Blogs & Comment

Using technology to be cheap

Incorporating money-saving with modern-day digital capacities.

I may not have the Mom cut just yet, but the financial management skills (a.k.a. cheapness) taught to me by my mother are definitely in tact. Over the past year, I’ve incorporated the acquired “cheap” trait with modern-day digital capacities. Here are a few examples of ways I’ve saved money by using my aptitude for technology:

  • I subscribe to a variety of different money-saving e-newsletters, such as the Living Social, WagJag and Groupon e-newsletters. Every morning, each of these services sends me an e-mail with a current promotion that expires either by the end of the day or within a few days. If I was rich, I would probably buy all of the promotions because they’re all great deals. But since I’m not, I stick to the deals I can afford. One of the best promotions I ever took advantage of was a Living Social promotion for a fancy Italian restaurant, Coco Lezzone. For $25, my date and I ate and drank $50 worth of consumables.
  • I recently purchased a compact countertop dishwasher. It was on sale at Canadian Tire for $229. Since I live in a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto, you can imagine that I don’t have much counter space to put the dishwasher on. While Ikea sells a stainless steel kitchen cart for, coincidentally, $229, I came across a Craigslist ad selling the exact same kitchen cart for $100 and no tax. Although the cart was residing about 10 km from my home and I don’t own (or lease) a car, within minutes, I logged onto my Zipcar account, reserved a small truck for a period of one hour, and then zipped over to pick up the cart. My annual Zipcar membership is roughly $65, and a one-hour rental on a weekday costs $8, gas and insurance included. I haven’t scrubbed a dish since!
  • Instead of buying gifts for everyone, my siblings and I pick names for Christmas. This year, I picked my 16-year-old brothers name. Shortly after, I logged onto Amazon and typed in the one thing I knew he loved: Football. The first search result that popped up was a collection of DVDs, each of which was a football movie. The set included classics like Rudy , Jerry Maguire and Radio. In roughly one week, I had the perfect gift sitting in my mailbox, and I didn’t even have to step foot inside a shopping centre. Including tax and shipping, the collection cost me $20 and some change. When I unwrapped the DVDs from the packaging, they were in perfect condition box sealed. The retail sticker ($29.99) was attached to the outside of the plastic covering, so I peeled it off. Awesome. I bought him something else to bring the total up to $50, but that’s a different story.

Do you have any stories to share about how you saved money by using the Internet? Please share your success in the comments section below. Id love to hear your tips!