Are you using all methods to save the most money when you shop? There is a documentary on Netflix called “The Ultimate Guide to Penny Pinching.” The show follows a few different people saving money in their own way.
There are segments for the extreme couponer, the family that does extra research to maximize savings, a couple using cost effective ways to spend less than £1500 for a wedding, and one guy who collects and eats roadkill. These people are finding ways to scale back on spending to maximize their savings as much as they can.
Even though the movie was based on stories from the UK, there are similar stories in the US of how people are saving money in the exact same way. After watching the film, I decided to apply some of their ideas to my own life (except for the roadkill…that’s not going to happen).
In the past, I shared how I use my MoviePass membership to go the extra mile with rewards and savings. As an addendum to that story, ends up my AMC membership went VIP. That means I don’t have to wait in the long lines to buy tickets or food. I can go straight to the VIP line and get served ahead of everyone else.
I didn’t have to pay anything extra for the VIP privilege. I just went to the manager to complain about the long lines and how none of the kiosks were available when she informed me I didn’t have to do all of that because I was VIP. My kind of membership!
Yes, you can be VIP, too. Just buy the membership. If you already have an active AMC membership, you should check to see if they upgraded you when they switched to their new system. That’s how I was upgraded.
Now, onto the other stuff. Today, I’m going to talk about the different ways you can make your purchases go the extra mile.
Start With a Discounted Gift Card
When I need to go to Target or buy a new gaming system at Game Stop that is not on sale anywhere, I buy a few discounted gift cards at Gift Card Zen.
My brother wanted the PS4 Pro for Christmas. It was not on sale anywhere. It was a firm $399 (plus tax). I went to Gift Card Zen and purchased $420 worth of gift cards and paid only $375.48. That’s a savings of $44.52.
There’s an App For That
After I made my purchase, I uploaded my receipt to Ibotta and because Game Stop had a special $5 rebate for $75 purchases, I got $5 back. I was able to get $5 back from the purchase I made the day before at Game Stop too. Ibotta had an earnings bonus reward and gave me another $5. That’s $15 back for shopping at Game Stop.
I also uploaded my Game Stop receipts to Receipt Hog to get points that can be later used towards Amazon gift cards, cash or magazines.
Other apps I use are Checkout 51 and MobiSave [use PROMO CODE: IGNUXTMX to get $1 when you sign up at MobiSave].
The great thing about these apps is that you can use the same receipt (especially for groceries) on each of the apps. Most of the time, they are running the same rebate specials. For example, you see bananas appearing on the Ibotta, Mobisave and the Checkout 51 apps. You can get rebates on each of the apps from that one receipt.
If you’re heading to Target, make sure you peruse their Cartwheel app for additional savings. You can use the Cartwheel app with physical coupons for double savings. If you have the Target debit or credit card, you can get an additional 5% off your purchase.
There’s a Site For That
Want a way to earn points towards coupons, magazines, gift cards, etc.? Try Recycle Bank.
You can learn ways to be more eco-friendly while earning points to use towards coupons at Target ($5 off of $50) or magazine subscriptions.
Another site I came upon that is amazing is Living Rich With Coupons. They’ve completely simplified the entire couponing process for you. They find the deals, tell you what coupons are needed and which coupons you can stack to get the product for next to nothing or FREE. Just make sure you pick up the newspaper every Sunday to clip your coupons and print out the ones they link up to.
I love that sometimes they know the store deal + coupon before the new flyer comes out in the Sunday paper.
Also, if you are shopping online…ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS go through the Ebates app to get cash back. Those surprise checks 4 times a year always come in handy.
Ways to Earn Free Gift Cards
For those who live in or near metropolitan cities and dine out frequently or make reservations a lot, use the Open Table website to book all of your reservations. Why? You get points for dining out. You can turn those points into restaurant gift cards or an Amazon gift card.
If you want to do a little work on the side to earn Amazon gift cards, try Amazon Mechanical Turk and pimp yourself out.
For those who use Bing as your search engine, make sure you are hooked up with Bing Rewards. For Chrome users, use Google Screenwise to earn gift cards just by searching on the internet.
If you use Chrome as your search engine on your phone, make sure the Google Screenwise app is on your phone so you can earn money while you do your regular internet searching.
There are always new ways to maximize saving money. The way I look at it, if you can get the same stuff for free, why pay for it? What tips do you have that helps maximize saving money?
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