shopping tips http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/7/all en-US How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/problem_with_documents.jpg" alt="Problem with documents" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Have you ever noticed that we look at most of our expenses in terms of monthly payments? We often justify these expenses by saying, &quot;It's just a few dollars a month.&quot; Sometimes, we even break costs down into weeks or days. But this type of thinking can be dangerous to our finances. Looking only at monthly expenses can mask the total impact of what you're spending. And when we view our expenses in isolation, we don't always see our full financial picture.</p> <p>Here are some things to think about when you tell yourself, &quot;It's just a few dollars per month.&quot;</p> <h2>It all adds up</h2> <p>When you think of your expenses as individual costs that you pay on a monthly basis, you're seeing only a very small part of your finances at any given time. Combine these monthly costs, however, and you'll see how quickly they can add up and make it hard for you to save. This is especially true with subscription-type services, in which you may pay a seemingly low monthly fee for a product or service.</p> <p>Netflix is just $9.99-$11.99 per month. Your news subscription may be $7. You have subscriptions for meal planning services like Blue Apron, and clothing delivery services like StitchFix. None of these subscriptions may seem costly in and of themselves, but when you add them up, they could comprise hundreds of dollars in monthly expenses and leave you with very little left over. And because they're subscriptions, they may be automatically deducted from your checking account or credit card, so you may not even be fully aware that money is leaving or when. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-meal-prep-subscription-boxes-worth-it?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Are Meal Prep Subscription Boxes Worth It?</a>)</p> <h2>You're being manipulated</h2> <p>How did we get into the habit of thinking of expenses in the context of a month or less? Because the people who seek our money want it that way. If a company can get us thinking about costs in smaller chunks, we're more likely to spend money. A gym could easily charge you $480 a year to join, but instead, they charge $40 a month and advertise that monthly amount because it seems like less. Your cellphone company could just ask for $1,200 upfront when you sign a two-year contract, but it's less scary to charge you $50 a month.</p> <p>Granted, most of us would prefer to pay in monthly amounts because we may not have tons of cash on hand, but most companies don't even offer us the option to pay in bulk amounts if we want to, because they don't even want us thinking about how much they take out of our accounts each year. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-scarcity-marketing-tricks-you-to-spend-more?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Scarcity Marketing Tricks You to Spend More</a>)</p> <h2>Resist the coffee analogy</h2> <p>Every once in a while, someone will encourage you to donate money or buy a product, arguing that it will cost you &quot;less than a cup of coffee&quot; each day. The suggestion is that coffee is a fairly low and everyday expense, and it's a compelling sales tactic. But the next time someone comes at you with this pitch, consider examining it in a different way.</p> <p>First, ask yourself if you'd be willing to cut out your daily coffee in order to buy this new product or service. If not, then accept that your expenses will definitely rise. Second, recognize how much that cup of coffee each day actually is costing you. Maybe it's just $2 every time, but that's $10 during a workweek, $40 monthly, and nearly $500 a year. Suddenly, you realize that the &quot;cost of a cup of coffee&quot; isn't mere pocket change. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-rich-youd-be-if-you-stopped-drinking-expensive-coffee?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's How Rich You'd Be if You Stopped Drinking Expensive Coffee</a>)</p> <h2>A higher monthly payment is always a big deal</h2> <p>Have you ever financed a car? The goal of the car salesman is to get you comfortable with a monthly payment and ignore the total costs over time. If you're paying for the car in full with cash, there's not much a seller can do to mask the cost. But when breaking out the total into payments, the seller can convince you that a few extra dollars are no big deal.</p> <p>For example, let's say you're looking to have payments of no more than $200 per month. The seller may say &quot;Well, I can get you down to $230, which is in the ballpark. Deal?&quot; That extra $30 may not seem like a lot. But if you have a 60-month loan, that adds up to $1,800! If you were paying for the car with cash in full, you'd never think that paying an extra $1,800 was reasonable.</p> <h2>Monthly payments can mask interest</h2> <p>If you purchase a home, you will likely have a mortgage with interest payments. You may also have interest payments if you finance a car. When this happens, the total cost of your purchase is higher, even though you don't think of it that way.</p> <p>Consider that if you purchase a house with a sale price of $400,000, you may pay $2,000 per month over the course of 30 years, bringing the actual money paid to $720,000. Monthly payments can make large purchases feel more digestible and manageable, but they can also cover up the total cost of big-ticket items over time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-signs-youre-paying-too-much-for-your-mortgage?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Signs You're Paying Too Much for Your Mortgage</a>)</p> <h2>Consider the lifetime costs</h2> <p>Once, while in the process of paying some bills, I tried to calculate how much I had spent over my lifetime toward cellphone, internet, and cable TV services to one particular company. I determined that I had paid this company each month for about 18 years. The math was eye-popping. In my life, I had directed more than $30,000 to one company just so I could stay connected.</p> <p>Granted, I'm not sure what I'd do without my phone or high-speed internet. But it did make me wonder whether I was always getting the best deal. Imagine if I had found a way to cut these bills by 10 percent each month. That would be $3,000 more in my pocket today! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-rich-youd-be-if-you-stopped-driving?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's How Rich You'd Be If You Stopped Driving</a>)</p> <h2>We don't think of income this way</h2> <p>If someone asks you how much money you make, do you tell them what you take in on a weekly or monthly basis? If you are a salaried employee, probably not. Usually, we think of our income in terms of annual salary, and we rarely stop to think about how much we bring in each month, each week, or each day. Unless you're an hourly employee, you don't say &quot;I make just $24 in an hour.&quot; You say, &quot;I make $50,000 a year.&quot;</p> <p>Think of expenses the same way. You might change your behavior as a result. &quot;I spend $1,200 a year on cable so I can watch Portland Trail Blazers games.&quot; &quot;I spend $940 a year on Americanos from Peet's Coffee.&quot; Yikes! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-get-your-morning-coffee-for-free?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Ways to Get Your Morning Coffee for Free</a>)</p> <h2>Saving is a long-term goal</h2> <p>It's important to remember that building wealth and achieving financial freedom is a very long process. It's the relatively small amount of money you save each day that piles up over time and becomes something substantial. It's very easy to be dismissive of a small weekly or monthly expense, but it's those very expenses that can make the difference between accumulating wealth or accumulating debt.</p> <p>When analyzing spending, it's helpful to examine all money as potentially helpful in your quest to build wealth. One hundred dollars now, if saved, could represent much more in the future. If spent, it's gone forever. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-safeguard-your-financial-future-with-just-200?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Safeguard Your Financial Future With Just $200</a>)</p> <h2>Take your usage into account</h2> <p>It's easier to defend the &quot;it's only a few dollars a month&quot; attitude if you regularly use the product or service in question. One could argue that a high-speed internet subscription, while costly, is worthwhile if you use it for several hours a day to run a business. But what about all those things you pay for that you never use?</p> <p>Your gym membership may only be $10 a month, yet you haven't worked out in months. Netflix may seem inexpensive, but you rarely stream any movies or shows. These monthly costs can really add up, and they are made worse if you are spending money on things you never use.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520Small%2520Monthly%2520Bills%2520Slowly%2520Wreck%2520Your%2520Annual%2520Budget.jpg&amp;description=How%20Small%20Monthly%20Bills%20Slowly%20Wreck%20Your%20Annual%20Budget"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20Small%20Monthly%20Bills%20Slowly%20Wreck%20Your%20Annual%20Budget.jpg" alt="How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/now-or-later-how-to-decide-the-right-time-to-buy-almost-anything">Now or Later: How to Decide the Right Time to Buy Almost Anything</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-one-question-you-should-ask-before-every-major-purchase">The One Question You Should Ask Before Every Major Purchase</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-its-better-to-buy-at-the-last-minute">6 Things It&#039;s Better to Buy at the Last Minute</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-7-common-spring-spending-traps">How to Avoid 7 Common Spring Spending Traps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix">8 Things That Are Cheaper to Replace Than to Fix</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Shopping monthly boxes monthly costs saving money shopping tips Spending Money subscriptions Fri, 13 Apr 2018 08:30:10 +0000 Tim Lemke 2129347 at http://www.wisebread.com Why You Should Sign Up for Airline Rewards Even If You Don't Travel Much http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/she_is_a_self_starter.jpg" alt="She is a self-starter" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>So you've got a busy job that never sends you on trips. Or you're terrified of flying. Or you have small kids whom you dread dragging onto an airplane. Sign up for some frequent flyer accounts anyway. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Travel Rewards Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p>Why bother if you're not going to be earning miles by buying airplane tickets? Because there are a lot of ways you can accumulate miles besides flying. Once you have all those miles, you can save up for a dream trip or one amazing vacation per year. And if you truly plan to never fly, you can even spend your miles on stuff other than flights.</p> <h2>How to earn miles without flying</h2> <p>My friends say they can't understand how I travel for free through frequent flyer miles, when they have never flown enough times to earn a single free flight. My answer is that I haven't bought enough plane tickets to earn free flights either. I earn the bulk of my miles right here on the ground. There are so many ways to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-tons-of-frequent-flyer-miles-without-flying?ref=internal" target="_blank">earn frequent flyer miles without flying</a>.</p> <h3>Credit cards</h3> <p>The fastest and easiest way to accumulate frequent flyer miles is by getting a new credit card. Just today, I signed up for a card that will pay me 40,000 miles after my first purchase of any amount. Typically, a new card will pay a similar or larger bonus after you meet a required minimum spend in the range of $1,000 to $5,000.</p> <p>These cards will also pay you one or more mile per dollar you spend. If you are responsible for running a household of multiple people, like I am, you may find it easy to accumulate 3,000 or more miles per month paying for things such as groceries, kids' day care or activities, gas, etc. Even without the sign-up bonus, that would amount to more than 30,000 miles per year &mdash; enough for a round-trip domestic flight on most airlines or a one-way ticket to Europe. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Use Travel Rewards Cards to Get Free Trips</a>)</p> <p>By combining bonuses and points for my monthly spend, I've been able to get my whole family to Australia and back, among other trips &mdash; with few of those points coming from actual flights.</p> <h3>Online shopping</h3> <p>You may find it more rewarding to use an airline shopping portal than a rebate site, such as eBates, when making online purchases. During the past two years, I earned about 5,000 miles each year through online purchases, and I am not a big shopper.</p> <h3>Other partner purchases</h3> <p>Rental cars and hotel stays are also good ways to accumulate frequent flyer miles without flying. Don't forget to put down your frequent flyer number at check-in.</p> <p>Also, you can often get a mileage bonus for switching cable companies or signing up for a new phone plan. I currently get just over 400 miles after I pay my bill every month, which will net me another 5,000 miles this year.</p> <p>Finally, don't forget to register all your credit cards with airline dining programs, so that you can get miles for eating out at participating restaurants without even thinking about it.</p> <h2>What to do with the miles</h2> <p>The best value for miles is generally flying &mdash; especially international flights in business or first class. So if you don't travel much, but you would like to take a trip one of these days, saving up for a really great one is a smart move. Don't worry too much about the miles expiring, because most programs <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-frequent-flyer-miles-that-are-about-to-expire?ref=internal" target="_blank">push the expiration date back</a> every time you make a transaction, including earning more miles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-expert-tips-for-redeeming-miles-for-free-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">12 Expert Tips for Redeeming Miles for Free Travel</a>)</p> <p>If you abhor flying and never plan to redeem your miles by taking a flight, you're probably better off choosing a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-rewards-credit-cards-really-work?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash-back credit card</a> as your main card. But that doesn't mean you have to pass when the only rewards offered for signing up for a new service or making a transaction are miles. There are lots of ways to spend those miles other than flying. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-tricks-to-making-the-most-of-your-reward-miles?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Tricks to Making the Most of Your Reward Miles</a>)</p> <h3>1. Book travel that doesn't involve an airplane</h3> <p>On <a href="http://www.dpbolvw.net/click-2822544-11373616" target="_blank">Points.com</a>, you can transfer miles from some frequent flyer programs into an Amtrak account. Just note the exchange rate. For instance, if you want to convert Hawaiian Air miles to Amtrak, you will end up with only one Amtrak point for every five Hawaiian points you cash in.</p> <p>You can book a car/hotel package, including activities, with miles on American Airlines Vacations, or pay for a cruise with miles through United.</p> <h3>2. Subscribe to a magazine</h3> <p>If you are the kind of person who still likes having paper magazines on your coffee table, the site MagsforMiles.com can be an affordable way to subscribe. For example, to get a year of my favorite, Sunset, would cost me only 600 Hawaiian Air miles. Since these miles are worth about 1.2 cents each, that's a year of the magazine for about $7, which is not a bad price, especially if you're looking to spend a few &quot;pocket change&quot; miles that will never amount to a larger transaction.</p> <h3>3. Go shopping</h3> <p>Delta allows members to <a href="https://marketplace.delta.com/" target="_blank">exchange miles for retail items</a> such as Tumi bags as well as vouchers for the $100 Global Entry fee, or even gift cards for the airline. United allows you to redeem miles for <a href="https://partner.audiencerewards.com/mileageplus/index.cfm" target="_blank">tickets to Broadway shows</a>, among other things.