce, etc.  I just buy what's on sale.  I need to check out some coupon websites although I signed up for one before and got so much spam, it was unreal.  I am trying to avoid that.  maybe I should set up a yahoo account and direct junk mail there.

post #7 of 36

Try calling the food companies directly and asking for coupons.  Many will send them to you just for calling.  The trick to couponing is to get coupons for products you use.  Wait for that product to go on sale.  Stock up on that product using your coupons to get a really great deal.  The grocery stores around here double, so I get lots of stuff for free or pennies on the dollar.  Eventually you build your own little stockpile so you don't have to buy things at regular retail price. 

post #8 of 36

I watch for coupons on things I wouldn't use, but that have 'overage' that can apply to the rest of the bill. Lots of times, the coupon manufacturer expects you to apply the coupon to a large size, but doesn't specify, so if you can find a small size, then you can get overage/cash back towards the rest of your items. Then I donate the items to the food pantry or the troops box. I've done quite a few trips paying less than $10 for $400-600 in groceries. But yes, it is a lot of work. I would say maybe 10-15 hrs a week is what I spent when I was really working hard on it. I'd use the overage to buy things I really wanted--fresh produce, meat, dairy, etc. But I had to buy things I'd never use! Like buy 3 boxes of Vivarin and I'd get $3.50 'overage' to apply to my groceries. Small package of rolaids and get $2.00 back towards groceries. Or buy Knox unflavored gellatin (a smallll box) and get $3.04 back towards the rest of my groceries. Hotcouponworld.com is where I would find/trade coupons that I wanted to match up to upcoming sales. I have no place that doubles coupons near me at all.

post #9 of 36

I watched it too. I think I would violate the UA if I wrote some of my thoughts - I think one of those folks could also be featured on hoarders.

post #10 of 36

Where have you found a coupon for Pepsi?  My DH is a big Pepsi drinker and I am a somewhat extreme couponer (not quite as much as most featured on the show), and I've seen VERY few Pepsi coupons.  If I've ever seen them they were a hangtag or peelie or a Target printable coupon.

post #11 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by 34me View Post

I watched it too. I think I would violate the UA if I wrote some of my thoughts - I think one of those folks could also be featured on hoarders.



 

post #12 of 36

We don't have cable, so I haven't seen it, but I think that it was fairly extreme made for TV type couponing.


I live in an area with double coupons, there are a few blogs that do all the work for me, and we already get the newspaper delivered, so using coupons makes sense for me.  I probably save an average of $10 a week with them.  There aren't many coupons for fresh stuff, but I can use the savings on the coupon stuff to pay for other stuff.  And, we use mainstream health and beauty stuff (deodorant, shampoo, soap, dish soap, etc), so that is where I find my biggest savings with coupons.  Recently, I got 2 deodorants, a liquid body soap, and a dishwashing detergent for $0.18.  Can't beat that, especially cause I just hate spening money on stuff like that.  I'd much rather it be on beautiful collards, you know?  LOL

 

I also go through spurts and stops with them.  I remember my mom going through phases in the 80s.  Coupons aren't really new.  They work during some circumstances of life, nad they don't with other circumstances.  You do what works for you. 

post #13 of 36

I was a pretty hardcore couponer back in my college years and first year of my eldest's life. I subscribed to one of those websites where you pay a small fee for the coupons but it was worth it, cause you could get more than 1, and just for the coupons you used. Some weeks I could save $40. I found I was wasting a lot because I wasn't rotating enough, and then we switched over to either generics, organic or other stores and it just wasn't worth it. I do shop sales and will use a coupon on occassion.

 

I stop at Aldis once a month for certain foods and that really helps our food budget. I agree with the above poster, couponing can make sense at different times. Right now, it just doesn't work for us.

post #14 of 36

i am a pretty devout couponer, i don't have 100 of any one product, but i stockpile what my family needs, and if we fall on hard times we would have that safety net to fall back on. That being said, I do find many natural/organic deals when i look for them, they are harder to come by, but it can be done. I have gotten oikos organic yogurt free, seventh generation products, (laundry soap, cleaners, dishsoap for free-.99 each), organic carrots for .38/lb, kashi organic cereal for free- .69/box, frozen organic veggies for .38/bag, skippy natural peanut butter for .49/jar, tom's of maine toothpaste for .59/tube, just to name a few items. I do buy conventional items, but if i can get organic/natural for cheaper than conventional or even free, i obviously choose those products.

