by: Amy Hannold,
247Moms Frugal Living Editor
Be an Informed Shopper: Research and knowledge pays. Refer to store policies on price matching, refunds for product purchased cheaper elsewhere or a sale within a certain time period, etc. Store policies can be found at www.priceprotectr.com/retailers.jsp.
Ask for a Better Deal: Talk with a manager about reducing sticker prices on display or slightly damaged merchandise, end-of-season items, etc. Inquire about military, teacher, senior, AAA, or other discounts you may be eligible for.
Make the Call: Phone the customer service department of your phone, internet, newspapers and other suppliers. Periodically ask for “new customer” discounts for existing customers, promotions and bundle prices. Visit BillShrink.com and NetQuote.com to compare prices.
Receive the Deals: Sign up at your favorite retailers, malls, dining, and other shopping places. Wisebread.com will send you a daily list of what’s on sale, where. Find bargains at CouponSherpa.com, CouponChief.com, eDeals.com, and Alice.com. Store coupons and discounts may be able to be stacked or matched with manufacturer coupons, promotions or rebates.
Gift a Gift, Get a Discount: Watch for deals on buying gift cards. Grocery stores often promote gift card sales by offering a discount on groceries (or other gift cards) when you buy gift cards. (Buying a gift card for yourself, and loading it with your monthly grocery budget will save you money!) Scrip gift cards; “Fundraising While You Shop”, is your opportunity to buy gift cards and support local schools/organizations: ShopWithScrip.com.
Pay on Time: Be timely with payments and you’ll save late fees. If you’re a usually on time with payments, and you’ve slipped this month, ask for the late fee to be waived.
Wait: Be sure what you’re buying meets a practical (as opposed to an emotional) need. Online, place the desired item in your shopping cart, and then wait a day or two. You may receive a discount invitation from the retailer, meant to encourage you to finish the purchase. Meanwhile, look around for a less expensive price or option.
Carry Cash: Start with a twenty dollar bill. How much harder is that to break for small, insignificant purchases? Challenge yourself to carry that bill while you make other, money-saving choices. Carry your coffee and snacks to work, pack a lunch, and bypass you usual spending temptations.