smart spending

What's your spending style?


When it comes to spending, do you have the urge to splurge? Or does just the thought of being daring with dough make you dizzy? We all have our own mode, in terms of money matters. To suss out your spending style, no need to shop around -- just take advantage of our (free!) quiz.

  1. Have you ever phoned friends later than you normally might, in order to save on long-distance calls?

    a. Heck, no.
    b. Yes, but you're careful to phone only those who generally stay up late, anyway.
    c. Plenty of times, and you're really peeved about that restraining order.
  2. The shopping channels on TV are:

    a. Like the nature channel -- you watch out of sociological interest: Who are these people ordering Capodimonte tchotchkes and cubic zirconia rings at 3 a.m. -- or, for that matter, at 3 p.m.?
    b. The best invention since sliced bread.
    c. A nice diversion -- entertaining when you've got the time, and there's always a chance for a good buy.
  3. During an amorous moment with your partner, you've fantasized about:

    a. Replacing your threadbare sheets, just as soon as there's a white sale.
    b. Being away at a nice vacation spot together.
    c. That old TV show where they let contestants run amok with a shopping cart for a wild two-minute spree -- whee! (Where are the great shows of yesteryear?)
  4. You receive an unsolicited credit card in the mail, so you:

    a. Stash it for emergencies.
    b. Make plastic confetti.
    c. Take it for a spin at the mall -- just to make sure it works.
  5. When you go into the ritziest retail shop in your neighborhood:

    a. It's to see what's in style; more often than not, you'll get the look for less elsewhere.
    b. The manager and his assistant do a jig of joy, as the sales clerks call their stockbrokers.
    c. Security tails you -- sheesh, is there some sort of limit as to how many times a person can just look? Is this not America?
  6. If you buy something on impulse, you feel:

    a. Good (da-da, da-da, da-da, da, you knew that you would, now!)
    b. A little reckless and wanton, but you don't do this very often.
    c. Like breathing deeply into a brown paper bag.
  7. You're invited to a party. You hope:

    a. There'll be some real food -- not those dopey little wieners in blankets.
    b. There'll be some really interesting guests.
    c. To find a new knockout outfit at the mall, something that'll keep everyone buzzing for weeks afterward.
  8. Speaking of clothing for special events, have you purchased anything for a one-time occasion, left the tags on, and returned it to the store later?

    a. ''What am I, Minnie Pearl?''
    b. No, but that is kind of tempting.
    c. Please, you'd be willing to risk setting off metal detectors, if the clothing's plastic security devices were accidentally left on -- discreetly wearing little paper tags is no big deal.
  9. OK, fantasy time again. Your favorite celebrity lust object speaks to you, and says: ''Here are my...'':

    a. ''Hotel-room keys.''
    b. ''Frequent-flyer miles.''
    c. ''Credit cards.''
  10. You're at a celebratory dinner with friends at a fine restaurant, each of you responsible for your own share. You toast with a glass of:

    a. Champagne. A toast is not a toast without it.
    b. Sparkling wine, or some other festive fizzy.
    c. Water, tap, vintage 2001. The markup on beverages in fancy restaurants is insane.
  11. Bringing your lunch to work makes you feel:

    a. Like a worker bee -- a boxed-in worker bee -- which is why you don't do it.
    b. Like you're doing a smart thing -- but you don't feel the need to be smart every day; sometimes you feel like going out with the gang.
    c. Good and virtuous.
  12. Have you ever cut open a used, flattened tube of toothpaste?

    a. No. Why? Is there a prize inside?
    b. No. You prefer endeavors with a more favorable effort-to-savings ratio.
    c. Sure. Waste not, want not.

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