The net is buzzing about Extreme Couponing which will premiere on April 6 with two back-to-back episodes airing at 9 and 9:30 PM on TLC. The premise of the show is that it follows around those "coupon ladies" and shows the extreme side of couponing.
Why does Extreme Couponing bothers me? Well, I get enough eye rolls, thank you very much. Granted, I don't hop in line with a fistful of coupons like the women of this show do. Cashiers rarely are happy to see you push your cart up to their register with a stack of coupons, particularly when their computers may not be programmed to accept a large number of them. I can understand the high people get when they save, save, save! I have been there myself. Freebies and extreme cheapies do have a way of giving you an endorphin rush. However, I worry that such a focus on massive coupon users will ultimately lead to stores placing their own limit on coupon usage. If more people do doubles and triples, then will these grocery stores (who only get reimbursed for face value, plus 8 cents per coupon) feel the financial pinch? Will they limit you to two coupons per product?
It's bad enough that when you do show up at the store with multiples that cashiers start the inquisition. How'd you get so many of these coupons? I buy extra papers when the coupons are good and I can justify that the price of the paper is more than covered by the savings that I will reap. I've even had cashiers accuse me of wrong doing when I used a legitimate printable coupon. I worry that cashiers will become even more nitpicky and make coupon usage on my end a nightmare. Will they start to scare away casual users based on the rep that those who use 100 coupons in one trip have as a result of the show?
I'd really love to know your thoughts on this... if you are a couponista, do you think a show like Extreme Couponing is a good thing? Do you worry about the same things that I do? Please share by leaving a comment.