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Old 10-16-2015, 03:43 PM
Status: "Absolute power corrupts absolutely." (set 14 hours ago)
 
Location: City Data Land
15,506 posts, read 8,981,603 times
Reputation: 30676

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When I met my wife 18 months ago, she introduced me to this Groupon/Living Social/nCrowd scene, which were coupon sites I've never used before. Although I find these online deals to be mostly useless, a few of the deals have appealed to me, and I purchased five specials, four of which I have been satisfied with, and the last one was mediocre. My wife buys a lot more than I do, however. She is really a fan of these things, but I have noticed that these deals are quite hit and miss, more so than most shopping experiences.

She buys mostly restaurant and entertainment deals with the Groupons, and we have gotten really bad deals with a few: the food was crap, they didn't honor the coupon as they promised (and we always read the fine print carefully), and she had to get a refund after we tried to use one of them when we didn't get anything we paid for. The latest stunt involved a coupon she purchased recently with nCrowd. They went out of business (for the second time) and became Boom Street, and when she went to the restaurant which she bought the coupon at, they wouldn't take it because nCrowd wasn't paying them for the coupons! Now she has to attempt to get her money back from a defunct company

When I used the Groupons, I checked the customer reviews of the businesses before purchasing. If they got good customer reviews which sounded legit, then I bought them. The four I got were great. The other was so-so. But I wouldn't return to the businesses and pay full price for these expensive services. Do you use these online coupon services? If you do, how do they work for you?
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Old 10-16-2015, 03:44 PM
 
Location: southwestern PA
20,419 posts, read 38,434,711 times
Reputation: 39085
I tried, but they were not worth the effort.
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Old 10-16-2015, 03:57 PM
 
Location: The Circle City. Sometimes NE of Bagdad.
19,122 posts, read 19,976,119 times
Reputation: 49620
And they do take advantage of the businesses. I won't do business with them.
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Old 10-16-2015, 04:42 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
11,614 posts, read 20,770,772 times
Reputation: 17007
They are hit or miss - there used to be for a wonderful nursery/garden center (since gone) - that I took advantage (and spent more but every little bit of savings helps). I think I've probably gotten maybe 5-6 things from Groupon, it doesn't cost you anything to belong so no biggie if you never buy anything. Make sure to read reviews of the company/item before purchasing though.
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Old 12-18-2015, 06:38 AM
 
Location: DMV Area/NYC/Honolulu
13,593 posts, read 6,941,140 times
Reputation: 13212
I've found some good deals on Groupon, but, after using the service once, I'm very much turned off from it. I ordered something from Groupon last week. According to the terms of the order, I was informed to expect my item to ship within 2-3 business days after placing the order. Well, we are now on business day # 5, and my order still hasn't shipped! Completely unacceptable. Now, I understand that Groupon isn't shipping this item itself, but I'd hope for some better communication (without me having to initiate) from Groupon after the company contacted the third party supplier, etc. But there is nothing to be heard/seen.
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Old 12-25-2015, 11:43 PM
 
2,157 posts, read 2,746,719 times
Reputation: 2780
I don't use coupons but I do monitor:

DealsofAmerica
Fatwallet
Slickdeals
Bensbargains

These websites are suppose to help you save money but many times, it seems like a curse instead.
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Old 12-26-2015, 02:18 AM
 
24,503 posts, read 35,968,627 times
Reputation: 12847
Quote:
Originally Posted by calnbs View Post
I don't use coupons but I do monitor:

DealsofAmerica
Fatwallet
Slickdeals
Bensbargains

These websites are suppose to help you save money but many times, it seems like a curse instead.
I remember slickdeals and fatwallet from the 90s. Man, what happened to those sites? They suck now. I guess they got so big that they are just a bunch of noise. When they had about 100 to 200 users, they had some really good deals and discussion. Most of the good crowd has moved on.
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Old 01-02-2016, 06:23 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
4,855 posts, read 2,279,718 times
Reputation: 7232
I use Groupon, Social Living, and Gilt City (a bit higher end) all the time, but I ALWAYS read a business's Yelp reviews first. Filter by date to get the most recent reviews. You can even search reviews for the word Groupon or Living Social because people will mention using a deal and let you know if they treated coupon customers any differently.

Maybe it's just me, but I feel like Groupon was higher quality a few years ago. Once they really took off, it seemed like any and every business struggling to get customers began offering a Groupon. I have used them for eye exams and dental cleanings when I was between jobs without insurance, and also for short-term gym memberships and boot camps, spas, and once for car detailing. I think restaurants are probably the riskiest because it's such a competitive business with a lot of turnover.
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Old 01-02-2016, 07:24 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
11,614 posts, read 20,770,772 times
Reputation: 17007
I agree kaphawoman - used to be better yrs. ago. I read reviews and it seems like they are scraping the bottom of the barrel many times.
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Old 01-03-2016, 08:16 AM
 
5,434 posts, read 5,369,879 times
Reputation: 6437
Because of where I live, we are flooded with deals from Groupon/Living Social. I used to use Amazon Deals too but they ceased operating that portion of the website.

I do regularly buy them for places I would like to try or that I will regularly go to. I also check Yelp and Groupon/LS, which now also contain reviews, to see if anyone has had issue with the deals. I have also bought deals for places that closed down before I got to use them and I always got my money back.

My husband's brother used them for his business. He was able to negotiate and it didn't really hurt him, business-wise, because of the stipulations he put on the deal and because he was really just putting bodies in the seats of something already being used. He told me cashing that 25K check felt great---and that was from one deal!

For me, they are also good for sporting events. If I want to go to a hockey game, the price is slashed in half---it is much less painful to pay $50 for two tickets than $100 when you're WAYYY up there. It was probably better back when it first started but many business owners lose money on the deals so they're less likely to do it nowadays. At first they touted their businesses as ways for people to pull in repeat customers but they found it doesn't usually do that.
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