47 Simple Ways To Waste Money

by Paul Michael on 24 June 2009 80 comments
Photo: Purpleslog
How are you doing with your money? Do you have everything under control, or are you spending a little more than you should? Well, if you'd like to blow even more of your money, this list will help you empty your bank account in half the time you usually do. Enjoy. 
 
  1. Gamble in Vegas. Sure, some people get lucky. But most of us blow a wad and leave feeling like reckless morons. 
  1. Spend your spare time surfing the bargain sites. It doesn’t matter if you don’t actually need anything, you’ll find something to buy. 
  1. Shop hungry. It’s amazing how much extra food you’ll throw in your cart. 
  1. Draw more money out of the ATM than you need. If you get $20, you’ll spend $20. If you get $40, it will disappear just as quickly. 
  1. Become an impulse buyer. See something in a shop window…grab it immediately and worry about the cost later. 
  1. Pay bills late. That will eat up some serious cash in the form of late fees, interest rate hikes and, sometimes, damaging your credit rating. 
  1. Lend money to people you know won’t pay you back, even when they say it will be different this time. 
  1. Don’t shop around. The first place you look is almost certainly not the best price available. 
  1. Don’t buy online. Those high-street retailers have lots of extra overheads, and they pass them on to you by marking up products. 
  1. Go to a state fair or carnival and buy lunch from a concession stand for your family. $8 for a hot dog, $4 for a can of coke. Multiply by number of family members. 
  1. Feed $1 bills into those crane machines that tempt you with large stuffed animals. You may get lucky…but only after you’ve paid twice what the crappy toy is worth. 
  1. Buy complete albums instead of cherry-picking the songs you want from a music download site. (Unless, of course, you always buy albums that are 100% brilliant from beginning to end). 
  1. Never double-check your measurements on a DIY project. You’ll make at least one big mistake and have to buy another round of materials. 
  1. Forget to take back movie rentals on time. Red Box may only be a buck a night, but rent two and leave them behind the sofa, and that can add up quickly. 
  1. That goes for library books, or any other type of rental that fines tardiness. 
  1. Buy food, throw it in the back of the fridge or in the “vegetable crisper” and forget about it. Then, a few weeks later, you can throw it away. Cash in the trash. 
  1. Become completely disorganized and forgetful. You have no idea how quickly you’ll spend money if you are buying things that you already have, or can’t find the library books that were due back three months ago. 
  1. Ignore special offers and coupons. Why pay $3 for an item when you can just as easily pay $5? 
  1. Take your car in for an oil change and proceed to get every single “recommended” repair. I just took my car in for an oil change, they wanted to change all four brake pads. Little did they know my car has a warning light that tells me when my brake pads need replacing; I also have a mechanic for a father-in-law. 
  1. And speaking of oil changes, get yours done every 3000 miles. True, modern engines and synthetic oils mean most vehicles can do 5000-7000 miles between changes, but so what. 
  1. Use credit cards without paying off the balance in full each month. You will rack up some delicious interest rates. And if it’s an APR, look for increasing fees as time goes on. 
  1. Fly First Class. You’ll get to your destination at the same time as the folks a few rows behind you, but you’ll pay substantially more for some legroom and a nicer meal. 
  1. Never read a contract. Ever. You will later be taken by surprise with all sorts of fees and penalties. And legally, you signed on the dotted line so you’re obligated to pay them all…or in some cases, like a secured loan, lose your house. 
  1. Buy an extended warranty, especially on a car. Most of the time, you’ll be paying a huge percentage of the cost of the item and when it comes time to make a claim you’ll be battling with legal eagles who will do anything to make sure you don’t get any money. 
  1. Don’t take advantage of your company’s 401k match; because another great way to waste money is to decline free money. 
  1. Buy a monthly gym membership, work out once, then sit at home for the next year and watch TV. 
  1. Buy in bulk on stuff you’ll never be able to use or consume before the sell-by-date. 
  1.  Smoke. If you go through one pack per day, you’ll literally burn over $2000 per year. 

    t the perfectly functional coffee machine at home, drive to work and pick up a grande half-caf-double-mocha-vanilla-chai-peppermint cream coffee from Starbucks or any other “premium” coffee chain. That’s an easy way to blow up to $5 on something that should only cost you pennies. 

