Read these 66 Shopping Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Thrifty tips and hundreds of other topics.
Go to http://kellogg.marketlocator.com/kelloggs/us/kelloggpromotion.nsf/webmailin/ to see the Kellogg's promotions that are still active. Go to the promotion that you're interested in, and you'll be linked to a page that will give you a brief description of the program, as well as, how to participate. NOTE: Kellogg's often offers promotions that don't require the CRT, just the completed form and required UPCs. These are hard to come by these days, so enjoy them while they last!
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If you go to yard sales/garage sales when it's raining, you'll have a better chance of getting a better deal. Most people won't go to one of these sales when it's raining, and the people that are holding the sale know that too. Therefore, you have much more room to bargain.
Try finding a store to shop at that has perks. For instance, a store that doubles/triples coupons, accepts competitors coupons, has a loyalty card, etc. Of course, if this store is more expensive than others, it's probably not worth it. You need to decide for yourself.
In the stores that you normally shop at, you should become familiar with the reduced rack. This is the section in the store where they sell things at a reduced price because of dented cans, crushed boxes, outdated bakery goods and bruised produce. You may want to check the item carefully to make sure that it is not too damaged for your tastes.
Sometimes we're lucky and get forms in the Sunday paper or in magazines, but most of the time, you find them in stores. The types of stores to look in are grocery, drug, hardware, convenience, liquor, department stores, etc. If forms aren't displayed, please ask a clerk where you can locate them. Most are kept at customer service or at the registers.
Sign up today for The Clean Home Journal™ and you'll receive their e-journal that includes special offers, timesaving tips, and new product information. They also have short surveys, on occassion, that you fill out and get a bag of goodies from a lot of their partners! "The Clean Home Journal™ is sponsored by household products you know and trust—products like Glade®, Pledge®, Scrubbing Bubbles®, Shout®, Windex®, Ziploc®, and many others." http://chj.scjbrands.com/
Save all of the UPC codes that you get from products that you know will have a refund in the future. If you're not sure if the product will be part of a future refund, save the UPC code to be on the safe side. You will want to find a way to organize your UPC codes so that when you need them for a refund, you will be able to find the correct UPC code quickly. If you have a UPC code and you don't know what it's for, go to www.upcdatabase.com and look it up.
Before you file your forms, qualifiers and receipts, you might want to do a few things that will help you in the long run. For instance, you should always write on the back of a qualifier what the qualifier is for. People usually highlight the expiration date on forms before they file them. Some people highlight the shopping date on the receipt so that it's easier to find the right receipt later. These are some ideas to help you get started. You might find a different way to do this afterwards, and that's fine. Do whatever works for you.
If the website that you are on is not a well-known one, it would be wise to make sure that they are giving you secure online purchasing. Each website is different, but some standard clues are: if there is a lock on the bottom left of the screen; there is a graphic from VeriSign somewhere on the site that says that it's a secure site. If you don't see these, and can't seem to find out if the website is secure, you might just want to forget about using that site, and trying one that you've heard of before, such as Amazon, eBay, Barnes and Noble, Sears, etc.
When you are purchasing an item that will be used in a rebate, you should get a separate receipt for that particular item. This is handy because most refund offers require you to have the original cash register receipt. This way, if a refund comes up for an item that you purchased separately, you will have an original cash register receipt for that refund.
Before going to yard/garage sales, make sure that you know your stuff. There are plenty of sites on the internet that you can go to for information on different items. If you know your stuff, you will be better equipped at knowing a real bargain, as well as giving you leverage in trying to negotiate a price.
There are many different types of trains, as well as many different ways that they operate. The idea is that the person that wants to start the train collects names and addresses of those that want to join. Once there are enough names, the person makes a list of everyone and then puts a certain amount of coupons in an envelope with the list, and sends it to the next person on the list. That person then takes the coupons that he/she wants, and then puts back the same amount of her/his own coupons, so that there is always the same amount of coupons in the envelope. Then it gets passed on to the next person on the list, and continues on like that. I'm going to be starting a coupon train, and if any of you are interested in joining, please e-mail me at ThriftyGuru@Lifetips.com with your name and address.
At some grocery stores you may have noticed those red, plastic machines that blink constantly. If you've never looked at them, you're missing out, because they have coupons in them that are free to take. If you want more than one, you'll have to wait to pull one out at a time. The only downfall to these coupons is that most of them aren't allowed to be doubled or tripled.
Gather family, friends and neighbors that want to save money buying in bulk. Find out what the group wants to save money on, and make a list of items to buy. This could save on wholesale club memberships as well, because not everyone would need a membership card to participate in the club. Find a way to work this club so that everyone benefits from it.
Go to www.g-sale.com today, because it's an easy way to post your ad on the internet - FREE! Here you can list garage sales, yard sales or moving sales. You determine how long your ad will be displayed. Looking for a garage sale near you? Enter the name of your city or state in the search engine text box and click submit.
Check out the Flea Market Guide website to find a local flea market. The website states that they try to make sure that all of the information is correct, but can't guarantee it. So to be safe, you might want to call the place first. http://www.fleamarketguide.com/
When shopping online, make sure that you get an online receipt of your purchase. Some websites will e-mail you a receipt, while others will tell you at the end of the order to print this page for your records, other websites won't tell you anything. So if you're not sure if the site will remind you to print a page or that you'll get an e-mail receipt, it would be wise to print the screen that shows your ordering information. Retailers can make mistakes offline and online, so it's better to be safe than sorry, and have a receipt.
If you are going to buy an item, don't just grab for the one in the front. Sometimes, if you move things around, you'll find items that have hang-tags on them or offers printed directly on the item. These can save you even more money, especially if the other item is one that you normally purchase.
Here are some phrases that might help you get more people to your yard/garage sale: "More Than 500 Items.", "Exceptional Antiques.", "Everything Must Go.", "Four-House Sale.", "Three Generation Sale.", "Children's Toys, Clothes and Games." Also, if you are going to be selling new, or almost new items, those should be mentioned as well.
Make sure you don't clip off the expiration date on your manufacturer's coupon. Many stores who do not accept expired coupons will not accept a coupon unless the expiration date is in sight. Please note that on some manufacturer's coupons, the expiration date is also noted in the same section of the coupon that tells the store where to send the coupon to.
Before you mail out a refund offer, it's wise to read and re-read the form a couple of times to make sure that you have followed the directions 100%. If you haven't you will receive your refund back, with a note explaining why they're sending it back to you, as well as how long you have to re-send the correct information.
Before you get started refunding, you should develop a filing system for forms, qualifiers and receipts. There are many different ways to do this, so start off by thinking what you think would work best for you and then start. You can always change your system afterwards.
When shopping online, it is wise to use only one credit card for that purpose. This would be so that if someone should hack into your computer and get your credit card information, that they would only be getting one of your credit card numbers, instead of all of them. It would also be wise to make sure that the credit card you choose has good coverage for internet fraud.
It is safe to say that when you're shopping online you can trust the retailers that you know. For instance, most people have heard of Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Sears, etc., so there should be no concern when shopping online. Be cautious of retailers that you've never heard of, like Joe's Bar and Grille, or Pete's Bike Shop, etc.
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|Sheri Ann Richerson|