</p> <h3>4. Get gift cards</h3> <p>Points.com will exchange many kinds of airline miles for gift cards, which could be helpful if you need to get a birthday gift for someone and are short on cash. The individual airline sites may also have information about trading miles for gift cards. However, be sure to check the rates and make sure you're not throwing away large amounts of miles for small value cards.</p> <h3>5. Donate to charity</h3> <p>Each airline has its own list of charities to which you can donate miles. If you were going to give cash anyway, this can be an efficient way to get the miles off your hands while helping the organization. The only drawback is that, unlike a cash gift, a miles donation is not tax deductible.</p> <h3>6. Send a loved one on a flight</h3> <p>Many airlines will charge you a fee to transfer your miles to another person, but there's a way around that: You can use your miles to book a flight for someone else just as you would book it for yourself. So even if you plan to never set foot onboard a plane, you can send your niece on a graduation trip or pay for your mom to come visit you.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhy-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhy%2520You%2520Should%2520Sign%2520Up%2520for%2520Airline%2520Rewards%2520Even%2520If%2520You%2520Don%2527t%2520Travel%2520Much.jpg&amp;description=Why%20You%20Should%20Sign%20Up%20for%20Airline%20Rewards%20Even%20If%20You%20Don't%20Travel%20Much"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Why%20You%20Should%20Sign%20Up%20for%20Airline%20Rewards%20Even%20If%20You%20Don%27t%20Travel%20Much.jpg" alt="Why You Should Sign Up for Airline Rewards Even If You Don't Travel Much" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-flexible-ways-to-cash-in-your-miles-and-points">3 Flexible Ways to Cash In Your Miles and Points</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-airline-miles-while-you-shop">How to Earn Airline Miles While You Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-more-value-out-of-american-airlines-miles">How to Get More Value Out of American Airlines Miles</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-airlines-frequent-flyer-miles-have-the-best-value">Which Airline&#039;s Frequent Flyer Miles Have the Best Value?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-understanding-airline-flight-routes-can-score-you-better-rewards">How Understanding Airline Flight Routes Can Score You Better Rewards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Travel airline miles airline rewards rewards points shopping tips travel miles travel tips Wed, 04 Apr 2018 08:30:09 +0000 Carrie Kirby 2127517 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Things to Consider Before Making a Big Purchase for Rewards Points http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/smiling_woman_with_credit_card_and_laptop.jpg" alt="Smiling woman with credit card and laptop" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It can be thrilling to chase credit card rewards. When you use a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel rewards credit card</a>, you earn points and miles that you can redeem for a free trip. And when you use <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash back cards</a>, you're essentially earning a nice little refund on your purchases.</p> <p>Making big purchases on your credit card is one way to rack up points quickly. A home remodel or wedding can cost tens of thousands of dollars, and as long as you're not spending extra just to rack up rewards, using a rewards credit card can be a way to defray those large costs.</p> <p>This strategy can be more complex than you think, however. Here are six things to think about before making a large purchase for rewards.</p> <h2>1. Will the merchant accept credit cards?</h2> <p>Before you can even consider using your credit card to make a large purchase, you have to find out if the store or vendor will even accept them. Every time a merchant accepts a credit card, it must pay the processor a merchant fee of about 2% to 3% of the transaction. Understandably, this makes many companies hesitant to accept credit cards, especially for their largest sales.</p> <p>For example, home improvement contractors often won't accept credit cards because they know that the merchant fees will directly impact their bottom line. You may, however, be able to work out a deal where you can, for instance, buy some of the project supplies with your credit card from a home improvement store. It never hurts to ask. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-to-use-for-a-home-renovation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards for a Home Renovation</a>)</p> <p>Some car dealers might also have policies preventing you from using your credit card to pay for a vehicle, while others may allow you to use your credit card for a certain percentage of the transaction and use cash or other financing for the rest of the sale. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-buy-a-car-with-a-credit-card?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Should You Buy a Car With a Credit Card?</a>)</p> <p>Finally, double check that the merchant is part of your rewards card's payment network. For example, some merchants don't accept <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/american-express-credit-card-offers-applications-reviews?ref=internal" target="_blank">American Express</a>.</p> <h2>2. Will the company impose a surcharge to use your credit card?</h2> <p>Some companies are happy to accept credit cards for large transactions, but they will impose a surcharge that will cost you more than any rewards that you might earn. For example, it's not uncommon for companies to impose a 3% to 5% surcharge on credit card transactions, and bury that information in the fine print of the agreement. And conveniently for the companies that do this, their surcharges are often in excess of their credit card processing fees, allowing them to make a profit.</p> <p>Thankfully, there are 10 states where it's actually illegal to add a surcharge to a credit card transaction. If you are doing business in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Oklahoma, or Texas, and a merchant is adding a surcharge to credit card transactions, you might want to inform them that the practice is illegal. If you are polite about it, the merchant may reconsider its surcharge and let you pay for your purchase with a credit card at no additional cost. Just be aware that the government and publicly regulated utilities are often exempt from the laws prohibiting credit card surcharges.</p> <h2>3. Does the company offer a cash discount?</h2> <p>Most states allow merchants to offer a cash discount on the advertised price instead of imposing a credit card surcharge. And even if a cash discount is not expressly advertised, you might be able to negotiate one before using your credit card, especially if it's for a large purchase. If the value of your discount is greater than the rewards you could earn, then it can be better to use cash.</p> <h2>4. Will the card issuer approve the charge?</h2> <p>Once you've figured out that the merchant will accept your credit card, you should double check that your card issuer will authorize the charge. Not only do you need to have a large enough line of available credit, but even if you do, a card issuer might flag an unusually large purchase as potentially fraudulent. For these reasons, it's a good idea to inform your card issuer in advance of a large charge, so they can make a note in their systems to expect it.</p> <p>And if you would like to make a purchase in excess of your current credit limit, you may be able to do so if you call your card issuer. It may grant you a credit limit increase, or, if you've got more than one credit card from that issuer, it may be willing to move a portion of your credit limit from one card to another.</p> <h2>5. Will you be able to avoid interest by paying your balance in full?</h2> <p>Whether your purchase is large or small, it only makes sense to chase rewards when you can avoid interest charges by paying your entire statement balance in full. When you're incurring interest on your debts, then your first priority should be to save money while paying it off.</p> <p>Rewards cards tend to impose higher interest rates than cards that don't offer rewards. So if you know you'll need to run a balance to pay off your large purchase, your best strategy is to use a card with a low interest rate or a card with <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">0% APR on new purchases</a> for a promotional period. These cards tend to offer skimpier rewards, if any, but the interest you'll save should more than make up for the lack of rewards. Forget about rewards until you're in a place to pay off your balance in full every month. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <p>Other options are to delay the purchase until you have saved up enough money to pay for it without incurring debt, or seek other low-interest forms of finance.</p> <h2>6. How will this purchase affect your credit?</h2> <p>A large portion of your credit score is determined by your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-ratio-is-the-key-to-a-good-credit-score?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit utilization ratio</a> &mdash; the amount of debt you have compared to how much credit you have available. Even when you pay off your statement balance in full, that balance is reported to the major consumer credit bureaus as debt for the month, and that can have a temporary impact on your credit score.</p> <p>If you have an excellent credit score and a large amount of available credit, then you shouldn't expect much of an impact. But if you have a limited amount of credit, then consuming it with a large purchase could cause your credit score to drop dramatically. One way to avoid this is to make a large payment before your statement period ends. Doing this will reduce your statement balance and its impact on your credit score.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Things%2520to%2520Consider%2520Before%2520Making%2520a%2520Big%2520Purchase%2520for%2520Rewards%2520Points.jpg&amp;description=6%20Things%20to%20Consider%20Before%20Making%20a%20Big%20Purchase%20for%20Rewards%20Points"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Things%20to%20Consider%20Before%20Making%20a%20Big%20Purchase%20for%20Rewards%20Points.jpg" alt="6 Things to Consider Before Making a Big Purchase for Rewards Points" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for">5 Store Card Pitfalls to Watch Out for</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries">The Best Credit Cards for Groceries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/2-minute-guide-how-to-use-balance-transfers-to-pay-off-credit-card-debt">2-Minute Guide: How to Use Balance Transfers to Pay Off Credit Card Debt</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-calculate-the-value-of-your-credit-card-rewards">How to Calculate the Value of Your Credit Card Rewards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-ease-into-credit-card-rewards-after-debt-repayment">How to Ease into Credit Card Rewards After Debt Repayment</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards Shopping credit card debt credit card rewards credit card tips earning points and rewards shopping tips Thu, 29 Mar 2018 09:30:21 +0000 Jason Steele 2123634 at http://www.wisebread.com How Scarcity Marketing Tricks You to Spend More http://www.wisebread.com/how-scarcity-marketing-tricks-you-to-spend-more <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-scarcity-marketing-tricks-you-to-spend-more" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_can_not_choose_stylish_pumps.jpg" alt="Woman cannot choose stylish pumps" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I was four years old, Xavier Roberts took the toy world by storm by launching the Cabbage Patch Kids. These dolls seemed to be everywhere, except on store shelves. This was back in 1983, when shopping meant showing up at a brick-and-mortar store. Most stores at the time only stocked between 200 and 500 of the dolls, which did not meet demand of the thousands of parents desperate to get their hands on the must-have toy of the year. Fights sometimes broke out between shoppers, and these reactions were dubbed the Cabbage Patch riots.</p> <p>It was unclear whether scarcity was an intentional tactic to help sell Cabbage Patch Kids, but many believed it was a marketing strategy &mdash; including the Consumer Affairs Department of New York's Nassau County, which accused the company of &quot;harassing&quot; children with advertisements for unavailable dolls. Meaning that Roberts was offering goods without the intent to supply them. This false-advertising charge, along with the news reports of violent altercations in toy stores, added even more truth to the idea that Cabbage Patch Kids were so scarce that kids would be lucky to ever get their hands on one.</p> <p>The Cabbage Patch craze was a textbook example of how scarcity marketing (whether fully intentional or not) can trick people into spending money. Looking back, a Cabbage Patch doll was hardly worth the time, effort, and money necessary to buy one in 1983. They were kind of funny looking, and children moved on to the next hot toy by the following year.</p> <p>But that sense of scarcity has a way of making us forget how to think rationally, and marketers are well aware of this. It's important to understand how scarcity marketing tricks you into spending more money, and what you can do to fight it.</p> <h2>Understanding scarcity marketing</h2> <p>The point of scarcity marketing is to make you fear that you'll lose out on something you want. In effect, scarcity marketing is triggering your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-loss-aversion-is-costing-you-more-than-your-fomo?ref=internal" target="_blank">sense of loss aversion</a>. This is the cognitive bias that causes us to more acutely feel a <em>loss </em>than we do a <em>gain</em>. When our loss aversion is triggered, we'll work harder to avoid kicking ourselves for losing something than we would work to gain something we want.</p> <p>This is what makes scarcity marketing so pernicious, because it's pairing a gain (whatever it is we want to buy) with the fear of losing that gain. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-your-brain-tricks-you-into-spending?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Ways Your Brain Tricks You Into Spending</a>)</p> <p>There are three main strategies retailers use scarcity marketing to make you keenly feel loss aversion.</p> <h3>Having a small amount of inventory</h3> <p>This was what happened in the great Cabbage Patch shortage of 1983, and is also something you will often see with Black Friday sales. Black Friday sale flyers will promise some really great deals, but they will all sport the caveat, &quot;supplies are limited!&quot;</p> <p>This also happens with online purchases. You might notice that Amazon will helpfully let you know that only four hard copies of the book you are about to order are left, so you should hurry and make that purchase. Never mind the fact that Amazon is literally open 24/7. Similarly, if you are searching for anything from concert tickets to vacation rentals, the website will share with you just how many other people are interested in the tickets or weekend getaway &mdash; thereby making you fear missing out.</p> <h3>Putting an expiration date on a purchase</h3> <p>Parents of Disney-loving children understand the frustration of learning that a beloved movie is &quot;in the vault.&quot; This savvy scarcity marketing strategy from the House of Mouse limits how often and for how long different Disney movies are available for purchase before they are &quot;returned to the vault&quot; for another seven years. If you miss out on purchasing a replacement DVD of <a href="http://amzn.to/2FO2oVg" target="_blank">Beauty and the Beast</a> or <a href="http://amzn.to/2tgqup4" target="_blank">Fantasia</a>, then you are out of luck until after your toddler has become a preteen. (This strategy worked best for Disney before eBay was invented, but it's still a smart marketing move.)</p> <p>You'll also see these kinds of expiration date strategies on everything from Groupon offers to &quot;One day only&quot; sales. They make you feel like you must grab the purchase now before it goes away, possibly forever &mdash; which is what seven years feels like if you can't find a copy of <em>101 Dalmatians</em> and it's all your child wants.