Don’t believe me? In this story, police allege that an Arkansas woman stole 185 newspapers for their coupon inserts, and on this blotter, another woman stole the coupon inserts from the newspapers.
I already had misgivings about extreme couponing, but this really takes the cake. It seems fine if you don’t do the following wildly unethical/illegal/or just plain foolish things:
- Buying things you don’t actually need. I mentioned earlier that spending money does not save you money. If you go and by a pallet of body wash or shampoo or whatever that you don’t use, then you may as well have thrown your money away. I see lots of extreme couponers who end up creating a stockpile that is ridiculous compared to their actual usage, and nobody wants you to end up on Hoarders.
- Stealing newspapers on coupon inserts in order to save money. See above. No one wants you to be on the newspaper’s blotter.
- Using coupons in violation of their terms of service. This is not ok, it’s fraudulent. Yet extreme couponers seem to do this frequently (at least on TV). While I’m sure there are some couponers that abide by all the terms on the coupon, I’m also sure there are plenty who don’t.
- Let it consume you life. Saving some money on coupons will not get you as much as getting an additional job or an education that will increase your earnings at your current career. I ‘m sure three’s someone out there who can say that they make more from a few hours couponing than at work, but the couponing isn’t scalable. Work is more-so.
So yes, use coupons if its something that you need, will use, was ethically acquired and redeemed, and didn’t take up too much time or energy for the savings. Otherwise, don’t use the coupon and don’t feel bad about it.