Archive for Save Money

The 24-Hour Airline Cancellation Rule Could Save You Money

Save on Emergency AirfareEver book a flight only to check back a few hours later and see the price dropped? Uggghhh…I know the feeling. That’s why I play airline roulette, holding out to buy my tickets banking on finding a cheaper flight.

Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose when you play the wait and see game. Prices can change in minutes. I’ve even gotten the sorry the fare you selected is no longer available during checkout. Only to be replaced with a higher ticket price.

My friend worked for the airlines and she told me how quickly prices could fluctuate. I’ve seen them go up and down right before my eyes. One morning I found airline tickets for $160, then later that same afternoon(only a few hours later) when I was ready to buy them  those same tickets jumped up to over $200. They may have come back down later that day-who knows?

The good news is that the mandated 24-hour reservation requirement allows you to cancel your higher airfare and get the lower airfare without a penalty if you meet the rule requirements.

According to (more…)

How to Save Money on Movie Tickets

MoviesDo you ever have interesting conversations with people sitting in the waiting room? I sure do. The last time I went to get my car serviced, I saw a woman reading “Gone Girl.” I asked if she had seen the movie.

She replied, “No, movies cost too much money for me. They are expensive! It costs $11 to go. I got this book from the library and there were 80 people on the waiting list for it!”

That’s some library waiting list. Wow!

She proceeded to say, “The only way I got this copy was because everyone wanted the regular book. I saw the large print version available and got that one.”

That’s smart thinking I thought and smiled. Perhaps she wasn’t missing anything since most people say the book is better than the movie anyway.

Still I couldn’t shake the fact that she thought it cost $11 to watch a movie.

So I said, “You don’t have to pay $11 to watch a movie.” Next she exclaimed, If I was in Florida I wouldn’t have to.”

Then, I proceeded to tell her how she could catch a flick on a budget right here and right now. She was as they say “all ears.”

Here are five ways to save money on your next movie ticket: (more…)

Categories: Save Money

4 Easy Ways to Save Money on Your Car Repairs

Check Engine LightDo you ever cringe when your car’s check engine light comes on? I know the feeling, these days regular car maintenance could cost you hundreds of dollars. While a major car repair might run you in the thousands. Ouch!

Earlier this month my car’s maintenance light came on. It’s six years old now. And this was a new maintenance code. I could only imagine how much $$$ it was going to cost me.

Every time I cranked up the car, it was in bright lights staring me in the face. As if it were saying, what are you waiting for? Stop ignoring me, something is wrong.

After a few days, I decided to schedule an appointment. I called several car dealerships to get quotes. They told me: $330, $340 and $450.

Prices like that for scheduled maintenance just make you want to scream! By shopping around I managed to save over $100 in less than 10 minutes.

Whenever I get service quotes, I just scribble them down on a piece of paper along with the details. Paying attention to the service maintenance details helps you save money when you’ve recently had something they are recommending.

For example, the last time I had to get my car serviced it included a tire rotation. I told the tech I got one a few weeks earlier, so I skipped it.

This time around I needed everything on the list!

The good news is that I still managed to cut my repair cost down an extra 15% (that’s $51) over the phone. In this post I’ll show you exactly how I did it. Read on.

Here are 4 Easy Ways to Save Money on Your Car Repairs: (more…)
Categories: Save Money

America Saves Week

Every year one of the top financial New Year’s resolutions is to save more money. Sadly, many of our resolutions are broken within the first month. Have you ever broken yours? I know I have (just being honest!).

The good news is that you don’t have to wait until next year to start saving more money. Every day gives you a chance to start anew.

It’s never too late to start saving!

You know what they say- “there’s no time like the present.” And it just so happens America Saves Week is coming up February 24th – March 1st, 2014.


America Saves Week is coordinated by America Saves and the American Savings Education Council. The purpose of this week is to help you get your savings plan in place, so you can start reaching your savings goals. It’s been proven that people with a plan are more successful. (more…)

Categories: Save Money

Money Smart Kid’s Jar System

When it comes to money management having a system helps. Last month, I attended a financial event where Mario Gage (the first Money Smart Week Kid) shared the “three-jar system” his parents taught him.