</p> <h3>Adding a timer to your purchase</h3> <p>Have you ever noticed that Ticketmaster.com asks you to finalize your purchase in two minutes? The site even provides you with a countdown clock of that two-minute time frame before &quot;your tickets are released for others to buy.&quot;</p> <p>While Ticketmaster (reasonably) claims that it offers a countdown in order to make it fair for all fans to be able to purchase tickets, the extremely short two-minute time frame (which assumes you haven't left your wallet in another room) plus the reference to &quot;your tickets&quot; are all set up to maximize your sense of loss aversion.</p> <p>Ticketmaster and other companies that provide a timer for your purchase are counting on your inability to think rationally about a purchase when you feel as if time is ticking away. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-biases-that-are-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Mental Biases That Are Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h2>Outsmarting scarcity marketing</h2> <p>Just because salespeople and marketing departments know how to manipulate your sense of loss aversion doesn't mean you have to fall it. Here are some tricks for keeping scarcity marketing from removing money from your wallet.</p> <h3>Buy gifts early</h3> <p>Part of the reason why Cabbage Patch Kids were so insanely popular was because of the timing of their release &mdash; just in time for Christmas in 1983. Many of the parents who found themselves in shouting matches in the aisles of the local Toys 'R Us felt like they had to get one of these dolls in time for Christmas Day.</p> <p>But parents who plan and purchase Christmas gifts early do not feel the same kind of desperation for the season's hottest toy, because they know they already have plenty of great things to wrap and put under the tree. Being deliberate about choosing and paying for gifts well before the gift-giving season frees you from the frenzied thinking that <em>this particular toy</em> is what will make this a memorable and happy holiday for your child.</p> <h3>Imagine throwing the item away</h3> <p>In many cases, the items sold to you via scarcity marketing are things that you simply don't need &mdash; and you can probably remember the short life cycles of various items in your life that went from cute product offered for a limited time, to something collecting dust on a shelf, to a Goodwill donation within a few short years.</p> <p>So when you're tempted to buy something because it's on sale for one day only or may otherwise soon be out of your reach, imagine how it will feel to donate or throw that item away in a relatively short time frame. Wouldn't you rather save your money and avoid the clutter?</p> <h3>Institute a 24-hour purchase rule</h3> <p>When we're in the grips of loss aversion, whatever it is we feel like we need to buy seems urgent. The best way to release yourself from that artificial urgency is to institute a 24-hour rule. If you're not sure if you should buy something, then wait 24 hours to see if you still want it as badly after a full day has passed.</p> <p>Waiting 24 hours to make a decision to buy is not going to make a difference in the majority of purchases, and as Mikelann Valterra of Forbes puts it, &quot;in the space between thought and action resides judgment. Give yourself some space to consciously think.&quot;</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-scarcity-marketing-tricks-you-to-spend-more&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520Scarcity%2520Marketing%2520Tricks%2520You%2520to%2520Spend%2520More.jpg&amp;description=How%20Scarcity%20Marketing%20Tricks%20You%20to%20Spend%20More"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20Scarcity%20Marketing%20Tricks%20You%20to%20Spend%20More.jpg" alt="How Scarcity Marketing Tricks You to Spend More" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-scarcity-marketing-tricks-you-to-spend-more">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-one-question-you-should-ask-before-every-major-purchase">The One Question You Should Ask Before Every Major Purchase</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-items-you-should-never-buy-online">8 Items You Should Never Buy Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-its-better-to-buy-at-the-last-minute">6 Things It&#039;s Better to Buy at the Last Minute</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-unusual-stores-where-you-can-find-great-bargains">9 Unusual Stores Where You Can Find Great Bargains</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-social-media-tricks-you-into-spending-more">8 Ways Social Media Tricks You Into Spending More</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping marketing tactics mental bias shopping tips Shopping Tricks spending more Fri, 09 Mar 2018 10:00:06 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2113552 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Rack Up Extra Rewards Points by Buying Gift Cards http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-rack-up-extra-rewards-points-by-buying-gift-cards <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-rack-up-extra-rewards-points-by-buying-gift-cards" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businesspeople_exchanging_visiting_card.jpg" alt="Businesspeople Exchanging Visiting Card" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you're out of ideas for buying a present, a gift card can be an easy way out. Not only are gift cards available for use at most major retailers, but they're easy to find. You can buy gift cards while doing your other shopping at supermarkets, office supply stores, and drugstores. And if you're trying to maximize the amount of credit card rewards you earn, buying gift cards can be an important tool in your arsenal.</p> <h2>Buying gift cards at the right store</h2> <p>Since many different stores sell gift cards, buying a gift card can be an opportunity to earn additional rewards for your purchase. For example, some credit cards offer bonus rewards at grocery stores, which typically have large racks full of gift cards. Also, there are small-business credit cards that offer as many as five points per dollar spent at office supply stores, which can have a vast selection of gift cards.</p> <p>In fact, some credit card rewards enthusiasts will often buy gift cards for their own personal consumption, in order to earn bonus rewards for their purchases. For example, if you have a large home improvement project, you might choose to purchase Home Depot gift cards at an office supply store using a small-business credit card that offers you 5x points there.</p> <h2>Purchasing gift cards to meet a minimum spending requirement</h2> <p>Many credit cards offer extremely valuable welcome bonuses of points, miles, or cash back to new applicants. However, these offers usually require you to spend a specific amount, often several thousand dollars, within a limited time period &mdash; typically three months. If you are unable to meet that requirement through your normal spending, you could consider purchasing gift cards that you can use later. Of course, you shouldn't consider doing so unless you are able to avoid interest charges by paying off your entire statement balance in full.</p> <h2>Retail versus general purpose gift cards</h2> <p>When purchasing gift cards, you have two options. The first is to purchase a gift card for a specific retailer. These are sometimes called &quot;closed loop cards,&quot; because you can only use them at that retailer. Closed loop cards will not carry any additional fees, so a $100 gift card will only cost $100.00. On the other hand, these cards can only be used for purchases at a single store or restaurant.</p> <p>The other option is to purchase a general purpose gift card that allows you to make purchases at any retailer that participates in a payment network such as Visa, MasterCard, or American Express. These are known as &quot;open loop gift cards.&quot; While they offer additional flexibility, you'll have to pay fees to activate and use them, which can be as high as $8.95 per card. Furthermore, there are some retailers that won't allow you to purchase generic gift cards with your credit card.</p> <h2>Earning additional rewards from your gift card purchases</h2> <p>Beyond the rewards offered by your credit card issuer, it's also possible to earn additional rewards directly from a store. For example, some supermarkets will give you fuel points for all purchases including gift cards. These points will allow you to save money when purchasing gas from their fuel centers. And wholesale stores often give their members some amount of cash back for their annual purchases, which can include gift cards. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-to-use-at-costco?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards to Use at Costco</a>)</p> <h2>Gift card reselling</h2> <p>Some hobbyists have found a way to earn credit card rewards by buying discounted gift cards and then reselling them. With these transactions, the buyer might take a small monetary loss, break even, or even make a very small profit, all while earning enough points, miles, or cash back from their credit cards to justify the purchase.</p> <p>However, this isn't an easy way to generate reward points or to earn money. Anyone who gets into this hobby should be extremely organized with their finances, and should never incur credit card debt in the process. The debt will negate any small value you gain from the rewards you earn. Also, there's no guarantee you can offload the gift cards, or that selling fees won't eat up any of those gains, either.</p> <p>Gift cards can make for good gifts, but there are a lot of other uses for them. By buying the right gift cards from the right retailer, you can possibly earn valuable rewards for your purchases.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-rack-up-extra-rewards-points-by-buying-gift-cards&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Rack%2520Up%2520Extra%2520Rewards%2520Points%2520by%2520Buying%2520Gift%2520Cards.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Rack%20Up%20Extra%20Rewards%20Points%20by%20Buying%20Gift%20Cards"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Rack%20Up%20Extra%20Rewards%20Points%20by%20Buying%20Gift%20Cards.jpg" alt="How to Rack Up Extra Rewards Points by Buying Gift Cards" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-rack-up-extra-rewards-points-by-buying-gift-cards">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much">Why You Should Sign Up for Airline Rewards Even If You Don&#039;t Travel Much</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points">6 Things to Consider Before Making a Big Purchase for Rewards Points</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-ways-to-use-technology-to-save-on-christmas-shopping">6 Easy Ways to Use Technology to Save on Christmas Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries">The Best Credit Cards for Groceries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping credit card rewards gift buying gift card tips gift cards rewards points shopping tips Thu, 01 Mar 2018 09:30:09 +0000 Jason Steele 2108840 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Dress for Success Before You're Successful http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-dress-for-success-before-youre-successful <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-dress-for-success-before-youre-successful" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_trying_new_cloth.jpg" alt="Woman trying new cloth" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Designer suits, handbags, shoes, and accessories &mdash; these are often visual displays of wealth and success. Unfortunately, when looking for our next big opportunity, interviewers expect us to dress the part before we're actually making the kind of money required to do so.</p> <p>Luckily, you don't have to make mega bucks in order to <em>look</em> successful. There are plenty of ways you can dress the part without emptying your wallet. Here are a few tips on how you can dress for success before you're successful.</p> <h2>1. Rent your outfits</h2> <p>Can't afford to buy a new suit or dress? Rent it instead.</p> <p><a href="https://www.renttherunway.com/" target="_blank">Rent the Runway</a> is perfect for finding trendy and special-occasion pieces at a fraction of the cost. Essentially, with Rent the Runway you pay to rent a designer piece for a few days or weeks. So instead of paying thousands of dollars, you can rent a designer suit, for instance, for around $100. Rent the Runway is ideal for anyone who is looking to make a big impression, but isn't quite ready to buy designer clothing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-ways-to-save-money-on-clothing?ref=seealso" target="_blank">50 Ways to Update Your Wardrobe for Cheap</a>)</p> <h2>2. Go thrifting</h2> <p>You may be surprised at what you can find while thrifting. Goodwill, local thrift shops, and consignment stores are all great places to find designer clothing at a discount. You never know what kinds of quality gems are hidden on thrift shop racks. Thrift shops are particularly useful for finding basic pieces, such as professional blouses and skirts. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thrifting-the-perfect-designer-wardrobe?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Thrifting the Perfect Designer Wardrobe</a>)</p> <h2>3. Online consignment shops</h2> <p>If you aren't having luck with local thrift shops, you can always try consignment clothing websites and apps, such as <a href="https://www.thredup.com/" target="_blank">ThredUp</a> and <a href="https://poshmark.com/" target="_blank">Poshmark</a>. With these sites, you can score many gently used designer pieces for under $50. Many items sell quickly, so be sure to act fast if you see a piece you really want. You can also sell your unwanted items for credit on these sites, and spend $0 out of pocket shopping for the work attire you need. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/turn-old-clothes-into-money-with-these-4-tools-and-apps?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Turn Old Clothes Into Money With These 4 Tools and Apps</a>)</p> <h2>4. Shop your friends' closets</h2> <p>Think you're too old to share clothes with your siblings or friends? Think again. Many of your peers are likely in the same boat as you. They may be looking for the next step in their career, but don't have a lot of extra money to spend on a new wardrobe. Help a sister (or brother) out when they're interviewing for a new job by lending them some of your clothes, and they'll likely to return the favor someday.</p> <h2>5. Keep it neat</h2> <p>Your clothes can play in an important part in your overall look, but what's even more important is the impression you leave. Simple things, like making sure you're practicing good posture, smile, and keeping your hair and makeup tidy can make a world of a difference in how others view you.</p> <h2>6. Check out department stores</h2> <p>When considering where to find clothes for cheap, department stores may not be the first thing that comes to mind. But often, they run super sales on clothing you can wear to work, such as suits, bags, and other basics. Keep your eye out to see if you can score some classic pieces for cheap.</p> <h2>7. Befriend the local cobbler</h2> <p>Cobblers might seem slightly old school, but they can miraculously make your old shoes look (and feel) brand-new again. Instead of spending your last dollars to purchase a new pair of shoes, talk to your cobbler to see if he or she can resuscitate what you already have.</p> <h2>8. Skip the dry cleaning</h2> <p>Most dress clothes shouldn't actually be sent to the cleaners after each wear. For delicates, such as silk or cashmere, dry cleaning can actually damage the fabric. So what can you do?</p> <p>Silk and cashmere should be hand-washed in most cases in order to extend the life of the piece. Wool suits need to be steamed and cleaned only when necessary. You can purchase a bottle of <a href="http://amzn.to/2Hj31Xh" target="_blank">wool or cashmere cleaner</a> and spot treat any minor stains. To freshen up your suit, you can always wash down the lining or spray with nonirritating fabric freshener.</p> <h2>9. Accessorize</h2> <p>If you have a few quality clothing pieces already, but are looking to make each outfit more your style, you can always accessorize. Accessories, such as jewelry, purses, pocket squares, or ties don't have to cost much, but they can update an outfit in an instant. Plus, accessories are easy to store and won't take up as much space in your closet. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-places-to-find-inexpensive-accessories?