Monday, 3 March 2014

Buying online: getting more for your money!

As fellow thrifters, you will probably agree that the Internet is the biggest source of bargains, offers, vouchers and deals. There are little habits that I think are really worthwhile getting into, which really do save you money with little hassle. Here are some of my favourite ways to bag a bargain online: 

Quidco 
I only discovered this website around 6 months ago, and now I use it all the time! For the consumer, this really is money for nothing. You sign up, then visit a website through Quidco, earning cashback which can be paid straight into your account! You can even register your debit card, and when shopping in certain stores (e.g. Debenhams) you automatically earn cashback on your purchase! 
This applies to purchases, but also things like holidays, insurance, TV packages and mobile phone upgrades. If you are considering spending any money online, you will probably be able to claim some kind of discount or cashback through Quidco! I recently upgraded my mobile phone (which I was planning to do anyway) and got £50 cash, just for visiting the site through Quidco. When booking my holiday recently, I earned 6% cashback... extra spending money not to be sniffed at! 

Price Matching 
Competition between large retailers really saves us thrifty shoppers money. I stumbled upon Mothercare's "Price Match" policy one day, and have been making use of it ever since. They will match the price of any other retailer, online or in store, even sale prices! At the time I bought this Fisher Price bouncer, Mothercare's price was £39.99, but I found it on Amazon for £24.99. Without any quibble or argument, I bought it in my local Mothercare store for the cheaper price. John Lewis is another huge company with a brilliant price match policy. If you are like me, and sometimes want things "right now!" instead of waiting for the postman, but still want to pay the best price, this is a great option to keep in mind.

Voucher Codes
I don't have a specific "go to" site for this, but before I buy anything online, I check on Google for current voucher codes. Offers like free delivery, or 10% discount codes, are often available. It's certainly worth spending 30 seconds checking it out, and looking at all suggested voucher sites, as you never know what extra saving you could make!

Shopping Around 
This sounds like an obvious one, but getting into the habit of doing a quick price check on anything you plan to buy can sometimes get you a better deal. Does another store have it on sale, or could you get a good voucher code if you bought it from a different store? 

One lesson I have learned on my journey to being frugal so far is that groundwork and spending that little extra time planning a purchase saves a lot of money.

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