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Do Extreme Shoppers Ruin Bargain Shopping for the Rest of Us?

I drove over to Babies-R-Us today in the hopes of scoring a few packs of Huggies diapers for only $1 each. The store held a $5 sale on Huggies Pure and Natural diapers, permitted the use of coupons and provided a $5 gift card for every two packs purchased. I had a couple of coupons in my binder, so I figured I’d make the trip and pick up a few packs for next to nothing.

When I arrived the diaper aisle looked like the milk department just before a big snowstorm. The shelves were completely bare. I was curious when the store ran out of diapers, (since I knew the sale started yesterday), so I asked a very kind salesman who told me the shelves were stripped clean within the first few minutes of the store’s opening. It seems two or three women came in with binders full of coupons. They were each guiding a number of carts and simply threw every diaper into their carts, (regardless of size), and rushed to the register.

There wasn’t a limit on the number of diapers one individual could buy, so there was no policy against the shoppers filling multiple carts and cleaning out the store. Within minutes the shelves were empty.

While I don’t fault these women for bargain shopping, I wonder if they really needed to purchase every pack of diapers they could get their hands on. Honestly, I’m not sure how I feel. While I think it’s great that these women will save themselves hundreds of dollars on diapers I can’t help but wonder if it’s fair to all of the other women out there who were looking to save a little too. Over at Bargain Life, they’ve raised this and other important questions that need to be asked – how is a family affected?

What do you think? Are you an extreme shopper and do you strip the shelves of products when you head to the store in search of bargains? Do you think stores should put limitations on the number of products a person can buy with coupons and discounts to ensure more people can take advantage of the bargains or do you commend these women for filling their carts for next to nothing?

Adult Diapers

Monday 14th of November 2011

This is really an interesting blog as it focuses on the very important topic. i came to know about so many things or tips.

Nicole

Friday 29th of July 2011

I agree with stores imposing limits. Most of these people are buying items only to resell them at higher price. It is so annoying. Luckily I live in area where I guess the coupon craze hasn't caught on so I have been able to get good deals.

One Frugal Girl

Thursday 28th of July 2011

It looks like everyone agrees that stores should impose limitations to ensure that extreme shoppers don't take advantage of deals to the detriment of other shoppers. In this case the store permitted these women to load their carts with cheap diapers, but I hadn't really thought of all of the people who find ways to cheat the system to get better deals.

The example of the man who has signed up for multiple CVS cards seems crazy. I don't see why the store can't turn him away!

Kara

Wednesday 27th of July 2011

I've always used coupons, but some people take it way too far. What a lot of people are doing is reselling the things they get for free or for very little (do a google search for "stockpile sales" if you want to be horrified.) They also donate items to food pantries and take a tax deduction for the full retail cost of the items even if they got it for free. There's a guy who comes to my local CVS and cleans out the candy aisle every week. The cashier tells me that he has about 25 CVS discount cards in different names that he uses so that he can get around sale limits, but that the cashiers aren't allowed to say anything. People have a lot of ways to take advantage of sales, and it's a shame that it's going to eventually affect everyone in one way or another.

Pam

Wednesday 27th of July 2011

I think it is only smart business for a store to impose limits. It only takes a few experiences like this to turn off customers. I never visit the CVS that is less than a mile from my house because I could never find the sale items. This was probably more a result of the store having ordered a limited supply of sale items, but the end result is the same. Bare shelves one too many times and a customer will switch businesses.