10 Financial Challenges and Saving Solutions

Was there ever a time when any one of us turned our backs on a bargain? Probably not. But today there’s even more reason to hang on to your dollars. The U.S. economy is cooling down, according to the Federal Reserve Board. At the same time, Americans are piling up more credit-card debt than ever before, and our savings rate is negative, the first time since the Great Depression.

So we’ve rounded up ten financial challenges, and come up with solutions to help you keep more of your money.

1. That SUV of yours seemed like a good idea at the time, but now you’re paying way too much to fill ‘er up.

Solution: First, look for the cheapest gas prices in your area before you head for the pump — they may vary by as much as 20 percent within a few blocks and can change frequently. Gasbuddy.com collects price information for the U.S. and Canada from 173 websites. Gaspricewatch.com collects prices on 128,000 gas stations from 123,000 volunteer spotters.

Be careful about how you use debit and credit cards to pay for the gas. Sure, gas company credit cards offer rebates on gas, usually from one to five percent. But they often carry high annual percentage rates and limit you to a particular brand of gas. Some even offer teaser rebates of up to ten percent, which may be available for only 30 days. A better choice is a general-purpose credit card, with rebates wherever you buy gas.

Avoid using your debit card. When you buy gas on a debit card, your bank “locks up” as much as $100 for as long as several days or until the station owner processes the transactions. If your bank account is running low, you may bounce a check or two.

An easy way to save on gas? Properly inflated tires. Check them weekly and shave up to 9 cents off a $3 gallon.

2. You stop at the supermarket a few times a week to pick up something for dinner, tossing in pricey items as you go.

Solution: Order groceries and staples online and get them delivered to your door. E-grocery stores became one of the biggest disasters in the dotcom debacle a few years back. But a handful of them are beginning to resurface, with more sure to follow.

Some sites are still regional, but amazon.com announced the nationwide opening of its grocery store this summer, with 14,000 nonperishable items, some hard to find and many discounted. Amazon offers free shipping on orders over $25.
To see which e-grocer operates in your neck of the woods, check out safeway.com, peapod.com, freshdirect.com and netgrocer.com.

1 2 3 4 5

Become more interesting every week!

Get our Read Up newsletter

how we use your e-mail

Some people like to travel by train because 
it combines the slowness of a car with the cramped public exposure of 
an airplane.

Dennis Miller

I think my pilot was a little inexperienced. We were sitting on the runway, and he said, “OK, folks, we’re gonna be taking off in a just few—whoa! Here we go.”

Kevin Nealon

“I can’t wait until your vacation is over.” 
—Everyone following you on Instagram


A man knocked on my door and asked for a donation toward the local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.

Comedian Greg Davies

Funny Jokes

Just found the worst page in the entire dictionary. What I saw was disgraceful, disgusting, dishonest, and disingenuous.


Funny Jokes

Client: We need you to log in to the YouTube and make all our company videos viral.

From clientsfromhell.net

Funny Jokes

My cat just walked up to the paper shredder and said, “Teach me 
everything you know.”


Funny Jokes

“Just because you can’t dance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dance.” 

@yoyoha (Josh Hara)

Funny Jokes

My parents didn’t want to move to Florida, but they turned 60 and that’s the law.

—Jerry Seinfeld

Funny Jokes

Q: What do you call an Amish guy with his hand in a horse’s mouth?

A: A mechanic.