Clipping coupons is certainly nothing new, people have been clipping, saving & cashing in for years. What I’m talking about in this post is Extreme Couponing. A wild, frenzied, surprisingly organized, sophisticated, and at times dirty endeavor (dumpster diving anyone). I was recently introduced to extreme couponing after flipping channels and landing on the show by the same name on The Learning Channel (TLC).

And learned a lot I did. It’s not that I’ve never clipped coupons before. In fact I’ve clipped a few, cashed in a few and….then…stopped. And it’s not because I didn’t have a need to coupon (another noun turned verb, love those), and now in this economy, who can afford not too?  No, my problem lies in the fact that…I’m…an…impatient…person. There, I said it.  I can hardly stand to wait for Honey to come out of the container, so while I do have Honey on hand, I switched to using primarily Agave so I don’t have to wait for it…wait for it.

What I learned is that people will do almost anything to get coupons:

  • one mom took her son to the dump and went dumpster diving (while in her swanky & cute leather jacket, jeans & boots)
  • another lady walks for 2 miles each day collecting coupons from businesses and neighbors, even taking a paper off the front porch if no one has claimed it
  • one man (Mr. Coupon, and the star of our video) has enough deodorant to last literally a lifetime, along with Cola, Salad Dressing & other items in his garage (minus the car)

While these people are extreme by my standards, it did encourage me (along with my husband who has been preparing a budget for the past few weeks) to save money on my grocery bill. But since I lack the patience to buy 10 newspapers and clip coupons, walk two miles to collect coupons & dive in dumpsters, where does one begin? These people were getting hundreds of dollars worth of products for less than the price of a Mocha with a friend. Where to start?

Well, I’m still investigating. Particularly when it comes to which stores accept other offers and double coupons (it looks like Albertsons might do this), and where to find out how to combine manufacturer’s coupons with discounts going on in MY store, so that I can combine them and get things really cheap? There’s got to be a website for this?

I don’t have all the answers, but I did take a first step and clipped a few coupons and saved a few dollars, but I need more information. My husband was excited to share that he found a coupon for canned vegetables. My response, “Are you kidding?” (with a face that communicated “you better be kidding”). What fun is there in cooking when you can’t chop, slice, dice, julienne and saute? So I need help beyond my adorable husband.

If you have ANY expertise in this area, please help me and those who read this blog. Or leave a comment on here. And if you are encouraged to “do one small thing” in this area let me know. For today, I’m saving money by not ordering another Lemon Tart from this lovely Bakery I’m sitting in. It’s one small achievement for the moment!

Here are a few websites some of my friends use:

And for your inspiration and encouragement to save the next time you go to the store, a video of our friend Nathan, Mr. Coupon.

Extreme Couponing

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Tags: couponing, extreme

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Comment by Tammy Cannon on January 31, 2011 at 5:14pm
Wow, Alaina Thanks! I heard http://www.grocerygame.com was a good website as well. I will try your website as well to get the tips on combining!
Comment by Alaina on January 28, 2011 at 7:11pm
I started really couponing about five years ago. Before that I used to cut out coupons when I would see them for something I would buy and use it next time I went to the store. I didn't know there was a right or wrong way to coupon but there is. I get the Sunday paper with the coupons and then I get my mother in law, sister in law and a neighbor's coupons. Many people throw them away so they don't mind giving them to someone who will use them. I use the couponmom.com site which explains their whole couponing theory but basically check their deals for your local store each week and it will tell you which coupons to use. The idea is to combine sales with the coupons to get the best price, many times free items. Then buy as many of the item as you can and have coupons for in order to stockpile it until next time it goes on sale. I cut my grocery budget in half by following their way of doing it.

 

 

 

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