    1. Buy books, DVDs and CDs at bookstores like Borders and Barnes & Noble. Last time I checked, the regular price for a new DVD averaged $25 - $30 in one of these stores. Even when they’re on sale, they’re more expensive than the same copy at Target. 
    1. Throw away your leftovers. Whether they’re from a home-cooked meal or from dining out, just put them in the fridge covered in cling-wrap and then pop them in the garbage a week later. 
    1. Buy bottled water. It’s dollars for a bottle, pennies from the faucet. And let’s not forget the environment costs of bottled water either. 
    1. Use 411 instead of 1-800-GOOG411. The first costs you a hefty fee each time you dial, the second is free. Both offer the same service. 
    1. Buy the high-octane gas. Modern computer-controlled cars will alter ignition and timing profiles to allow the use of low-grade gas, but why bother taking advantage of that? 
    1. Purchase bags of “baby carrots.” In actuality, they’re large carrots shaped into smaller, bite-sized pieces, but you’re way too busy to cut carrots to size. 
    1. Don’t take the time to read street signs. I got myself a lovely $25 parking ticket recently because I thought the road was meter-free. It wasn’t. The meters had been replaced by one parking fee booth about 20ft down the road.   
    1. Oh, and why not speed as well? You’ll get a big fine and a few points on your license just to get somewhere a few minutes quicker. 
    1. Rent from Blockbuster instead of RedBox. $4 versus $1 per night. And remember never to return it so you get charged a big fat fee to keep the disc. 
    1. Never monitor your bank account(s). That way, you can occasionally go overdrawn and get charged a lovely big fee. 
    1. Don’t take care of your teeth, and avoid dental check-ups and cleanings. You’ll save a little money at first, but worry not…the dentist’s fees will come pouring in when your mouth looks and smells like the inside of a garbage dump. 
    1. Don’t haggle. Whether it’s a small bag of apples at a farmer’s market or the purchase of a new home, just accept the first price and call it good. 
    1. Play the lottery. Sure, there’s a  roughly 1 in 120,000,000 chance you could bag the jackpot, but it’s a slim chance. Even the odds of winning just a lousy $10 are about 1 in 35. Imagine closing your eyes and picking one white ball out of a bag containing 34 red balls…yep, doubtful. 
    1. Never question a dubious charge or bill. If in doubt, let the restaurant, grocery store, cable company, phone company or any other mega-corporation keep the money. They need it for all the lawsuits. 
    1. Buy brand-name everything. Yes, many of the store-brand products are repackaged brand-names at lower prices, but why pay less? 
    1. Buy a new car. It loses about 20% of its value the second you drive it off the lot. 
    1. Don’t turn off the lights or appliances. Keep them all going, even when you’re out of the house. That should push your electricity bill way up. 
    1. Don’t read Wise Bread. But as you’re reading this, maybe you will end up savings some money today. Don’t worry, follow the rest of the advice here and you can soon spend way more than you need to.  
    4.5
    Average: 4.5 (2 votes)
    Your rating: None
    ShareThis

    comments

    80 discussions

    Add New Comment

    CAPTCHA
    This test helps prevent automated spam submissions.
    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Why isn't "buying music" a waste? The radio waves carry music, the internet archive has public mp3s, the library has CDs.

    Paul Michael's picture

    IN some instances I agree, but I do like to support up and coming artists and also groups that I feel deserve it. I paid for the In Rainbows album, and I pay for legal downloads. There is a difference between saving and stealing.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    I ride a bike to work everyday. The only gas I worry about is from last night's chili.

    Guest's picture
    Wiseass!

    "Imagine closing your eyes and picking one red ball out of a bag of 34 red balls…yep, doubtful."

    Actually picking one red ball out of a bag of 34 red balls is pretty easy, I'd say.

    Paul Michael's picture

    That should have been white and red. I will change. Wow, I need a cup of coffee!

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Wow, that was snarky, cynical, AND preachy. One "tip" you might also reconsider is not using premium fuel in cars designed for it.

