I just finished watching the season premiere of TLC’s Extreme Couponing and I had some thoughts to share.
1. April “The Crazy Militant Mom”
I wasn’t a big fan of April. Don’t get me wrong, she put her couponing to good use. With a family of 9 to feed, that is enough of a reason to do extreme couponing but to be charitable she also purchased enough to cook for her church congregation of 200 on Sundays. But, she just seemed a little crazy to me. Any one else get that? She ordered her kids through the grocery store like soldiers! I found some of her comments to be kind of inappropriate. During checkout she is yelling out in the story asking for liqour or wine… and then the comment about Brad Pitt! I’m sure there are some dramatics for the cameras but she just seemed really off-putting.
I did learn something from April though even though it doesn’t even apply here. She found a peelie coupon on prepackaged salad and then proceeded to explain that on the coupon barcode if there is a 9 as the first digit the coupon can’t be doubled but if there is a 5 as the first digit it can be doubled! I wish we could double coupons here (PharmaSave is having Double Coupon Days Canada Wide this Friday and Saturday though! Call your store to see if they are participating!)
So down to business. The Crazy Militant Mom did have a pretty amazing haul.
Total Retail: $1146.13 USD
OOP: $33.61 USD
2. Carla “The Queen of The Coupon Mafia”
I enjoyed the segement about Carla. Carla was planning a haul to feed 20 people for a weekend away. In comparison to April, Carla was funny. She and a friend/coupon mentor had a coupon battle while shopping! It was really nice to see a segment about someone who could have fun at the grocery store instead of freaking out and yelling at their spouse and/or children! These women were competing to see who could have better percentage savings on their individual purchases. Guess who won?
I laughed when I saw her pink shopping bags though! I couldn’t help but think… Wouldn’t it be cool if they were SaveaLoonie bags! Maybe one day if they bring the show to Canada
Carla’s totals were also pretty impressive.
Total Retail: $697.96 USD
OOP: $43.87 USD
3. Erin “The Wedding Couponer”
I liked Erin too. She had a really touching story as her inspiration for starting coupon and had a great reason to be planning a huge haul! She was couponing for her sister’s wedding Her sister was on a really tight budget for her wedding of 280 guests and Erin wanted to help. These sisters clipped hundreds of coupons and spent hours planning a huge shopping list. They arrived at the grocery store with over 350 coupons and 16 planned transactions. She also brought along her coupon binder containing more than 600 coupons. WOW! She planned so many transactions to maximize her coupons as her store had restrictions on the number of coupons that could be doubled. And she brought her binder for the same reason any good couponer does – just incase there is a great deal!
They were able to get everything on their list and had some pretty great savings (of course!)
Total Retail: $886.12
4. Shavon “3rd Generation Couponer”
I really enjoyed Shavon’s story – not sure I’m such a big fan of her shopping habits. Shavon’s story is that she is a 3rd generation couponer and learned all her skills from her Grandmother. When her Grandmother passed away she left Shavon a stash of coupons that were 20+ years old that had no expiry date! She showed that she was continuing with her Grandmother’s organization system and keeping all her coupons in colour coded envelopes instead of a binder. This is very similar to the system I used when I started out. Shavon’s big haul was planning to restock her sister’s depleting stock pile. When Shavon showed off her stock pile she had something I really liked. She had a can rotation system. This is the second time I’ve seen this system on the show. These are really cool – it is a shelving unit that you insert new cans in the top slot and they roll down to the second. This way you take product from the bottom row and put new cans in the top to ensure your stock is being used by its expiry. I don’t currently have a lot of canned goods in my stockpile so I don’t have a need for one, but it is definatly something that could come in handy!
Shavon and her sister head to the grocery store with 21 planned transactions! Again this was done to maximize the amount of coupons she can double. She does something I didn’t like though – she uses carts but also uses a hand basket for each transaction and lays them out down an isle to fill up the appropriate amount of items into each basket. Although this is a marvalous idea on how to keep that many transactions organized it makes it impossible for anyone else to use that entire isle! I have to wonder if this is for real because I think that would be pretty inconsiderate to fellow shoppers. All said and done though Shavon walked out with by far the best savings of the night.
Total Retail: $1416.00
One thing I did notice over the course of all 4 segments, every one of them had some coupon/register crisis! I guess it just adds to the drama factor. Does this really happen though? I’ve had maybe a little issue with a coupon or a price match but nothing that would make me pull my hair and have a panic attack like they do LOL
Did you watch? What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below and tell us what you think