Yes, I’m Saying it: I Hate Extreme Couponing.

Season two of Extreme Couponing will air next month. I will not be watching it. I don’t like it and I’m not afraid to say it.

I came across a preview of season two and I am pretty much disgusted. I feel as though my heart is at the bottom of my stomach with just this one preview–I already know that I don’t need to see the rest of the show to know that it will be giving us couponers a bad name.

This one preview does it. TLC I hope you are happy. People who use coupons the “right” way and use them to actually support their family in a reasonable means, you have now created a door to making manufacturers more aware of the fact that there are “shelf clearers” out there and those who take advantage of the system.

The sad thing is that TLC is getting the bad rep for the people they are putting on their show. In the first season there was misbehavior, fraud and dishonest people–second season? who knows what there will be.


I know many of the Extreme Couponers from season 1 and they are amazing people who are doing nothing but take care of their family with coupons.

This show is doing nothing but making it harder on those who don’t find it necessary to clear shelves and want nothing but put a good word out there about coupons.

Words can not explain how disappointed I am in the people who have proven to the country that they misuse coupons, clear shelves or are dishonest. Do you really want it that much harder when you check out? You put yourself on TV and make yourself look a fool in front of millions of people. People who are cashiers, managers and store clerks. You have put a red flag on all of us who may carry a coupon binder–talk about being discriminating.. checking out with coupons—has never been harder. I am not the criminal or selfish person that you have portrayed me as.

I want nothing but to provide for my family.

For those that are new to couponing: If you choose to watch Extreme Couponing or found this site after you watching the first season..let me simply say that that is not couponing. Couponers are not selfish, do not clear shelves and do not misuse coupons. Please remember that coupons are not a right and that misuse is against the law.

If you want to learn real and honest couponing tactics–I hope you continue to follow Southern Cali Saver. :)


  1. Cindy Nichols says

    I really agree with you. When I first started watching the show I was kind of disappointed in my own couponing skills. I have never come close to how much they save on the show but I only buy what we need and my local store would never allow a transaction of 100 tubes of toothpaste for free. They only allow 4 transactions with one kind of coupon so I’d have to make 25 trips! I never saw the sense in that kind of shopping anyway unless they are donating to a food pantry etc. Anyway, just my 2 cents worth.

  2. kelli nelson says

    Very well said. I just showed a friend how to use coupons and she mentioned that she watched that show. I asked her if she really needed 52 jars mustard? I am just trying to make ends meet and donate to people in need.

    Thanks for doing what you do.


  3. Yesi says

    Just the other day my husband went to pick up some ink at staples and he overheard and saw one of the employees send out a walkie talkie broadcast to look out for a guy in blazer that uses many coupons…lol… I thought that was pretty absurd…like he was a shoplifter to look out for

  4. ANA says

    Thanks, Josie! That bad show has made us, us honest people that want to put a good product on our kitchen table of our families a bad rapped. Because of those crazy episodes, we are being judge right away at the cashier’s line. Here is California we are just trying to survive and not be selfish by clearing all the shelves.

  5. Amber says

    I just want to be able to coupon n save a little extra money to take my little family out n i do not like clearing out shelves because I’m considerate for others so I’m gonna keep following you guys for tips ok .

  6. Connie says

    I completely agree with you! While I initially liked the show for teaching me that it is possible to feed a large family on a teeny budget, the longer I watched the more discouraged I became. With the help of yours and a couple of other websites, I learned how to get the most out of couponing and how to do so honestly. However, as the summer progressed this has become more and more challenging due to a few of the unfortunate trends that this show has caused: shelf-clearing, newspaper & insert theft, and negative attitudes towards couponers. I was really hoping that this show would not come back!

  7. Leslie says

    Thanks for posting this! I totally agree with you! There was a person on another blog that was arguing with me about this show. I had mentioned that this show had done nothing but show unethical practices, how to steal newspapers, and cheat the system, and this person was defending the show! Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but to have this show on again is just wrong!

