Online Shopping Rebates: Don’t Overdo it!

shopping

Upromise, Ebates, SwagBucks, Mr. Rebates, FatWallet…there are so many online shopping “portals” where you can earn rebates from your online shopping!  You hear about a deal and someone (maybe even me) tells you to remember to do the deal through one of these companies to make sure you get a little bit more back.

Next thing you know, you have 20 accounts with $.49 each in them!

Not the brightest idea, wouldn’t you agree?

One of my goals this year is to reduce clutter even more.  I am a huge fan of Flylady and her “lessons” have helped me control my house.  It’s not perfect (and to my readers who have been in my house:  there is no need to chime in with how imperfect my house is!), but it’s getting better every day.

Now I am looking to reduce clutter outside of the normal ways…and one of them is my online shopping portals.  I was shocked to go through my inbox and realize how many accounts I had.  I spent some time today going through them and closing out a few accounts (yes – I gave up a few dollars here and there…it was worth it in my mind) and am now down to only 3!

Ebates:  easily the most well-known of the online portals.  Very easy, love it.  Will use it for most of my online shopping.

SwagBucks:  I kinda forgot that I had it until a few days ago.  I love The Google, but The Google doesn’t pay me to search, does it?  As much searching as I do online, it seems stupid to NOT use it!  Some of the downfalls?  The online shopping benefits aren’t as great.  For instance, if I want to buy just 1 $25 Gift Certificate for $3 from Restaurant.com, I wouldn’t get credit through Swagbucks, as their deal is 1 Swagbucks for every $5 you spend (seems to be basically the same deal with the other online shopping through them).  Most other sites give you a straight percentage.  It may only be a difference of a few pennies per transaction but as we all know – pennies add up!

UPromise.com:  lets me accumulate money towards college and while my Hunt’s tomatoes aren’t going to pay for Harvard, it is the only place (that I know of)  where I can get money back in my “offline life”.  The new eCoupons are great.  There are new ones each month and I’m just going to get in the habit of loading them on to my card on the 1st of each month.  If I use them, great.  if not – oh well!  

Have you fallen in to the trap of too many online shopping portals?  If so, I highly recommend that you spend some time, look at the accounts that you have and start streamlining as well! 

Is there another site out there that you like or that we should know of?  Leave them in the comments!

Restaurant.com: $25 Gift Certificates for $3

They aren’t as well-stocked as their last promotion (I have 3 restaurants that I always immediately check), but they have added some new ones!

Get a $25 Gift Certificate for only $3 when you click here and use the code:  SAVE at checkout!

Offer good through 1/26/09!

Of course, don’t forget that you can always do this through your Upromise account and get an additional 15% credited back to your Upromise account!

California Tortilla: Free Taco this Tuesday!

california-tortilla

I admit that when they gave out free Tacos on November 4th, I skipped it because when I think “fast food taco”, I think of Taco Bell and their skimpy little tacos.  Although California Tortilla may be one of our first choices for quick take-out, we always just stuck to their burritos and never gave the tacos any thought!

But then I got a free taco for voting for California Tortilla in the Shorty Awards (follow them on Twitter – there’s still time to vote!) and decided to go get it!

Let me tell you – these are NOTHING like Taco Bell tacos!  Unless you are my husband, one of these tacos is the perfect size for any meal!

So how do you get one?

First, go here to see if there is a California Tortilla near you.

Then just stroll in to your local store on Tuesday January 20th, walk up to the cashier and do a little dance (you don’t need to make a little love/get down tonight)

As a reward for your silliness, the cashier will give you a free taco AND a keychain full of savings!

Old Navy: Take an additional 50% off clearance

old-navy

Like most other retailers, Old Navy is having a clearance sale.

Take an additional 50% off your clearance purchase, both online AND at the store when you use the code: EXTRA50 at checkout.

Offer good through January 19th!

If you are shopping online, don’t forget to go through your Ebates, Mr. Rebates or UPromise.com account to get an additional 3% back!

Thanks for the heads-up Darla!

Free Makeup on January 20th!

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So some people got together and sued Federated Department Stores over makeup. 

Do I know why?  Nope!