    You have to understand what's going on to understand why this is a bad idea. These systems use a knock sensor to adapt ignition timing. When low octane gas pre-detonates (a damaging event for an engine, by the way), the computer adjusts the ignition timing to prevent this from happening again.

    This is good, right? Kind of. You won't get detonation AFTER this, but you will already have suffered the destructive effects of detonation until the engine adjusts, and when the engine DOES adjust, it will reduce the power the engine can produce. The worse the knock, the more severe the adjustment.

    Most engines that require high octane gas are high performance engines. By putting low grade gas in your high performance engine, you are potentially reducing its performance. Why buy an expensive engine and then hamstring it into performing like a lower-performance engine by forcing it to "turn down the power"?

    Worse still, if your engine doesn't adjust its behavior properly for whatever reason (it doesn't adapt, the knock sensor is broken, etc), you could damage your engine.

    This tip really IS a great way to waste money!

    Guest's picture
    Marc

    Why 47?

    Guest's picture
    Kevin W

    I agree with Guest @4, using regular fuel in a car that requires premium is a false economy and ill-advised. The functionality to retard timing under knock conditions is intended to be a temporary disaster-avoidance measure. Every time the engine knocks it puts harsh wear on reciprocating parts. If they fail the engine will be a total loss, which is much more expensive than using the correct grade of gas.

    Without getting into the technical details, a premium-fuel engine converts gasoline into mechanical energy more efficiently when it is running normally on premium fuel, than it does in knock-avoidance mode on regular fuel. Running a premium-fuel engine on regular degrades fuel economy. People have tracked their economy in both modes and generally find that they spend more dollars on regular fuel due to decreased efficiency.

    If you are opposed to buying premium fuel, you will be much better off buying a car that is designed for regular fuel in the first place.

    Guest's picture
    GenuineNerd

    Back when cars still had carburetors, and before cars became equipped with computerized gizmos, using premium gasoline in an older carburetor-equipped car did help mileage and performance...usually older cars would "diesel" or run-on after the key is shut off, if low-octane fuel is used, the engine is out of tune, and the engine itself is carboned up. Tune ups on older cars consisted of replacing spark plugs, points, condenser, adjusting the ignition timing, etc...now a tune-up on a modern car pretty much consists of replacing the spark plugs after so many miles. Cars were simpler back then, but they needed much more maintenance and repairs as well. And back then, oil companies were heavily promoting premium fuels, mainly because cars back then needed more octane as they got older. (Remember, gasoline was a lot cheaper back then as well...regular would be around 30 cents per gallon while premium was 32 cents.) Today, unless your car really needs it, buying premium is a waste of money.

    Guest's picture
    that guy

    Use the octane your vehicle manufactured recommends.
    They have no interest in selling you better gas then you need.
    In fact I chose Toyota over Nissan because Nissan recommends 93 and Toyota lists 87.

    The negative angle your employing to get your point across comes off as confused and condescending.

    Coffee first, writing after.

    Guest's picture
    Erebus.Of.Light

    8$ for a hot dog? 4$ for a can of coke? exaggeration anyone?

    Guest's picture
    Lucia

    I know it sounds completely ridiculous, but on the West coast, if you go to a fair or a sporting event, hot dogs cost $8. I'm from the midwest and wouldn't have believed it if I didn't see it with my own eyes!

    Guest's picture
    GenuineNerd

    I agree...County/state fair and carnival food is overpriced...you'd be better off bringing in food from a fast food joint before paying your admission. But then again, where else can you get corn dogs, deep fried veggies/onion rings/blooming onions, funnel cakes, cotton candy, fried Snickers/Twinkies, etc.? Besides, the sanitary procedures regarding handling food coming from these trailers can be variable as well...it depends on the vendor and/or the health department where the fair/carnival is located.

    Linsey Knerl's picture

    Here in Nebraska, it is no more than $2.50 = $3 for a corn dog at the carnival.  Apparently, however, the Orange County Fair charges $8 for their corn dogs..

    http://vegasandfood.blogspot.com/2009/04/hot-dog-on-stick-corn-dog.html

    Perhaps there is a price difference between regular dogs and corn dogs, but I think the purpose of Paul's article remains clear.   :)

    Linsey Knerl

    Guest's picture

    We could all add to the list, and here are my additions:

    Shopping at "sales"--a clever technique designed to get you to buy stuff you ordinarily wouldn't and might not even need.

