Book Review: The Lazy Couponer

March 21, 2012 by
Filed under: Coupons, News 

Since I’m on vacation this week, I thought I’d ask Terra from Life As a Field Trip to do a book review for us.

The lastest money-saving book I picked was  The Lazy Couponer: How to Save $25,000 Per Year in Just 45 Minutes Per Week with No Stockpiling, No Item Tracking, and No Sales Chasing!.  After reading it, I decided to ask someone who was an average shopper to read it.  Terra is most definitely that; she uses coupons but generally shops one store, doesn’t chase sales, doesn’t have the room to stockpile much, either.  In short, she’s normal!

Here’s her take on the book:

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I’m always skeptical about paying for something that will save me money, but I love lazy. I already follow the coupon and savings blogs. Their posts automatically show up in my Facebook feed, doing the work for me. A big splashy “With No Stockpiling, No Sales-Chasing and No Item Tracking!” on the cover of this book sealed the deal. Being uber lazy, I thought this could be the book for me.

As I read the introduction I thought it sounded too good to be true, but I continued reading. It didn’t take long for me to realize the author relies heavily on drug stores like CVS and Walgreens. She begins by using a drug store shopping trip as an example of how much you can potentially save. In both the introduction and Chapter One she used lots of math, calculations and planning. These are all things I avoid when being, ahem, lazy.

The author spends a couple of chapters introducing coupons, how they work and the lingo. I did find this helpful. I’m sure her suggestions like ‘Get to know your store’ by establishing a relationship with store managers and employees and keeping a copy of the store coupon policy with you are good ones, but again, who has time for that? Certainly not the lazy. She went on to spend a chapter each on how to use her coupon method shopping at grocery stores, drugstores and super centers.

After reading the book, I felt like I could manage putting together a ‘coupon scenario’ or a plan of what to buy for CVS in order to maximize savings. I scoured the Sunday CVS ad, found several things on sale that generate Extra Care Bucks that I needed, matched them up with coupons and set out for CVS. I already had a $4.00 off of a $20.00 purchase coupon. I felt pretty confident, but once I started looking around CVS my confidence waned. The store was out of half of the things I wanted and I couldn’t combine the posted deals, with my coupons to get the results the author did. Post check out, I had saved exactly as much money as I would have if I had simply jumped in the car and used my coupons at Target.

I admit I am an amateur and I could have asked for a rain check on the items they were out of, but that didn’t seem very lazy to me. The author did explain that it would take some time and practice to get into the swing of things, but since my first visit, I haven’t been able to save any more money using her method at drugstores than I already did just stacking coupons the way I always have at the stores I usually use.

Overall, I’d say a better title is in order for this book. The author clearly knows her coupon stuff, especially if you are looking for a drug store How-To. It was easy to read, introduced coupon jargon and vocabulary, and gave some nice basic coupon information, but seriously, if you’re looking for lazy, attend one of Green Bay Consumer’s Not So Extreme Coupon classes (see home page for details on upcoming classes). Follow her blog and her recommended sites. Let GBC do the work for you!

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