Do I care why?  Not particularly!

All I know is that since I bought makeup at one of their stores between May of 1994 and July of 2003, I am a member of “the class” and am entitled to 1 free makeup item starting on January 20th and for the next 7 days (or while supplies last). And you probably are too if you bought any cosmetics at the department store during that time frame!!

Click here for more details (thanks Maria!)

One free makeup item?  That TOTALLY makes up for that whole Chanel addiction I had in the mid ’90s…but I’ll take it!

Free Ice Cream at Baskin Robbins: January 15th only!

bright-choices

To help launch the new BRight Choices line of lighter ice creams at Baskin Robbins, stores will be giving out 1 free scoop of the new BRight Choices flavors on Thursday January 15th!

To get your free scoop, you do need to show a membership card  for a gym (I’m hoping that the YMCA is good enough) between 11:00am and 10:00pm.

Don’t have a gym membershipClick here for a $1 coupon that you can use instead!

More details here

(I’m trying to figure out the logic of handing out ice cream to people who are trying to lose weight, but still…..)

Tax Season is Here: Some Cheap Ways to File

taxes  

Darla asked me if I knew of any good deals on doing your taxes, and since she is one of the coolest people I know, I happily went “hunting” for her!

The IRS is opening up the eFile system on January 16th and if you are due a refund, why wait until the last possible moment to get it?  Get your papers together now and get ready!

If you are one that does your taxes yourself, there are several options available, including some free ones! 

PLEASE NOTE:  if you have very long or complicated returns and have always had an accountant do them and are not very organized, it might be better to stick with the accountant.  Yes – we are all trying to cut costs, but if there is anything in this life you don’t want to mess up…it’s your tax returns!

TaxCut is my favorite program.  We have used it for years. 

If you don’t need to itemize your deductions, they have a free online program that you can use.  you can then print out your return and mail it!  e-Filing is an additional $14.95.  

If you need to itemize, they have a program for $39.95 that includes e-Filing

State returns are an additional cost

TurboTax is the other “big name” one.

If you don’t need to itemize, they also have a free version of the software that you can use

Need to itemize?  Their Deluxe version is only $29.95 and includes e-Filing

State Returns are an additional cost

And then there are two “up & coming” sites.

 Taxhead.com

allows you to prepare and print your 1040EZ OR your 1040A for free.

eFiling (before April 1st) is only $12.95

if you need to do the 1040 “long form”, this is not the site for you

1040Return.com

Cost is $14.95 for 1040EZ/A or $15.95 for the 1040 and includes the e-Filing for free

State returns are an additional $9.95 and includes the cost of e-Filing

 

Do you know of any other good deals on doing your taxes?  Post them in the comments!

Hickory Farms at a HUGE Discount

  hickory-farms

If you like Hickory Farms products, now is a great time to order them as they are offering 75% off EVERYTHING on the site!

AND

Take an additional 15% off your order when you use the code:  849358

AND

do the transaction through your Mr. Rebates account and get an additional 7% back!

note:  this doesn’t mean that you save 92% (75 + 15 + 7).  It works out to more like 81%

Thanks to Darla for pointing out this deal!

Free Sunsilk, Rice Cakes, Magic Eraser and more!

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With all the new freebies coming out, my mailbox is going to fill up again!  Don’t forget one of the best parts about getting the freebies:  very often they include coupons as well!

Get a free sample of Sunsilk here (note:  at the top it says they will send a coupon, but at the bottom you also get to pick a sample)

Get a $2 Coupon for Aveeno Positively Ageless here

Get a sample of Stetson Rich Suede cologne here

Get a free Mr. Clean Mini Magic Eraser here

Get a free sample of Quaker Oats Mini Delights here

Don’t forget these freebies that are still available

Dunkin Donuts Dark Coffee

SoyJoy bars

Free healthy samples from RemedyLife

Always Infinity Pads

Always Infinity Pads (sample #2)

Pantene Pro-V

Get winter healthy samples

Dove Hair Care

Cream of Wheat

Free $10 Coupon Book from Betty Crocker

Total Cranberry Crunch

Splenda with Fiber

Metamucil Berry Burst

Degree Absolute Protection