    Spending the money you "saved" by buying on sale to buy more stuff you oridnarily wouldn't and might not even need.

    Buying processed food, ie, a bag of salad greens (mostly various types of lettuce) for $3.99 when you can buy a head of lettuce for $1.49. For the $2.50 saved, I'll gladly take an extra 2 minutes and chop my own lettuce.

    Buying TV dinners or microwave meals. You may as well go out for fast food, it's no more expensive and at least it's fresh.

    Paying $3-$5 for candy at movie theaters. The very same packages of candy are available at a grocery store or chain pharmacy for $1!

    This is FUN!

    Guest's picture
    Guest Jane

    yes sales are bad, but if you see a item that you like wait for a sale. why pay 20 bucks for a toaster when you wait for a weekend sale and get 20% off. knowing what you need and want, find them, wait till they are on sale and get them, he did write not to impluse buy

    also frozen meals can be cheaper then fast food. I live in canada and a meal of fast food cost about 6 bucks with out a drink. the frozen meals i buy are on sale at safeway for 3 for 6 bucks and it is about the same amount of food.

    and yeah never buy candy from the movies. You can sneak it in.

    Guest's picture
    Joe

    I take issue with #45.

    You could just as easily say it is wasteful to buy new clothes, new furniture, new computers, new TVs, new toys, new lawn mowers, etc. etc. etc... Why do people always pick on new car buyers? What is wrong with paying more to own a new car if it is worthwhile to you? This type of tips is HIGHLY subjective, if not judgmental.

    The majority of your list is good though.

    Guest's picture
    Webster

    $8 for a hot dog? $4 for a can of coke? What kind of crazy fairs are you going to! Your showboating is outrageous and you should be ashamed of yourself. I'm shaking from being so damn mad at you! Why?!?

    Guest's picture
    Norma Peidmont

    You are mean.
    I'm not your friend anymore.

    Guest's picture
    Wanzewurld

    Thankfully, this page, as all internet pages is at least as easy to control as a radio, television, or newspaper. America is about freedom of speech among other things... Gripe if you feel you must but remember you always have the right to turn it off, throw it away, or hit the little "X" in the upper right corner of the screen.
    Thank you preceding patriots who have kept our rights secure.

    Guest's picture

    Nawww, dont waste money

    Guest's picture
    loves the fair!!

    I have read quite a few of your articles. This one started out sounding like you usually do, and then it just ended on a rude, insolent and major attitude note. Why did you have to ruin what could have been a very good article getting all nasty??

    I love the fair, and go every year. Part of the fun is tasting different food, or eating stuff you might only splurge on once a year at the Fair. In MN you can get a GIGANTIC corndog for $3.50. Pop usually runs $2 for a big cup. We also have free milk. As much as you can consume, all day long for free! If you are someone who is not into this, then instead of bashing people who enjoy it once a year stay away from them.

    PLEASE go back to writing in the style we have become used to seeing. This mean spiritedness does not suit you.....

    Guest's picture
    Beth

    So if no one buys new cars, then where do all the used ones come from? ;)

    I bought new when I got my first car -- but I bought it with the intention of driving it for at least 10-12 years. (I'm still driving it, actually). Would I have saved more money buying a three year old car and only getting 7-9 years out of it?

    I'm not being sarcastic -- I'm genuinely curious.

    Guest's picture
    Dobie

    I bought my last car new, and it did lose about 20% of its value when I drove it off the lot. So what? I am planning on driving it for at least 10 years, if not longer. What has always worried me about used cars is how did the previous owner treat the car? Was the proper maintenance done? How did they drive? By purchasing the car new, I can make sure that it is properly maintained.

