December 10, 2010

TLC Extreme Couponing – New couponing show coming Dec. 29

3,000 rolls of toilet paper, 10,000 items stockpiled in the garage, saving thousands of dollars in ONE shopping trip – it’s called extreme couponing and TLC is launching a new show called just that. The show, Extreme Couponing, is slated to air December 29 at 8 p.m., and features four hardcore couponers and their intense savings and stockpiles.

My initial reaction was to: cringe. If the majority of Americans ONLY see this kind of couponing – they might get a sour taste in their mouth. The mentally of buy, buy, buy – as much as possible, for as little as possible – whether you need it or not, is a bad message to send about couponing.

Here’s what the TLC Web site says about it:

TLC will introduce four of the country’s most coupon-obsessed savers who will do anything for a deal. Their game is simple – get as MUCH as possible for as LITTLE as possible.  But these extreme couponers aren’t just looking to save a few dollars here and there. . .

My second reaction was: it makes for good TV. People love the concept of getting stuff for FREE. People are intrigued when they hear that couponing can really get you FREE stuff and anything sensational (like saving over $5K on one transaction) gets people talking. . .and watching.

I have to admit – I’d be watching if I weren’t going to be on an airplane and as soon as I get settled, I’ll be trying to find it as a rerun or to watch it online. Although I have some reservations about the show concept, I won’t judge the show until I’ve seen it.

It does remind me about a post I did last month, How Much is Too Much and I think I’ll go back to the things I mentioned there. Overall, I believe couponing is the key to:

  • Stretching your family budget – being able to provide for your family, for less. It makes smart financial sense to clip a few coupons to pay less out of pocket for the things your family needs and uses.
  • Giving generously, blessing others – when we are able to get items for free or close to free, we can bless others via food bank or shelter donations. We are able to give generously because we are so financially smart.

Let’s hope that those are the messages that people get about couponing – not that we are a bunch of crazy, hoarding, stockpiling, over-the-top, extreme, clear-the-shelf-to-fill-up-our-garage-with-products-we-don’t-need, kinda people.

What are your thoughts? I want to hear them! Will you be watching?

(Thanks to The Coupon Project for the heads up about the show!)


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  1. I will definitely be watching, but I agree that I had mixed feelings about it as you did. Couponers get enough of a bad rap for going overboard and taking advantage of deals to the extreme, that I hope this will not make that worse. My second thought was that I hope this doesn’t make it harder for me to find deals at my local stores (if more people start doing it!!).

    • This was my first thought. That my local stores were gonna be wiped clean if more people were couponing. I am doubting that very many people in my area will concern themselves with education on how to use coupons to get such a great deal. But there are many people that should just simply clip and use (the basics) to help their familes out.

  2. I regularly only buy 5 Sunday papers and have never bought q’s online. I don’t dumpster dive (not even sure where one could do this in my area). I have never cleared the shelves either.

    IMHO, I actually don’t think its always that one couponer has cleared shelves all the time when I get to Walgreen’s or Rite-Aid and see empty shelves. For those stores, its more that they didn’t have a lot of stock to begin and that is what I find more frustrating. I don’t have the energy or time to focus on clearing the shelves—however, if some couponers want to buy 40 plus of one item then they should be entitled to do so as much as I will for 5 q’s. I don’t see a problem. Its first come, first served.

    For me, life is too short to store boxes of razors and bottles of shampoo just because they were free or nearly free. But if someone wants to fill up their house with all that stock–let them, they might have legitimate uses for those items. I won’t be judging them. Just my two cents worth. Everyone has a different perspective.


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