TLC Extreme Couponing Controversy Update

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Budget Savvy Diva is sharing a great post with us to give you more information on what’s happening with the controversy I posted about on TLC’s Extreme Couponing.  You all had such strong feelings about the obvious disregard for coupon guidelines that I wanted to bring you an update.  What she did effects all of us – making it harder to use coupons in the future.

In the most simple terms this couponer Jamie as shown below on National TV committed coupon fraud which she was caught for a year before. She also teaches couponers in a coupon class all about it — for a pretty penny — $35.00 !!!!!!

What she does wrong:

– There is a way to figure out coupon codes.

You see the bar code ?

There are numbers under the bar code – well you take the first set of numbers and you look for UPC on products from the same company and if they match up the coupon CAN be used on that other product. So people will take a high value coupon for one product and use it on a low cost product – sometimes being from completely different products. Like using a toothpaste coupon on detergent.

This is what she does – and she is proud of it.

The Couponer Under Fire Jamie

The repercussions of such couponing are large… such as lower value coupons and more extreme restrictions at store like Krogers

TLC said in an statement to EW: “We have received a strong response to the premiere and are listening to and reading the various comments around the show — as with all programs, we appreciate the feedback. While the series documents extreme couponing strategies, we take any concerns about specific tactics seriously and are looking into the situation.”

I’m hearing rumors that CIC is investigating her, but those are only rumors for now!

Do you think anything will happen??


  1. Vanessa says

    Frankly, I do not understand why someone would go on national television and engage in fraudulent transactions on tape. It is also interesting that TLC did not review her strategies prior to taping/airing the episode. Whether she faces any sort of civil or criminal charges remains to be seen (although it would be hilarious if she had to reimburse the coupons and pay full price for all of that mustard she bought).

    The implications for the rest of us are tighter coupon policies, limits and tracking controls. CVS already has a pretty good handle on this by limiting the number of ECB offer transactions per customer.

    More and more chains will implement store cards to limit transactions, and any software developer worth their salt will develop a product that enables purchase tracking and/or for all coupons to be electronic (so no more doubling). I believe that this will be the eventual path anyway, as the redemption from store to manufacturer could then be done automatically and the process would be paperless.

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see Wags implement a card like CVS in the near future, either. My cousin is a high school teacher and a few of his students work at the local Walgreen’s. Customers regularly come in and make qualifying purchases to receive RR’s. They go back later in the week to return the items for a refund and keep the RR’s.

    Ultimately, I think it will be just like everything else – a few bad apples will spoil it for the rest of us.

    • Dana says

      Hi Vanessa,

      I agree, a few bad apples could ruin it for everyone else. That’s ridiculous to make purchases at WAGS and then return the products later to get the RR’s. That is a lot of work to return something that you were most likely getting for free after the RR anyway.

      There is so much going on in the Jaime department. I hope if she is prosecuted it is shown on TV so people can see there are consequences to using coupons fraudulently

  2. says

    I think this whole thing is a shame. I posted a blog yesterday about how I got SO mad at KRoger yesterday when I found out that their coupon policy had changed…and now I find out its because of her. WOW! Way to go lady.

  3. Kelly says

    I don’t know where to begin. People like her are incredibly stupid. While I too know how to read the bar code. However, I use it to plan my purchases and savings closely, as I am on an extremely tight budget. I use coupons to make ends meet. My husband lost his job due to shut downs and his new job is half the money. So, this kind of irresponsible behavior can not be tolerated.

    I teach coupon classes and now my students want to know how to dupe the system and get everything for free. I explain that with patience and continued couponing a tremendous savings can be accomplished. Here in Virginia Beach we have limits of 20 coupons and most stores double up to .99 We have many specials doubles sales compared to the rest of the country.

    My suggestion is that we all write strongly worded letters to TLC and threaten to go to the press. About there blatant abuse of coupon and store policies. I can’t believe that the store allowed or the show filmed a woman doing 17 separate transactions. They were in the store for 5 hours, incredible. What a drain in the stores resources. On the same vain how dare they clean off the shelves as if that was except able coupon etiquette. The coupon process is a wonderful gift and great hobby and we can not let a few narcissistic apple ruin the bushel. We must mount a pointed tactical opposition to the garbage being glorified on TLC before it is too late!

    • Dana says

      There is a dicussion on the fb page right now. I has a blogging buddy mention that she taught a classes and one of the students said she was told that it was okay to use a coupon for 1 product on a different product. She thought it was okay. People need to realize it is fraud.

      17 transactions, yeah. Who has time for that as a shopped and as a store employee!

  4. Kelly says

    I will continue to put pressure on TLC to do the right thing! We do it everyday, and it isn’t fair and it is not right. I will watch the show tomorrow again to see if the same garbage again. I have spent so much time lately unteaching so much of watch has been glorified on Extreme Couponing. Hopefully TLC will revamp the show and engage in real learning and highlighting the best of the best.

    • Dana says

      That is what some of my blogging friends have been experiencing as well. Educating their students on how to coupon and how to create a resonable stockpile not to follow what’s on tv.

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