  8. Jayme says

    I started couponing because of the show but I’m not sure I will watch it again. I refuse to clear shelves because I know how frustrating it is when I go (w/ my 5 kids) and then find out theres none left.

  9. Wendy says

    Thank You!!!!! Ever since “that show” couponing has become a challenge! I feel I have to compete with others for a good deal. At first, I thought it was just me, but recently heared other bloggers complaing about empty shelfs and not being able to get newspaper!! what really??? thats a shame! So I decided to give myself a break hoping that everything calms down. I couldnt affort wasting time, effort, and gas driving around everywhere for a good deal. BUT NOW I HEAR ITS COMING AGAIN. AAAWWW NOOOOOOO!!!!!

  10. Wendy says

    @YESI.. yep they always come back. So to help me stay organize, and spend less money, I keep a 3 month supply, three of everything, tp, bodywash, ect. This way I know what I have and what I REALLY need. So I coupon once a month or even everyother month. It saves me tons of TIME =D. Yes, I probably dont get those great clearance deals, but I still get stuff for free, so it doesnt really matter. I have learned to be more patient with couponing. thats a plus 😉

  11. Yvette in Corona says

    I feel your frustration when I read this post! I absolutely agree with everything you have said. I thought the show would help in a good way but boy, was I wrong!

    The only good thing I saw in the show was watching how savvy coupon shoppers use their skills to donate or help the needy. But, in saying this, unfortunately more times than not, I saw greedy, ruthless, and shady people on the show instead. Good riddance TLC’s Extreme Couponing…

    (I can’t wait for the Little Couple to come back on! I love Jen and Bill!) 😉

  12. kat says

    I just watched that preview and I totally agree with you. I even posted a comment but apparently they did not like what I said because its no longer on the page…lol. Guess they really didn’t want anyone calling out that woman on her deceptive practices and lousy attitude. But she does make for great T.V. I suppose. I have a feeling its going to get a lot harder for us Moms just trying to make ends meet here in Cali. Keep up the good work Josie because we need all the help we can get now. P.S. Cute pic of you and the hubby.

  13. says

    … being a gemini I have to of course, agree, and disagree….
    I love it and hate it.
    I love it, because:
    1. It started me couponing… and now i save hundreds of dollars a year couponing…
    2, It allowed me to discover this site, (love you Jose!) and I even started my own site ( ),
    3. AND it makes a great point of discussion with people I meet -usually with my coupon binder, clipboard and envelope of coupons… walking up and down the isles at WALGREENS OR CVS lookin for my deals. hahha!

    BUT I also HATE it…..
    IT makes me crazy to see such a HUGE waste of product…. EVERYONE always says “how many boxes of fiber cereal does one guy really need anyway?” ha…. I just hate to watch those people STEALING from stores like that. I tell people all the time, YOU CANT DO WHAT THEY DO! store policies avoided, multiple transactions, over 2 hours checking out.. my head is going to explode!

    so some good points AND some bad ones.
    oh well…. I may think the show is OK, but I NEVER watch it anymore! Reality shows in general are just as fake as any other TV show!

  14. Vivian says

    I’ve never seen a single episode nor have the desire to. All I need is a blog/website like yours to follow. I don’t need to see who did what and where on TV. This is more realistic! Thanks Josie.

  15. Autumn says

    I completely agree. I am all for using coupons and getting a great deal. However, I think it’s really ridiculous that people need to clear shelves and buy 50 bottles of ketchup. I mean c’mon!

  16. Cindy says

    First off, thank you for all that you do. I Check this site everyday for coupon/money saving info. I just finished watching the preview or season 2. And while I found the “shelf clearer” annoying I must say that I will prob watch the show. I’ve always used coupons and was attentive to sales/rock bottom prices but watching the show gave great tips and led me to informative websites such as yours. So essentially it made me smarter with my coupon use. On that note I never clear shelves (2 or 3 items is my max). I think these “bad” couponers have always been around and yes it’s unfortunate for everyone else. But I don’t think the show should be entirely to blame. So I guess I’m like Glen- like it and hate it (they really shouldnt profile the unethical couponers).

