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Public Misconceptions About Extreme Couponers

Extreme Couponing Canada

Extreme Couponing Misconceptions

There are many misconceptions about extreme couponers out there (big thanks to Extreme Couponing and their shady practices) and I think it’s about time to clear them up, don’t you?

Since when is saving money a crime? Why do people feel the need to criticize others when they shop with an “extreme” amount of coupons? Is it jealousy? Or do people simply not understand what extreme couponing is all about?

Here are a few public misconceptions about extreme couponers:

Extreme couponers only buy junk food

Do I get a lot of junk food for free after coupons? Yes. Do I get much healthy stuff for free after coupons? No. Does that mean I only eat the junk, just because it was free? Absolutely not.

Although the majority of food coupons are for unhealthy food items, that does not mean that us extreme couponers only buy those items. Most of us eat a balanced diet – even if that means buying fresh, healthy food, without a coupon.

Extreme couponers are poor

Research has shown that Canadians making more than $150k a year are just as likely to use coupons as those making $50k or less.

If you see someone using coupons, don’t automatically assume that they are using them because they’re poor. You may be surprised to learn just how much money the average coupon user makes each year!

Extreme couponers buy items they don’t need

Who really needs 77 bottles of mustard or 1,500 sticks of deodorant? Who actually needs to stockpile dozens of packages of diapers when they don’t have a baby?

The answer? No one. Obviously.

So why are extreme couponers buying these items? That’s simple – because they’re usually free (after coupons are applied). Many extreme couponers donate their excess to local food banks, shelters and friends & family.

Extreme couponers are hoarders

What’s the difference between stockpiling and hoarding? Hoarders hold on to everything, even if they know that they don’t need it. Extreme couponers stockpile, and stockpiling is when you buy something for future use.

Stockpiling groceries may seem strange to some, but it is one of the best ways to save money on your grocery bills. Don’t assume that just because someone purchases large quantities of items with coupons, it means they are hoarding them. They may be keeping what they can use, and donating the rest.

Extreme couponers spend all of their time on couponing

Although extreme couponing is hard work, and in the beginning, it may seem like a full time job – but I honestly don’t know anyone that spends all of their time on couponing.

The amount of time spent couponing varies greatly on the amount of deals you want to purchase, how many coupons you accumulate and how much time you really do have available.

I consider myself to be an extreme couponer, and only spend an average of an hour a day on couponing (sometimes less).

Remember the important rule of never judging a book by it’s cover. If you see someone buying dozens of chocolate bars, or cases full of dish soap – don’t assume that they are poor or hoarders.

We all know what assume stands for right? When you assume, you make an ass out of you and me. Don’t do it!

What other misconceptions would you add to this list?


  1. Marilyn

    I totally agree with this, I love my coopons and I’m always looking for more.
    On that note can someone tell me when the new pg coupon flyer will be out.

  2. Poor Fat Chick

    I admit I was influence by the show to start using coupons. However I knew from the start that I wouldn’t be able to get savings such as them. But if could save a dollar that is a dollar in my pocket and not there. And then getting things free or really cheap such as razors, deodorant, laundry soap that was the icing on the cake. I figured if I could save on those items then I would have more to spend on healthy options as well.

    People used to make fun of me when I starting using coupons, calling me poor and/or grandma (I am in my early 30’s) because I starting using coupons. My boss even pulled me aside and asked me if everything was alright financially.

    I knew I would have my day. And I did.. when months later I explained to those people who made fun of me that my boyfriend and have saved about 20% off our grocery bill and we haven’t paid for razors or shaving cream for about 6 months I had people asking me to show them about couponing. The greatest though was being able to donate health and beauty products to friends/family in need.. that makes it so worth while

    • Cassie Howard

      Yes, unfortunately, many people are rude to couponers. I`m glad to hear you stood your ground and have been able to save money with coupons on a consistent basis. And kudos to you for donating!

  3. Carrie H

    Extreme couponers are poor – Look at Jimmy Buffet he is one of the richest men in the world and he doesn’t even own a computer.

  4. Jaclyn

    I used to share my savings on Facebook. I was not only proud that I was able to save so much but a lot of friends wanted to know how… I stopped sharing my couponing on FB because after posting a status update one day on my savings a thread started about me being a “hoarder”, “broke”, they discussed how I should get a better hobby and it was a waste of my time… So I stopped posting BUT I did not stop couponing after that I simply removed those people from my life and am proud to say I have a huge stockpile that cost me very little and I no longer have to worry about running out of anything and that’s a good feeling!