Here’s how it works.  For every dollar he receives, it’s divided into three categories:

  • 10% for church
  • 30% savings
  • 60% for spending

So he’s only spending 60% of his income. This system taught Mario the valuable lesson of living below your means at a young age. (more…)

Attention Illinois Students and Educators: Scholarships Available

The Illinois Jump$tart Coalition (ILJC) has scholarships available for educators and students. The Mission of the Illinois Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy is to be a catalyst for enhancing the financial capability of young people through advocacy, collaboration and communication among key stakeholders.

According to, the guidelines for these scholarships are as follows: (more…)

A New Way to Save Money on Hotels

Photo by Matthewjs007via Flickr cc

Photo by Matthewjs007via Flickr cc

Most people look online for low priced hotels. There are so many travel websites out there—it can make you dizzy!

Still savvy people are out there online scouring the Web to find rock bottom prices. I don’t know about you, but for me gone are the days of just showing up to pay a high rate.

Are you kidding me? I’m not trying to get robbed.

Do you have to go online to find the lowest priced hotels? You may be surprised to hear this, but they could be a phone call away. And I’m not talking about calling the hotel’s front desk either. Let me explain. (more…)

Save More Money at the Outlet Mall

Photo by oakbrookterracehotels via Flickr cc

Photo by oakbrookterracehotels via Flickr cc

Everybody loves a great deal! That’s why so many people go to outlet malls. If you don’t believe me, try going to the Chicago Premium Outlets on a holiday weekend.

It’s ridiculous! People come from near and far looking for bargains. They pack the parking lots, side streets and neighborhoods with one goal in mind—to go shopping.

Someone even told me he saw shoppers parking on the interstate (I-88) just to get in on the action.

That being said, the first way to save money at the outlet mall is to park legally. No deal is worth you getting your car towed. That puts you back hundreds of dollars in towing costs. Besides, who needs the frustration? (more…)

Categories: Save Money

Women Breadwinners – Are We Still Afraid of Becoming a Bag Lady?

Photo by Alex O'Neal via Flickr Creative Commons

Photo by Alex O’Neal via Flickr cc

Everyone has been buzzing about a new Pew survey that finds a record number of women are the breadwinners. The survey results show a shift in the amount of money women are bringing home. In fact, some married women (5.1 million) are earning more than their husbands. On the flip side, there are single mothers (8.6 million) supporting their families alone.

As you can probably imagine the income disparity between the two groups is large. The married women total household income is $80,000 compared to $23,000 for unmarried single mothers. For a thoughtful perspective on this survey, read the article “Pew study: Two different tales of women earners.”

Women Breadwinners, yet Afraid of Becoming Bag Ladies

Despite the fact more women are breadwinners, some of us have this fear of becoming a ‘bag lady’. You know, like the pigeon lady in the movie Home Alone 2. After all, we live longer than men. Will we have enough income to support ourselves during the golden years? (more…)

This Could Save You 50% or More on Parking…

Car GarageTired of paying too much to park? Keep reading this and you’ll find out how I saved over 50% parking in Chicago. And Chicago has the nation’s highest parking metered rates. Metered parking downtown can cost as much as $6.50 an hour. Ouch.

It’s ridiculous! With rates like this, you’d have to shell out 52 quarters to park for a few hours. That’s an awful lot of change to be lugging around to pay a parking meter. This is probably causing people to get parking outrage. No wonder they gladly accept credit cards.

Parking is just too expensive.

That’s why I try to avoid parking downtown. Nothing beats commuting by train into the city. But unfortunately, it’s not always convenient.

The other day I decided to drive downtown. But I refused to pay those high parking rates. Thinking back to #2 in my “7 Surefire Tips to Save on Parking” post.

So I had to find a way to save on parking. That’s when I came across this incredible website with unbelievable parking rates. (more…)

Categories: Save Money