The Crazy Life of Extreme Couponers

Trista - November 8, 2021
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2. Claims of Scripted Shows About Couponers

One former participant explained that their entire show was entirely scripted and not just removing inappropriate phrases, for example. “The entire show is scripted,” they said. “The producer handed us coupons to give to the store and told us what to say,” they went on. Disappointing, but not unheard of considering the world of reality TV. Joanie Demer, a participant on the show and the co-founder of The Krazy Coupon Lady website, was featured on several media appearances, which is how Extreme Couponing producers found her.

In her episode, she bought four carts worth of groceries, stating, “it was completely insane!” She explained that it took months of planning, even writing to manufacturers to request coupons for discounts and free products. She even added a disclaimer: “It’s fun to flex your muscles and get to say, ‘look what I can do.’ That’s cool, and it made for great TV, but that was in no way a realistic portrayal of the amount of money that you can save on any given week couponing.”

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1. What Has Changed About Couponing?

Some changes, like more restrictive coupon policies, were direct results of the show, while others were due to the available technologies. Digital coupons and cash-back or rebate apps are just a few examples of new technologies that have revolutionized the couponing world. A decade ago, a show about spending over forty hours a week clipping and organizing coupons to save hundreds or even thousands of dollars was a see-it-to-believe-it phenomenon. As the series progressed, the shopping trips became more and more outrageous as each of the participants in the episode needed to outdo the previous shoppers. 

Yes, couponing has changed in many ways due to the show. However, some of the biggest changes aren’t related to the show at all. You may not be able to use 20 coupons and get 73 free mustard bottles today, but you can still stack coupons and save a good amount of money, then use a cash-back app for additional rebates after the fact. Today, there is a newer generation of couponers that may have never even seen Extreme Couponers. Couponing today is more about strategically spending a little bit of extra time on saving money. However, there will always be a subset of die-hard couponers that will walk around with their clipped coupons in organizers! 

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