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Places to Find Inexpensive Accessories</a>)</p> <h2>10. Keep it simple</h2> <p>When choosing professional pieces, it's a good idea to choose classic designs with simple, neutral colors. That way, you can mix and match everything in your closet, making it look like you have more clothing options than you really do. And by sticking with the classics, you'll be able to wear each piece for years to come, which saves you money in the long run. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-wardrobe-basics-for-women-that-are-worth-investing-in?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Wardrobe Basics for Women That Are Worth Investing In</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-dress-for-success-before-youre-successful&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Dress%2520for%2520Success%2520Before%2520Youre%2520Successful.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Dress%20for%20Success%20Before%20Youre%20Successful"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Dress%20for%20Success%20Before%20Youre%20Successful.jpg" alt="How to Dress for Success Before You're Successful" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rachel-slifka">Rachel Slifka</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-dress-for-success-before-youre-successful">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-money-saving-tricks-to-know-before-buying-an-engagement-ring">12 Money-Saving Tricks to Know Before Buying an Engagement Ring</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much">Why You Should Sign Up for Airline Rewards Even If You Don&#039;t Travel Much</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-gel-nail-polishes">The 5 Best Gel Nail Polishes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-manicure-kits">The 5 Best Manicure Kits</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Style career tips Dress for Success professional attire saving money on clothes shopping tips work clothes Fri, 23 Feb 2018 09:00:07 +0000 Rachel Slifka 2106616 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Things That Are Cheaper to Replace Than to Fix http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/broken_fridge_902703032.jpg" alt="Finding things that are cheaper to replace than to fix" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Before you hire a handyperson to fix what's broken, consider the cost. The truth is, some things are cheaper to send to the scrap heap and replace with new or refurbished models, than to repair. From wonky TVs to cordless vacuum cleaners (and a few other everyday items), here are eight things you're better off parting with before it becomes a money pit.</p> <h2>1. Most appliances</h2> <p>On average, appliance repair services charge between&nbsp;<a href="https://www.homeadvisor.com/cost/kitchens/repair-an-appliance/" target="_blank">$100 and $250 an hour for labor on major appliances</a>, according to HomeAdvisor, and that's before you factor in the price of parts and other service fees and taxes. Smaller appliances, like microwaves, can be repaired for around $70 an hour (plus the cost of parts), but when you consider the cost of a <a href="http://amzn.to/2Hhh6nI" target="_blank">new microwave</a> &mdash; most decent models of which fall in the $50 to $100 range &mdash; you'd be silly not to just update the broken machine. HouseLogic.com provides a tip on&nbsp;<a href="https://www.houselogic.com/organize-maintain/home-maintenance-tips/when-to-repair-or-replace-large-appliances/" target="_blank">how to decide to repair or replace</a>. It's called the 50-percent rule, and it suggests that if an appliance is more than 50 percent through its life span, and if the cost of one repair is more than 50 percent of the cost of buying new, then you should replace rather than repair.</p> <p>You could, of course, try to DIY the fix, like I did with a dishwasher that stopped draining water efficiently. I went online to research the problem, and I found a helpful YouTube video that walked me through how to remove the parts. Working through it, I discovered a rogue screw in the chopper element of the dishwasher, which was clogging it up. The 20-minute project from start to finish saved me a few hundred dollars.</p> <p>Before you take drastic measures, however, check to make sure the appliance is actually broken. Is it plugged in? Have circuit breakers tripped? Has flooring become uneven? (This can stop some appliances from turning on.) Are the vents and filters clear of lint, dust, and debris? Once you've assessed the situation appropriately, make your next move. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-smart-ways-to-help-your-appliances-retain-their-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Smart Ways to Help Your Appliances Retain Their Value</a>)</p> <h2>2. Car parts</h2> <p>Across the board, it's almost always cheaper to replace a broken car part than repair it.</p> <p>&quot;Unless you're driving a much older car whose replacement parts are very hard to come by, parts are abundant for modern vehicles,&quot; says Richard Reina, product training director of CARiD.com, an online aftermarket auto retailer. &quot;In addition to being more readily available, new, mass-produced parts tend to cost less than more custom replacement parts of the past. Finally, repairing a broken element of your vehicle, no matter how simple, can come with incredibly high labor costs. It is not cost-efficient to pay a technician $40 an hour or more to spend four hours removing a component and rebuilding it, when the total cost of replacement is less. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-easy-diy-car-repairs-to-save-big?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Easy DIY Car Repairs to Save Big</a>)</p> <h2>3. TVs</h2> <p>I never buy the warranty when I get a new television, because reliable brand-name TVs are relatively inexpensive these days, especially when they're on sale. I've never owned a TV that has malfunctioned in any way. That's probably because I tend to upgrade every five years or so (picture quality, sound, and size changes so drastically over that time that I can't help myself), but even if the TV did break somehow and it was out of warranty, I'd just replace it.</p> <h2>4. Coffee machines</h2> <p>At the high end of home or office coffee machines, you're looking at a $200 to $250 investment, but most in-the-middle models cost around $150. However, you can definitely get a perfectly fine coffee machine for around $20, which is why replacement over repair makes sense here.</p> <p>A friend told me a story of her work coffee machine breaking down, and since it was a crucial part of the office, they wanted it fixed ASAP. Initially, they researched if they could fix it themselves, but it became clear how expensive it would be. Since it was out of warranty, they would've had to buy replacement parts to try to fix it. After hopping on eBay and other local suppliers, they noticed that the prices were ridiculously high to buy new parts. There were also no guarantees that the machine would work after buying them. To save time and money, they decided to buy a brand-new coffee machine, which was cheaper than the individual parts collectively, plus it came with a brand-new two-year warranty &mdash; an added value you should always consider when contemplating a repair versus replacement.</p> <h2>5. Cordless vacuum cleaners</h2> <p>ModernCastle.com, a site dedicated to reviewing vacuum cleaners, recently did a test of cordless vacuums that it identified as more expensive to repair than replace. The most common issue is a dying battery, because most of the batteries are lithium ion, which only last two to three years.</p> <p>Editor-in-chief Derek Hales provided a few examples of the research.</p> <p>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2EF4c4G" target="_blank">Shark Pet Perfect 2</a> has a replacement battery that costs as much as a brand-new unit (about $50). The <a href="http://amzn.to/2HgzMUH" target="_blank">Black &amp; Decker V16 Cordless</a> and <a href="http://amzn.to/2CjjuXr" target="_blank">Bissell Pet Hair Cordless</a>, on the other hand, don't have replacement batteries available, forcing you to buy a new model every couple of years. Repair isn't even an option, and that's problematic for an appliance with such a short life span. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-long-these-6-appliances-should-last?ref=seealso" target="_blank">This Is How Long These 6 Appliances Should Last</a>)</p> <p>It's worth noting that some companies that sell battery-operated appliances will replace the battery for free if you reach out to customer service and explain your issue.</p> <h2>6. Clothing</h2> <p>If you have expensive designer pieces, especially handbags or shoes, repair is probably worth the investment, mostly because these accessories have a respectable resale value. Otherwise, the only thing I consider is how much I love a piece, which isn't much since I don't have any attachment to specific items in my closet, and I welcome the chance to buy new ones. For example, I had a few sweaters taken in a few years ago after I lost a bit of weight, and the bill was up there. Almost as much as buying the sweaters brand-new, and I would have if they were available in a smaller size, but they weren't. Everything else, I just toss, donate, or learn to love with its new imperfection. I buy everything on super sale anyway, so repair isn't worth the consideration.</p> <h2>7. Hot water heaters or boilers</h2> <p>Boilers pose a dilemma when it comes to replacing or repairing. It ultimately comes down to what the problem is (which will likely only be solved with a service call) and how badly the unit is affected.</p> <p>Older boilers that haven't had many issues are prime candidates for the scrap yard, especially if they haven't been serviced regularly. Older models also are likely to cost more to repair than their newer counterparts; newer models eventually become the standard to consider, as well as the age and pressure through the years.</p> <p>The initial costs of a repair won't match new installation. But while it may seem cheaper now, additional damages and inefficient running costs should be a consideration for boilers that are more than 10 years old.</p> <h2>8. Gaming consoles</h2> <p>You're more likely to spend more on repairing a PS4 or Xbox One than replacing. Repairs to these systems can take some time, and when you factor in shipping costs (because have you experienced shipping costs lately?), you're probably better off buying a new console altogether.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Things%2520That%2520Are%2520Cheaper%2520to%2520Replace%2520Than%2520to%2520Fix.jpg&amp;description=8%20Things%20That%20Are%20Cheaper%20to%20Replace%20Than%20to%20Fix"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Things%20That%20Are%20Cheaper%20to%20Replace%20Than%20to%20Fix.jpg" alt="8 Things That Are Cheaper to Replace Than to Fix" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket">How a Simple &quot;Do Not Buy&quot; List Keeps Money in Your Pocket</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-big-on-indoor-and-outdoor-greenery">How to Save Big on Indoor and Outdoor Greenery</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-household-fixes-you-should-stop-paying-others-for">5 Household Fixes You Should Stop Paying Others For</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-classic-impulse-buys-we-need-to-stop-falling-for">10 Classic Impulse Buys We Need to Stop Falling For</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Shopping broken appliance car repair Home repair saving money shopping tips Mon, 19 Feb 2018 09:00:06 +0000 Mikey Rox 2105464 at http://www.wisebread.com 15 Winter Must-Haves to Keep in Your Car http://www.wisebread.com/15-winter-must-haves-to-keep-in-your-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/15-winter-must-haves-to-keep-in-your-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_scraping_and_cleans_snow_off_car.jpg" alt="Woman scraping and cleans snow off car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having your car break down in the winter sucks, but not as much as breaking down and being stranded without the proper supplies. You never know how long you'll be stuck on the side of the road, and without the right tools and survival supplies, you could be in serious danger. Avoid adding insult to injury (hopefully not literally) with these items that you should have in your car when winter weather is a threat to driving safety.</p> <h2>1. Ice scraper</h2> <p>Take it from someone who used to use debit cards to chip away at ice on my windshield, an <a href="http://amzn.to/2DOovJ8" target="_blank">ice scraper</a> is worth the investment &mdash; if only so you don't have to keep calling your bank to request new cards.</p> <h2>2. Jumper cables</h2> <p>You can't go anywhere if your battery is dead, which means you could be stuck for a long time if you're in a secluded area with no cell service or a dead phone. Keep <a href="http://amzn.to/2Gx5HAa" target="_blank">jumper cables</a> in your car (at all times!) to avoid this precarious predicament.</p> <p>Adds CARiD.com's product training director Richard Reina, &quot;Another, lesser-known item that might be helpful during the winter is a battery blanket. Batteries lose their starting power in the cold and these blankets can help extend the life of your battery and help it start during cold conditions.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-car-battery-warmers?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Car Battery Warmers</a>)</p> <h2>3. Foldable shovel</h2> <p>You can find relatively inexpensive, <a href="http://amzn.to/2DNIAiQ" target="_blank">foldable snow shovels</a> that can slide under seats and in the trunks of even the smallest cars. These are essential if you encounter an unexpected snowstorm that leaves your car buried.</p> <h2>4. Extra vehicle fluids</h2> <p>Having small amounts of vital vehicle fluids, like de-icing and wiper fluids, will help you avoid the very dangerous situation of running out and therefore not being able to see through your windows properly. Add wintry precipitation into the mix and you have a recipe for disaster.</p> <p>&quot;Many brands of de-icing fluid suggest using a 50/50 mix of fluid and water,&quot; adds Reina. &quot;In the winter, particularly if you live somewhere that gets very cold, you may want to switch to using 100 percent fluid in your vehicle.&quot;</p> <h2>5. Snow salt</h2> <p>Keep a small amount of <a href="http://amzn.to/2DQ6oTj" target="_blank">snow salt</a> in the car to help with traction and melting if you encounter a slippery situation. It could mean the difference between working your car free from the snow and ice or not being to get out until someone arrives to help.</p> <h2>6. Flashlight</h2> <p>A lot of people rely on their phones as a flashlight, but you can't put all your eggs in that basket when it comes to car safety, because the phone could die, and you will need to preserve the battery until help arrives. Instead, keep a battery-operated or crank <a href="http://amzn.to/2rV2kjb" target="_blank">flashlight</a> in your car. It's much more reliable and likely brighter.</p> <h2>7. Blankets</h2> <p>If your car's stuck in the cold winter weather, it may take a while for help to arrive. Blankets, particularly made of wool, will help you stay warm if your car is dead and without heat. I also like to carry those hand-warming packets to put in my gloves and shoes; they help me stay toasty out in the cold, and they'll make you more comfortable if you're stranded. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-on-12-winter-essentials?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Save on 12 Winter Essentials</a>)</p> <h2>8. First-aid kit</h2> <p>I keep a first-aid kit in my car at all times, because you never know when you'll need a bandage or other quick-fix medical supplies. Exposed cuts and scrapes can get infected quickly, so it's better to be safe than sorry. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-first-aid-kits?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best First Aid Kits</a>)</p> <h2>9. Tow Rope</h2> <p>A <a href="http://amzn.to/2DMgN2q" target="_blank">tow rope</a> can get you out of those annoying snow ditches, but you also can help others when they're in the same situations. Sharing is caring.</p> <h2>10. An extra pair of clothes</h2> <p>If you're out in the snow, even for a short amount of time, you're going to get wet. Your shoes and gloves will be affected the most, and your hands and feet are extremities you want to keep the warmest. Keep an extra pair of clothing, including socks and shoes, in your trunk so you can change and warm up promptly. You don't want to run the risk of frostbite or hypothermia.