 

I haven't been looking for organic natural very much lately, but this weeks scores were babyganics HE laundry detergent for 1.50/bottle, They were on clearance at toysrus for 6.98, and they were buy one get one free and i had 4$ rewards dollars to spend and they ended up being 3.24 for both with tax, not bad for bottles that are regularly priced 9.99 each. I have found a lot of good natural/organic deals at toys r us/babies are us. I also got a tadpoles organic crib baby bedding set on amazon.com for soon to be dd for 75% off, yes i could have gotten a regular set for 46$, but instead I got one made of organic cotton, so I feel like it was a great deal for the type of product.

 

I also bargain shop for pretty much everything, I like the children's place outlet, i get many gifts there I often get clothes there for .99 or less if i have a coupon to use.

 

I just wanted to let everyone know that there are good deals to be had out there that aren't bad for you or the environment. Check out organicgrocerydeals.com and organic deals and coupons (blog), that's where I find a lot of my deals for healthier products.

post #15 of 36

 

Thanks, ilovemybabybird! You've inspired me to give it another try.
post #16 of 36

The judgments make me very sad.  nono02.gif

 

I do often purchase things we don't normally eat because it is free.  I donate most of those items to family or local organizations that want them, but sometimes we will indulge in something that we wouldn't normally have and I'm good with that, too. 


Edited by Mulvah - 10/16/11 at 5:16pm
post #17 of 36

I watched one of those shows recently and I do not think they were very clear that the person paid for some of her coupons online.  And that amount was not put towards how much she spent on her groceries.

 

I do cut coupons.   It drives me crazy with how few organic coupons or fruits and veggies coupons are out there.  But they do show up now and then.  

 

I am part of a coupon train where I send my unused coupons each week to the next person on the list and the person before me sends me theirs.  

 

I have also been known to buy coupons online when a good natural/organic one is available.

 

I subscribe to various company email lists in order to get more of the organic or natural coupons, for example Biokleen sends email coupons now and then.  

 

I am also on a coupon/shopping website where people post deals and freebies.  

 

I certainly do not save as much as if I was willing to use every brand under the sun, but I do OK.  

 

I also watch Walgreens and Target where you can combine manufacturer and store coupons.  I have been known to get items for pennies or free or even money back.  Granted this is not often but now and then on things like toilet paper, my shampoo, toothpaste, etc.  

 

I actually find my biggest savings comes from watching prices.  I have a price book I keep up to date on my ipod touch.  I have 3 regular food stores I use depending on what I need that week.   This way I know when something is on sale whether it is a deal or not.  I do stockpile a little when I get good deals on the basics that will last.

post #18 of 36


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by treeoflife3 View Post

I watched it... it was really neat how much they could save but as I posted on facebook, I wouldn't be proud of my savings if THAT is the bulk of my diet.  It was seriously gross.  However I will say how much they DID pay for what they bought was at least in line with what I think its worth.  I wouldn't want to pay 250 bucks for that stuff... 6 dollars seems a lot fairer for what you get.

 

I can only assume that the products that have coupons for them are over priced anyway.  How much could it possibly cost to make a box of total?  Of course the company can afford people to use coupons... its not like they are buying real food.


I doubt that the families that were given boxes of the cereal would agree with you.

Those people put together huge shopping trips for the show.  Their regular shopping trips save a ton, but are not as spectacular and entertaining as what was shown on the show.

The first woman they showed had a truck from the food pantry load up at her house the day after the show.

The Krazy Coupon Lady (the 2nd woman) donated her entire shopping trip.  She also has her own website and her own book.

The guy with the 1100 boxes of Total regularly donates huge amounts to his church food pantry.

 

I wish they had shown all the donating and shown some of the families that benefit from it.  But that would not have made exciting TV.

 

post #19 of 36
Mambo Sprouts has all their coupons on line now . Plus I think you can also get a version of them at whole foods.. The mambo sprouts has a great collection of all natural
post #20 of 36

I like to coupon too, and yes, I buy LOTS of useless items if there is overage. Tonight I spent $65 and saved $105 in coupons. What did I buy? Lots of holiday Glade crap, using $3 off 3 coupons. They were $.60 each on clearance, so the difference was overage and helped pay for my fresh fruits, veggies, bread, juice, cheese,etc. Plus there is a great Reach Floss $1 off coupon out there, which is overage at my store too. ($.75 each, so $.25 in overage) So I also ended up with lots of floss, which we will use eventually. 

 

I'm not sure what to do with all my Glade candles, etc. I'm not sure if Goodwill will take them or not. 

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