I went on my weekly grocery shopping trip today - Meijer had a few good sales going on and with coupons matching them, it looked like maybe I could afford to buy food for the family. I get my coupons the honest way - out of the Detroit Free Press coupon inserts (Smart Source, Red Plum, Proctor & Gamble). I print off a few through My Points. Once in a while I print off a few Meijer Mealbox Coupons (which you can use with manufacturer's coupons).
I spent an hour in the store looking for the best prices, mostly short dated items. I wasn't feeling the best anyway, so it was a complete chore. I hate budgeting! Just for once I want to be rich. It can last a whole day and then I can go back to normal. I just want to know what it feels like to buy whatever I want without worrying about the prices.
Ummm, back to the post at hand.
When I went to pay for the groceries, I was suddenly treated like a thief. The clerk questioned me repeatedly about the coupons I was using, about whether or not I purchased the items specified, etc. It took forever. Another clerk came over to talk to my clerk for a moment. My clerk shows the other clerk the two My Points coupons I was using. They look at each other and then at me - suspiciously. Then I had to answer yet more questions. I was beginning to lose my patience (for me, that's getting warm under the collar and my cheeks turning red.)
Finally, I told the girl, "I am usually pretty careful to watch dates, purchase two of an item if the coupon states to, whatever. Once in a while I make a mistake, though, but it's unintentional."
This clerk then said, "It's just that we've had a lot of coupon fraud lately."
Aha. Coupon fraud.
I am SO sick of people cheating and stealing via coupons! You CANNOT photocopy coupons. You CANNOT buy something other than what the coupon states. You CANNOT buy coupons. You CANNOT STEAL! That's what using an illegal coupon is called - stealing.
It's one of the Ten Commandments. It's a sin. And it's making it difficult for those who are honest to buy food for their families.
The penalties for coupon fraud are stiff. If you're tempted - beware. Read more about coupon fraud here. Keep yourself informed and be careful to follow the law. If stores stop taking manufacturer's coupons, a lot of people will find it difficult to put food on the table. They won't be the only ones affected - you will be too.