  17. Rochelle in SD says

    I am on the fence about this show. I personally will go after every deal that is free or better and devote my Sunday morning to get as much free stuff that I can. But then I turn around and donate much of it to others – my coworkers, family, and friends.

    However, one of the clerks at the local drugstore told me that there are some people that go after the deals then turn around and sell the merchandise at the Swap Meet. That’s NOT ethical and if it’s not illegal, it should be! The clerks don’t have any authority to do anything about it, but I think it paints “all” couponers in a negative light.

    I was shopping one day and offered up a coupon to a woman looking at a product I knew I had a lot of coupons for. She said something like “Oh, you’re ONE OF THOSE”… That’s all I needed to hear. I said “Oh, I guess I don’t have that coupon after all”, and walked off.

    I don’t like being lumped in with dishonest people, and no one likes to be labeled. If it was’nt for the great things I am able to do with the money I save, and donate to others in need, I might be tempted to stop using coupons altogether.

    However, in my area I belong to a group of other couponers and we support and help each other as well as donating our expired coupons as a group to overseas military families. I might have stopped if it wasn’t for the support of that group. We all met by the way at Josie’s seminar in San Diego.

    Your post was well said Josie and thanks for your Blog!

  18. Tisha says

    Thank you for not being afraid to say what all of us legit couponers feel. I asked my mother last season to stop watching the show because it was extreme and would have a negative effect on other couponers. I will call my mother when I see a good deal on something I know she uses often. She will be retiring in a couple of years and I would like to see her save more money considering how the economy is. I have had cashier said ohh you must watch that show. I respond by saying no I started couponing before that show and I don’t think it’s a fair representation of good couponers. ( althought there were a couple people who just did normal transactions for their family size) This show surely is making it hard for the rest of us and I will not be watching this season and I have asked family and friends to do the same. Thank you

  19. Laura says

    Kudos on this post!

    I will admit, I watch the show. But shelf-clearers are just absurd, and people who misuse coupons are disgraceful.

    I was at Walgreens one day when there was a candy on sale that I happened to have a coupon for, which made it free. A little girl with her grandmother walked by the candy and the girl wanted it. The grandma said, “I know you’ve been good today, and I’d buy it for you, but I don’t have any money!” So I handed her my coupon and she was able to get her granddaughter a free candy (two, in fact!). That’s what couponing should be about – helping people and doing what you can do make even the smallest difference.

    I have never cleared shelves. I stock up on things I know my sister and mom and friends in financial troubles need. I have a small stockpile my own self, but this last weekend my boyfriend bagged up a bunch of it for the homeless man who lives in our alley.

    This show, while I watch it like I watch Say Yes To The Dress (for the sheer amazement of human behaviour), and the people on it give up coupon-binder carriers a bad name. It’s sad, when so much good can come from it.

    Love the website – keep it up! 😀

  20. Sarah says

    @Rochelle in SD
    As I was reading through the comments I just had to reply to something I read. You said that re-selling items that you got for a steal by using coupons is NOT ethical and should be illegal but what do people do on Ebay? Except for used products people are selling items they got for discounted “steal” and re-selling them for a profit. I do not sell my food itmes and stuff that I buy with my coupons but I do buy clothing at up to 80% off MSRP and re-sell it at about 40% MSRP and make a profit This has nothing to do with ethics, it’s economics.

  21. rosieB says

    I agree that the people on that show are a bit ridiculous. I remember the lady on there that had a stockpile of diapers but yet she had no kids. I thought that was pointless!!

    I only buy things that I know I will use. If I have coupons for things that I know I’ll never buy then I try to give them away.

  22. yoli says

    I have using coupons for @ least 10 years now. The show made me start using coupons in a more organized way to save more. I did feel that some of the people on the show are hoarders. This past weekend BabiesRUs had another 2 day sale on the the Huggies Jeans Diapers for $5 once again. My 9 month old goes through diapes like crazy. I went on Saturday late in the day (last day of the sale). They had tons of diapers left. I bought 12 packs with coupons of $2 and $3 off. I did not clear the shelves and there were many more diapers left (@ least 40 packs). After leaving the store I called my sister and asked “do you think I am being a hoarder?” she said “NO”. I would not have bought that many if were the 1st day of the sale or if there were not many packs left. I love couponing because it is helping me support my daughter. (By the way, those 12 packs will probably only last me 1 month!)

