21 Easy Tips to Saving Money

There is definitely a sense of satisfaction from going to the store with nothing but a few dollars and a handful of coupons and coming home with a sack full of stuff:)   Sometimes I even have more coupons than groceries!  Playing the “coupon game” is a fun challenge with some great benefits.  For Russell and I it’s allowed us a little more freedom in our budget to do fun activities with the kiddos.  It’s also allowed us to share our savings and blessing with others.  We’ve been able to take some of our savings and donate to our local food bank.  The great thing about using the couponing technique is we can give so much more.  It’s a great feeling.  If your interested in learning how to save on your shopping experience, check out our links below and give it a try!   Who knows…you might look this excited the next time you grocery shop:)DSC_0168_edited-1

Kroger mega event savings
Budget strategies for saving meat
Amazon Prime is it worth it?
Grocery Sale Cycle
Shopping like a pro at Target
Frugal club bargains
How to save money when eating out
Bidding on Hotels and Priceline
Frugal Family Fun
How to Save 50% on Groceries
Photo Deals
Free Books!!!
Cheap Airfare
A Word about Thrift Shops
27 ways to make your Groceries last as long as possible
Remodeling on a Budget
Strategic Shopping
Diaper Deals
Online Coupon Codes
Groupon Deals and Savings
Kohl’s Rewards

 

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Groupon Deals and Savings

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I LOVE saving money!  Who doesn’t right?  I also love to spend money where I know I’m getting a discount or bargain.  I recently signed up for Groupon which is a free service for anyone to join. If you’re not familiar with Groupon, it’s an on-line service for consumers to receive deal-of-the-day recommendations on services in your area.

A few months back, I found a great deal on a boat rental in our area and last week my family and I cashed in on the deal and spent the day on the lake.  It was so much fun and super reasonable when I purchased my deal through Groupon.   This is just one of a few purchases I’ve made using this great service!

Every 24 hours, Groupon broadcasts an electronic coupon for a restaurant or store in your city, recommending that local service while also offering you a 40% to 60% discount if you purchase that service.  Why does Groupon do this you might ask?  Groupon is a middleman service that promotes your city’s restaurants and stores. Groupon encourages people to try a different restaurant or store each day, and earns a commission whenever they successfully refer a customer.

Each day, Groupon will send an email announcement to its subscribers, describing the deal-of-the-day in that metro area.  If you like the deal-of deal-of-the-day, then you purchase an electronic coupon directly from Groupon using your credit card or PayPal account. You print that coupon, take it to the restaurant or store, and redeem it for commonly double the value you paid.

The great thing about this, if you don’t like the deal-of-the-day then you do nothing, and wait for the next day’s offer.  There is no obligation nor any cost for you to simply watch each day’s Groupon announcements.

If you’re interested in joining Groupon you simply go here and sign up.  All you need is your email address which you will check every day for discounts.  THAT’S ALL and enjoy your frugal adventure!

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Cheap Airfare

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Traveling is expensive with a family of 7!!  I love sites like Priceline for hotels and cars, but haven’t had much luck with airfare. It is almost never cost-effective to fly rather than drive.  BUT recently I have discovered a way to cut back on airfare.

My kids have never flown and they have been dying to!  So, as we began to plan a vacation for the end of this year we started looking at airfare.  I found a TERRIFIC site called Airfare Watchdog.  You can visit this site and put in where you want to fly.  Anytime there is a drop in cost, they will email you to let you know.  We have not purchased tickets yet, but I have seen the tickets drop as much as $75/person.  If your dates are flexible, this is a FRUGALTASTIC way to hit the skies!!!

One of my favorite features is that it also gives you alternatives to your flights.  It might find a good deal at an airport that is a little further from you.  You may fly into DFW instead of Lovefield or LaGuardia instead of JFK….not super inconvenient but it might save you a lot of money.

What do you do to save money on vacations????

Bidding on Hotels with Priceline

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Hotels can cost a FORTUNE!  A few years a go my husband and I decided to take a risk and try out bidding for hotel rooms on Priceline.  We were pleasantly surprised!  When bidding, Priceline deals only with national chains, so you won’t get stuck in a hotel you have never heard of.  Now days, this is the only way that we ever book a room.  We have never been disappointed in a hotel that we were put in and have saved hundreds of $$$$!

Priceline negotiating works because hotels want to book rooms.  An empty room means no money, a discounted room is better than that!  They don’t want to publish the lowest amount they are willing to take, because then nobody would be willing to book at their regular price.  This is why the name and address of the hotel is not given until after you have booked it.

Here are some tips:

1.  Make sure that you are going to be going on the trip.  You enter your credit card and payment when you place the bid.  You cannot change or cancel your reservation!

2.  Just before you click the final button, you will be shown a total cost including taxes and fees.  Make sure you are aware of the total cost.

3.  If you place a bid and it is not accepted, you have to wait 24 hours before you can bid on the same star level and date.  Make sure to give yourself a few days if you want to continue to try the same bid.

4. You can’t make room request ahead of time.  When you bid, you are simply guaranteed a room.  No guarantees on the type of room you will get.  If you MUST have a king size bed, this may not be the way to go.  In my personal experience, the hotels will do whatever they can to accommodate you, but if they are fully booked they may not have the room type you want available.

5.  Take the time to research what people have bid successfully.  Websites like biddingfortravel.com show you some recent successful bids.  You are not guaranteed to get the same price, but it  gives you a good ballpark to know where to start on your bid price.

6.  Be as open as you can about location.  If you can save 60% on the cost of the hotel, would you be willing to drive 5 more minutes to get to where you are going?  The more area you can open up, the better chance you have at getting a rockin’ deal!

7.  Consider what you are getting for the star level.  It is awesome to be able to stay in a 5 star hotel for pennies on the dollar, but many swanky hotels nickel and dime you to death.  Internet, parking, and food are typically much more costly.

8.  DO RESEARCH!  Before bidding, go on another site like Expedia and find out what hotels are going for on your travel date.

9.  If you are taking the kids, go for the 2.5 star hotels.  FREE BREAKFAST!!!  Hotels with 3 stars and up typically don’t offer a complimentary breakfast.  That alone saves you another $20-$30.

HAPPY TRAVELING!!!

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