Father, Son Coupon Hobby Gains National Attention
Second-grader continues a family tradition of clipping coupons, to appear on TLC tonight.
One father and son in Chatham Borough have taken a family hobby to new heights, and saved bundles in the process.
Sam Kaplan, a second-grade student at Washington Avenue School, began cutting coupons at a young age.
"Ever since the scissors could fit my hands," he said, he has clipped coupons from the family's weekly newspapers.
Couponing is something of a family tradition in the Kaplan household. Sam learned his skills from his father, Jeff, who in turn learned from his father. An old shoebox in which his father stored coupons over the years now rests in Sam's custody. The box, Jeff said, is reckoned to be about 25 years old.
"If you look at some of these, they're from a time when coupons were actually printed in the newspaper," Jeff said.
Also, many of these older coupons have no expiration date, though several of the companies are no longer in business.
Jeff estimates over the years his family has saved thousands of dollars by shopping with coupons. He even turned the penchant into a new business, Lozo.com, which offers coupons on groceries, discounts on household items and advice for smart shopping.
"We're going to add a section called 'Sam's Corner,'" Jeff said, where his 8-year-old son can give tips on saving money while shopping.
The crew from TLC's "Extreme Couponing" paid a visit to the Kaplan home earlier this year and taped Sam, Jeff and Jeff's father and brother on a trip to the grocery store, where Sam used coupons to save hundreds on groceries. The two were also featured on an episode of "Good Morning America," which aired Monday, May 28.
The massive amounts of goods purchased on these shopping trips are stored throughout the Kaplan home, on shelves and in cupboards and pantries. While it may look like a lot of food, Jeff said between three children under 10, "it goes quickly."
As of Friday, items on the shelves included snack bars, soda (for when family or friends come to visit—"we're not really a soft drink household," Jeff said), cleaning products, body wash, paper towels, Fruit Roll-Ups and assorted juices and soy and almond milk.
The episode of "Extreme Couponing" airs Monday at 10 p.m. on TLC.
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