Friday, May 16, 2008

Frugal Friday - small savers


This week I just have a couple quick small savers. Neither of these will save oodles of $$$; however, if a bunch of small money savers are implemented, it can make a big difference over time.

When to use cash and when to use credit at the gas pump?
Well, it depends. If you use credit to purchase gas, make sure you are using ones with rewards programs (like cash back or frequent flyer miles, etc.). Otherwise, it actually saves you more to pay with cash, if the station offers a discount for paying cash. For example, using Discover can actually save you at least 2x what paying cash would because of their cash back program.

So, when is it better to pay with cash? If you spend a lot of time on the road and use either a debit card or credit card without a rewards program then you could probably save more by paying cash at the pump. Even though using your debit card is the same as cash, it tends to be treated as credit, so you would end up paying more $$$. I typically pay for just about everything using "cash" (physical cash or debit) and save credit purchases for larger or online purchases. I'm going to switch to cash for now so I can save the few cents each time I fill up. Since I have over a 30 mile commute each date (one way) and I visit my boyfriend every other weekend, who is over 80 miles away, and I visit friends once in awhile who also live a bit of a distance, that all adds up. I figured that with my basic weekly driving alone (not counting visits to friends or special trips), I could save around $100/year by doing this. I'm also going to look into switching to a credit card with a better rewards program.

It's funny that Dirkey's post was along similar lines of paying cash. I started this last night, then debated whether or not to post but I decided to go ahead. My brain is too tired to try to think of another Frugal Friday tip:)

Home playdough & cookie cutters:
I don't have many memories of my maternal grandmother, but one of my favorite memories is her making us kids her homemade playdough. Just writing about it I can smell it. Why pay for playdough from the store and all the nifty cutters, when kids will be just as thrilled to have homemade playdough with cookie cutters. I found some great playdough recipes on line. My grandmother always made uncolored playdough, which was great. But I love that the recipe on the link actually has ways to color the playdough. BONUS - Not only will you save a little $$$, but homemade playdough is easier to clean up than store bought and you will know what's in it!

Again, I realize neither of these tips is going to save you oodles of $$$, but every little bit counts, right?!?


Dirkey said...

Every little bit helps!
I love that you checked the differences and found out what the best was. I have a few gas stations around me that charge different prices for cc but I don't use them :)

I definitely can't wait to make some playdoh with my kids :) The store bought stuff Creeps me out!!!

mama k said...

Koolaid playdough is da bomb! That reminds me that I need to make some more... :)

Dirkey said...

I tagged ya I tagged ya :)