Frugal Fridays | Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom

January 30, 2009

Frugal Fridays

I'm big...

...on saving money.

I'm not always great at it, but when I do find an amazing deal, it makes me feel alive. I feel simultaneously proud and victorious, smug and passionate. Saving money makes me feel FREE.

I have a long way to go before I would classify myself as "frugal," but I believe every little bit counts.

I would LOVE to hear your little tricks to saving money - whether it's a place you shop, a website you surf, a coupon you clip or a habit you have gotten yourself into.

Recently, I have found myself on the prowl for more ways to save money. On my journey, I've come across a few that have been successful. Some might be no-brainers to you, some might be as exciting a find to you as they have been for me.

So, I dedicate my Fridays to Frugality. These little tidbits get me so pumped, I'm not sure which one to go with first!

Frugal Fridays #1

Restaurant Email Clubs

Now, this one is not for the faint of (email) heart. I have been doing this for several years now, and have really enjoyed the outcome.

One night, you find yourself in an eating establishment. The table is littered with placemats, utensils, napkins, plastic holders stuffed with the dessert menu, sugar packets and...a form to join that eating establishment's Email Club. Most people can't be bothered with another form to fill out, another stupid email to send to spam. Sadly, most people just write these Email Clubs off.

Not so fast, friends...

These Email Clubs can really be a godsend. I've taken to filling these forms out and giving them to my waiter/waitress. Most places nowadays can sign you up online - which is even better, quicker and more efficient.

Most of these Email Clubs offer monthly to several-times-a-monthly offers via email. Many of them also send you a special treat offer on your birthday.

As I said earlier in the post, it is not for the faint of heart. You have to be okay with getting a few emails a week from restaurants, often which offer nothing important. OR you can create an email account strictly for these emails. [Note: I have not noticed an influx of spam, and they do not inundate my mailbox.]

Some of the benefits? $10 off every few weeks at one place, a % off at another. A coupon to try a new menu item.

The best benefits come when your birthday rolls around. One year, when I was signed up with several email Clubs, I had enough offers to allow me to eat out for a WEEK. IT WAS GLORIOUS. Some places offer a free meal with the purchase of another. Some places offer a free appetizer or dessert. A few special ones give you a FREE COMPLIMENTARY MEAL, no strings attached.

For those who have kids, a large family or a LOT of friends, every little bit you can save counts. And people will think you are savvy and thrifty. 

(It's also a great way to save money on dates with your husband/fiance/boyfriend/etc)

ome worth signing up for (in my opinion):

Buca di Beppo (if you live near one) - they give me $10 off $30 meal (which is right about the cost for 2-4 people) every few weeks AND a free dessert on your birthday.

Spaghetti Warehouse (if you are LUCKY ENOUGH live near one, like I am!) - I get maybe 1 email a week, or once every two weeks. When they send emails, they usually have good offers, such as a BOGO (buy one get one) free meal, a $5.99 lunch deal, etc.  They also give you a good treat on your birthday (unfortunately this year, I did not get to redeem mine).

Desert Moon (if you live near one) - I get offers for % off from time to time, and a few dollars off a meal for my birthday

Houlihans (if you live near one) - I have to re-enter for this establishment. BUT, they were one of the golden few who gave me a COMPLIMENTARY MEAL on my birthday, no strings attached. They also didn't email often, which is nice.

Applebees - I think I get either a free appetizer or a meal with the purchase of another on my birthday.

Red Robin - I get some nice offers from time to time, and something like a free burger on my birthday.

Those are just a few - and plenty more to try out!

If you know of any more that have good, legitimate offers - EMAIL ME!

What are your Frugal Tips?

1 comment :

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