    Which leads me to point 2 - I do get my oil changed every 3 months, which is typically around 3,000 miles. My car could go longer, I know. But this way I have a professional looking at the car every 3 months. I am lucky that I have a very good mechanic that I trust. He has found worn brake pads before rotors were damaged, and other small problems before they turned into big expensive problems. Over the years I have noticed that doing things this way I spend a lot less on repairs than my friends who don't take preventive maintenace as seriously.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Why do you hate fairs? Some of my best childhood memories are from the local fairs. Why so nasty? And as for cars, you are way off base. Please lighten up. The world has enough mean people already.

    Paul Michael's picture

    with tongue firmly in cheek. I think too many of you are taking it way too seriously. If I had wanted to write a straight article, I would have written 47 ways to save money. It was a different angle and I don't think as a writer I need to defend that. If you don't like it, that's fair enough. And come to Parker Days in Colorado. I went there last year and paid a small fortune for a hot dog and coke. Of course I was exaggerating a little, but only to make a point. As I always say, if you don't like my writing style, don't read my articles. I am certainly not required reading. OH, and could someone please point to the place where I say you should not go to a fair? I just said don't buy the food. Bring your own, or eat before you get there. The irony of people telling me to lighten up here is amazing, so many people are way more irate than they should be over an article that tried to make a point in a different way!

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Yikes! With all the negativity there is to read on the internet, I don't need more on your site. No thanks.

    Guest's picture
    Tabitha

    I'm gonna drive my new car, that I just filled up with 93 octane, to the Fair. When I get there I'm gonna buy two hotdogs and a soda. When I get back I'm cooking my baby carrots in bottled water. I will be doing all of this just to spite you. Don't make me pay my bills late. I will if you make me!

    Guest's picture
    Chris

    I guess the first thing this article has taught me is that most Wise Bread readers are a bunch of prudes with no sense of humor. If you can't read between the lines, you're all dumber than a bunch of rocks. And to leave all of these spiteful comments to complain about something you consider snarky, well that's the same as pro-lifers killing doctors. It's JUST AN ARTICLE! The Internet has billions of them. Some of them are racist. Some are sexist. Some are illegal. Why get so worked up about this? Jesus people, get a life.

    Guest's picture
    Tabitha

    You obviously don't get it Chris. Your "all dumber than a bunch of rocks" comment says everything. It's your hateful comments that we don't need. Hypocrite.

    Guest's picture
    #4

    Whoa now, #22. Me calling someone snarky is the same as murder? Really? And you're saying *I* am the one with a poor sense of perspective?

    As for the "don't take it seriously" thing, I can't say I'm outraged or even particularly bothered. This is, after all, the thoughts of one random person on the Internet, and affects me only until I close this browser window or unsubscribe from this RSS feed. But that doesn't change the fact that the information here is exaggerated (hot dogs) or false/misleading (fuel octane), and the tone of the post was... nasty.)

    I can't speak for anyone else, but I commented on this post to correct a piece of advice I know to be bad, and to raise my hand to say that this article is not the kind of thing I want to read in the future.

    Guest's picture

    One of the comments said that some of the advice in this article is "false and misleading"--specifically, about the use of lower-octane gasoline in modern cars.

    The best automotive journalist I have run into in the U.S. is Ed Wallace of Dallas. He has won some serious awards for his work, and writes for major magazines as well as appearing weekly on radio and television.

    Ed has covered this gasoline octane business many times. Last I heard, his personal car was a very nice Infiniti which the manufacturer claims needs premium fuel. Ed uses regular, with no problems at all-and advises others to do the same. This is after extensive inquiry with automotive engineers from many companies.

    At one time, it was true that engines were highy optimized for a particular grade of gasoline. With computer control of engine functions today, the difference is minuscule--far less than the difference in costs you are pouring into your gas tank.

    Those saying this article is "nasty", I'm afraid, really do have a deficit in their sense of humor. Personally, I "got it" that this was satire, and enjoyed it immensely.

    David

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Chris, like there are billions of other articles on the internet, there are many time more comments. Why don't you keep your comment on the article not the responses.

    Guest's picture
    Norris

    The comment by Chris is out of line and I totally agree with #4's response to your slanderous statement. Stop trying to censor people. Don't like it? Don't read it.

    Guest's picture
    krnewman

    I drive an 87 Nissan Pulsar and I find that the difference in mileage I get with premium gas more than pays for the difference in price, typically an extra 4 to 6 miles per gallon for an extra 20 to 40 cents. Plus, the engine runs much cleaner and more efficiently and will last longer.

