Poll: Are You Embarrassed about Using Coupons?


By: , SparkPeople Blogger

A recent survey from the company ICOM Information and Communications finds that more than one in five consumers (22%) are embarrassed to use coupons at the grocery store. But could tough economic times change some of those attitudes? Nearly 57% of the respondents who said they were self-conscious about redeeming coupons also said that within the last 6 months, they no longer care as long as they are saving money.

Of consumers age 35 and younger, 26% said that they have fewer inhibitions about coupon usage than they did last year. Nearly 20% in this demographic said they used to be self-conscious but are no longer because of the economic benefit of clipping and redeeming coupons.

Whether or not times are tough, I'm a coupon clipper. I love getting the Sunday paper and flipping through the ads to find deals on the foods I frequently purchase. I have a little coupon box to organize them. When I get to the checkout line and they ask "Do you have any coupons?" I'm always excited to say "Yes, I do!" I'm never embarrassed to use them. In fact, I feel like it's almost throwing money away not to, which is why the results of this survey were pretty surprising to me.

How do you feel? Have you ever been embarrassed to use coupons? Why or why not?

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  • STMML02
    I'm in my early 20s, and I rely on a part-time job to pay for my apartment and food expenses while I'm taking classes. Of course I use coupons, because I need to make sure my money stretches as far as possible! - 3/8/2011   2:25:55 PM
  • 1011
    Will not leave the house without them! The thought of shopping without coupons leaves me in a cold sweat. I've actually left a store without my purchases when I realized I didn't have my coupons! No embarrassment necessary! - 3/8/2011   9:20:55 AM
  • 1010
    I am a coupon clipper. Why would anyone be embarrassed of saving money. I really doubt anyone in line behind me even notices. Now that I'm thinking about it I guess I'd feel more proud than embarrassed. - 3/7/2011   3:18:42 PM
  • 1009
    Heck NO I aint embarrased, I loooooovvveeee to see my grocery total come down. Coupons are $$$ to me. I wont shop if i don't have my coupons. - 3/7/2011   2:51:49 PM
  • 1008
    I'm definitely not embarrassed. My mom was big on coupons, and now I use them too. I'm very careful, now, to use them for healthy stuff and things I will actually eat! I won't buy something just because I have a coupon. I usually wait til the item's on sale, too. I save so much money that way! - 3/7/2011   2:20:27 PM
    I love coupons, especially when I an item is on sale, and then add a coupon on top if it, and someplaces even double them! I 'm pretty new to couponing, but in the last 2 months, I already have enough FREE toothepaste to last a year. It definitely takes some research up front to know if something is a good deal or not, but the opportunity is there to save a LOT. - 3/7/2011   1:19:42 PM
  • 1006
    no but sometimes they are not worth it when you can buy off brand that is just the same and a lot less pricey. - 1/1/2011   3:33:47 AM
  • 1005
    No i actually wish I had more and remembered to use them more often. But why would I be embarrassed about saving money and spending it wisely. Esp because I know with my savings I will be vacationing on some nice island (lol). - 12/8/2010   7:44:23 AM
  • 1004
    I will use coupons as much as I can! - 11/30/2010   10:47:22 PM
  • 1003
    I use coupons as much as possible. Target.com has online coupons - I used them last week and did some early Christmas shopping and saved nearly $25. Well worth the coupons. - 11/27/2010   11:24:23 PM
  • 1002
    I love using coupons! We were never well off when I was a child, so its not like using coupons is a step down or anything...if anything, its a step up from giving a handful of pennies to the cashier that you pulled out from under the car seat. The only problem is that almost all coupons are for processed food...so if you're trying not to eat that junk, the coupons don't help. Also, if you buy any store brand products, its sometimes cheaper to get those than the name brand product with its coupon. Now if only they'd put out coupons for vegetables and off brands.... - 11/25/2010   10:49:29 AM
    Why be embarrassed? The stores love to hav you come in with coupons! Why else whould they put them in the paper or have them in front of the stores in books. I've noticed lately most of the sale flyers have coupons in them. I love coupons and enjoy the challenge to see how much I can save with them and the sales for non coupon items! The only thing you have to remember is, don't buy it, even with a coupon, if you don't need it!! - 11/1/2010   12:12:09 PM
  • 1000
    I used to be a couponer, but not any longer; I don't get the paper. I know you can get coupons online, but it's not worth it to me. If I got coupons, I'd use the ones for toilet paper; otherwise, I don't buy processed foods. Fresh foods go on special and I can find the store ads online. - 10/28/2010   11:48:23 PM
  • JPETERS2323
    I'm ashamed to admit that I use to use coupons alot more than I do now. My mom despised using coupons when I was younger but I remember cutting the coupons and whatever we saved using coupons, I was allowed to keep! Win~Win!! I have instilled in my kids the value to couponing for everything (ex. BOGO for family night activities, dollars off at restaurants, etc...) It seems like you can get some type of discount anywhere you go either by carrying the Qdoba card, Red Robin, etc...or attaching their card to your keyring) I óż coupons!! I have recently gotten on the "coupon train!" Private message me if you would like to join!!

