TLC’s Extreme Couponing: Why We Won’t Stop Talking About It

TLC’s Extreme Couponing is back tonight.

I wanted to address one of the repeated comments we get pretty much weekly in the comments of our Extreme Couponing posts. It goes something like this:

If you want couponing to go back to the way it was and all of the hype to die down, stop talking about Extreme Couponing. You are essentially feeding the craze by continuing to post about it and talk about it.


True. Absolutely true. However we won’t stop talking about it. Here’s why:

We have seen an increase in traffic since Extreme Couponing 1st aired. Much of that traffic increase consists of new visitors. Many of those new visitors are brand spankin’ new couponers. Our site is their first introduction to couponing and we need that introduction to be one that stresses the reality vs. reality TV aspect. We need them to learn the ethical way to coupon. We need them to read it in our posts and see it in your comments. We need them to see couponing as black and white. There’s a right way and a wrong way to coupon.

We may sound like broken records with our talk about couponing ethically and shelf clearing and blah blah blah. And if you’ve been couponing for a few years you might only hear the blah blah blah. And that is fine by us. We trust that our lovely readers who are seasoned couponers do so with integrity. And since you keep coming back we hope our occasional (a bit more frequent lately) reminder to coupon ethically doesn’t feel like us nagging. We have no desire to police you in the aisles or act as your mothers, we just feel it is our obligation to educate newbies in the correct manner. And never more so than with the massive increase in couponers out there!

So while it may seem like we are beating a dead horse, we won’t ever stop talking about it. We won’t be the slightest bit offended if you tune us out. But if you are new to the world of couponing (or have couponed for years), we certainly hope you understand and appreciate the importance of the right kind of Extreme Couponing!


Still haven’t watched Extreme Couponing and not sure what we’re talking about? You can catch up on missed episodes for $1.99 on Amazon Demand!

Need help getting started on your journey to Extreme Couponing (done right!).

Our 90-minute coupon class on DVD will teach you step by step the correct and ethical way to implement extreme couponing. Use code EXTREME for a 55% discount at check out.


  • Lauri Daniels

    Over it. Doesn’t work in San Diego. We don’t double coupons. Most printed coupons say only 4 of these coupons in one transaction or some say per day. Wal Mart tried to tell me they don’t take printed coupons, only manufacture coupons from magazines and news papers. I had to show them their policy. I still try to match store offers and store coupons with printed coupons whenever possible.

  • georgia d

    Doesn’t work on Long Island either…we have double coupons but most stores only double up to 99 cents. The one store that doubles dollar coupons limits it to 4 per day per family. I did see an extreme episode where a woman shopped in a Shoprite clearing shelves and all but they do not let you use more then 4 of the same coupon in the Shoprite here so it makes me wonder if the show is bs. Also, not one store here will give you the excess of a coupon so I don’t know where these shows are filmed but none of it applies here in NY.

    • Tracy

      I do think that the stores break their own coupon policies for the show. The only store that I know of that allows overage on coupons is Walmart. Everytime I hear that overage is allowed in the show I look to see if they are shopping at Walmart, and it never seems to be the case. In Southern California, most stores will double one like coupon up to $1 and the next like coupons are at face value. Also because of this show most stores have changed their coupon policies to limit like coupons to 4 per transaction. On the same note when are “reality” shows ever trully real? They all embellish their shows to make them more exciting.

  • Alli Blue

    I tried couponing a few years back. Once baby #4 was born I found it too much for me. But I recently decided that I would like to start up again. I have seen TLC’s show. I come away with a desire to coupon, but also mixed emotions about what I watch. Some of them I love, the couponers are delightful, and coupon with integrity. And most often, the couponer makes my toenails curl. It’s as though they turn green with greed, they covet their coupons above their own families, and I especially hate it when they drag their kids on a 9 hour shopping trip.
    I would also like to say that if you are a reality tv junkie like I am, you know that is has changed over the years. There are people who make it their professional career to audition for reality programs. So, like with many “reality” tv shows, these “extreme couponers” are cast for this show. The good, the bad, and the shelf clearer.

    Thank you for doing what you do. Blah, blah, blah…. 🙂 Meridian, Idaho

  • Amanda S

    I saw several shoppers at Jewel-Osco on the show. Their coupon policy states that they do NOT double coupons, along with a couple other stringent policies… none of which were being followed by the folks shopping there on E.C. So, either it’s completely rigged by these stores when the cameras are there, no one questions these policies at their store, or these people are just completely unethical and nobody cares.

  • Julie

    I think you’re right to keep talking about it, because I’ve seen–we’ve all seen–so many new couponers who think that their shopping trips should be like the ones on the show, and they need to know that’s not real and that real people neither need nor want 120 bottles of mustard in their pantries. Jill Cataldo has documented that the stores are letting the couponers on that show break their own policies to produce the most amazing results, and those results are bringing new people into the game. The more of those people who try to break the rules in similar fashion, the more we’ll see the stores cracking down on couponing. None of us want to see that! So, please, keep doing what you’re doing!

  • Kelly Berry

    And how much exactly is the 90 minute DVD? Hmmm

  • Jill

    I am glad that you a teaching the ethical/polite way to coupon. I do watch Extreme Couponing and that is how a found your site. I do wish however that companies would realize the difference between reality and Reality TV and stop changing the rules just because a few abuse the rules.

  • Alyce

    I HATE that show! Only bad has come from it for us couponers! But I LOVE your site because of the guidlines given. Thanks again gals!

  • ashley

    My problem with it is here in Boise the walmart doesn’t care about coupon limits. I watched a lady walk out with like 10 of those toliet cleaner things the day the sale began. I think it promotes shelf clearing and unethical ways of finding coupons without showing how it really works.

  • myssssss

    Since I have couponed well before 1971 I have noticed people who hoard the amount of food they actually buy in the stores, they cannot stop at the allowted item at all, therefore the amount offered by stores is actually gone by the time I am interested in purchasing the alloted amount. Shame on them, a two person household does not need 50 jars of peanut butter nor 50 containers of the All or Wisk or Purex detergent when they go on sale for little money…so if a sale comes up I go to the store immediately and get the alloted amount, I don’t stock up like you suggest decently I just get the 2 or 3 allowed with coupons and call it a day, thankful I can even get any of the couponed item in the store…I help out at a food pantry and a place that feeds people on weekends who have no food whatsoever by friday etc. they feed their small children and they are left with nothing for themselves, they work, pay their bills, never ever smoke or drink, if one of those people who do extreme couponing would donate to where I put in plenty of time maybe the people in our community would not be so hungry, just suggesting!!!!!!!!! Also a deal done legally is great the people who cheat, cheat the employees of food stores, and all people who shop, some companies pull the whole deal like when some people bought hundreds of bottles of Purex a few years back with catalinas for only retail tax, the offer was pulled from catalinas thus making it impossible for honest people to buy 2 bottles, I know it happened to me, it has been 2 full years when I buy Purex it is only when it reaches about .99 cents a bottle with my coupon and no catalina has ever shot out of the catalina holder, the company pulled that deal because of those greedy people…Your column and suggestions tell people how to legally with courtesy how to save money with coupons, etc..Those extreme couponers are not what you preach tooo bad they are so greedy in these very tough economic times…

  • Tricia

    I won’t lie, that show is addicting. I don’t blame you not being able to stop talking about it, even in a negative light.

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