    Also, I like lending money to friends who need it knowing I won't get it back. I never lend money to anyone expecting to get it back. Should I stop giving money to people who need it when I already have enough? I find it pays off in the long run because it makes my life happier. I probably pay less in medical expenses or something.

    Guest's picture
    WB reader

    Just a thought, but has anyone else considered that the author was being inflammatory and somewhat snarky in order to get all of this attention? It's a technique that has worked well for many people, including Perez Hilton and Bill O'Reilly.

    Guest's picture
    Alex E

    I was in Vegas the past weekend and was debating tossing a few quarters around. Then I realized I've never even seen somebody else win in all the time I'd walked around casinos. How dumb could I be to think I have the slightest chance in winning anything really?

    I kept my quarters to do my laundry. Best move I made there. Good tip!

    Guest's picture
    Charley

    Ok, tone of the article aside, lot's of good little tips (phrased as anti-tips) here and a reminder for myself, of the money I've wasted in the past. Liked the part about buying songs instead of full albums. This is precisely why the CD is a dying relic.

    And #30 - I am kind of down on printed books lately, anyway. As a former bibliophile (nearly a thousand books), I like that i can now fit my library on my IPOD touch. Kindle books and PDF versions are generally cheaper (at least for the non-fiction I like to read) and I think that as the technology gains greater acceptance, the price will come down even further. I don't know if it will ever obsolete the printed book, mostly because it's currently difficult to pirate electronic books (i.e. rip your library to digital) but I do like the fact that my house is not overflowing with books in every nook and cranny. I kind of just let go of my books and started anew (no i did not re-purchase my printed books as digital books). I have ten favorite printed books on a small bookshelf and that's it.

    Paul Michael's picture

    $9 for a tiny piece of steak on a stick, and $8 for a turkey leg.

    Guest's picture
    Amber

    I enjoyed this article. It was funny... which is what I needed at the end of my long work day. We all make excuses to why we spend the way we do. It's nice to see someone call us on it.

    Guest's picture

    Paul--As one who appreciates fine sarcasm, you hit a bullseye with me.

    Content is what counts, and this article is deep on that. Sarcasm is just the flavor, and like all flavors, it only makes the content more interesting.

    Keep at it!

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    I'd like to include:

    Don't research the quality of products before you buy them. Get the cheapest one and watch it break in a few months.

    Buy the newest electronic gadget / game system the day it comes out, who cares if the price will drop in a month or two.

    Don't buy index funds. Pay a large management fee to get the same or worse results over time.

    Never calculate the unit price in the grocery store. Just buy what the big yellow sticker tells you to.

    Skip the matinee, watch the same movie for full price in a crowded theater.

    Guest's picture
    FrugalZen

    if you want to pay high dollar.

    At a certain park by where I live run by a mouse a Smoked Turkey Leg is $8.50 plus Tax. (A larger one is $3.38 at the nearby Wally World)

    Twelve Ounce can soda from a machine is $2.50.

    Twenty Four ounce Lemonoade is $3.75 plus Tax.

    The three Mickey D's on the property don't have any Value Menu selections...what's a $1 off property is $2.59 on.

    And in the employee cafeterias the Subway is not allowed to sell the $5 subs and the cheapest footlong is $8.79....FOR THE EMPLOYEES NO LESS!!

    Consequently I can see the advice to eat first or pack you own..(as long as they don't catch it at the entrance...as a guest you're not allowed to bring in your own, employees are at least allowed too.)

    But Tongue in Cheek articles are still good.

    Guest's picture
    Kristina

    I get the tone. Not everyone is comfortable with such a tone, though, but so be it. Nuff said about that.

    About music, though... I often find that the "deep cuts' are the ones which appeal most to me in the long run. Without buying the whole (I date myself with this term) album, I would be missing out on some of my favorite songs.

    Everyone should splurge (?) on the things they really value. Just don't spend your money needlessly. Isn't that the essence of frugality? Otherwise, one is simply being miserly.