  23. erin of twins says

    I have 3 kids under 4 and use a coupon binder. I only use coupons for things that we will use as a family. I don’t buy things just because they may be money makers or are free. I keep a modest stockpile in my garage of just the basics (juice, toilet paper, paper towels, etc). I will stock up on 4 or 5 of an item like BBQ sauce of ketchup if I can get a great deal….but that is it. I can’t tell you how many times people see my binder and say things like “oh, I’ve never seen a couponer in action” or “Look, one of those coupon people” and than they proceed to watch me shop. I keep a lot of coupons in my binder that I will never use…I give them to people in line with me at teh check out. If I see soemone buying something that I have a coupon for, I give it to them. I was is Albertsons about a month ago and if you bought 4 cereal for $10 you got a free gallon of milk. A lady was buying 3 boxes. i told her about the promotion that they had on and gave her 4 coupons for $1 off each box. She was thrilled. This is what couponing is about for me. Helping to supply for my family of 5 on 1 income, helping others, and donating items when I can (like back to school supplies). Thank you Josie for helping me do this, and shame on TLC for making it harder for those of us that coupon with pride, integrity and honesty.

  24. Elizabeth says

    ITA, Josie. Hearing “oh are you one of those extreme couponers?” makes me cringe. I don’t want to be associated with those people they put on that show! Most of them should be on the “extreme hoarders” or “my strange addiction” show because that’s what they REALLY are! People who argue with cashiers and have garages and spare rooms dedicated to food storage, really? That’s not normal! I’ve been couponing since I got married in 2000. My mom used coupons all the time when I was little, and her mom before her. I admit I have taken renewed interest in couponing over shopping for store brand or bulk product due to the economy. I wish TLC had never aired this show though, and I’m disappointed in their decision to renew. Between that and “kate plus 8” I may boycott their network. They are capitalizing on the drama and taboo factor big-time. Might as well start airing Jerry springer. *rolls eyes*

  25. Trish says

    @Elizabeth – Elizabeth you are so right! I too love the Little Couple, and I used to love “Little People Big World.” However, when you consider EC, Toddlers and Tiaras, Kate plus 8 and the other insane shows, Jerry Springer really does come to mind. I hate the fact that the more absurd or controversial the more people will talk about it/watch it and the more money they will make, right or wrong. TLC- “The Learning Channel” … ummm yeah, okay.

  26. Brigid says

    I competely agree with you guys. This show makes us all out to be hoarders and/or selfish people. This show has already made it difficult for me to go shopping and feeling bad about holding up the line for the few extra minutes it takes me to check out. Some of the people on this show really have an extreme shopping addiciton and need to seek help. It is not normal to give up rooms in your house for you stockpile and continue to add to it! Moderation is everything.

  27. deniseL.A says

    Well said girlfriends! I have been doing coupons for two years now, and these past few months have been so rough! All in a sudden cashier look at me like if I pay with food stamps, if I use just one coupon I’m being judged as a shoplifter. Thank god manufacturers decided to limit coupons to 4, because that is the amount I would buy anyway. I really hate it when I go to the swap meet and I find the stuff I got for free being sold there for $5! ridiculous.

    These two years that I was unemployed the coupons helped out so much, when you have a baby… diapers, shampoo, baby lotion coupons have helped me save so much money. I always go by the book, because it is the only way I can help my husband take off some stress. If coupons were forever gone, we would all suffer more.

    TLC lost me in the middle of the season and high stake sweepers is worst. If TLC wanted to do a second season on coupons, they should do Hoarding buried alive: extreme couponing combined together. Not just help families how to properly use coupons but getting rid of a stockpile warehouse and actually give away. Thanksgiving is coming up and it would be nice for reality tv to show what most of us already do. It’s not just about giving away free turkeys at a park, but reaching a family in need and provide them with your own groceries.

