I used to be a big Groupon on and Living Social purchaser. In the beginning it seemed like a good deal. But, I was cautious from the beginning after reading a NYT story about a women who was a Groupon addict and had so many she couldn’t use them all by their expiration date.
Lately, these group coupons seem to have gone the way of all established ideas, and their deals are more and more ordinary. I have been in the market for a pasta maker, for instance, and have been following Groupon offers for that item. But, in comparing it with Amazon, it isn’t usually as good a deal, and often there is shipping, which as a Prime member, I do not usually pay. All in all, I find my local businesses, Amazon, Overstock and Wayfair to be much better for my buck.
I will say, on occasion, like a trip to Las Vegas’ Ethel M’s Chocolate factory, where their workshop is offered on Groupon, it is a deal not offered elsewhere. We saved a bunch using the Groupon, which amazingly, we didn’t know about until the ticket taker asked us if we had a Groupon. We slipped out of line, ordered the G, and sashayed over to the cash register counter to utilize the hot tip.
As for restaurants in our area, our electric company has been offering us a $25 restaurant.com coupon every month as a thank you. I have accumulated so many of these for our local eateries, I cannot use them all. But no worries–unlike Groupons, they never expire, and are normally a 2 for 1 deal, like Groupon, except they are not pre-paid. Reminiscent of the NYT experience, I was finding the expired Groupons to be a bit of a challenge. And, one last thought. Vendors tend to lose a lot using Groupon initially, and if you are savvy, you can usually negotiate with the vendor for your second visit to be had at a discount where they won’t be sharing the discount with Groupon. Not all, but many have figured this out.