Did that really just happen?
You know the story….you have planned, organized, and shopped a store and you head to the register to excitedly pay for your items when suddenly someone is rude, disrespectful, or demeaning because of the fact that you are using coupons. I have received so many emails and comments lately about the way people get treated while using coupons. First off, I just want to let you know….you are not alone, it has happened to just about every couponer that I know (if not literally EVERY couponer).
Whether it is the cashier or another shopper, it really doesn’t matter, does it? It can make you go from feeling so accomplished to down right sad, frustrated, upset or a combination of all three (hence the picture above). I am all too familiar with that feeling and can tell you my roughest encounter was when I was shopping at Super Target a few months ago and a mother with her teenage daughter came up behind me in line. All my stuff had already been rang up and the cashier was scanning my stack of coupons (I probably had about 50…so yes that is a lot). I always try to be polite by telling the person behind me that I have a lot of coupons that will take a while to scan and that time was no different…only the reaction was.
The mother smirked at me and then leaned into her daughter and said, “see honey that’s what happens when you are not responsible in life…you end up having to use coupons because you can’t afford to pay for stuff.” Ohhhhh…I was flaming mad inside and wanted to say sooooo many things that would not have been appropriate, but instead I smiled at her while she gazed back at me like she had just won the lottery and I said, “No honey, I use coupons because I have a deep respect for the hard-earned money my husband makes and for every one dollar coupon I use, is one dollar that stays in my pocket and not the retailers.” She never responded, and I wanted to tell her so many other things that proved I was responsible in my life, like:
- How I went to college and graduated with a Bachelor degree when I was 22 and then proceeded to get my professional clear teaching credential, masters degree, and a GATE teaching certificate all by the time I was 27. And how I proudly walked across that stage to accept my MA degree while my newborn son and 3-year-old daughter were sitting in the audience with the rest of my family.
- How I bought my first home when I was 22.
- How I taught elementary school for five years and decided to quit when my son was born so I could stay home with my kids.
None of that was emotionally or physically easy, none of it was mentally or financially easy, but it was all because I WAS RESPONSIBLE! Right? I planned for those things and worked hard to achieve them!
So, while I can easily offer you my condolences and tell you it happens to all of us, I have a few other pieces of information that might make you feel even better! Did you know:
“Online coupon users have bigger households, are better educated, and are wealthier than the general population” according to the Coupons, Inc. Market Research Bureau.
“More than one-half of US Internet users with household incomes of at least $100,000 reported using online coupons. By contrast, only 30% of users with incomes under $25,000 used coupons” according to eMarketer.
Here are the percentage of coupon users at different income levels according to eMarketer:
<$25K : 30%
$25K – $50K : 38%
$50K – $75K : 42%
$75K – $100K : 43%
$100K – $150K : 51%
$150K and over : 53%
I do my research….a learner by nature! I just wanted you to know that, YES it happens to all of us, YES it’s frustrating, and YES I wish I could come stand by each and every one of during times like that, but I can’t, so I leave you with that food for thought….you are smart, you are responsible, and you are saving and THAT is all that matters!
Have a FRUGALICIOUS day my fellow couponers!
PS: For those of you who have difficulty with cashiers, just kindlly remind them that for every coupon you use, the store gets an additional $.08 – $.10 handling fee. And for every coupon you use that is under the value of the product, they still get full value of the coupon from the manufacturer, so they are basically making more money off you than someone who just walks into the store and purchases something! So there