    Read more: http://www.dailyspark.com/blog.asp?

    - 5/31/2010   4:39:42 PM
  • 998
    I never learned to do it and I get pretty embarrassed about it. I'll carry them in my purse for days, look at the cashier as if I'm hoping she will ask me to give her the damn coupon and then I'll go home and throw it away... - 5/31/2010   2:25:46 AM
  • 997
    i heart coupons! they're free money! - 5/31/2010   12:19:33 AM
    I love coupons but some of them cannot be used in Hawaii where I live. - 5/30/2010   8:59:58 PM
  • 995
    I have never been ashamed or embarrassed about using coupons. I have been a big couponer all of my life and I hope my kids are too. I know more of the younger generation may be embrrassed about using them, but I am not. I think it is always wise to be aware of how much we are spending and if we can save money it is great. It is a great skill and value to pass on to your children also. And, I am at a point im my life that I do not have to pinch pennies, but I still consider it savy to be aware of what I spend. I try to sort my coupons before I go to the store, and stick close to my shopping lists so I do not have any big surprises. - 5/29/2010   4:39:25 PM
  • 994
    I went through a stage of being the madd clipper! I even went as far as joining a group that met once a month and traded coupons. Having 50 of one kind of coupon was not unusual in our group. I was not embarrassed in the least to be a coupon clipper!

    The problem I had was when the grocery stores limited the amount of coupons or started putting restrictions on which coupons you could use and when.