    Guest's picture
    carlos

    I agree with most things and I already live my life doing most of this. However, My car has an older engine, so I change the oil every 3000 miles as recommended... BUT I don't change it on the date they tell me. My father works for an engine oil manufacturer and he tells me this is bullshit. Thanks for the article.

    Guest's picture
    Seth

    You have to admit the advice is generally good. He was trying to pass along some tricks to save money using sarcasm (which I enjoyed). Thank you for the advice and I'm sorry the tone did not appeal to the masses.

    Guest's picture

    I really enjoyed this article, reminds me of some of the things I use to do. Too much wasted money.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Good article, thanks for posting. I also like the useful extra tips that some have added, thanks for that too other people. :)

    Guest's picture
    faun

    Paul obviously has wayyyy to much time on his hands and needs to get a hobby or a second job to pay for all that coffee and high octane fuel. LOL!
    Times are extremely stressful these days and we could all use a good chuckle now and then. Thanks especially 'tabitha' (comment #21) for really making me laugh...I needed that.

    Guest's picture
    Steve

    Amazing tips! Drawing more money from ATMs is really a good idea to spend more!!! What a thinking!!!

    Julie Rains's picture

    Nice post with useful tips  -- thanks for helping me to think differently by writing in a different style.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    I like it.
    By "it" I mean me.

    I AM AWESOME!

    I didn't like the article though, too snarky.

    Guest's picture
    Dogbert

    I ride a bike to work everyday. The only gas I worry about is from last night's chili.

    Guest's picture
    some dumnass on the internet

    I agree with that guy who commented about the fair.

    Guest's picture
    david in norcal

    If you're haggling over the price of a bag of apples at the farmer's market, you need to get a life and focus on more important things.

    You also should not be trying to score a deal by making someone who's not making much money take the financial hit.

    You could save money by tipping 15% everywhere instead of 20% for good service, but that's coming out of typically low-paid and unbenefitted workers. It sucks as a way to save money frankly.

    Sleep well at night, or at least earn the right to.

    Guest's picture
    accident

    Paul hates the following:
    -farmers trying to make a living
    -people who patronize fairs
    -people who have to drive for a living
    -those who read prolifically

    or not

    Guest's picture
    Spedie

    Despite some of the negative comments about the article, I liked it...it made me think a bit. The tone was sarcastic, but that's what it was meant to BE by the writer!

    Very good writing, by the way.

    LOL and sitting here chuckling....

    Guest's picture
    Megeelee

    Calling 800Goog411 is free from a landline, but on your cell it's going to cost you. Probably not as much as your providers 411, but there will be a charge. The same is true of any 800 number from your cell. Its called something like a "toll connection charge." When I questioned my cell phone company about it, I was told that toll free numbers weren't long distance and therefore not covered under my free nation-wide calling plan. It was something like $0.50 per connection.

    Guest's picture
    SimpleLife

    Oh, yes... comment 21 was awesome. I thought that reading this article was a waste of my time, but comment 21 made up for it. Thank you, for making me laugh.
    Paul, I usually like your articles, but this one was a dud.
    Sorry.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    was almost as much fun as reading the article - which I thought was fun, interesting and helpful.
    People do need to lighten up - he's a writer with his OWN opinions if you have a different one, good on you. This is why we live our OWN lives and make our OWN choices.
    I drive a new car, I put premium in it, I don't go to fairs and I don't eat hotdogs and I do take more money out of an ATM than I need currently BUT I don't have a problem with spending more than I was planning on and I hate having to drive to the bank.
    I really liked the points of not paying attention to the veg bin and throwing away leftovers. Luckily I have chickens who LOVE leftovers if I don't get to them.

    Guest's picture
    Samira

    I thoroughly enjoyed this list and was laughing through it. Thanks!

    Guest's picture
    Justin

    Great article with a list of things that a lot of people could use to see. Definitely enjoyed this post.

    Andrea Karim's picture

    I love anti-advice! I linked to a post written in the same style last week that had me chuckling. The internet is a funny place - half of the people are so mean that I can barely believe what they'll type, and another 40% is so sensitive that a cheeky article makes them weep into their milk.

