There's nothing like a recession to help remove the stigma of coupons, both for the clipper and for the company offering the discount. Groupon, a website that gives away daily 50%-to-90%-off coupons (for purchases like spa treatments, dance classes, restaurant fare and desserts) as long as enough people buy into the deal, now operates in 92 U.S. cities and 22 countries, and while it's primarily aimed at locals, the fact that the coupons are usually good for a year will undoubtedly make more travelers pay attention. (Similar sites include LivingSocial, KGB Deals, Buy with Me, ScoutMob and Scoop St). Fashion-bargain site Gilt, meanwhile, has launched its own local-deals site, Gilt City.
While many of the offers on those sites aren't exactly high-end, Blackboard Eats has finagled 30% (and sometimes deeper) discounts at upscale, respected restaurants in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco the kinds of places where coupons, and the people who love them, used to be shunned.