I don't have a job right now. I'm in that horrible, formless miasma between college graduation and gainfull employment. You might think you shouldn't be taking advice from a jobless person. But who knows how to save money better than someone with ZERO income?
You tell me how to get a job, and I'll tell you how to save what you make at yours.



Here's a list of 4 EASY online ways you can get or save a lot of money with about 10 minutes worth of not-very-serious effort.

It's the Thought That Counts

Nothing in your wallet except that $200 Giftcard to Steinmart your Granny gave you for Christmas? Change that piece of partisan plastic in for actual cash by selling it on Ebay.
Ebay lets you sell any giftcard as long as the value is under $500 and you don't sell more than one gift card per month. You'll have to take a little bit of a loss on the value of the card (usally around $10 for a $100 Card) plus a $2 selling fee, but it's worth it to have $189 dollars you can spend anywhere versus $200 you can only spend on overpriced blazers and knicknacks. I know you think Nana wanted you to spend that money on fuzzy sweaters and shawl clips. But really, Nana just wants you to be happy.

On the flip side of the coin, if you know you're going to spend a large amount of money at a certain store, check the eBay listings to see if there's a giftcard up for auction. Buy a $100 gift card for $90 and you've just made your own discount.

Scrimp Cocktail

Don't have money for drinks? Why not get a marketing company to buy the drinks for you? Go to the Mystery Shopping Providers' Association website and check the job board for shopping opportunities in your area.
Sound like a scam? The MSPA is reccomended by the Better Business Bureau as a reputable site. Don't fall for other sites that ask you to pay a fee and claim you can make a career out of mystery shopping-- because you can't. While you can't make a living at it, mystery shopping will pay you flat "shop fees" of around $20 for each shop you do, plus reimburse you for the cost of the products or services you buy. This equals free products + some extra pocket money.
So, if you're planning on buying any big-ticket items, ALWAYS check the MSPA job board to see if a company is looking for a review on a particular store or item. You could end up getting that purchase for free.
In the case of restaurant and bar evaluations, the companies often allow you to take friends with you on the job, and the manager usually comps the entire meal ticket on-site. So, you get a drink with the gals and don't have to pay anything, ever, at all.

Slicker Than Snot On A Doorknob

Repeat after me: Never EVER shop online without checking Slick Deals first. NEVER EVER!!
Virtual gathering place for the frugal at heart, shoppers from all over the world gather at SlickDeals.com to post great values, low prices, and even coupon codes culled from a hard day's buying. I've found the ongoing Victoria's Secret thread particularly usefull, scoring checkout codes for a free totebag, free sample perfume, and free shipping on items I purchased from their online store. There's another forum devoted entirely to freebies-- The "What I got free in the mail today" thread is a must-read. One poster wonders aloud what she should do for her mail man after he delivered over a hundred different free sample boxes to her in one day.

Power of the Attorney, Habeus Corpus!

Yes, that is the theme to Harvey Birdman, Attorney At Law-- but it's also an excellent reminder of another way to get your money's worth. Make sure to get your part class action lawsuit settlements. Does that sound shady? Well, it shouldn't. We're all wary of being overly litigious these days. But there are probably class action settlements going on right now for products sitting in your house. Check Class Action World for lists of recently filed and recently settled Class Action suits.
I was surprised recently to find out that Airborne is paying out refunds to anyone who purchased their products between 2001-2007 as the result of a class-action settlement. They're paying the price for false advertisement and if you bought any of those products, you should get your due by going to the settlement's website and filing an online claim.
I was also surprised to see the common sense with which the court handled the settlement, understanding that those of us with normal mental health don't save receipts for cold medicine we purchased FIVE YEARS ago. No proof of purchase is required, although the amount you will be refunded is less than if you have a receipt.


The Squeaky Wheel...

I'm not a complainer-- at least not to companies. I worked in customer service for many years and I know what it's like to have some irate fool spraying bits of his lunch in your face over some trivial foible. So I don't like to complain... but maybe I should get over that.
I was reticent to complain about the horrific experience I had in the Atlanta airport this March, thanks to some really atrocious Delta customer service and a couple hundred planes they deemed unfit to fly that day. I took my sweet time about complaining, but when I finally went to their website and wrote up a little email detailing what had happened, I received a swift response and a $200 credit voucher towards any Delta flight. Now, whether or not I actually want to fly with them again is another matter.

And while you're at their websites filling out complaints about the stank eye you got from the ticketing agent on your last flight, don't forget to sign up for the frequent flyer program. I got a $100 gift card from one airline's program-- which I promptly turned around and sold on eBay.

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