Budget Travel

July 30, 2009

Money Saving Tips We Haven’t Heard Before

By Meg Hoppe

I find that placing my piggy bank in an open field and inserting only quarters, I spend less.

Money Saving Tip #1: I find that placing my piggy bank in an open field and inserting only quarters, I spend less.

If you’re anything like me, you’re tired of seeing the same money saving tips. You click on the article anyway, hoping for something new and innovative to pop up. I know that if I packed a lunch instead of buying one, made my coffee instead of going to Starkbucks, and stopped spending so much on video rentals I would save a small fortune. That’s why I’ve started doing all of that. And yes, I have seen a slight decrease in the amount of money that I spend. However, it’s like the moment I save money in one area of my life, another area calls for my attention and subsequently my credit card. I realize that I’m no master budgeter, my bank account, credit card debt, and credit history can tell you that. So this is the sole reason that I want, no need, money saving tips that will actually save me money.

So, during my habitual checking of my social networking sites, follow me on Twitter @CallMeHoppe, and e-mail I stumbled across yet another “X Amount of Ways you’re Being Ripped Off” article. I think that at this point, I click on them with a zest of wishful thinking. I just hope that maybe this one will have some gold nugget or at least a slightly humorous/interesting variety.

You can rest easy America, because I have found a spectacular money saving article that I would like to share with you. Aside from the normal, yeah we get it Comcast is financially molesting us; there were some rather interesting tips. Here, let me share a few.

From Forbes [yes THE Forbes magazine] “14 Ways you’re Getting Ripped Off” article. If I had to pay for it, the article would have been 15 ways…

High End Guacamole: Is this really a growing problem in America? Are

Yes that is my piggy bank sitting atop of that pile of money. No more guacamole for me, thanks Forbes!

Yes that is my piggy bank sitting atop of that pile of money. No more guacamole for me, thanks Forbes!

we undergoing some sort of guacamole epidemic that I haven’t heard about? The fact that Forbes found it pertinent to include making your own guacamole in this article only proves my point that people are running out of money saving tips. Next you’re going to see Business Week telling me that I need to start making my own ketchup and mustard.

Auto Dealer Repair: I used to work at a car dealership and let me tell you that this one is completely fact. I cannot tell how many times the guys in the body shop and I would laugh at people coming in with their cars. Not only do customers pay exorbitant amounts for maintenance, but they are paying for high end parts that could easily be substituted. I don’t think I met one person at the dealership who actually took their cars to a dealership for repair. But if you like stale donuts and lukewarm coffee then go for it.

Emergency Room Visits: I happen to agree 100% with this one. In my opinion, Forbes should include riding in ambulances. If I am in need of immediate medical attention, I would rather wait and pay for a taxi. It would be cheaper than taking an ambulance and truthfully, it would probably get to my house sooner. While Forbes puts this one on the list, they acknowledge that there is nothing that we can do about it. Unless you want to start playing doctor, and I mean that in the literal sense, you’re stuck going to the hospital. I suppose the only things you can really do are take care of yourself, vote for someone who will push through a health care bill that won’t force you into bankruptcy, and learn to wield a scalpel.

Caskets: Okay, my main beef with this “money saving tip” is that it saves me nothing. I’m not getting ripped off because I am dead. Sorry kids and bereaved husband but I don’t have to deal with this. However, when I do die, seeing as how Forbes says that caskets can cost upwards of $20,000 bury me in a sheet in the backyard.

Movie Theater Snacks: Agreed. Stop buying them people! Why do we do this to ourselves? It costs $4.00 for a box of little Snickers balls. I can buy 4 Snickers for that price. If I really want them in ball form, I can take the time to rip off small pieces, mold them with my fingers…just eat the Snickers bar from 7-11.

Ab-Slimming Gadgets: One of my best girlfriends is a notorious impulse shopper. I think that she has more of these ab-slimming gadgets than anyone I’ve ever met. The best part about this situation is that she rarely uses any of them. It has always reminded me of the song by Steve Goodman [amazing folk musician from Chicago who originally penned “Go Cubs Go” and “City of New Orleans“] entitled “Vegematic.” It’s about a guy who falls asleep with the TV on and buys everything on the infomercials in his sleep. Imagine waking up to all that useless “Seen on TV” crap. So instead of watching infomercials about losing weight, take a walk and burn a few calories. Put down the phone, you will never use that Ab Cruncher and you know it.

Honestly, Forbes didn’t tell me much that I didn’t already know. Their ideas weren’t at all useful to my daily life as I don’t subscribe to most of that nonsense. However, if you want to read the rest, there are some other pretty funny ones, check out this link. Kiplinger also has a similar article that has some actually useful tips pending you don’t already realize all of them. They also have 20 Ways You Waste Your Money as opposed to Forbes’ meager 14. You can check out that article here.

*Meg Hoppe is a freelance writer and marketing professional from Chicago. Visit her other blog here and follow her on Twitter @CallMeHoppe.

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