    That leaves 10% of the internet users/readers to keep the thing afloat. I, of course, fall into the mean category, so I'm not one of the 10%.

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Commenter 1: This was the meanest article I have ever read! I am so upset that I need to go lie down. Why would you write this and publish it? It's so mean and horrible.

    Commenter 2: What are you, Commenter 1, an idiot? This is meant to be funny. 

    Commenter 1: No, YOU are an idiot for writing a comment about how I am an idiot. If you don't like something, then you don't have to read it, just like you didn't have to read my comment about how mean this article is. But you did read my comment, and then you commented on how you didn't like what I wrote, which is mean and dumb of you. You are a horrible person and I hope you die, so that you don't hurt nice, wonderful people like me.

    Christ, cognitive dissonance, anyone? Why can't frugal people be funny, too? 

    Guest's picture
    Guest

    Stay in a "fancy" hotel. No complimentary breakfast, no fridge or microwave, no coffee maker in the room but they sell Starbucks in the lobby, $10.50 for a liter of bottled water in the room (no kidding), and let's not even start with room service. It is cool to stay in a swanky place at least once or twice in your life, but for everyday travel & vacations, go for the business-class hotel and always try to find a place that serves the free breakfast.

    Guest's picture

    Great list! People fall into the cycle of easy-- and easy is expensive . . .

    Guest's picture
    katy

    Paul, thanks for great tips and reminders. I smiled throughout your article. I think when people get mad, it's because they've beeb caught wasting money!

    Have a good holiday.

    Paul Michael's picture

    It seems the positive comments are outweighing the negative ones now, which is great. I can't please everyone, but I do like to please the majority. Thanks everyone.

    Guest's picture
    Brian

    Entertaining article (and some of the comments, too)! Even if I don't agree with all of them, most are pretty solid and I enjoy the tongue-in-cheek style.

    I will add #48: Buy a vacuum cleaner based on marketing and the price (i.e., the more expensive, the better). There's no better way to insure it lasts until just past the warranty... :-)

    Guest's picture
    Beth G

    I enjoyed the article, and understood the style as it was meant to be understood. The Wisebread blog is a good source for some great ideas for the frugal-minded folks like me.

    I have to admit that I got a kick out of some of the comments, because it takes me back to middle school & high school childness.

    Guest's picture
    Victoria

    This is a poorly written and backwards article.

    Any accuracy is lost on the confusing "47 things that you shouldn't do that I'm going to tell you to do, sarcastically" format. Credibility is lost on sarcasm.

    Guest's picture
    Deliciae

    I agree with a good majority of this list! Certainly fair and theme park food has cost my an arm and a leg when I could just as easily eat at home beforehand. Sometimes it's nice to treat myself to an amazing funnel cake on rare occaision, however. ;)

    Although some of these seem like common snese, this post is a great reminder of how much more money I could be saving up for colelge loans instead of wasting them on lottery tickets.

    Also, since I'm a colelge student working on campus, I regularly make stops to the vending machines and buy a snack and drink. Many people in my office also do the same and I imagine it all totals to a ridiculous amount of cash and change spent on snacks you could be bringing from home.

    Great post and thank you!

    Guest's picture
    Deliciae

    And I apologize for all the typos! This is a very stiff keyboard and I'm terrible at using it!

    Guest's picture
    mutuelle

    as everything that's contrevertial this article is interresting. in it'way....:) thanks anyway Paul!

    Guest's picture
    Mutuelle

    The best exemple is how the governement waste money

    Guest's picture

    I too liked your blog

    Guest's picture

    it'really funny! congratulations to the author!

    Guest's picture
    GenuineNerd

    As for higher-octane gasoline, back at a time when cars used carburetors and did not have computers, higher-octane fuel was often needed as the engines got older, since those engines tended to get carboned up with age, affecting performace and gas mileage. With today's computer-controlled, fuel-injected cars, regular will do unless the owner's manual specifically requires premium...and this is regardless of whether the vehicle has 100 miles or 100,000 miles. And gasolines today burn cleaner than gasolines from years ago.

    Guest's picture

    hello, your article is fantastic.Keep it up.A+

    Guest's picture

    The number 6 really applies to me and how I "manage my money" :/