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  1. #1
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    Default Saving Money on Spurlges

    Quote-

    Save Hundreds on Your Favorite Splurges
    by Kelli B. Grant
    Friday, February 20, 2009
    provided by

    Even when consumers are cutting back on expenses, the odd splurge -- say, a haircut at a favorite salon -- still manages to squeak by.

    "Consumers are in the process of moving to a different lifestyle," says Kit Yarrow, a Golden Gate University business professor specializing in consumer psychology. "That doesn't happen overnight."

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    In fact, a recent survey by the National Retail Federation found that budget-conscious consumers have been quick to give up certain expenses, such as satellite radio subscriptions, high-end cosmetics and cellphone upgrades; while they cling to others, like cable subscriptions, haircuts and dining out.

    "What's frivolous and what's practical is completely subjective," says Yarrow. So if that $4 mocha latte is the only thing making your mornings bearable, you'll most likely give up your monthly manicures or lawn mowing service before switching to the office coffee machine.

    Even while you can justify keeping some splurges, that doesn't mean you still have to pay full price for them. Here's how to save on six of the "untouchable" expenses consumers say they don't want to live without:

    Internet Service

    (81% of respondents in NRF's survey say they won't cut it.)

    "Now's the time to pit the various carriers and providers against each other," says Rob Enderle, president of technology advisory firm Enderle Group in San Jose, Calif. Most Internet service providers are willing to match competitors' prices to keep you from going elsewhere, especially if you're threatening to move your phone and cable services, too.

    Weigh the various technological options, as well. WiMAX, an emerging high-speed wireless service, for example, is available in some areas -- and usually at a much lower cost than cable or DSL Internet services. Residents of Great Falls, Mont., for example, could spend $29.99 per month for WiMAX through BridgeMAXX, versus $42.95 for Comcast's (CMCSA) fiber-optics. The savings: more than $150 a year.

    Cellphone Service

    (64% of respondents in the NRF survey say they won't cut it.)

    Don't pay for cellphone services you don't use. Assess your monthly phone use to ensure you're not paying $80 a month when a $60 plan would suffice, advises Jordan Amin, vice-chairman of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' National Financial Literacy Committee. With so many options out there, it's relatively easy to customize a plan that suits your talking and texting habits. Infrequent talkers may save even further by switching to a prepaid plan, which allows you to pay a per-minute rate instead of a monthly plan for minutes you won't use.

    Cable

    (61% of respondents in NRF's survey say they won't cut it.)

    Bundle your services. You'll get a better rate packaging cable with at least one other product, whether Internet or phone, says Enderle. New Yorkers using Time Warner (TWX) cable, for example, could cut the cable portion of their bill by $10 per month by adding on cable and phone.

    Subscribers to premium channels should also check to see if their favorite shows are available online for free. Many popular shows can be viewed through network-approved (and often, partnered) sites like Hulu, TV.com and Joost. Eliminating Showtime and HBO from that Time Warner bill would save a New Yorker $29.90 per month.

    Discount Apparel

    (43% of respondents in NRF's survey say they won't cut it)


    Before you buy online, check for online coupon codes at sites like RetailMeNot.com and CouponCabin.com. Although discount retailers like Kohl's (KSS) and Target (TGT) have remained popular shopping destinations amid consumer cutbacks, the overall retail slump means mid-level department and superstores are still offering plenty of discounts, says Dan de Grandpre, founder of DealNews.com, an online consumer guide. Kohl's, for example, offers 20% off a purchase of $100 or more with promotion code PYDTWENTY through March 3.

    Hair Care

    (40% of respondents in NRF's survey say they won't cut it.)

    While the number of at-home beauty treatments has surged, consumers are still willing to pay handsomely for services that can't easily be done at home -- namely, haircuts and complex coloring procedures, says Yarrow. Vocational and salon-training programs typically offer low-cost cuts, with trained teachers standing by to ensure your new 'do doesn't become a don't. National chain Bumble and Bumble, for example, offers free haircuts, color and styling to consumers who apply for its model program, which trains student hairstylists in basic styles. Applicants must have healthy hair and be open to hairstyle changes that are more dramatic than a trim.

    Dining Out

    (37% of respondents in NRF's survey say they won't cut fast food and 33% won't cut casual sit-down dining.)


    One way to trim your dinner tab: Make a reservation. Free site DinnerBroker.com offers up to 30% off just for making a reservation at participating restaurants, while OpenTable.com lets you rack up points toward dining gift certificates.


    Also be on the lookout for discounts. T.G.I. Friday's, for example, is offering a printable coupon to buy one entree, get one free through March 1. Or buy a city-specific Entertainment Book, which offers coupons at local fine dining and chain eateries. The books cost up to $30 a piece, a charge that's easily recouped with one or two nice meals out.

    Copyrighted, SmartMoney.com. All Rights Reserved.



    Thought it was interest article.. Tell me your thought?

  2. #2
    Moderator/Blogger VivaLaJuicy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Interesting article... I personally can't cut out those small luxuries in life... ex: hair salon, dining out, even my internet... my gosh, I can't imagine living without it. It's my daily source for everything!!

  3. #3
    Jacqueline coach-princess348's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Thanks for posting this.

  4. #4
    I give up ^_^
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Having internet available could save you $$$$, there is so many online sales and print-out coupons you can use for pretty much everything so I wont cut it

  5. #5
    Moderator/Blogger VivaLaJuicy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Quote Originally Posted by Maria View Post
    Having internet available could save you $$$$, there is so many online sales and print-out coupons you can use for pretty much everything so I wont cut it
    ITA!!

  6. #6
    LV and Juicy Lover xx Juicy Luva's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Cutting my INTERNET?? As if! I need my ASOS!

  7. #7
    Moderator/Blogger VivaLaJuicy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    ^^^ Yeah, I would never give up on internet either.

  8. #8
    *The TBF Elite* FedUp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    Can't live without internet and cell phone...might as well be marooned on an uninhabited island

    If at all i have to be marooned...let it be with my bag and shoe collection

  9. #9
    *The TBF Elite* FedUp's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saving Money on Spurlges

    On a serious note, i guess it is all a question of priorities.

    If i had to pay medical bills or get my kids their essentials (toys and games don't count), i would sacrifice anything in a heartbeat.

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