Is it pronounced "koo-pon" or "kyoo-pon"?

How do you pronounce "coupon"?

  • "koo-pon"

    Votes: 27 81.8%
  • "kyoo-pon"

    Votes: 6 18.2%

  • Total voters
    33

Doctor Q

Administrator
Original poster
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
37,280
3,366
Los Angeles
Random question-of-little-consequence-of-the-day:
How do you and your neighbors and schoolmates and coworkers pronounce the word "coupon"?

Dictionary.com says
Coupon [koo-pon, kyoo-], related to cope and coup, is of French origin, from colpon (piece cut off).

It has developed an American pronunciation variant [kyoo-pon] ... with an unhistorical y-sound not justified by the spelling. This pronunciation is used by educated speakers and is well-established as perfectly standard, although it is sometimes criticized. Its development may have been encouraged by analogy with words like curious, cupid, and cute, where c is followed by a “long u” and the [y] is mandatory.​
Despite my personal fondness for the sound of "q", I learned to say coupon as koo-pon, and that's how everyone I deal with daily says it, but I hear it both ways on the radio.

In the U.S., is the distinction a regional thing? Which region?

Is there more consistency within other English-speaking countries?
 

iRachel

macrumors 6502a
I say Kyoo-pon, and so do most of my friends and family in the Chicago area - where you tend to here a lot of the "kyoo" pronunciation. I live in wisconsin now, and people make fun of the way I say it - most people up here say "koo-pon."
 

iMacZealot

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2005
2,238
3
I think both are acceptable but I've always said koo-pon. Just like ant for aunt and Call-oh-rad-oh instead of non-coloradans who say call-oh-rod-oh or call-oh-rad-uh.
 

xsedrinam

macrumors 601
Oct 21, 2004
4,347
1
I've always said "koo-pon", but I do think it's a regional thing. I'm originally from the Midwest (IL), but my wife is from the South (TN). She says "kyoo-pon". But then she also says "po-in-set-i-ah" as part of her dipthonged arsenal. Ain't that "koot". :p
 

WildCowboy

Administrator/Editor
Staff member
Jan 20, 2005
17,208
1,106
I say "koo-", but my parents say "kyoo-." I can't remember if I used to say it like they do (they and I grew up in Buffalo, NY) and changed since I've moved around the country or if I've always said "koo-".
 

Foxglove9

macrumors 68000
Jan 14, 2006
1,568
173
New York City
I pronounce it kyoo-pon. Everyone in my family pronounces it like that, so I did to. However I realized everyone seems to pronounce it with a koo. So I try and say koopon now. But I have to say it just doesn't feel right.

It's funny you started this thread because I really didn't think anyone else pronounced it like my family does. Thanks :)
 

iMacZealot

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2005
2,238
3
iMacZealot said:
I think both are acceptable but I've always said koo-pon. Just like ant for aunt and Call-oh-rad-oh instead of non-coloradans who say call-oh-rod-oh or call-oh-rad-uh.
Just out of curiosity, does anyone here say Call-o-rad-oh instead of Call-o-rod-oh? If so, do you live in Colorado?
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
18,704
1,192
New Zealand
I've never heard it pronounced "kyoopon".

iMacZealot said:
Just out of curiosity, does anyone here say Call-o-rad-oh instead of Call-o-rod-oh? If so, do you live in Colorado?
I always assumed it was Coll-o-rah-do :eek:
 

iMacZealot

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2005
2,238
3
Nermal said:
I always assumed it was Coll-o-rah-do :eek:
You're not a Coloradan like myself unless if you pronounce it -rad-. Most out of state people say -rod-. The name derives from the spanish word colorado, which is pronounced -rod-, but the state technically should be pronounced -rad-.
 

Stampyhead

macrumors 68020
Sep 3, 2004
2,294
30
London, UK
I think the difference in pronunciation comes from the original French pronunciation (koo-pon) and the anglicised version which adds the "y" in the typical fashion of British English. Here in the U.S. we don't typically add the "y" sound before the letter U but I guess both pronunciations can be found here. I grew up saying "kyoo-pon."
 

xsedrinam

macrumors 601
Oct 21, 2004
4,347
1
spicyapple said:
Separatist militants pronounce it as, coup-on! That's my little joke for today. :)
Were you kyooped up, all day at home? :p Whoops. That's a "coo" miscue. Okay, little, deuce kyoop, then.
 

iMacZealot

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2005
2,238
3
swingerofbirch said:
I have heard people say kyoopon, it's usually the people who say school as "skyull."

Around here we get terlut for toilet, hellur for hello, doering for doing. It's fun.
"Hellur!"
"What's up?"
"Just doering to do my business at the terlut!"

Never did I think doing could be a three syllable word. I should try talking this way and see what sort of reactions I get. :D
 

ZoomZoomZoom

macrumors 6502a
May 2, 2005
767
0
iRachel said:
I say Kyoo-pon, and so do most of my friends and family in the Chicago area - where you tend to here a lot of the "kyoo" pronunciation. I live in wisconsin now, and people make fun of the way I say it - most people up here say "koo-pon."
Yep, I'm from Chicago too and I call it kyoo-pon. But it's not something I stick with; sometimes a koo-pon slips out.