Extreme Couponing on TLC

TLC has launched a new program centered around people who take the word couponing to the next level. Extreme Couponing shows the couponers walk away with hundreds or thousands of dollars worth of groceries and products for free or near free.

How is it possible? It takes dedication and for some hours or days of planning. Just clipping coupons, going to the store and finding that item isn’t going to net you mass free products or grocery. More is required.

These dedicated couponers clip thousands of coupons, even purchasing coupons from coupon companies so they’ll have as many of a certain coupon as they desire. Then time is spent finding the right sales to match the coupons, so whatever is purchased will be free or near free. This means most will shop at groceries stores where they allow doubles or even triples of the coupons.

Next, time is spent scouring the sales of the week. For some this means looking on-line or through circular ads to find the sales. Some will actually walk the aisles of the grocery store the day the sales start. This way they’re familiar with what is and isn’t on sale and can arrange their coupons accordingly. They have mastered the art of saving and that is why so much time is spent on preparing for that shopping day.

Once all the prep is done, it’s time for shopping. Loaded with mass amounts of coupons, it’s off to the grocery store where the EXTREME begins. Baskets upon baskets are filled with groceries and products. Not just one of each, there’s 10, 20, or more of that particular item being sought. Macaroni, toothpaste, tissue, laundry products, can goods, cereals, candy, meats are all piled into shopping carts.

I’m sure the check out clerks are all praying their aisle isn’t chosen for the checking out process either. These hawk like couponers watch as each item is rung up. Did the item ring up according to the sale price? If it didn’t the coupon wont work like it’s supposed to: bringing the cost for that item down to very little or nothing.

After the tally is wrung up and $600.00 to $3000.00 is showing, the magic of the sales and coupons happen. The clerk starts typing in all those discounts the coupons bring. Double and tripling down the cost goes until what is left is the cost of tax or nothing at all.

Proud and satisfied couponers make their way to their vehicles, loading the goods and groceries with the smile of a Cheshire Cat spread across their face. They’ve made the best cop of all and they’ll go home and celebrate by adding these purchases to their well stocked pantries and freezers.

If there are any drawbacks to this sort of shopping it’s the amount of time and energy it takes to do it. Also some have had to take insurance out on their goods because the loss would be horrendous if something like a flood or fire destroyed it all.

Extreme couponing isn’t for the lame of heart. To make it work as a couponer you’ll need to devote yourself to the whole concept of couponing. That means everything from the gathering of the coupons, finding the stores who offer to double and triple coupons, and then watching for the sales that will work good with the coupons. Not to be overlooked is the shopping trip itself, where hours can be spent first gathering the goods and then on the check out process.

While this can be mentally and physically draining, the perk is that couponers have quite the surplus of goods. They’re able to have the satisfaction of knowing they have on hand what is needed to care for their family. These couponers even have enough surplus to share with the community or give as donations, which many of the extreme couponers do.

15 thoughts on “Extreme Couponing on TLC”

  1. The really sad part of this whole couponing thing is that a LOT of this merchandise is going to go to waste. They stockpile and there is a shelf life on most of that stuff. I LOVE the ones that give to local churches and organization. I think most of it is the thrill of the chase. Please don’t get me wrong. I LOVE MY COUPONS! I just don’t have this much time out of my life to spend on it…

  2. After I watched this show for the first time the only thing that came to mind was the word “hoarders” I agree it is great if they donate to a food shelf, charity, etc but some of them don’t. I just keep asking myself “Why would you need 35 bottles of Maalox?!!)

  3. Great article! I haven’t watched the show but I know a lot about couponing. I don’t have the energy or drive to do it to the max but I say more power to those who do and the most power and Good Wishes to share with homeless, church groups an the needy.

  4. I agree with some of the others. I believe in saving money and trying hard to use coupons, but I think when there is excess, it is hoarding. To be able to do this like they do, and show how much they spent, and walk away with tons of items, it is like they are trying to give themselves self respect. They say they give away items, but do they really? No one really needs that much surplus or stockpile. We really only need what we will use.

    • I agree. They do a good job of saving money! I wish I could do that! But looking at their stockpiles and the time it takes to get this all organized!! I mean really 47 mustards, ok it doesn’t go bad, but come on!!! The next show we see these people on will be HOARDERS!!!
      And another thing save some good deals for other people!!!

  5. I aree with the others, there’s no way they can use all the products before they expire. Nothing but waste when they get all that for nothing, don’t use it themselves and don’t share with local food banks and shelters. Hopefully the public comments and perhaps the shows producers will have some influence on those who have too much for themselves but don’t share.

  6. I agree with a lot of others on here. I can not see how one person needs 62 bottles of mustard or 35 bottles of ant-acids and none mentioned about donations. This is an opportunity for people to help others not to be on the next show of Extreme Coupon Hoarders. I dont have a stock pile near of what these people have but I also have been giving a lot a way to friends and family or people I know who really need stuff. I think couponing is a great way to save money but the show did not really show in depth how much time or how extensive of a process it is to make a shopping trip like that work not to mention most of us common couponers do not get the privileges of making 18 transactions or going over the limit of doublers. Good for them but I hope that it goes for a good purpose not just going to expire in someones selfish stock pile.

  7. This is just really sad. When would it ever be necessary to have such large stockpiles of stuff. These women sound like they need help. If you have the kind of time needed to get such large savings with coupons than you should get a job or a hobby or something that is actually productive to do with your time. I can’t imagine somebody who dedicates that much of their time to saving money can have a very rewarding life.

    • Well if you’re like the family on the show “17 kids and counting” you need all of the food at the lowest price you can get it. But the woman who had those 17 kids is also extreme, so it’s just tow extremes.

      Also if you’re heavily dedicated to charity, then doing this and giving it away to charity is a way of accomplishment.

    • In reading your reply, it sounds like you are the kind of person who has been blessed finacialy. If you actually watched the show, all of the people started doing this out of necessity. I do agree that all of them except the african american woman have taken it too far but it also has taken them years to get to that point.

      • I am in no way blessed financially. I am a mom and a student. I live in an attic apartment without a stove or range with just a mini-fridge, hotplate and slow cooker. What little I have is used to take care of my family and to pay for my six figure student loans. Just because I don’t have a lot of money doesn’t mean I’m going to use what little time I have to take couponing to the extreme. My family benefits way more from my time than they do from having stuff. We certainly don’t need 62 bottles of mustard. Buying something on sale is only a bargain if you need it.

        And to respond about the 17 kids show. If you have to do this in order to feed your children than you should have been smart enough to stop having children once you could no longer afford them.

  8. Let me know when coupons exist for produce, salads, FRUIT (or Whole Foods)… I eat a special diet and alot of the coupons I come across are for either junk foods or stuff I frankly do not eat.

    Non-for-profit organizations should hire extreme couponers for their day care centers (adult and/or children centers) or summer camps. This way, they don’t have to use “expenses” as an excuse for the high prices.

  9. I think the saddest part about the extreme couponing is that we’re not allowed to use more than 10 coupons at a time in our states grocery stores 🙁

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