10 Weird Ways to Save Money
If you are looking to increase your savings, here are a few ways to save money. Keep track of the money you save using these ten tricks and put those savings into your emergency fund.
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Grocery Shop on Wednesdays
Here’s one way to save money you might not be aware of — it’s cheaper to grocery shop on Wednesdays than any other day of the week.
Most grocery stores mail out sales flyers on Tuesdays so that they will hit your mailbox on Wednesday. Most sales at stores start on Wednesdays which means that you’ll get first dibs on any new sales that week. It’s a great way to save money and stock up on essentials before they sell out.
Also, a lot of stores will still honor the sales from the week prior so bring any flyers or coupons from the previous week and see if your store will honor them. Sometimes it really just depends on your store and the management there.
If you want to cut your grocery bill, eat less meat. Meat is more expensive than grains and produce.
If that’s too much of a sacrifice, try grocery shopping either really early in the morning or super late at night.
A lot of stores will drastically mark down meat that is close to it’s shelf life. Snatch it up at a deep discount and store it in your freezer. My local store always discounts meat early in the morning so if I get there before 9am, I can always score a few packages of beef or chicken at a deep discount.
Get your hair cut at a cosmetology school
Most cosmetology schools offer services to the public. This is a way for their advanced students to gain real world experience. Normally, the students working for the public have already completed their training and just need a certain number of hours of practical experience before they can graduate.
This means deep savings for you. You can get a quality haircut, color, extensions, whatever, for a fraction of the cost.
If you’re still nervous about letting a student near your hair, rest assured. The students are always overseen by instructors. So if something isn’t going right, there is someone more experienced to step in if needed.
Double check store apps
Before you head out the door, make sure to double-check stores sales on the internet. Knowing what internet sales are going on will help you save money in the store.
Also, download store apps for stores you shop at often. Many will have unadvertised sales on the app. Physical stores aren’t the best at updating pricing and sales. If you are armed with the internet price, you will undoubtedly save money.
If you’ve got the app, or have the internet price pulled up on your phone, you can potentially save some serious dough.
Use competitor prices
Many stores will price match if another store has the same product for a lower price. Even if the store doesn’t advertise that they match prices, it’s still worth asking if they will.
Walmart and Best Buy advertise that they price match. Best Buy will even match prices on Amazon. My husband and I bought a small flat screen for our bedroom from Best Buy. We found the same TV on Amazon for about $25 less. Our local Best Buy price matched the Amazon price and we were able to take home our new TV that day.
Don’t go to the grocery store so often
Your fridge may look empty but are you really out of food?
Try to cut down on going to the grocery store so often. There’s always something tempting at the store, or you pick up an extra item “just in case.” These little purchases add up.
If you limit your trips to the store, you’ll cut down on buying frivolous items.
Force yourself to use everything you already have. Get creative with rice, beans, canned goods- you know the stuff that gets shoved to the back of the pantry.
Buy gifts with discounted gift cards
It may seem counterproductive to buy gift cards when you don’t “need” them but hear me out.
You know you will need to buy gifts throughout the year. Holidays, birthdays, anniversaries – they keep coming whether you’ve got the money or not.
Instead of freaking out whenever one of these occasions arises, be proactive and buy gift cards when they are on sale!
Raise.com always sells discounted gift cards but they also have sales where you can get even more savings.
Buy the gift cards when they are on sale and use them throughout the year as gifts or use them to buy gifts. Doing it this way will save you from having to shell out money you don’t have at the last minute.
Going out doesn’t have to break the bank
Saving money doesn’t have to mean living like a hermit. You can still go out every once in a while, just make sure you’re doing it smartly.
Always check for specials through Groupon. It’s a great way to snag specials and local restaurants, spas, and entertainment.
Many restaurants offer 2 for 1 nights. These are usually on weeknights. Our local Italian restaurant has a deal on Wednesdays where you get two entrees and an appetizer for $21.00. That’s a pretty cheap date-night if you ask me.
Also, check local listings for nights where kids eat free. Usually a simple google search will pull up local specials. You can also check out websites like mykidseatfree.com.
Another great way to go out but still save money is to go to food trucks. Our city hosts numerous events where there is a “food truck rodeo.” Essentially, all the food trucks in the area congregate around one spot. It’s a great way to try a lot of different foods and the prices are really reasonable. Plus you get to spend some time outdoors and take in the atmosphere of the city.
Use a price comparison tool
If you want to save time and money, check out online price comparison tools. These work as search engine extensions and alert you when there is a lower price on the same item.
InvisibleHand is a web browser add-on. You won’t see this tool until it finds a deal for an item you are shopping for. Since the prices are in real-time, you get the most current and accurate price. It shows a discreet notification when there are lower prices available on the product, flight, hotel or rental car you’re shopping for. It gives you a link directly to the lowest price.
PriceGrabber is another web browser add-on. Whether you know what you want or are simply browsing, you can save money with this price comparison search site. You can be as specific as typing in “iPhone 6” and get a list of price comparisons for that model at different online retailers or you can be as general as “iPhones” and it will bring up a list of all the iPhones available and the prices. If you decide to go with the general search and you find something specific you like within that search, you can click on “Compare Now” to get a list of retailers that sell it and compare the prices.
Replace paper with cloth
Using paper goods may be convenient but it can get expensive. Think about how much a pack of paper towels cost. If you get the good ones, you’re spending at least ten dollars for an eight pack. To save money, replace the paper towels with sponges and rags.
Use spray disinfectant and a rag instead of disposable disinfecting wipes. Use your old bath towels and baby burp clothes as rags. Just throw them in the washing machine after a few uses. Clean sponges by putting damp ones into the microwave for a minute.
Take Advantage of the Sharing Economy
The “sharing economy” is just a buzzword for what people have been doing since the beginning of time, sharing.
The easiest way to do this is to barter with friends. You could offer to babysit in exchange for home repairs for example. Craigslist even has a barter section where people are willing to trade goods and services.
If you travel a lot, try Airbnb. People who have an extra room can offer it to guests for a cheaper rate, usually more than half off what you would pay for a hotel. I’ve used Airbnb a couple of times and have been happy with the results. And for other travel needs always use a site like Priceline to get the lowest price and save money on travel.
Make sure to keep track of the money you save. Put it into your emergency fund or rainy-day fund. You will stay motivated when you can actually see your savings increase.
What weird money savings tips do you use? Let us know in the comments below.
Don’t Forget: You can make extra money too!
- Take Surveys for cash and gift cards at Swagbucks. They have one of the highest payouts, making it easy to earn extra money each month.
- Start your own blog! Blogging is a great, long-term way to make extra money in order to bump up your savings. Check out my tutorial here.
- Earn Amazon giftcards by using Swagbucks. It’s free and super easy.
- Don’t forget to use Ebates every time you shop online. You’ll earn cashback for stuff you were going to buy anyway.