Posts Tagged ‘deals’

9 Black Friday Shopping Apps

Smart phones and technology can help make your shopping easier, especially on Black Friday (doesn’t THAT sound nice?). Here are video reviews of Black Friday and other shopping apps that can help you save time and money:

Tech reviewer Matts MacIntosh shows two phone apps to find coupons and locations that accept them, find apps and track their price changes, scan bar codes and then located the best deals. He reviews Yoowza!, AppSniper and RedLaser: reviews three and evaluates the performance of these three apps designed for shopping Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals . Find out if  the cost of these iPhone & iPad Touch mobile apps are worth their potential savings:

The Daily App Show reviews The Find, a mobile app that ties online and offline shopping together. You can price compare, scan bar codes, locate products and save information to save money. For iPhone and Android:

Crazy Mike from walks you through the features of THI Friday iPhone App, a free money-saving app:

Owen Robbins from KRRS Systems reviews the money-saving and coupon app called, The Coupons App for iPhones, iPad, Android devices. They also feature Black Friday deals:

More Black Friday Savings strategies in our posts:

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The Special Deal Days of Holiday Shopping


The holiday shopping season continues to start earlier in the year, and that means a growing number of “special shopping days” with more deals and discounts from retailers and online outlets. This is a greater opportunity for you to save on those items on your gift list. But with more and more sale days, it may be quite a challenge to keep your spending in check during the holiday shopping season. The keys to staying in control are:

  • plan ahead
  • know the best days to shop
  • research and price compare ahead of time
  • use coupons and promo codes
  • stick to your budget

Here are the 12 traditional big sale and discount days for holiday shopping:

November 10 – Neighborhood Toy Store Day  This day of awareness was initiated to help shoppers find the best children’s toys on the market and encourage shopping in your  local community. Check out this website with resources: Neighborhood Toy Store Day. 

The Day after Thanksgiving – Black Friday – In the United States, Black Friday is the day following Thanksgiving Day. On this day, most major retailers open extremely early, often even on Thanksgiving night, and offer promotional sales to kick off the shopping season, similar to Boxing Day sales in many Commonwealth Nations. Sales are announced weeks ahead of time, and doorbuster deals are offered in limited quantities, which means advanced planning is essential to get the most from these bargains. More to find big savings in our post: Black Friday, Cyber Monday Money Saving Tips

The Saturday following Thanksgiving – Small Business Saturday  – Small Business Saturday reminds us to shop at locally-owned neighborhood stores. Boutique independent shops can offer some unique choices, quality goods and caring service.

The Monday following Thanksgiving – Cyber Monday – This marks the start of Cyber Week, where online shopping deals are continuous right up until the very last holiday minute, especially if you know where and how to search for bargains. By shopping online you save on gas and parking fees. Watch for sales, and use promo codes for discounts and free shipping offers. 7 Cyber Monday Shopping and Safety Tips.

End of November or in December – Chanukah – The first day of the eight-day holiday of Chanukah changes from year to year, but check your calendar and watch for new offers, specials and promo codes before that first day and and throughout the eight days of Chanukah. More tips to enjoy your holiday celebration in our post:  8 Ideas for a Happy Hanukkah Party on a Budget.

Second Monday in DecemberGreen Monday – eBay coined the term “Green Monday,” which does not refer to anything ecological, but rather, refers to the busiest online sales day of the year and the busiest shipping day in the country, with sales reported to bring in over one-billion greenbacks. More savings tips in this video:  Green Monday

Mid-December – Free Shipping Day – The U.S. and Canada’s Postal Service’s Annual Free Shipping Day,  is a one-day, online-shopping event when literally thousands of merchants offer free shipping promising delivery by Christmas Eve, and many merchants offer additional special promotions and discounts. More on participating retailers, special offers in this post on Free Shipping Day .

Third Thursday in DecemberNational Regifting Day – Regifting can be a budget-friendly option for gift-giving and is a more environmentally friendly option. Additionally, National Regifting Day conveniently coincides with the time that many businesses are hosting holiday office parties. One word of caution: be sure you don’t regift the gift back to the person who gave it to you originally. More handy tips in this video on The Art of Regifting.

Saturday before Christmas Day – Super Saturday – This is the second biggest retail shopping day of the year. The Saturday before Christmas is called “super” because it’s the last weekend chance for shoppers, which makes it super for retailers. Along with extra incentives and doorbuster deals being offered through the weekend, shoppers may also find a wide range of retail prices with tons of impulse items priced on the higher side while items that haven’t moved previously may be priced to sell. More in this video: Super Saturday Holiday Shopping

Christmas Eve Eve and Christmas Eve – Two more intense days for sales at brick-and-mortar stores. This is the final opportunity for shoppers browse for gifts in order to give them in time for Christmas Day, and it’s the last chance to move inventory before final end of year markdowns. But though you may be facing a time crunch, it’s still possible to find deals. How-to tips in this video:  Last Minute Holiday Shopping Tips.