</p> <h2>11. Water</h2> <p>You can live at least three weeks without food, but you'll be in pretty bad shape just a few days after your last sip of water. The upside to winter weather, of course, is that if there's snow on the ground, you can eat it to stay hydrated. Just stay away from the yellow patches.</p> <h2>12. Matches and lighters</h2> <p>I keep lighters and matches in a plastic bag in my car just in case I need to start a fire, whether for warmth or a smoke signal. The adventurer in me kind of looks forward to the opportunity, but not when it's teeth-chattering degrees outside.</p> <h2>13. Whistle</h2> <p>It may be hard for your cries for help to cut through wind and precipitation on a particularly stormy winter day. A whistle will do a much better job of that, and could lead potential rescuers to your location.</p> <h2>14. Gloves</h2> <p>You can't do anything helpful for yourself in the event your car breaks down if your hands are frozen.</p> <p>Winter-preparedness advocate Paul Grattan, a sergeant with the NYPD's Transit Bureau, suggests carrying appropriate <a href="http://amzn.to/2DLAIhN" target="_blank">winter gloves</a> or mittens.</p> <p>&quot;They'll help you during snow removal, towing, minor repairs, or tire changes, and they can help you recover and conserve body heat when you're stranded or returning to your vehicle from the cold. I don't rely on the pair I wear during the winter alone; I always carry an extra pair in the car.&quot;</p> <h2>15. Nonperishable snacks</h2> <p>Yeah, you can survive for a while without food, but you don't have to if you pack a few nonperishable snacks in your vehicle.</p> <p>&quot;Dried foods, such as jerky and fruit, as well as nuts, nut butters, and snack bars are great because they are energy-dense,&quot; says Emily Patterson, safety and security expert at ASecureLife.com. &quot;They can keep you going if you're stuck in a storm or with a mechanical issue &mdash; or even just on a road trip with a significant distance between stops.&quot;</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F15-winter-must-haves-to-keep-in-your-car&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F15%2520Winter%2520Must-Haves%2520to%2520Keep%2520in%2520Your%2520Car.jpg&amp;description=15%20Winter%20Must-Haves%20to%20Keep%20in%20Your%20Car"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/15%20Winter%20Must-Haves%20to%20Keep%20in%20Your%20Car.jpg" alt="15 Winter Must-Haves to Keep in Your Car" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-winter-must-haves-to-keep-in-your-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gift-giving-etiquette-to-get-you-through-the-holidays">Gift Giving Etiquette to Get You Through the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-master-these-10-shopping-skills-before-you-hit-30">How to Master These 10 Shopping Skills Before You Hit 30</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/simplify-your-life-with-these-27-monthly-subscription-services">Simplify Your Life With These 27 Monthly Subscription Services</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-luxury-pens">The 5 Best Luxury Pens</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Shopping car trouble first aid must-haves shopping tips travel must-haves winter winter must-haves Thu, 01 Feb 2018 10:00:06 +0000 Mikey Rox 2097063 at http://www.wisebread.com Why New Purchases On a Balance Transfer Card Can Cost You http://www.wisebread.com/why-new-purchases-on-a-balance-transfer-card-can-cost-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/why-new-purchases-on-a-balance-transfer-card-can-cost-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/scoring_on_some_big_deals_online.jpg" alt="Scoring on some big deals online" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>So, you racked up some holiday debt and want to use a balance transfer to dig yourself out. Since many <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-0-balance-transfer-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">balance transfer credit cards</a> offer 0% APR for 12-21 months &mdash; and some even come without a balance transfer fee &mdash; your strategy makes sense.</p> <p>After you transfer your credit card balances to your new balance transfer card, you'll have the length of your card's introductory offer period to pay down debt with no interest charges. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/step-by-step-guide-to-doing-a-balance-transfer-on-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Do a Balance Transfer, Step by Step</a>)</p> <p>Of course, it's always wise to weigh the pros and cons &mdash; and the costs &mdash; of these offers. The most common cost is the balance transfer fee. While a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-no-balance-transfer-fees?ref=internal" target="_blank">few cards charge no balance transfer fees</a>, most do. A typical a balance transfer fee is 3%-5% of your balance. So for every $5,000 you transfer, you'll fork over $150&ndash; $250 in the form of an upfront fee. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-comprehensive-checklist-for-a-successful-balance-transfer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Comprehensive Checklist to Doing a Balance Transfer</a>)</p> <p>While the interest you'll save by transferring your balance to a 0% APR card can make paying this fee well worth it, you should still do the math when evaluating <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-a-balance-transfer-offer-a-good-deal?ref=internal" target="_blank">whether a balance transfer is the right move for you</a>.</p> <h2>Why you shouldn't use a balance transfer credit card for purchases</h2> <p>But there's another savings killer to be aware of. Using your balance transfer card for new purchases is one of the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-common-mistakes-when-doing-a-balance-transfer-to-eliminate-debt?ref=internal" target="_blank">most common balance transfer mistakes</a> people make. Do so, and you could wind up paying a lot of interest in ways you wouldn't imagine.</p> <p>Here are a few facts to consider as you transfer a balance and decide how and when to use your new credit card.</p> <h3>You're adding to the very balance you're trying to pay off</h3> <p>The top reason not to use your balance transfer card for purchases is because that's working against your goals. If you transferred a balance to pay down debt, using your card for purchases is a lot like emptying buckets of water from a boat with holes. The more water you throw out (monthly payments), the more water (debt) seeps right back in through the holes. And you may even find that you pay down debt much more slowly than you rack it up.</p> <p>The best way to get the most out of a balance transfer is to get 0% APR for as long as you can, minimize fees, and then stop racking up more debt. Focus your efforts on becoming debt-free and stick to cash or debit for a while.</p> <h3>Your payment may not go toward purchases, but instead to your transferred balance</h3> <p>Let's say you transfer a $5,000 balance to a card that offers 0% APR on that balance for 15 months, but charges 16% APR on new purchases. Once you get the card in the mail, you use it to buy a $500 lounge chair for your living room.</p> <p>At this point, you have a balance of $5,500, and a minimum payment of $165 (3% of your balance, which is a common way banks use to calculate your minimum payment). The good news is, because of the Credit Card Act of 2009, anything <em>over</em> your minimum payment must go toward whatever balance has the highest interest rate. The bad news is, your minimum payment can go toward the balance with the lowest interest rate.</p> <p>In this case, your $165 payment would go toward your 0% APR balance and your $500 purchase will start racking up interest at a rate of 16% APR. The only way to avoid this would be to pay your minimum payment, plus the entire balance you've charged, <em>plus any interest you've accrued on the new purchase balance.</em></p> <h3>You may not get a grace period</h3> <p>But why would you have interest on your account if you made a purchase with a 0% APR credit card?</p> <p>While a lot of consumers don't realize this, carrying a balance on your credit card means forgoing your grace period &mdash; the amount of time you have to pay your credit card in full without paying interest. Grace periods must be at least 21 days by law, so you have at least 21 days to avoid all interest charges on regular purchases <em>provided</em> you don't carry a balance.</p> <p>When you transfer a balance to a new credit card, however, you <em>are</em> carrying a balance. That means forgoing your grace period altogether on new purchases. You'll start accruing interest on purchases you make with your balance transfer card from the moment you make them. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-you-didn-t-understand-about-credit-card-interest-grace-periods-and-penalty-aprs?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Everything You Didn't Understand About Credit Card Interest, Grace Periods, and Penalty APRs</a>)</p> <h2>The right way to use a balance transfer credit card</h2> <p>The bottom line: Using a balance transfer credit card for purchases can be a risky endeavor. Generally speaking, it means racking up interest without a grace period. And obviously, things could easily get worse in a hurry if you can't pay your minimum payment plus your entire purchase balance off right away.</p> <p>That's why you're better off not using a balance transfer card for purchases. Transfer your balance to the 0% APR card, then focus on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-first-steps-to-paying-off-debt?ref=internal" target="_blank">paying off debt</a> instead of charging up a bigger balance. Or, at the very least, make sure you get a 0% APR credit card that offers zero interest on both balance transfers <em>and </em>purchases. Cards like this do exist, so if you really need to, make sure you're applying for one of those. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards with 0% APR for Purchases</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fwhy-new-purchases-on-a-balance-transfer-card-can-cost-you&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FWhy%2520New%2520Purchases%2520On%2520a%2520Balance%2520Transfer%2520Card%2520Can%2520Cost%2520You.jpg&amp;description=Why%20New%20Purchases%20On%20a%20Balance%20Transfer%20Card%20Can%20Cost%20You"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Why%20New%20Purchases%20On%20a%20Balance%20Transfer%20Card%20Can%20Cost%20You.jpg" alt="Why New Purchases On a Balance Transfer Card Can Cost You" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-new-purchases-on-a-balance-transfer-card-can-cost-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points">6 Things to Consider Before Making a Big Purchase for Rewards Points</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/step-by-step-guide-to-doing-a-balance-transfer-on-credit-cards">Step-by-Step Guide to Doing a Balance Transfer on Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/your-comprehensive-checklist-for-a-successful-balance-transfer">Your Comprehensive Checklist for a Successful Balance Transfer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-a-balance-transfer-does-to-your-credit">Here&#039;s What a Balance Transfer Does to Your Credit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for">5 Store Card Pitfalls to Watch Out for</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards balance transfer balance transfer card credit card tips shopping shopping tips Tue, 30 Jan 2018 09:30:08 +0000 Holly Johnson 2095897 at http://www.wisebread.com How a Simple "Do Not Buy" List Keeps Money in Your Pocket http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-157679664.jpg" alt="create a do not buy list" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you find yourself scrolling through retail sites when you're stressed? Do you gaze longingly at all the clothes you want to buy? Are you anxious until you get your hands on the latest tech gadget?</p> <p>If so, those are signs that you may be spending money that you don't have. Sure, retail therapy feels good in the moment, but the resulting worry about the money you spent and the debt you created will bring you right back down.</p> <p>Try taking a break from shopping for several weeks, months, or even a whole year. It <em>can</em> be done. Even if your shopping isn't out of control and creating debt, taking a break can create some space in your life and free up some money that you can spend or save elsewhere.</p> <p>And it all starts with a list.</p> <h2>The &quot;Do Not Buy&quot; inspiration</h2> <p>Author Ann Patchett made her own list of rules about what she could and could not buy for her &quot;<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/15/opinion/sunday/shopping-consumerism.html" target="_blank">Year of No Shopping</a>&quot; project. She decided that she would not buy clothing, shoes, accessories, jewelry, or technology. She could buy things like shampoo and batteries, but only when she had run out of what she already had. She gave herself flexibility when it came to gifts, but even there she tried to give people time or books, rather than things.</p> <p>She made rules that fit her lifestyle and still allowed her to do her work. For instance, she continued to buy books because she owns a bookstore, writes books, and generally finds that books are a huge part of her life. She permitted herself to buy anything she wanted at the grocery store and to continue dining out regularly.</p> <p>Sure, she saved money, but that wasn't all she found in the year that she followed her no-shopping rules. Following the rules gave her a better perspective on money and its power, on how we get it, how we use it, and what it's good for. She began to think about how many people do not have the money to buy what they need, let alone what they want, and started to have more compassion for them. She also learned that the feeling of wanting something passes relatively quickly.</p> <p>She saved time, she says, because she was not only not buying, but she wasn't looking at things, either. This means that she didn't scroll through retail sites, she didn't window shop at the mall &mdash; she just didn't shop. In fact, she gained so much from her year of not shopping that she decided to extend it for another year!</p> <h2>How to make it work for you</h2> <p>If you're like me, you can think of at least one thing you need to stop buying. Maybe you've thought of several. Write them down and start your list. If you're not sure what should go on your list, here are a few ideas to help you get started.</p> <h3>Think about buyer's remorse</h3> <p>Have you made any purchases in the last few months that you regretted later? Write them down and see if you notice a pattern. Maybe it's all clothing, or things you bought when you were angry, or inebriated. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-prevent-a-drunken-online-shopping-spree?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Prevent a Drunken Online Shopping Spree</a>)</p> <p>Whatever the pattern is, figure out a rule that will help you break it. Maybe you need to stop buying clothes, like Patchett did, or refuse to shop when you're angry. Whatever the pattern, there's a rule that can help.</p> <h3>Review your bank statements</h3> <p>Look for spending patterns in your bank statements. Are there certain stores where you spend a lot of money, certain categories where you spend more, or certain times of the week, month, or year when you spend more? In a manner similar to that outlined above, find a rule that will help you break your cycles.</p> <h3>Assess your cravings</h3> <p>Just as a craving for sugar every afternoon can mean that it's time to step away from the sweets for a while, a craving for certain items can mean that it's time to stop buying them. Are there products or categories of items that you always want to buy? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-effortless-ways-to-prevent-budget-busting-impulse-buys?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Effortless Ways to Prevent Budget-Busting Impulse Buys</a>)</p> <p>If you aren't sure, think about where you end up if you're wandering around Target or a shopping mall. Do you go to Lululemon? The Body Shop? The Apple Store? Think, too, about stores where you have a credit card (or wish you did), or sites you follow closely online so you can make sure you're getting all of the deals right when they drop.</p> <p>Unsubscribe from their emails, unfollow them on social media, and steer clear of the stores in person. If you cut off contact, you won't be tempted to spend there.