  28. christa says

    I’m so with you all! When I first heard of that show I was excited, but now I hate it. It makes clerks meaner. The shelves are always empty. I actually stayed away from couponing for a few months after it aired and am only getting back to it now, and now I find the show’s coming back again =-(

    • Cecollie says

      I agree. The show is called EXTREME for a reason. Of course stores allow things for the publicity that they would not allow others to do. My feeling is that no matter what you do someone will criticize what you are doing. I follow coupon policies, store policies and I am spending my own money and time. If someone doesn’t like how much I buy of something or what I do with it once I buy it…well, they can kiss my big toe. It’s none of their business.

  29. Liv says

    Extreme couponing is disgusting. I feel like it is this lie. People say they work hard to save for the things they coupon, spending hours a week and month planning for shopping trips and clipping coupons. Then they go and basically take things for free and abuse the system. It’s different I guess for charity, it seems like it’s a take from the rich give to the poor which can be noble. My fiance is obsessed with the show, he’s an organic farmer, and watches it with this disgusted look on his face. It seems like it has become a norm for us American’s to assume we deserve things for free, even access tweezers that we will never use. Instead of people spending 40 plus hours a week couponing maybe there could be something else to do. One woman said she got into couponing because she lost her job and now spends hours upon hours couponing. Why not get a job and coupon some on your down time. The system works but I think couponing gives a false sense of the value of a dollar. Success can be measured many ways, but I would not find someone with over $100,000 worth stuff she got for nothing successful. Most of the stuff as well is not even stuff that is worth buying. It is sad in a way that people feel they need 95 boxes of tampons to feel successful. Live within your means and you could probably get a job and not have to coupon 40 hours a week. The only thing almost as disgusting as this on TLC is that Dugger family.

    • Cecollie says

      Wow! Could you be just a little more judgmental?
      If you follow all the policies and use legal coupons…it’s not stealing! Personally, I am far more disgusted by your attitude.

  30. Cyndi says

    I think the most coupons I have used is 30 and not all in the same store or transaction, and the only reason I did that is because the items were like .24 cents after coupons and sale which made a good donation item. I only keep and use coupon on items my family use and if they are on sale and I can donate them like I said

  31. Ron says

    These extreme coupon people are the reason there are more restrictions on normal people who use coupons. Also, who do you think is paying for these fools to get all that free stuff, we are because the manufacturer will pass this on to us. If you see fewer good coupons in the future, blame these extreme idiots!

  32. Anna Anderson says

    Hello my name is Anna Anderson, i live in Southern California and would like to really learn how to coupon the right way please. If you have the time could you or would you help me out. Thank you for your time. Looking forward to hearing from you. Again Thank You. Anna from California

  33. Alejandra says

    I COMPLETELLYYYY agree with you. I am on a VERY VERY limited budget and try to use coupons to stock up on things at a low prince but they are things I know I will use and need. I do not buy items that I don’t need just becuase they are free. Since the show started everytime I have a small stack of coupons I am given this akward stare and have even been asked “Are you one of those couponers who tries to get everything for free?” It was uncomfortable because the show created a stigma that couponers are horders who are selfish- all I am trying to do is survive and get out of debt not cheat anyone out…. BOYCOTTING EXTREME COUPONING… what a shame for TLC they could have made the show a positive one by focusing more on the help that coupons provide.

  34. Lee daugherty says

    I watched the show. They should quit eating. Clean their house . Most of those couponers are obese …. I just think they are like addicts. Can you imagine if a crack head could figure put how to get crack for free. The would be addicted to that. Same theory.. It’s just obese people going for their next score.

    • Superkoala55 says

      Holy shiiiiiiiiiiizzzz Lee D. You are so right. I have started couponing, went to buy some things today, and already feel addicted. Like I need to go back to the store now. I’m a recovering addict and it’s that rush. Deff. a drug.

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