50 Ways to Get Great Deals on Anything
These tips will help you save money on everything from gas to groceries.
Big-ticket items like DSLR cameras can cost you a pretty penny—unless you time your purchase exactly right. David Pogue, a Yahoo tech columnist, recommends waiting to shop for cameras until Presidents’ Day weekend. “New models usually debut in February, so you can count on big discounts on last year’s models on Presidents’ Day weekend,” he writes in his book Pogue’s Basics: Money. Find out the 19 must-have items that will save you time and money in the long run.
Sites like RueLaLa.com and Hautelook.com offer pop-up sales on popular beauty brands, from Urban Decay to M.A.C. To save even more, try shopping at Glambot.com, an online beauty store that buys and resells gently used makeup products. Just steer clear of the beauty products you should never waste money on.
Before you shell out hundreds of dollars for glasses at an optometrist’s office, check out GlassesUSA. Not only do they offer name-brand eyeglasses for half the price, but they also sell their own frames for as low as $20. And with over 1,500 types of frames, you will have no shortage of options.
Opt for Kirkland toilet paper at Costco; it will give you the most bang for your buck, according to research by Krazy Coupon Lady. After comparing over 15 different types of toilet paper, they found that the Kirkland brand costs just one-third of the price of name-brand TP. Don’t miss more things you should buy at Costco.
Whether you need deodorant or Band-Aids, you can save big through rewards programs at CVS and Walgreens. As a rewards member at CVS, you will be eligible for in-store discounts and receive various coupons after every transaction. Walgreens allows you to earn points for up to $5 off any future purchase.
Looking to give your house a new paint job? Head to Home Depot over a long holiday weekend, such as Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, or Labor Day. They slash the prices of one-gallon and five-gallon paint buckets by $5 to $25 on these major holidays. You’ll want to memorize these 17 habits of people who are great at saving money, too.
Don’t be fooled by sky-high hotel prices. Hotels track your browsing habits and ability to pay in order to determine what they will charge you, so you’re not always getting the best price. To stay anonymous while you shop, make sure to clear your search history or download an incognito browsing app.
Instead of selling your old jeans for pennies at your next yard sale, bring them to any Madewell location and receive $20 towards a new pair. Madewell’s Blue Jeans Go Green recycling program will turn those “pre-loved” pants into housing insulation for low-income communities. It’s a win-win: Your denim goes to a good cause, and you get a great deal on your next pair.
Engagement ring sales peak in December, according to a report by the International Diamond Exchange. Because fewer people are shopping for rings between June and August, summer is the best time to nab a deal. Even if you won’t pop the question for a few months, it pays to plan ahead—literally.
Video streaming services
Believe it or not, you might get a discount just for canceling your streaming service. Try signing up for a free trial on Netflix, Hulu Plus, or Amazon Prime, and then hitting the “cancel” button once the trial is up. Odds are, you will be offered a discounted subscription or additional free trial on the spot, Lifehacker reports.
Many stores have secret price codes that tell you when and how much an item will be discounted. At Home Depot, for example, a price ending in .06 means that the hardware will be discounted in six weeks. Snag any hardware with a price that ends in .03, since that is probably the best deal you can get. Check out these insider secrets to help you save at all of your favorite stores.
To make room for new luggage styles, retailers usually mark down last year’s suitcases in March. That makes it the perfect opportunity to swipe an affordable carry-on. But March is not the only time of year to get luggage on the cheap. “In August, another round of price cuts settles in, since people are pretty much finished with their summer travels,” Pogue writes.
At FreeShipping.org, you can find free-shipping coupon codes for more than 4,000 stores, including Best Buy, Target, and American Eagle. And the savings don’t stop there; the site also alerts you when your favorite brands are having a sale. Read up on these savvy shopping tricks you’ll wish you knew all along.
Shop at Discount Beauty Center to get premium hair products on the cheap. You can find everything from shampoo to hair dye to curling irons for just a fraction of the original cost. Fabulous hair doesn’t have to break the bank; try these inexpensive beauty tricks only makeup artists know.
There is no better time to stock up on affordable hand soap than during the Bath and Body Works Semi-Annual sale, according to the Krazy Coupon Lady. Each January and July, Bath and Body Works discounts their hand soap to just $2.25 a pop. Pro tip: You can also combine coupons in one transaction to get the soap for even less.
Shorts and sandals weather may be behind you, but there is one plus side. Starting in August, you can snag swimsuits at a major discount. There could be another round of sales in October, Pogue says, so take advantage of the slow season before your next spring break trip.
Donate six empty M.A.C. makeup containers to any M.A.C. store, and they will give you one lipstick of your choice for free. The Back-to-M.A.C. program recycles empty packaging for any of their branded “primary packaging,” including Paint Pots, Fix+, Lipglass, and Pigment jars. It’s a great way to help the environment—not to mention you get a freebie.
The furniture industry runs on a biannual basis, according to NerdWallet. That said, you can expect the steepest discounts on furniture right before new styles arrive in retail stores. Watch out for home furniture sales around January/February and August/September to get the best deals. These 12 easy home upgrades add serious value to your home.
Those holiday mattress sales are no scam. In fact, long weekends like Labor Day and Memorial Day are a great time to invest in a discounted mattress, according to Pogue. “The entire industry blows out last year’s models over Memorial Day, so watch for crazy sales in May,” he writes.