    • Cassie Howard

      I’m glad to hear you removed those people from your life. No one needs that kind of negativity.

  5. Karen

    I have been very fortunate people have been amazing. Have had so many strangers inline at he grocery store ask me. Where can I get coupons. Even the the cashiers think its great and want to start couponing. I direct them to this website. It has showing me so many easy ways to save . Thank you again.

    • Cassie Howard

      Thank you so much for sharing!

  6. Elle

    I work at a homeless shelter, this morning a large donation of personal sized hairspray, hair gel, shampoo, conditioner, tampons, ect was donated by a generous lady who told us that she used coupons to get them free!

    We were thrilled to accept the donation!

    I use coupons myself, and often donate things to the place I work! I love saving money for my family, and helping those less fortunate than myself! It’s true that many of us are only a pay check away from living in a homeless shelter!

    I love the thrill of having a large check out bill and saving 50-70 percent every time I shop!!!

    Happy Couponing Folks! Don’t let them get you down, saving money is exciting, and don’t forget about your local homeless shelter when you have extras!

  7. Jess

    We’re not poor, I coupon and why wouldn’t I?

    Once I started price matching and couponing, I took our grocery bill from $200 a week to $85. I don’t care how much you make, an extra $6000 a year is awesome.

  8. Ashley

    I find one of the biggest misconception is that a lot of couponers are trying to rip the store off. I know that there are couponers out there that do try to break the rules (I have not met any, but I have seen people try it, whether it be on purpose or by accident I am not sure). But the misconceptions that we are all trying to get something for nothing is not true. Do I love Free Stuff of course who doesn’t, but I only get things for free when I have a FPC our a great sale is on and my coupon covers the full price.

    I have been asked if I sit at home trying to figure out how to “rip the store off” (there words not mine). I never try to rip the store off will I go over all the flyers and find the best deal and match it up with coupons, yes, but do I sit here and try to figure out how to get something I do not have the correct coupon for, no.

    I use coupons to keep our grocery bill down, we went from spending about $120 to $200 a week down to about $50. This way we are able to save and if something do unexpectedly come up we have money to cover it.

    • Cassie Howard

      Yes! I agree, that is another misconception. A cashier at Zellers called me a scammer one time. I spoke to her manager and also called head office. I heard that she got a good talking to about speaking to a customer that way!

  9. Nicole

    I have been extreme couponing for over 2 years (thanks to Cassie), and couponing for 5. I have to admit that I am somewhat of a closet extreme couponer – mostly because of the bad reputation the show Extreme Couponers has given us. Our family thinks it’s great from all the things we give them, but most of our friends are not aware of the extent of my couponing (I have a modest stockpile in our basement). Those of my friends that show interest in couponing – I have shown how to coupon. One of my friends that I taught has become even a bigger extreme couponer than I, and has a huge stockpile. She recently went through a divorce, and said that dividing her stockpile was one of the hardest things for her to give-up.
    I get mixed responses at stores from both cashiers and other customers, and sometimes feel the need to apologize that the coupons are holding up the line ( I usually use 15-30 coupons in a shopping trip). It seems weird to apoligize for saving 30-50% on my bill….it only makes sense not to pay full retail! My biggest peeve about the show Extreme Couponers is that all the manufactures have now changed the wording on their coupons, and extreme couponing is harder for those of us that do not misuse the coupons. I will however always continue to coupon, donate, and make full use of my savings in other areas of my life. I appreciate sites like Mrs.January, and the wisdom it provides! Thanks 🙂

    • Cassie Howard

      Thanks for sharing your story, Nicole! As saddened as I am to hear about your friends divorce, I can’t help but laugh when you said dividing her stockpile was a difficult thing to do. I’d feel the same way.

  10. tracy

    I have learned so much from mrsjanuary,and simply frugal thanks for all you do.Thanks for sharing all your knowledge about saving money.I don’t care what people think about couponing as long as I’m saving for my childrens future who cares what they think of us couponers.It is just jealously not everyone can do it.I have good days and bad where it all goes smooth at the stores,some that don’t depending on the cashiers.I just try again next time.Thanks Cassie your a very intelligent woman.

    • Cassie Howard

      I agree, who cares what other people think!

