Details make all the difference when saving money.
Minor changes in the the way you shop the supermarket, such as picking
the store brands over designer labels, cutting coupons and watching
in-store promotions, help to keep money in your pocket. On the other
hand, all the discounts in the world won't save you a dime if the
cash register rings up the wrong price at the checkout.
A star money-saver knows that the job isn't done once
the goods are loaded in the cart. Close attention to your receipt
can net even more savings, says the Frugal $ense winner for the
month of December, Hon Chu, of Oviedo, Fla. Congratulations, Hon!
did you come up with your winning tip?
Well, a lot of times you see ads in fliers or specials that the store
has, and then after you check out you find that you didn't get the discount. It's
frustrating. Sometimes you don't even find out until you get home and look at
the price on the receipt. By then it is probably too late because you don't want
to make that trip back to the store just to get $3 or $5 back. So, I began to
check the prices to make sure they were correct every time I checked out of a
discount store or grocery store -- especially on the promotional items where it's
$5 or $10 off -- making sure it is really that price. If not, then I can go back
in the store right away and talk to the customer service representative and get
the price adjustment. In some of the supermarkets, they are really good about
this because I think they are afraid of being seen as deceiving customers with
the wrong prices on specials or ads. That's why they are giving the first item
for free and then price-adjusting subsequent items. In Florida, Albertson's and
Publix both do it.
|December's Frugal $ense winner: Hon Chu|
Chu, of Oviedo, Fla., won $100 for submitting the following tip:
your receipt after you have checked out
Bankrate: Does this pay off
for you a lot?
definitely -- a lot of times. Just maybe two or three weeks ago my wife went to
the supermarket and bought two pounds of extra-large shrimp and then was charged
more than was advertised and we got about $10 back. And my colleague, when I told
him that I entered the contest and shared my tip with him, he went to the store
to get some baby formula, which is very expensive. It was the wrong price, and
he bought two of those items, so he ended up getting the first item free and then
the price was adjusted, so he ended up saving $27.
Do you do other things to save money?
Yes, I think frugal is a way of life, but I didn't used to be that way when I
was a teenager or in my early 20's. I would just go for brand names, and when
I had money I would just go and buy something when I found it. I think living
frugally is possibly part of the aging process. But now my wife and I are always
looking for good deals, coupons and specials to save as much as we can.
Why did you enter the Frugal $ense contest?
I came to know about the Frugal contest about two or three months ago, and I thought
it was really interesting because the ideas are coming from real people who used
the tips and tested them before. I used a couple of them and found them very helpful
in saving money and thought I had a good tip as well, so wanted to share with
the rest of the people.
Bankrate: What is your
biggest money-saving tip of all time?
That will be my next entry on Bankrate.com -- just kidding. Actually I do have
some ideas, but I'm not allowed to win for another 12-month period, is that right?
But my wife will be able to, so watch out for my wife's entry.