Load up on bath towels during a JCPenney sale to save serious cash. When you combine the sale price with coupons for $10 off a $25 purchase or $20 off a $50 purchase, you can get towels for as low as $3.99 each, Krazy Coupon Lady reports.
You will find the most reasonably priced gowns during the winter months. “Nobody’s buying wedding stuff in November and December,” Pogue writes, “so that’s when the bridal shops mark down their wares to make room for the new year’s designs.” Here are more things you should never pay full price for.
Try Boxed, a handy app for iPhone and Android. You can get discounted cereal, applesauce, peanut butter, body wash—you name it—shipped in bulk to your home for free. And unlike some warehouse services, there’s no membership fee.
So you want to hit the road—without going broke. Luckily, there’s an app for that. GasBuddy and SmartFuel (iOS) let you compare prices of nearby gas stations, and estimate how much a trip will cost. Plus, this amazing app will save you tons of money on tolls. Your wallet will thank you, guaranteed.
Visit your theater chain’s corporate website to see if tickets are available in bulk. Regal Cinemas, for example, allows customers to buy Premiere Tickets for $9 a pop, good for movie releases nationwide (even brand-new ones). In certain areas, that can amount to almost a 50 percent discount. The one downside: Because you’re buying in bulk, the total price can be high, so ask friends to split the cost with you.
No need to pay an arm and a leg to scalpers. Goldstar.com helps members find half-price tickets to events, members-only complimentary tickets, and personalized event recommendations. Sign-up is free. For more events, try SeatGeek. It consolidates information from online ticket sellers for professional sports like racing and fights, concerts, theater performances—basically anything you can think of. It also lets you search by venue or city and find a seat with the best sight lines.
Visit Gift Card Granny, which collects deals on gift cards, to nab, say, a $100 Applebee’s card for $86. Cardpool.com, Raise.com, and Cardcash.com offer similar perks. You can also offload your own unwanted gift cards for a little extra cash. Here are more easy ways to earn money fast.
Look for secondhand steals on the Poshmark app. You’ll be able to find a range of designers and sell your stuff as well to make an extra buck or two. Make sure you avoid the 32 invisible ways stores trick you into spending more.
Subscribe to bookbub.com to browse significantly discounted and free digital books from a variety of publishers that work with all major e-readers. Sign up for a library card at your local library to access their database of free e-books. Here are more ways to read books online for free.
Airfares are often at their cheapest about 54 days before a trip, and Tuesdays and Wednesdays are usually the best days to buy tickets and travel. You can also dig for deals online. Try airfarewatchdog.com, which tells you when low rates become available, then compare prices at kayak.com. (By the way, this simple trick could cut your airfare prices in half.)
Try a refurbished unit. Many manufacturers—Dell, HP, Sony, etc.—sell discounted used goods online. For more deals, go to rakuten.com, which sells discounted electronics, with great buys on everything from camera equipment to computers. But buyer beware: these are the tech gadgets you should never buy secondhand.
Visit getinvisiblehand.com to install the Invisible Hand extension on your computer. Whenever you’re shopping online, it’ll automatically search alternatives and notify you at the top of your browser window if there’s a better deal elsewhere. Or go to camelcamelcamel.com, where you can search for any Amazon item and track its price history.
On its own, the Key Ring app can’t save you money, but the convenience it offers should. It keeps all your rewards cards for various outlets stored so you won’t have to carry all that plastic in your wallet or on your key chain. No more forgetting cards means no more missing deals.
Students can get deals that others would miss, such as free Amazon Prime for six months (followed by 50 percent off a membership), unlimited Washington Post digital access, and discounts from many popular clothes shops. On the other hand, here are the things senior citizens get for free or discounted.
For starters, bring in your own cup for a discount. Resourceful types can save on iced lattes by ordering a double shot of espresso over ice and filling the cup with milk from the bar. If you buy ground Starbucks coffee at grocery stores, check for a code on the bag and enter it to your Starbucks account online to earn free refills or drinks. These are some other things Starbucks employees won’t tell you.
Groupon offers significant discounts on work such as teeth whitening, root canals, and crowns. Investigate a dental price club or discount plan at dentalplans.com, which can help if you anticipate work that goes beyond the scope of the twice-yearly checkups many insurers cover. You pay a yearly fee—up to a couple of hundred dollars—then the plan’s discounted rate per visit.
Check prices online. Sites like cars.com allow you to search in your zip code with a variety of criteria to get a great deal—or at least have a bargaining chip when it comes to squaring off with a dealer. Now that you’ve got the car, make sure you’re not making one of these 7 expensive car maintenance mistakes.
Head over to renttherunway.com, where you can rent designer gowns for reasonable prices—you can even rent two sizes at once, for no additional charge.
No gym? No problem. Download the free Nike Training Club app to access training videos, from aerobics to weightlifting. These are the 4 times to save (and 3 times to splurge) on your fitness routine.
Phone bills when abroad
Use WhatsApp to text with friends when you (or they) are out of the country. It sends your messages over your phone’s Internet connection, so you can avoid running up your phone bill when sending texts internationally. Next, here are 56 almost effortless ways to save money.