</p> <h3>Be realistic</h3> <p>The point of a &quot;Do Not Buy&quot; list is to make a list that actually works for you and your lifestyle. Nothing has to be oppressive or overly stringent. Most of us have areas where we would like to cut back, as well as things we'll still have to spend money on in order to live.</p> <p>This will be different for everyone. Maybe you already have plenty of workout clothes, but you need to update your work wardrobe, or you've been planning to buy a new computer the next time Apple makes an announcement, but you don't need a new phone. You can make rules to fit all of these.</p> <p>You can also allow yourself exceptions to your own rules, as you see fit. If you're a writer and your computer dies midyear, it's probably acceptable to buy a new one even if you have electronics on your Do Not Buy list. You can also add rules as you go along if you find you enjoy the freedom of not buying, or you see other shopping habits you want to break.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520a%2520Simple%2520Do%2520Not%2520Buy%2520List%2520Keeps%2520Money%2520in%2520Your%2520Pocket.jpg&amp;description=How%20a%20Simple%20Do%20Not%20Buy%20List%20Keeps%20Money%20in%20Your%20Pocket"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20a%20Simple%20Do%20Not%20Buy%20List%20Keeps%20Money%20in%20Your%20Pocket.jpg" alt="How a Simple &quot;Do Not Buy&quot; List Keeps Money in Your Pocket" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-classic-impulse-buys-we-need-to-stop-falling-for">10 Classic Impulse Buys We Need to Stop Falling For</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-things-that-should-never-cost-more-than-99">11 Things That Should Never Cost More Than $99</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-everyday-money-tasks-youve-been-doing-wrong">12 Everyday Money Tasks You&#039;ve Been Doing Wrong</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix">8 Things That Are Cheaper to Replace Than to Fix</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Shopping frugal tips saving money shopping hacks shopping list shopping tips year of no shopping Mon, 22 Jan 2018 09:00:06 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 2091125 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Store Card Pitfalls to Watch Out for http://www.wisebread.com/5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/attractive_woman_with_credit_card_and_laptop.jpg" alt="Attractive woman with credit card and laptop" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've ever visited a department store, you've probably seen how they use credit card promotions to rope you in. The first clue you're being scouted usually takes place at the register. As you check out and prepare to pay, the cashier hints that you could save 20% or 30% on today's purchase, but there's a catch. To score this amazing discount, you need to sign up for a store credit card.</p> <p>Store credit cards work similarly to traditional credit cards in that they let you charge purchases and pay them back over time. The biggest difference is, you can often only use your store card at one department store or a family of stores. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/store-credit-cards-that-dont-suck?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Store Credit Cards That Don&rsquo;t Suck</a>)</p> <p>While nothing is technically wrong with store credit cards &mdash; and they can absolutely help you score killer deals on in-store merchandise &mdash; that doesn't mean they're risk free. There are several features of store cards that set them apart from most other credit cards, and that can turn into pitfalls if you're not careful.</p> <p>Before you excitedly rush into applying for a store card to get the promotional deal, here are some downsides to be aware of.</p> <h2>1. High interest rates</h2> <p>One of the biggest pitfalls of store credit cards is the fact that they tend to charge higher interest rates than regular credit cards. Sure, cardholders may get coupons for 20% or 30% off purchases, but you'll pay heavily for those discounts if you dare to carry a balance.</p> <p>One popular clothing retailer advertises 30% off your first purchase and 12 extra discounts per year if you sign up as a cardholder, but the fine print reveals that the card's ongoing APR is 24.99%. If you ever plan to carry a balance, you'd be better off forgoing the store card and discounts and signing up for a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-low-interest-rate-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">low interest credit card</a> instead.</p> <h2>2. Limited acceptance</h2> <p>Another big downside of store credit cards is the fact that most, but not all, can only be used at select stores. These are called &quot;closed-loop&quot; since you can only use them at that particular merchant.</p> <p>Still, some retail cards are also co-branded with Visa or MasterCard. This makes them useful if you need credit for an emergency purchase like a car repair. If you plan to get a credit card to score discounts or rewards, but also think you might use it for emergencies, look for a co-branded card. Some retailers offer both co-branded and closed-loop cards.</p> <h2>3. Narrow rewards redemptions options</h2> <p>Some store credit cards offer their own rewards programs, but these programs are typically limited in scope. For example, one department store card lets you earn 3-6 points per $1 spent at that store, depending on your purchase. But you have to spend 5,000 points to get a $25 gift card. That means you might have to make around $1,667 in purchases to get a $25 reward.</p> <p>That is a rate of return of around 1.5 points per $1 spent (or 1.5%), but your reward is only good for gift cards at that store, making its value severely limited. On the flip side, you could easily find a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash-back credit card</a> that offers 2% cash back or more. With that strategy, you could use your rewards however you want.</p> <h2>4. Deferred interest</h2> <p>Deferred interest is another gimmick department stores use to rope consumers into signing up for a store credit card. These offers are usually advertised similarly to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">zero interest credit card</a> offers, but they&rsquo;re not the same thing. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the biggest telltale sign of a deferred interest offer is that the term &quot;if&quot; is used. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/deferred-interest-credit-cards-dont-fall-for-this-trick-over-the-holidays?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Deferred Interest Credit Cards: Don't Fall For This Trick Over The Holidays</a>)</p> <p>For example, a 0% offer on a credit card may say something like, &quot;0% APR on purchases for 12 months,&quot; whereas a deferred interest offer will say, &quot;No interest if paid in full within 12 months.&quot;</p> <p>That &quot;if&quot; makes a big difference because, if you don't pay your balance in full as the offer specifies, you'll be hit with retroactive interest charges.</p> <p>&quot;Deferred interest means that if you do not pay off the entire balance of the promotional purchase you've made on your card, then interest going back to the date of the purchase will be added on top of the remaining balance,&quot; <a href="https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/blog/how-understand-special-promotional-financing-offers-credit-cards/" target="_blank">writes the CFPB</a>. &quot;This promotion may also require you to meet other terms as well, such as making your minimum monthly payments on time.&quot;</p> <p>Here's how deferred interest works: Imagine you financed $400 in holiday shopping purchases on a store credit card that offered no interest if you paid your balance in full within 12 months. However, the card's interest rate is normally 25%.</p> <p>Your purchases would accrue $100 in interest charges during the first 12 months, even if they weren't charged right away. If, after 12 months, you hadn't paid down the entire $400 balance, you would immediately see $100 in interest charges added to your bill.</p> <h2>5. Store closures</h2> <p>Store closures are yet another pitfall to watch out for with store credit cards, and this issue really seems to be coming to a head. Major retail chains have closed as many as 5,000 stores in 2017.</p> <p>If you have a store credit card for a department store that closes, it's not the end of the world. Nothing will happen to your card other than the fact you'll no longer be able to use it. Obviously, you'll still owe your balance plus any interest charges. The worst part, however, is the fact that any rewards you've accrued will be worthless once the store is gone.</p> <p>In that respect, a traditional cash-back rewards card could leave you a lot better off since these cards aren't tied to a particular store. Before you sign up for a store credit card, make sure to consider the fact that the store you patronize now may not be around forever.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Store%2520Card%2520Pitfalls%2520to%2520Watch%2520Out%2520for.jpg&amp;description=5%20Store%20Card%20Pitfalls%20to%20Watch%20Out%20for"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Store%20Card%20Pitfalls%20to%20Watch%20Out%20for.jpg" alt="5 Store Card Pitfalls to Watch Out for" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-store-card-pitfalls-to-watch-out-for">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-to-consider-before-making-a-big-purchase-for-rewards-points">6 Things to Consider Before Making a Big Purchase for Rewards Points</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-new-purchases-on-a-balance-transfer-card-can-cost-you">Why New Purchases On a Balance Transfer Card Can Cost You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-these-6-credit-card-moves-now-to-prepare-for-holiday-shopping">Make These 6 Credit Card Moves Now to Prepare for Holiday Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries">The Best Credit Cards for Groceries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards Shopping credit card tips mistakes to avoid shopping pitfalls shopping tips store card store credit card Tue, 12 Dec 2017 09:30:14 +0000 Holly Johnson 2069777 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Better Ways to Spend $1,000 Than on the New iPhone http://www.wisebread.com/12-better-ways-to-spend-1000-than-on-the-new-iphone <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-better-ways-to-spend-1000-than-on-the-new-iphone" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_choosing_a_new_mobile_phone_in_a_shop.jpg" alt="Woman choosing a new mobile phone in a shop" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Recently I bought the iPhone X, and immediately had buyer's remorse. I'd reconciled the $1,000 price tag with my budget and bank account, but while purchasing the phone through my provider, the extra charges started to rack up. After the upgrade and other fees plus taxes and insurance, the bill came to over $1,400. The phone has since arrived, but it's still in the box because I can't decide whether or not I really want it (because I definitely don't <em>need</em> it) &mdash; especially after all the horror stories about how fragile it is and the very high costs to replace it.</p> <p>Meanwhile, I'm over here thinking about how I can better spend that money if I return the darn thing. If you're in the same boat, let me suggest a few ideas. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-sites-that-will-pay-for-your-old-iphone?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Sites That Will Pay for Your Old iPhone</a>)</p> <h2>1. Buy an alpaca</h2> <p>You may have seen a meme on social media suggesting that you buy an alpaca instead of an iPhone X. It's cute, yeah, but it makes sense. For as low as $500, you can <a href="https://www.openherd.com/alpacas-for-sale/" target="_blank">purchase a darling alpaca</a> from livestock-auction site Openherd. This isn't just a pet, either; it's an investment. Savvy alpaca owners can turn a profit on sheared alpaca fleece, like the folks at Prairie Fields Farm in Columbus, Ohio, which sells its natural alpaca fiber to my fashion-designer pal Celeste Malvar-Stewart who, in turn, creates stunning couture dresses and other pieces from her studio, Hangar 31.</p> <p>Of course, you'll need to learn how to care for your alpaca properly (make sure you have the space, obviously), but because the internet has an answer to almost anything, you're in luck with this <a href="https://modernfarmer.com/2015/09/raising-alpacas/" target="_blank">how-to on raising alpacas</a> from Modern Farmer.</p> <h2>2. Fix whatever needs fixing</h2> <p>Does your vehicle need repairs? Washer and dryer on the fritz? Do you need dental work? Use the grand you planned to spend on the iPhone X to solve these problems that in the long run, will cost you even more money if not addressed. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-simple-household-repairs-every-frugal-person-should-master?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Simple Household Repairs Every Frugal Person Should Master</a>)</p> <h2>3. Open or contribute to an IRA or 401(k)</h2> <p>If you don't already have an IRA, use the $1,000 to open one.</p> <p>&quot;Go straight to an investment banker,&quot; advises personal finance expert Brian Davis, co-founder of the real estate rental site SparkRental.com. &quot;I personally use Charles Schwab because they're easy and cheap, but use whoever you like.&quot; IRAs come with great tax benefits &mdash; contributions are tax-deductible &mdash; and they're extremely easy to set up.</p> <p>If you already have an IRA or a 401(k), get closer to maxing it out &mdash; hopefully with employer matching &mdash; so you're not leaving free money on the table. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/401k-or-ira-you-need-both?ref=seealso" target="_blank">401(k) or IRA? You Need Both</a>)</p> <p>Save yourself hassle and management fees by investing in a low-fee index fund or target date fund, advises Ian Atkins, managing editor of Small Business Finance section of Fit Small Business. &quot;Putting $1,000 in a tax-advantaged retirement account now can mean big value in 30 years,&quot; he says. &quot;Alternatively, a used iPhone X will be almost worthless in three years.&quot;</p> <h2>4. Cross off a bucket-list item</h2> <p>Is there something on your bucket list you've been dying to do? Sky-dive, maybe? Finally taking that trip to Europe? Cross these items off by forgoing the iPhone X. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-do-9-popular-bucket-list-items-on-a-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Where to Do 9 Popular Bucket List Items on a Budget</a>)</p> <h2>5. Spend it on your health and wellness</h2> <p>Your health and wellness should be worth more to you than a phone. It's priceless, actually.</p> <p>Schedule a spa day, invest in products that will provide a better night's sleep, hire a personal trainer to get your fitness back on track, or jet off on a relaxing retreat to nourish your mind, body, and soul.</p> <h2>6. Take a class to learn or enhance skills</h2> <p>If you're between jobs or just want to make a change, invest in yourself by learning new skills or enhancing skills you already have. Look into classes at your local community college or find a specialty online. For example, you might consider the <a href="https://hbx.hbs.edu/courses/entrepreneurship-essentials/" target="_blank">Entrepreneurial Essentials</a> course to advance your career with a certification from Harvard Business School's online program, <a href="https://hbx.hbs.edu/" target="_blank">HBX</a>. This particular option is only $950, leaving you $50 to celebrate your smart decision with cocktails. Holla!</p> <h2>7. Pay off a credit card that's compounding daily interest</h2> <p>I'm gonna be straight with you: If you have existing credit card debt that's compounding daily interest, you can't afford the iPhone X. No if, ands, or buts about that.</p> <p>M.A. Haley, author and founder of RichestMom.com, is with me on this, especially when it comes to cards with high interest rates. She points out that if you put the $1,000 iPhone on a credit card with an APR of 30 percent or more, then only pay the minimum balance every month, it will take you more than five years to clear the balance and will cost you more than $1,000 in interest payments.</p> <p>Bottom line: Don't go deeper into debt to keep up with the Joneses. You know better than that. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-day-debt-reduction-plan-pay-it-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5-Day Debt Reduction Plan: Pay It Off</a>)</p> <h2>8. Invest in artwork</h2> <p>I've invested in artwork for the past 10 years, but not because I want to make money off it. I enjoy looking at the pieces I've purchased from up-and-coming artists &mdash; like my buddy Julian Rapp; his Love Robot is the heart of my collection &mdash; but I do keep my fingers crossed that one day what's hanging on my walls will pay for my retirement. If you research what you're buying and make smart purchases, it may pay off for you, too &mdash; like the lucky ducks who bought an original Banksy without knowing it. No promises, but it's a path to pursue.</p> <h2>9. Put it aside for an emergency</h2> <p>Life throws us curve balls all the time, and sometimes (OK, <em>most</em> of the time) they're expensive. If you don't already have an emergency fund &mdash; which should be between six and nine months' of your usual expenses &mdash; walk straight out of the Apple Store and put your iPhone X money in a safe place for when you need it most. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund-from-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Easy Ways to Build an Emergency Fund From $0</a>)</p> <h2>10. Make home improvements</h2> <p>The great thing about home improvements is that they can add resale value to your home, well beyond the upfront cost of the actual improvements. Take a look around to identify areas that could use updating. This is especially timely if you're planning to sell in the near future. You'll attract buyers much more easily with a home that's clean, modern, and move-in ready without the new owners having to put in too much time or extra money on the back end. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-easy-home-improvements-that-add-thousands-to-your-listing?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Easy Home Improvements That Add Thousands to Your Listing</a>)</p> <h2>11. Invest in blue chip stocks</h2> <p>Did you know that if you invested $1,000 in Amazon 20 years ago you'd be a millionaire by now? Shoulda, coulda, woulda, right? Still, it's not too late to invest in the <em>next </em>Amazon with blue chip stocks.</p> <p>&quot;Blue chip stocks are stocks of well-established companies that are most likely a household name,&quot; explains Ogechi Igbokwe, founder of the savings site OneSavvyDollar. &quot;Fortunately, new investors can download the <a href="https://www.robinhood.com/" target="_blank">Robinhood</a> [free stock trading] app, which charges 0 percent commissions for trades and has no minimum balance requirements to get started. This is an app I use, and so far so good.&quot;</p> <h2>12. Improve the life of someone less fortunate</h2> <p>If there's no part of your life that can benefit from saving $1,000 on a new phone, let your generosity shine. I'm not a proponent of donating to national charities &mdash; some of them seem like they are nothing more than profit-turning business with tax exemptions &mdash; but I've provided loans to <a href="https://www.kiva.org/" target="_blank">Kiva</a> borrowers in the past, which helps low-income entrepreneurs and students realize their dreams.</p> <p>If I do donate to charity, I usually focus on my local community, and even then I do my research. I want to make sure my money will help the person or people in need and not a CEO sitting behind his desk counting the cash. So if you'd like to make a donation to someone or an organization directly, you should do the same and get all the details before donating. Once you know where your money is going, you can rest easy knowing that you just made someone else's life easier, safer, or more comfortable, and that will provide way more joy than a phone ever could.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F12-better-ways-to-spend-1000-than-on-the-new-iphone&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F12%2520Better%2520Ways%2520to%2520Spend%2520%25241%252C000%2520Than%2520on%2520the%2520New%2520iPhone.jpg&amp;description=12%20Better%20Ways%20to%20Spend%20%241%2C000%20Than%20on%20the%20New%20iPhone"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/12%20Better%20Ways%20to%20Spend%20%241%2C000%20Than%20on%20the%20New%20iPhone.jpg" alt="12 Better Ways to Spend $1,000 Than on the New iPhone" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-better-ways-to-spend-1000-than-on-the-new-iphone">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-social-media-tricks-you-into-spending-more">8 Ways Social Media Tricks You Into Spending More</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-simple-do-not-buy-list-keeps-money-in-your-pocket">How a Simple &quot;Do Not Buy&quot; List Keeps Money in Your Pocket</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-that-are-cheaper-to-replace-than-to-fix">8 Things That Are Cheaper to Replace Than to Fix</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-best-couponing-apps">The 10 Best Couponing Apps</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Technology apple products iPhone new phone saving money shopping tips the new iphone Thu, 07 Dec 2017 10:00:06 +0000 Mikey Rox 2068113 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Master These 10 Shopping Skills Before You Hit 30 http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-master-these-10-shopping-skills-before-you-hit-30 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-master-these-10-shopping-skills-before-you-hit-30" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/young_woman_with_shopping_bags.jpg" alt="Young woman with shopping bags" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your 20s are a time of making mistakes, and getting away with being irresponsible from time to time. By the time you hit 30, however, you should learn from those past mistakes, and have your life together, and that includes managing your finances. Part of that overarching concept includes being able to shop savvy so you can save more of your heard-earned cash. Not an easy skill to master, but these tips will give your budget a boost.</p> <h2>1. Comparing prices</h2> <p>Perhaps the most basic shopping skill you need to master is how to compare prices to score the best deals. This takes practice, of course &mdash; you need to know what you're looking for and where to look for it &mdash; but once you've got that down, you can save <em>thousands of dollars</em> a year.</p> <p>Everything from computers to cars, and groceries to getaways are ripe for comparison, and all of it is made much easier by the internet. Spend some time digging to compare the prices across multiple sites. You may be surprised at the disparity in prices across retailers, but that's how our economy works. In this proverbial money-spending competition, only the smartest buyers survive. Invoke your inner Darwinism to always come out on top.</p> <h2>2. Negotiating major purchases</h2> <p>Despite the popularity of online shopping, there are still some things you have to buy in person, and that involves negotiating on price. From haggling with the local flea market vendor to shaking down the car salesman, negotiating skills are essential to getting the fairest and sometimes lowest price available. This can be an intimidating process &mdash; who will buckle first in this financial faceoff? &mdash; but a lack of confidence where your money is concerned will only put a deeper dent in your wallet than is necessary. A big mistake in this area is strictly thinking in dollars and cents. There are other ways to enhance your purchase's value without straight cash back.</p> <p>Mike Catania, chief technology officer of the money-saving site PromotionCode, offers a pro-tip on the back-and-forth of the best deals.</p> <p>&quot;Understand that salespeople get paid on commission, typically X percent over a certain amount,&quot; he explains. &quot;Rather than attacking the commissionable price, make offers around it. Ask for a $200 gift card on top of the appliance or the washer/dryer stands to be included and delivered the same day for free. Your job isn't to punish the salesperson, but to extract the most value that you can from the transaction, and that means thinking outside the box and genuinely understanding the position of the salesperson.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-negotiating-skills-everyone-should-master?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Negotiating Skills Everyone Should Master</a>)</p> <h2>3. Evaluating competing products</h2> <p>It's not just comparing MSRP pricing that will help you determine the best deal or value. Often you have to consider other factors, like consumer reviews, available promos or discounts, add-ons and freebies, warranties, and overall brand quality. I also like to rely on recommendations from family and friends and try things in person so I can get a good look and feel for the product. I don't know how many times I've thought an item looked great online just to get it in my home and hate it. Photos alone can be deceiving, which is why it's essential to do more diligent research on what you're buying, especially if the cost is considerable. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-spot-a-fake-review?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Spot a Fake Review</a>)</p> <h2>4. Separating quality from quantity when clothes shopping</h2> <p>I've always been a clothing junkie, but as I've gotten older, I focus more on the <em>quality </em>of my clothing (because the clothing I like to wear isn't cheap), rather than quantity of having <em>more</em> things to wear. The issue sort of works itself out, though, since quality clothing lasts longer than the cheap stuff I'd pick up. My closet is full of variety as a result of the durable, stylish, classic clothing that I've amassed over the years.</p> <p>Lindsay Sakraida, director of content marketing with DealNews, agrees.</p> <p>&quot;Shopping maturity often means learning the value of spending more on fewer items, so you can shop less in the long run,&quot; she says. &quot;When it comes to clothing and accessories, it can be tempting to keep adding more to your closet, especially when you're looking at cheap, fast fashion. This desire is sometimes present because we want more variety, but often it's because what we're buying isn't satisfying. But if you find a high-quality item that fits like a glove and flatters your body so much that it looks like you've lost weight, you're unlikely to feel the same drive to buy more. You'll feel satisfied with what you've got because you feel good every time you wear it. Often these items cost more, which can be a difficult pill to swallow, but when you take the plunge and see how it affects your other purchases, you may realize that you spend less in the long run.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-qualities-to-look-for-in-well-made-clothing?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Qualities to Look for in Well-Made Clothing</a>)</p> <h2>5. Determining want versus need</h2> <p>I like shopping alone because nobody gets in my head about what I'm buying or judges my purchases, but sometimes it's helpful to employ the buddy system when I've got money to burn so I don't make stupid spending decisions. A good friend will be that little voice on your shoulder helping you decide whether you want or need something, and almost always it's just a want, and not a need. You'll curl your lip at the friend in the moment &mdash; because who asked you, Rachel? &mdash; but you should know the difference by the time you turn 30 unless you want to live in your parents' basement forever surrounded by all your expensive impulse-buys. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-effortless-ways-to-prevent-budget-busting-impulse-buys?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Effortless Ways to Prevent Budget-Busting Impulse Buys</a>)</p> <h2>6. Learning how to just say no</h2> <p>Saying &quot;no&quot; is another shopping skill that sometimes only comes with age.</p> <p>&quot;It's so easy to consider an item on sale and think 'It's so cheap, why not buy it?'&quot; Sakraida says. &quot;But instead, you have to learn to force yourself to consider, <em>Why</em> <em>should</em> <em>I buy it?</em>, regardless of how reasonable the price tag is. A cheap buy is still worthless if it doesn't fit a need or improve your life in a tangible, consistent way.</p> <h2>7. Identifying the right times to buy things</h2> <p>Timing can be everything when it comes to saving money when you shop, like keeping an eye on deals around the holidays or waiting until your birthday to scoop up loyalty or email marketing deals that are coming your way. In addition, there are actually certain times of the week that are best to make various purchases, like airline tickets and appliances.</p> <p>Adds Sakraida, &quot;These days, it doesn't take long for a store to offer a promotion of some kind, so it's easy to save at least 20 percent on new merchandise. Wait even longer to about midseason, and you could save closer to 40 percent, and waiting until the end-of-season clearance will nab you up to 75 percent off.&quot;</p> <h2>8. Seeing the value in used goods</h2> <p>I've always loved saving money, so thrift shopping, secondhand buys, and used merch is right up my alley. But not everyone is on board. I can't make you feel OK about it &mdash; some people just don't like the idea of having or wearing something somebody else owned &mdash; but if you can get over this aversion, you'll save a heck-ton of cash.</p> <p>&quot;In your 20s you're probably furnishing your first home or apartment, which can be expensive,&quot; says Anna Brockway, co-founder of Chairish, an online marketplace for used home d├ęcor. &quot;My number one shopping tip is to buy vintage furniture instead of buying new. In most cases, vintage furniture costs 70 to 80 percent less, and it's much better made and has more character and style than mass-produced stuff. Vintage is great way to stylishly communicate your personal style and point of view, which is another skill you'll want to master by 30.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-should-always-buy-used?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Things You Should Always Buy Used</a>)</p> <h2>9. Avoiding shopping hungry, emotional, or drunk</h2> <p>I was recently home alone on a Friday night getting to know a bottle of wine when I flipped to the Evine home-shopping channel to get a few holiday gift ideas. A cookie jar, beauty box, and bakeware set later, I was $140 poorer. I'm 36 years old and I know better than to drink and shop. We all make mistakes, but try your best to avoid shopping when you're hungry, emotional, or tipsy. You're not in the right head space during these times, and your lack of judgment will cost you, at any age. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-prevent-a-drunken-online-shopping-spree?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Prevent a Drunken Online Shopping Spree</a>)</p> <h2>10. Knowing your shopping triggers and staying away from them</h2> <p>What triggers you to open your wallet? Clothing? Cosmetics? Caramel macchiatos?</p> <p>It's OK to treat yourself every now and again, but if you know that your will power is severely challenged by one thing or another, avoid that thing. Don't go to the mall or the makeup counter or your local coffee shop. You can satisfy these urges in other, cheaper ways. Plus, by the time you're 30, you should be better at practicing self-discipline. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-youve-become-a-financial-grownup?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Tell You've Become a Financial Grown-up</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-master-these-10-shopping-skills-before-you-hit-30&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Master%2520These%252010%2520Shopping%2520Skills%2520Before%2520You%2520Hit%252030.