Money Saving Hacks
As moms, we know the importance of stretching our dollars. Especially if you have multiple kiddos! My thought process has always been "the more we don't spend, the more we can save" and/or "the more we don't spend, the more we can play." Lately it's been the latter as I've adopted the mindset "I wasn't born to pay bills and die." I didn't travel a lot growing up and I had Noah at age 20 so that prevented the early 20's travel bug most people get. I want to see the world, but more importantly I want to see my kids see the world. Relating that to this post, it takes $$$ to see the world!
I'm pretty conscious about how much I'm spending and I'm always looking for options to save. I've got a few ways I like to do this and extreme couponing is NOT one of them. Although I wish I was good at that, I've just never quite figured it out. You can put your scissors down for this post.
1) Ibotta! They're one of my favorite money-saving hacks. It's an app created by a Colorado company, so if you're in Denver like me you're also supporting a local company! Ibotta is a cash-back app. They have promotions on their app for grocery purchases (and tons more). You add them to your account, do your grocery shopping and when you get home you scan your receipt and the item and they you received your cash back. Once your account hits $20 you can choose to have your money sent to you in a couple of different ways, but I choose Venmo. I've found it's the fastest. If you decide to download Ibotta on your phone or sign up online, use my code: habm9w and get $10 for your first redemption! I do get $5 for telling you about it if you use my code, let's help each other! I get $5 and you get $10. Win/win!
2) Honey! Honey is a browser extension that searches the internet and automatically applies the best promo code it can find to make sure you're saving the most money possible. You install it and then forget about it. It is seriously an amazing tool and I forget about it until I'm checking out online and realize there's a code added that I wasn't even aware of! The only thing about Honey is you can't use Honey and Rapid Rewards at the same time. So I usually purchase through Southwest when Honey tells me there are no promo codes available or if the savings is minimal.
3) Grocery stores! Whether you shop at King Soopers, Safeway, Albertsons, Publix, etc., there are typically apps for each store. Safeway is my favorite app because they keep track of what you buy and add coupons based on that. Unfortunately I don't shop there as often anymore so I use the King Soopers app. It's not as user-friendly, but there are definitely lots of coupons to be added to your account for savings at check-out. Even stores like Whole Foods and Sprouts have jumped on the coupons-through-apps bandwagon and you can save there too!
4) Target! The store we all know and love. If you shop there frequently, get a Red Card! They have it in the option of a credit card and a debit card. Personally, I hate debt so I would suggest the debit option. It pulls funds directly from your bank account and saves you 5% on top of any other savings you may find. In addition, you get free shipping anytime you order from their website. Combine that with Honey or Rapid Rewards for even more savings! If you're doing a lot of in-store shopping, download the Cartwheel app and scan everything you're purchasing to make sure you're not missing out on any additional coupons Target is offering. Combine in-store purchases with Ibotta for the ultimate savings.
5) Shopkick! Shopkick is another app option for saving money. This one can be a little more time consuming (if you use both options of earning) and can take longer to earn. You earn points just for walking into certain stores (Target is always one of them) and eventually can cash in those points for gift cards. Shopkick also has the option to scan certain items in the stores (no purchase necessary) to earn even more points. Since I'm usually shopping with kiddos, I don't do this because, toddler. Need I say more? They also have certain promotions running, usually the scannable items, and if you end up purchasing one of those items and scanning your receipt you can earn even more. I've gotten probably $50 since I've downloaded it a year ago so it's no get rich quick scheme, but if you're going to be walking into these stores anyway, why not rack up points? Use code: SALE541249 to get an extra 250 kicks with your first walk-in or scan within 7 days of downloading the app!
6) If you're like me and you've recently been bit by the travel bug or you just want to start racking up points, sign up to become a Rapid Rewards member with Southwest. Whenever you purchase a flight and enter your membership number, you earn points once the flight is completed. That's the traditional way of earning points and is totally great, but what a lot of people don't know is that they have another option for your everyday online shopping! If you log into your rapid rewards account and go to their rewards shopping, you can find hundreds of online stores they work with and can earn anywhere from one point per dollar to 9 points per dollar (sometimes more). Their list of retailers include places like Target, Home Depot, Nike, Nordstrom Rack etc. You click on the store you want to shop and it takes you directly to their website to shop like normal. Don't close the browser window unless you plan on clicking through the Rapid Rewards link again. That way you ensure you get your points. What I like to do, especially with big purchases, (like the fridge we had to buy when we moved into our home), is go into the store and find your best option. Sometimes with big purchases you might want to be a little more hands on and that's totally still an option. Write down the model, then purchase online. You usually get free shipping with large purchases so it's cost additional costs are not a factor and we earned two points per dollar on that purchase. That's 2,400 airline points we wouldn't have gotten if we hadn't purchased through the Rapid Rewards link. So now we have a fridge for the same cost as an in-store purchase AND 2,400 airline points added to our rapid rewards account. Keep in mind some stores have "same-day store pick-up" options if you aren't a fan of waiting for things to be shipped. Southwest has other ways to earn points if you explore their website. Dining is another favorite of mine! If you have an account, make sure you're getting the most out of it. If you don't, go sign up today at www.southwest.com. They may not be the "fanciest" airline, but their customer service is second to none. Not to mention they might be the last ones hanging on with free carry-ons AND checked bags in addition to their no-cost option to change flights. I can't believe airlines are charging for carry-ons. Sigh. Anyway, let your points rack up and eventually you'll have enough for free flights! I think I'm sitting on enough for a family vacation, so I'm debating our next adventure!
I would love to hear about your money saving hacks! Leave me a comment here or on my Instagram (@christineyeargin)! I'll take all the hacks I can get!