Saturday, 15 September 2012

Ways I have been Saving Money in 2012

This is not a sponsored post. I just can't believe others aren't doing some of this stuff.

There are three things I've been doing this year to reduce what I spend on things. None of these have caused a change in my spending habits - they've just let me shop as I normally would while not paying as much. But it does rely on my being, by preference, an online shopper. Sure, I occasionally have a blow out at Festival of Quilts or in a shop but generally I buy online. So let us begin.

Quidco

I keep telling people about this and they don't believe me or think it's a scam. But look at this image of my dashboard and where it says it has paid me £211.81. That's since January.
myquidco
That's money I either got back as a percentage of what I spent or that I was given by companies for trying their service for a week or even by standing outside a high street shop and pressing a button on a phone app.  This is how it works:
quidco
If I want to buy something online - a pair of shoes from Clarks for example - I first go to Quidco. I log in and type Clarks into their search. They tell me I get 5.5% cashback on whatever I spend at Clarks and I click their link to visit the site. I shop on Clarks website as usual and in a week or two I get 5.5% back. I bought a pair of shoes on their recently which were £49. I had a 10% off voucher from elsewhere so that made them £44.10. I get cashback of £2.43 from Quidco. So I've got my £49 shoes for £41.67. It's not a massive saving but it's better than nothing. Another example - I was out of contract on my phone. I found a deal I wanted. I checked it on quidco before buying. On quidco I get the same deal but with £60 cashback. You can see I just got paid the money from Tesco phone shop on my last payout. £60 for doing what I was going to do anyway. Nuts right? Same on holidays. Expedia will give you back about 10%. And I've never been spammed or anything like that.

I'll be honest - if you click this sickly green banner below and sign up I'll get £2.50 the first time they pay you £5. But then you'll have saved a fiver on what you were going to buy anyway. It is seriously money for nothing.

i love Quidco Green

My Survey

This is one of those sites that pays you for filling out surveys online. 
mysurvey
They tend to be about toilet paper or music or other such wonderful things and are very boring but you earn points for each one you complete and what do points mean? Paypal money or amazon vouchers or a ton of other things. You can see from the image that I've got a stack of surveys they've decided I fit the profile for. Each will take between 10 and 30 mins to complete online and earn me between 20 and 150 points. I've only got 46 points there at the moment because I just cashed in 540 of them for a £5 amazon voucher. I think in the six months or so I've been a member I've earnt about £30 of vouchers and I only do the surveys while I'm waiting for something else to happen. Like running a bath or in a boring phone conference. 

There is a referral service where I get 100 points if someone I refers signs up so if you are interested email me and I'll send you an invite. 

Groupon

This last one can be deadly - I'd suggest opting out of receiving their newsletters once you've signed up and only using the website tactically. 
groupon
Personally I only use this for haircuts. Otherwise it's just too easy to spend money on rubbish. If you need something you know Groupon tends to offer (haircuts, waxing, massages, steak dinners, exercise equipment, teeth whitening) stalk the website for a week. Look at not only your area but places near your area. Deals can come and go in 24 hours so set a reminder on your phone to visit once a day to see if any relevant deals have come up. Since I became aware of Groupon I haven't paid full price for a haircut. Of course those who know me will know that someone with Cousin It hair doesn't need to visit a salon very often but when I do, I get a bargain. And people - groupon is on Quidco so for every groupon you buy you get 5% cashback. Double discounts. Nice. 

There is also a referral service for this where I get £6 if you buy a groupon but I would suggest you sign up to Quidco instead and get your own cashback for buying a groupon so you go ahead and start benefiting straight off. However if you'd rather not email me and I'll gladly get the £6!
Man Made - Money

Now I do believe I am due for a haircut AND at £19 with 5% cashback it will only cost me £18.05 and at London prices that is one sweet deal. 

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