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How Are Stores Fighting Back Against Extreme Couponers?

Extreme couponing
exousia.etsy, Flickr

Stores like Walmart and Kroger are sick of the practice of “staking,” in which frugal shoppers combine store and manufacturer coupons in a way that makes their items cost next to nothing — or even, in some cases, actually earns them store credit or cash back.

So they are pushing back against these extreme couponers with new policy changes restricting staking. For example, one shopper at Walmart was recently told that if she wanted to stack coupons on 34 containers of chocolate milk, she would need them to be rung up 34 different times and accumulate 34 separate receipts. (You’d hate to be behind her in line.)

Kroger is taking more of a direct route, by banning certain types of stalking outright. And other large chains, such as Rite Aid, are tweaking their rules to make it less advantageous and more time-consuming to cash in on these unintended mega-deals.

Do you think it’s unfair that stores are hitting back against customers who are just following the directions on their coupons? Or are extreme couponers just a menace to everybody else who is trying to shop?

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