Couponing: Do students do it?


Couponing: Do students do it?

Kate Schwanke

Couponing is one of many small ways to save money, but why isn’t it very popular with college students?

With TV shows such as “Extreme Couponing”on TLC, cutting coupons has become a popular way for families all over the country to save big on household items.

Beth Myers, a resident of Medina County, said she has been couponing since she was a kid.

“My mom taught me everything I know,” Myers said. “I was one of four children growing up, and my mom and dad had very little money and so to do it she had to coupon.”

Myers gets many of her coupons from the Sunday newspaper for multiple grocery stores and Target. She also spends about an hour a week clipping and putting together her grocery list, she said.

Staying at home with her two children, Myers began couponing in 2000. She has also saved more money than one would expect just from couponing.

“I started keeping track in the year 2000, and between 2000 and 2013, I saved over $35,000,” Myers said.

Some coupon users are even finding savvier ways to save time from searching newspapers and magazines.

According to the Inmar 2013 Coupon Trends Report, shoppers redeemed more than 66 million digital coupons in 2013, an increase of 141 percent from the previous year. Of the estimated 329 billion coupons distributed in 2013, roughly 40 percent were for food products and 60 percent were for non-food products, the study showed.

Many college students use coupons in a digital form. The use of smartphone apps including RetailMeNot, Groupon and SnipSnap are becoming more popular amongst the younger generation to get deals.

Alicia Johnson, a junior communication studies major, said she doesn’t coupon due to the negative connotation that goes along with it, but she does save money using online resources.

“I think in this new day and age, kids don’t think about that (couponing) and if they do, it’s usually online and they use discount codes and stuff,” Johnson said. “When I think of coupons, I think of cutting it out of the newspapers, and kids don’t read newspapers often.”

Johnson said she also shops for products that are already discounted or to the point where she doesn’t need coupons.

“All my makeup I buy is under $5 each, and I shop at Goodwill,” Johnson said.

But for some students, couponing isn’t something that crosses their minds.

Brooke Shotter, a sophomore interior design major, said her mom has a good collection of coupons for grocery stores, but she does not have a personal interest in couponing herself.

“I don’t really shop that much, and if I do, I’m already bargaining anyways so I won’t buy anything full price,” Shotter said.

For many college students, saving money is crucial. Myers said when she was in college, she didn’t coupon much because she lived at home and had a meal plan when she lived on campus. However, when she graduated, she began couponing.

“I think when you leave college, you have to do a budget, you have to get your first job and that way you can get more for your money,” Myers said. “Nobody can afford to waste money so I keep doing it.”

Contact Kate Schwanke at [email protected].