Monday, May 23, 2011

Frugal In All Things

If you really want to be a cheapskate frugal diva, you have to find ways to work around paying full price for anything. Enter the art of "stacking". You can stack a coupon and a rebate. You can stack a register reward and a coupon. You can stack a store coupon and a manufacturer coupon. You just have to figure out a way!

I have been doing this lately at Walmart. Now that their coupon policy states that they will give cash back or apply the overage to other items in your cart, I am buying all my non-coupon items from there - produce, bread, etc. With the Similac deal, I use the overage from each bottle of formula that I buy, so in essence I pay nothing for the formula and then less on each other item.

Keeping this in mind, I realized I had $17 in Staples rewards that I needed to use. The only time I ever shop at Staples is when something is free after rewards or rebates, so I wanted to use them before I forgot and they expired. I started thinking about what to use them on and then, bingo! I am all the time shipping out things for eBay and it seems like I never have enough mailers on hand. They are the cheapest at Dollar General from what I have found but still about $0.70 per envelope. My friend Tracey is an eBay queen and I know she has a secret but I keep forgetting to ask her. (My guess is Costco or some other bulk supplier??) So, how did I go about this?

Step 1 - I logged into Ebates. I have talked about Ebates in the past. It is a website that gives you cash back on online purchases. It has tons of stores, from Kmart to Groupon to Lobster Gram which I have no idea what that even is.... So once I logged into Ebates, I clicked on Staples. It directed me to the Staples website.

Step 2 - I found the mailers I wanted and added them to my cart. It came to something like $32. But after I chose to have it mailed to the store that's 5 miles from my house instead of directly to my house, shipping became free which brought it down to just over $23. I entered my coupons for my Staples rewards, which are right there on the Staples website.

Voila! My final total was $4.94 for 24 mailers, or about $0.21 each. Also, I will get 2% cash back just for shopping through Ebates. My order that went through at Staples is somehow tracked through Ebates and I'll get the money back in a check. I just got a check a few days ago from Ebates for almost $30 and I NEVER shop online so this was major excitement for me!

So.... how do you find ways around paying retail??


Ken Loyd said...

Plus, you earned MORE Staples Rewards on the $4.94 you actually spent! WOW!

EmWalker said...

you are AWESOME!:) I love Walmarts new policy. I shop there for non coupon items too because everything is generally just less expensive than anywhere else. I love knowing that I get an even bigger discount things like produce and milk just because my coupons had overage. An awesome feeling!:)