    Then I got cancer and realized that that I bought with these coupons weren't healthy for me! So I stopped completely. Now, I pick and choose which coupons I will use. I clip all the ones for things like razors and stuff that doesn't go in your body but I'm careful to only clip the food items that are good for me. If I don't, I will go down the path of buying the Oreos "just because I have a coupon." This will not benefit me for my weight loss goal. It won't help my kids to have that junk around either! - 5/28/2010   3:24:23 PM
    I'm never embarrassed to use coupons. I aspire to be one of those ladies who can purchase a cart worth of food for about $2.52! I'll write to companies if I like or don't like something about their products and more often than not, they will send cents-off coupons, or better yet, free coupons. The trick is to use the coupons when the items are on sale. When the kids ask for this thing or that, I tell them if it's on sale and I have a coupon, I'll get it! - 5/28/2010   11:50:08 AM
    I find, as others have, that most food coupons are for products I don't eat due to sodium, calorie count and/or processing. However, coupons for pet supplies, cleaning products...absolutley!! - 5/28/2010   7:57:54 AM
  • 991
    I'm not embarressed, I just started couponing a couple months ago and now watch coupon links. - 5/28/2010   12:03:31 AM
  • 990
    Coupons are awesome! Who doesn't want to save money? - 5/27/2010   7:46:32 PM
    Why pay full price for something when you can use coupons and get it for almost nothing? My mother is the queen of coupons. I have personally witnessed $100 worth of groceries going into the car for less than $20. (I'm not that good. I buy too much produce, lol) - 5/26/2010   7:46:14 PM
  • 988
    Coupons are great! - 5/26/2010   4:15:59 PM
    Oh hell no...I am not embrassed using coupons ever..I love the whole process..searching for them..cutting them out..planning with them..I have saved a lot of cash with them..... - 5/26/2010   1:51:27 PM
  • 986
    I use coupons every time I shop! I have for 30 years, ever since I was a grocery clerk at the age of 16. Never would feel embarrassed, I personally think it makes one look smart and savvy! - 5/26/2010   11:06:21 AM
  • Y.SANDRA97
    will use them in a heart beat ,just can't find the one's I need - 5/25/2010   11:20:47 PM
  • MEECHIE_123
    I remember when I first got out of high school I was embarassed to use them myself. When my mom did it, I thought it was normal.Now I don't care...I love them, I just forget to use them - 5/25/2010   10:19:07 PM
  • KMR100878
    I just started using coupons and I love it. I rarely buy sugary snacks and the coupons I use are for things like personal care products, yogurt and frozen vegetables. I've recently starting paying attention to the coupon sites and LOVE being able to get things 25 - 50% off. I agree with others that I wish I could get coupons for fruits and vegetables, but I plan on shopping at a farmer's market, so I'll know the money I spend stays in my community. - 5/25/2010   1:29:32 PM
    My mother used coupons, so I've grown up seeing that your $200 grocery bill can be knocked down to $150 or $125. I think our record was a hundred bucks saved in coupons. Besides, I'm the one who would be losing money if I didn't use the coupons. I don't really care what other people think, they don't pay my bills, I do. - 5/25/2010   12:50:41 PM
    I love coupons! I have saved up to 20+ and my mother has saved even more than that. We are generally often to find coupons for what we are buying anyway- dog treats, dog food, coffee creamer, coffee (and I am very picky!!!), cereal, etc... - 5/25/2010   10:30:29 AM
  • 980
    no i am not embarrassed to use coupons and in fact when we go out to eat (which is very rare) i check on line to see if there are coupons available for that particular place; usually FRESH CHOICE offers coupons you can simply print up. i use coupons at the grocery store all the time! plus, just an added note, if you have AAA insurance, you can often times use your AAA card while shopping for clothing, shoes and eating out; you can save 15 - 30 %, depending on where you shop! - 5/25/2010   10:13:13 AM
  • 979
    Embarassed for using coupons? WHY??? If you are embarassed to use a coupon then you might care too much about how you perceive others "see" you. The truth is, people you don't know don't care what you do. No one - NO ONE - is going to be in line and see someone use a coupon and gasp. The point I am trying to make is that if you let your own perceptions of what others think of you inhibit you from something like using a coupon, then you are taking away from your own life, restricting yourself unnecessarily. What people "might think" shouldn't even be a care in your mind when it comes to things like that. Quit overthinking what others think and just live and enjoy your life. Who cares what they think anyway - are "they" and their opinions somehow better than you and yours? No way! - 5/25/2010   9:51:55 AM
  • 978
    I love using coupons!!! I wish I was as savvy as some of those ladies who get carts full of foods for dollars because they know all of the loopholes and use coupons like crazy! - 5/25/2010   9:50:21 AM
    I'm not, but I have friends who wouldn't be caught dead using a coupon. - 5/25/2010   9:04:16 AM
  • 976
    Embarrassed? No way! I love to use them. You save a lot of money.
    Using coupons faithfully. Few times I spend over $100.00 of grocery and using coupons just spend $2.00. Who is embarrassed? - 5/25/2010   8:58:48 AM
  • 975
    I'm not embarrassed to use coupons, I just always forget to use them :( But I am a big fan of price matching. - 5/25/2010   8:50:36 AM
    No way. I LOVE coupons. Never go shopping without them. I usually spend something like $15 or $20 and save $150. - 5/25/2010   8:31:38 AM
  • 973
    No, I'm not embarrassed to use coupons; in fact, the more coupons the better. I save a lot using coupons. I even print coupons on line. No shame here, I have 8 mouths to feed! - 5/25/2010   1:31:04 AM
  • 972
    I'm never embarrased to use coupons but I rarely take the time to clip them. - 5/24/2010   11:13:15 PM
    NO I AM NOT . - 5/24/2010   9:46:14 PM
  • 970
    I don't use coupons. I think they are a waste of time. I just go and get what I need. Not that I am wasteful, mind you. but like other posters have said, coupons are generally for super sugary processed foods. Sure my kids eat that stuff, but when I can buy a large bag of no name brand cereal for less than a small box of name brand why cut coupons? Plus I think they are a scam anyway. You have to buy two $3.50 boxes of cereal to save a buck? So I spend $7 to save $1? I could save myself $3.50 by not buying the extra box of cereal to get something I truly need. - 5/24/2010   6:43:53 PM
    Love coupons! It seems lately I only use them for ziploc bags, toilet paper, baby products or baby food. Now, one of our local stores (HEB) recently starting adding deals like buy a ready made salad and get a bell pepper or Cucumber for free. Now, I can use lots more of those! - 5/24/2010   1:20:45 PM
  • 968
    I love to use coupons the problem is most coupons are for things that I don't need or want. But when I find one I can use I make sure to clip. The others I give to friends to use. - 5/24/2010   9:51:06 AM
  • 967
    No way! I'm not embarassed! They are made to be used right? In my opinion, there's no shame in saving a buck (or even a quarter) when possible! - 5/23/2010   8:55:51 PM
  • 966
    I'm not embarrassed. I'll buy 6-8 Sunday papers if the coupons are good. I have links to couponing web-sites and I scope out the stores when shopping for more coupons. My problem is getting stuff we don't need, so I'm working on that now. The food shelf benefits... - 5/23/2010   8:11:02 PM
  • 965
    Coupons for items I normally use are great; or to try something new. When I enjoy a new item , I e-mail the company with complements and they usually send me another coupon. Nothing embarrassing about being thrifty in this economical environment, just common sense! Truly, a penny saved... - 5/23/2010   5:51:32 PM
  • 964
    I have always used coupons. We have always been frugal in good times and bad which is why I was able to retire at 55. I worked for Kroger for 39 years and collected all coupons I could find and then could match them to sale prices. the cashiers always wondered what was wrong if I didn't have a handful of coupons. in fact, they still do as we still shop there.
    I don't think anyone should be embarrassed about using them. It is just like throwing money away not to if you have a coupon and actually need and use the item.
    Most cashiers don't mind if you have them organized and ready to go and don't try to use expired coupons or ones for items you didn't buy. - 5/22/2010   12:07:06 PM
  • 963
    I would love to use coupons. There is just no coupons for what I buy or even with the coupon the other simalar product is still cheaper. It just doesn't work out. I just watch for things on sale or I have my preferred grocery stores to go to, because they are usually cheaper but not always. I just watch prices.

    Oh and I don't like printing them off my computer, because that waste ink in my opinion - 5/22/2010   11:40:23 AM

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