  11. Louise

    Because I have a soy and nut allergy I am limited to what products I can buy. I usually stick to fresh fruit, veggies, meat. I bake my own bread, cakes, cookies, etc.. I rarely buy processed foods due to soy content. This makes it hard to use coupons or to find ones that are usuable to me. Any suggestions as to how I can save ?

    • Cassie Howard

      I would email the companies that you are able to buy from and see if they offer coupons to their customers. I’m sure many of them do.

  12. teachermum


    I buy very few processed/packaged foods (something in many of them makes me wheeze), we don’t drink milk, and therefore there are rarely coupons I can use for our groceries. I save by buying produce/meat that is on sale–we eat what is on sale. I also can’t stand scented things so that eliminates coupons for most H & B products.

    I use coupons to buy things to donate to our local food bank/shelter. I still get to play the game that way!

    We are able to afford to go out and buy whatever we want for groceries for whatever price they may be, but I just can’t do it. I’d rather spend my money in Disneyworld!

    • aLaNa

      The wheezing problem I have too and is caused by the preservatives in the processed foods. Ingredients like BHT in cereals, sulphites in dried fruit, cereal, lunch meat, wines, even Cheemo perogies!

  13. Annie

    Hi. Sorry for my english, im french. But i just wanna say that im à new couponer and often i have problem with cashier or store. But i dont care because i save à lot of money and im à student. Always i give à lot of thing to my my family and they are so happy and proud of me. And my husban loves when i save money because we can use money for other thing.
    Some people laugh at me about it but i dont care!!! And this website si so awfull. It helps me very very much. Thank you!!
    Im not poor and im an extreme couponner and im proud of me and never im not gonna stop to coupon!!!

    • Cassie Howard

      Good for you, Annie! 🙂

  14. RonNasty64

    I think grocery stores should have a specific checkout line for extremers. There is nothing worse than being behind one of them at checkout. I’d like to see an extremer have to wait for another extremer to finish their check out so they can truly relish the experience.

  15. teachermum


    While I don’t always have coupons, I would gladly use such a line if I did and it existed. I never have a problem waiting behind someone using coupons and have done so many times. I also look behind me and see if I can share any coupons with those waiting.

    A designated line would be wonderful as I would hope they would put the coupon savvy cashiers on that till–that move alone along with giving that person the ability to override coupon limits would make that line just as fast as any other. I do tend to check out the cashiers before choosing a checkout lane hoping to find the speedy ones!

  16. Leslie

    A good way to deal with people who are in line behind you is to either give them one of your coupons and/or items to go with it. I have done this many times, such as a $2. Resolve with a $2. coupon, or like last night, 4-$1. coupons (we are able to stack coupons where I went shopping), for the gentleman’s 2 V-H frozen dinners. He was buying the same thing as me. My V-H dinners were costing me $1. each after coupons, his, $3. each. So by giving him some coupons for his frozen dinners, he didn’t mind waiting in line behind me, and he was thrilled to see my savings! Once you involve someone behind you in line with your coupon deals, they become the recipient, they enjoy it, and they are thankful, too!

    • Cassie Howard

      That is a fabulous idea! I am going to try this the next time I’m out shopping. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    • amanda

      this is one of my favorite things to do in a store. i often do a quick eye scan of what is in some peoples carts and if i know i have a coupon i wont use i pass it on to them.

    • Landon

      I absolutely love doing this and I am very honest with people when they come behind me and I tell them I might take some extra time because I have coupons and price matching and I also scan the cart to see what I can help them save. I don’t know how many times other shoppers or staff at the store ask me where I get my coupons. I send them directly to your site. It helped me so much. I have been couponing in Alberta for over a year and never been so happy to have such a fun hobbie!!! I love the thrill of saving money and the challenges us couponers face when shopping. I have so many things I do now like I always go as soon as the store opens in order to get my meat at the best price. I LOVE COUPONING!!!

  17. alisha

    hello my name is alisha kincaid and i live in north bay ontario and im trying to start couponing 🙂 i need your help thank you

  18. Julie

    While shopping around the grocery store today, some guy with his wife / girlfriend sneered at me and said, “There goes another f&^%ing crazy stupid coupon lady. What a loser!” Wish I had seen him after checkout to let him know that I saved $12.00 in coupons and $25.00 dollars off getting sale items and price matching. Yep! I’m a loser alright! Losing money off my grocery bill.

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