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Master%20These%2010%20Shopping%20Skills%20Before%20You%20Hit%2030"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Master%20These%2010%20Shopping%20Skills%20Before%20You%20Hit%2030.jpg" alt="How to Master These 10 Shopping Skills Before You Hit 30" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-master-these-10-shopping-skills-before-you-hit-30">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gift-giving-etiquette-to-get-you-through-the-holidays">Gift Giving Etiquette to Get You Through the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-winter-must-haves-to-keep-in-your-car">15 Winter Must-Haves to Keep in Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/simplify-your-life-with-these-27-monthly-subscription-services">Simplify Your Life With These 27 Monthly Subscription Services</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-small-monthly-bills-slowly-wreck-your-annual-budget">How Small Monthly Bills Slowly Wreck Your Annual Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-luxury-pens">The 5 Best Luxury Pens</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Shopping 30-something life skills shopping skills shopping tips turning 30 Mon, 04 Dec 2017 09:30:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 2065228 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Flexible Ways to Cash In Your Miles and Points http://www.wisebread.com/3-flexible-ways-to-cash-in-your-miles-and-points <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-flexible-ways-to-cash-in-your-miles-and-points" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/i_can_not_wait_to_get_on_that_plane.jpg" alt="I can&#039;t wait to get on that plane" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you're a beginner at traveling for free using miles and points, it makes sense to think of each program as a separate entity. Want to fly for free on American Airlines? Get some American AAdvantage miles. Want to stay at a Hilton for free? Start saving up Hilton Honors points.</p> <p>But once you've mastered the basics, you'll find that limitless opportunities arise when you start mixing and matching your programs, and adding in points from banks or credit card issuers, which can be traded for a variety of point types. When you start doing this, you not only gain more flexibility, but sometimes you're able to take advantage of deals and bargains that help you wring more value out of the points you have. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-credit-cards-have-the-best-travel-redemption-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Credit Cards Have the Best Travel Redemption Value?</a>)</p> <p>For example, I will soon be using British Airways' Avios points to fly from California to Hawaii. Does British Airways fly from California to Hawaii? Nope. I'll be flying on Alaska Air. Alaska is a partner of British Airways, and accepts Avios for flights. Why use Avios? Because each airline has its own ways of calculating how many points different flights cost, and British Airways' system makes flights from the West Coast to Hawaii a better deal than I would get using Alaska Miles or other domestic carrier programs. Generally, booking a flight from the West Coast to Hawaii costs 12,500 Avios points each way, compared to 17,500 to 30,000 Alaska Airlines miles each way. Also, I happen to have plenty of Avios, but no Alaska Airlines miles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-airline-partnerships-can-supercharge-your-travel-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Secret to Redeeming Travel Rewards With Airline Partners</a>)</p> <p>Here are the three main ways you can travel using points from different companies to get the best deal possible.</p> <h2>Use miles on a partner airline</h2> <p>The major airlines belong to large partnership programs. For example, United Airlines belongs to the <a href="https://www.united.com/CMS/en-US/Marketing/CustComm/Promotions/Pages/AirlinePartners.aspx" target="_blank">Star Alliance</a>, allowing its MileagePlus members to use or earn United miles on 26 other airlines, including Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines.</p> <p>Sometimes these mileage partners show up when you search for flights to book on an airline site, so you might not even notice that you're flying a partner airline until you get to the airport. Other times, you need to work a little harder. For my flight to Hawaii, for example, I will have to make the reservation by phone, because Alaska Airlines flights don't show up on the British Airlines booking site.</p> <p>Besides helping you get a good deal, this method can help you use your miles to access routes or destinations that aren't served by the airline with which you hold the miles. For example, last year I wanted to fly direct from San Francisco to Sydney, Australia. I had accumulated a lot of American AAdvantage miles, so that's the &quot;currency&quot; I wanted to pay with. American doesn't fly to Sydney from San Francisco, but its partner Qantas does, so I used my AAdvantage miles to fly Qantas. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/comparing-miles-which-airline-loyalty-program-is-better?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Airline Loyalty Program Has the Best Value for Their Miles?</a>)</p> <h2>Transfer points from one program to another</h2> <p>You can't generally transfer miles from one airline to another, but you can often transfer points from a hotel loyalty program to an airline or from a credit card travel rewards program to an airline or hotel. These companies all have exchange agreements with select partners &mdash; and sometimes you can actually gain value by moving your points from one program to another. But beware, in some cases you lose value in the transaction.</p> <p>Before you start converting points, check the conversion rate carefully. Most of the time it'll be 1:1, meaning one credit card reward point can be converted to one airline mile. But other times, it might take two credit card rewards point to get one airline mile. Sometimes this is still going to be worth it to you, because that airline is the only one that will get you to your destination. But other times, it's better to consider another option that does give you a 1:1 ratio.</p> <p>However, another scenario is when you get a <em>better</em> value than 1:1. Some programs will give you a bonus for transferring your points. That's why it pays to shop around when <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/choose-the-best-travel-rewards-credit-card-with-this-guide?ref=internal" target="_blank">choosing a travel rewards credit card</a>.</p> <p>What if the airline you want to fly doesn't have a partnership with the points program you want to use? All's not lost. You can arrange a double transfer. A what now? Well, imagine you have a bunch of rewards points, but it doesn't transfer to the airline miles you want. But do a little digging and you notice that the credit card rewards program allows you to convert to a certain hotel program, which allows you to transfer those hotel points to its partner airline program, the very airline you want to fly. Unfortunately, many times this sort of double transfer will cause you to lose lots of value in your initial points. Especially since hotel loyalty programs generally have poor exchange rates. So consider the double exchange a last resort in most cases.</p> <p>It's always a good idea to search for a more direct strategy before resorting to a double transfer. Or if that sounds too complicated, try method three, below.</p> <h2>Spend points like cash on a travel portal</h2> <p>Credit card rewards programs have portals through which you can book flights on a variety of airlines (and hotels) using points. Usually, when going this route, your points will be converted to a discount on the cash price of the flight, and if you don't have enough points, you can pay the remainder in cash.</p> <p>The value per mile you get when shopping through the airline portals is often a little less than you would get by redeeming miles directly through an airline, but there is also an advantage to doing it this way: The airlines see your booking as a cash purchase, not a miles redemption. This means that you're not limited to the sometimes small number of award seats made available by the airlines, or by holiday blackout dates. Even better, when you book this way, you can earn miles on the flight. And some flights booked this way may be eligible for upgrades.</p> <p>Sometimes, the credit card portals sweeten the deal. Because I hold a premium card, for instance, I got a points rebate for my flight purchase, reducing the total cost of the trip. My card also gives me five points for every dollar I spend on the portal, so between getting miles for flying, a points rebate on some of the points I spent, plus five points for every dollar cash I paid, I considered this a win/win/win.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F3-flexible-ways-to-cash-in-your-miles-and-points&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F3%2520Flexible%2520Ways%2520to%2520Cash%2520In%2520Your%2520Miles%2520and%2520Points.jpg&amp;description=3%20Flexible%20Ways%20to%20Cash%20In%20Your%20Miles%20and%20Points"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/3%20Flexible%20Ways%20to%20Cash%20In%20Your%20Miles%20and%20Points.jpg" alt="3 Flexible Ways to Cash In Your Miles and Points" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-flexible-ways-to-cash-in-your-miles-and-points">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-should-sign-up-for-airline-rewards-even-if-you-dont-travel-much">Why You Should Sign Up for Airline Rewards Even If You Don&#039;t Travel Much</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-airline-miles-while-you-shop">How to Earn Airline Miles While You Shop</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-use-rewards-for-summer-travel">How to Use Rewards for Summer Travel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-airlines-frequent-flyer-miles-have-the-best-value">Which Airline&#039;s Frequent Flyer Miles Have the Best Value?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-more-value-from-united-airlines-miles">How to Get More Value From United Airlines Miles</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping Travel airline miles airline points free travel frequent flyer miles shopping tips travel tips Wed, 29 Nov 2017 09:30:10 +0000 Carrie Kirby 2062562 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Self-Care Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season http://www.wisebread.com/6-self-care-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-self-care-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/cheerful_young_woman_smiling.jpg" alt="Cheerful young woman smiling" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's the holiday season, and while you might be busy buying gifts for others, you should also carve out some time (and maybe some goodies) for yourself, too. Self-care should be a priority for you, and it doesn't even have to cost you anything. Here are six ways to take good care of yourself so that you're able to take care of others during the most wonderful time of the year. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-smartphone-apps-that-make-self-care-a-snap?ref=seealso" target="_blank">14 Smartphone Apps That Make Self-Care a Snap</a>)</p> <h2>1. A better night's sleep</h2> <p>A good night's sleep gives you a strong start to the day, and while there are loads of pricey high-tech sleep gadgets, there are plenty of inexpensive, yet luxurious ways to ease you into slumber, too. <a href="http://amzn.to/2hDYLpA" target="_blank">Cozy pajamas</a>, a <a href="http://amzn.to/2zWAVQl" target="_blank">fluffy robe</a>, toasty <a href="http://amzn.to/2jdmRaO" target="_blank">slippers</a>, and a <a href="http://amzn.to/2jG4G1t" target="_blank">weighted blanket</a>, are just a few budget-friendly gifts that you totally deserve.</p> <p>You can also spritz your pillows with homemade lavender water. Just add 10 drops of lavender essential oil to two ounces of water in a small spray bottle. Ask Alexa, or other home device to play nature sounds for you, or download one of the many free apps on your phone that has soothing sounds to lull you to sleep. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-frugal-gifts-for-the-person-who-needs-a-nap?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Frugal Gifts for the Person Who Needs a Nap</a>)</p> <h2>2. Coffee and other warm beverages</h2> <p>Grabbing a no-frills coffee at a cafe, to say nothing of a fancier drink, costs much more than buying gourmet grounds to brew at home. That also goes for tea, hot chocolate, hot apple cider, and any other warm winter drink. And what's better than grabbing a hot cup of your favorite drink and curling up in front of the fire or classic holiday movie? During this magical time of year, there are plenty of options for gourmet coffee to buy and make at home for pennies on the dollar of what you'd pay at a restaurant or coffee shop. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-rich-youd-be-if-you-stopped-drinking-expensive-coffee?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Here's How Rich You'd Be if You Stopped Drinking Expensive Coffee</a>)</p> <h2>3. Time outdoors</h2> <p>Even though the temperatures are dropping, getting some fresh air helps reduce stress, and provide an energy boost. Bundle up and go for a walk before work, at lunch, or on your way home. It doesn't have to be for a set amount of time, either. Just go until you feel like you're ready to head back inside. And any time spent out in nature won't cost you a thing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-outdoor-adventures-that-dont-cost-a-dime?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Outdoor Adventures That Don't Cost a Dime</a>)</p> <h2>4. The gift of giving</h2> <p>Many organizations are having special volunteer events to prepare Christmas baskets, wrap presents for kids, and perform numerous other services for those who need our help. Put aside some time or a bit of your holiday budget to give back. I have some relatives who prefer to receive donations to their favorite charities in lieu of Christmas gifts, and I'm always happy to oblige. The feeling you get from helping those less fortunate is better than most tangible gifts you will ever receive. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-charities-you-can-trust-with-your-holiday-donations?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Charities You Can Trust With Your Holiday Donations</a>)</p> <h2>5. Plenty of healthy foods</h2> <p>Those holiday parties and traditional meals are coming. In these weeks leading up to them, do a little pretox with plenty of fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, and lean proteins. One friend of mine takes &quot;pretox&quot; so seriously that she goes vegan before the holidays are in full swing. She finds that she loses a little bit of weight before the holidays and then can enjoy all of her favorite foods without feeling guilty. Pack your meals with healthy ingredients and reap the benefits of enjoying a well-balanced diet, at least until the candy canes get handed out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-fantastic-lettuce-free-salads?ref=seealso" target="_blank">13 Fantastic Lettuce-Free Salads</a>)</p> <h2>6. A motivated new year</h2> <p>In the past, I've made long lists of things I was resolved to do in the new year. This year, I chose one big goal &mdash; to get my novel published &mdash; and I focused my creative energy to make that happen. With that success of a focused goal for this year, I've started to think about the one thing I'd like to accomplish for 2018. I'm using these last months of the year to form a plan one small piece at a time.</p> <p>Focusing your time on setting goals for the new year will keep you in a hopeful, positive mindset to end the current year with. And it costs you absolutely nothing to motivate yourself!</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-self-care-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Self-Care%2520Gifts%2520to%2520Give%2520Yourself%2520This%2520Holiday%2520Season.jpg&amp;description=6%20Self-Care%20Gifts%20to%20Give%20Yourself%20This%20Holiday%20Season"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Self-Care%20Gifts%20to%20Give%20Yourself%20This%20Holiday%20Season.jpg" alt="6 Self-Care Gifts to Give Yourself This Holiday Season" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christa-avampato">Christa Avampato</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-self-care-gifts-to-give-yourself-this-holiday-season">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/gift-giving-etiquette-to-get-you-through-the-holidays">Gift Giving Etiquette to Get You Through the Holidays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-these-6-credit-card-moves-now-to-prepare-for-holiday-shopping">Make These 6 Credit Card Moves Now to Prepare for Holiday Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cheat-sheet-retail-markup-on-common-items">Cheat Sheet: Retail Markup on Common Items</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stuck-at-the-airport-relax-with-these-14-easy-self-care-tricks">Stuck at the Airport? Relax With These 14 Easy Self-Care Tricks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/treat-yourself-with-these-7-free-self-care-routines">Treat Yourself With These 7 Free Self-Care Routines</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Shopping christmas shopping gift guide holiday shopping mental health self-care shopping tips Mon, 27 Nov 2017 09:30:10 +0000 Christa Avampato 2058942 at http://www.wisebread.com