December 26 – Kwanzaa – This seven-day celebration starts the day following Christmas and ends on January 1. This week is loaded with post-Christmas and end-of-year discounts being offered, but pay special attention and you may find extra coupon codes and discounts added to address this specific holiday. Ideas, crafts, recipes and gift ideas in our post: 7 Kwanzaa Celebration Ideas.

Day After Christmas and Post Christmas Deals: The day after Christmas is now considered to be a close contender with Black Friday as one of the busiest shopping days of the year. Shoppers are in stores with gift exchanges and returns, and using gift cash and gift cards while taking advantage of end of season sales for items like winter gear, clothing and coats. It’s also a good time to find rock bottom prices on holiday items you might want to stock up on for next year’s holiday season like wrapping paper, holiday cards, and decorations. Discounts are usual offered through January 1 as retailers need to move last year’s inventory to make way for new spring stock. Make the most of your post-holiday shopping with the tips in this video on How to Snag After-Holiday Deals.

 More on how to get the most for your holiday shopping dollar:

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Father’s Day: Fantastic and Wallet-Friendly

We know you care, and your Dad will too!

You can show Dad you have real heart for him, and also hold onto your real savings at the same time with these videos loaded with easy budget-friendly or even free do-it-yourself gifts, gift baskets, recipes, entertaining and activity ideas Dad will love!

Father’s Day the Home Shopping Way – Every father deserves the best, and what better way than with Home Shopping? What dad wouldn’t appreciate a little comedy with his socks and BBQ?  Catch this Karen Alloy comedy.

Meetballs 3-course, feed 4, under $35 – Chef Bill Poirier from Boston’s restaurant, Sonsie, whips up a 3-course-meal for 4 people, for under $35 budget. Spinach salad, turkey meatballs, & chocolate ricotta!

Summer Grilling , Serve 8 for $10 Each – Cook up a 3-course meal for 8 people and for under $10 each with recipes from David Joachim and Andrew Schloss, Authors of  Mastering The Grill.

Cupcake Father’s Day Gifts – Everyone loves cupcakes and the author of   Hey There, Cupcake! shows how to decorate dessert for a special Father’s Day.

DIY Coin and Key Keeper – Give Dad a hand for pocket change & car keys with this one-of-a-kind do-it-yourself tray that any child can make!  Easy DIY from Crayola Creative Workshop.

DYI Photo Frame from a CD Case – An easy DYI gift project from Crayola Creative Workshop: turn an old CD case into a bright and bold picture frame that can hold a special message.

Origami Necktie and Shirt Card – So Easy to do! A DYI origami necktie and shirt card that’s sure to bring a smile to every dad.

Men’s Spa at Home – Men like to indulge too. Check out these at home men’s grooming products and gifts to pamper the man in your life from Lenny LaCour.

For more gift ideas, that are sure to please, check out these blog posts:

These previous posts mention  great resources for nice discounts and even free fun local activities you may want to make part of your Father’s Day plan :

Father’s Day FACT:  Did you know:

Scholars claim the tradition of Father’s Day can be traced in the ruins of Babylon where a young boy called Elmesu carved a Father’s Day message on a card made out of clay nearly 4,000 years ago. Elmesu wished his father good health and a long life. The idea of a Father’s Day celebration in the U.S.A. originated in 1909 in Spokane, Washington, when Ms. Sonora Louise Smart Dodd was listening to Mother’s Day sermon.  Sonora pondered if there is a day to honor mother then why not for father and she began a rigorous campaign to celebrate Father’s Day in the U.S.  It wasn’t until  1972 that a permanent national observance of Father’s Day  was established by President Richard Nixon. More Father’s Day facts

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Black Friday Previews

Black Friday continues to arrive earlier and earlier each year, and this year is no exception. Not only do Black Friday “specials” come earlier, but the “previews” (aka “leaks”) of deals, doorbusters, and specials that stores will be offering on Black Friday come earlier and earlier too.

While I personally am not a Black Friday Shopping Fanatic, I know there are thousands of you who will brave the jammed parking lots, crowds, long lines, and limited stock on doorbuster deals to take advantage of bargains that can be found on that discount shopping day. And, being well prepared in advance is one of the best ways for you to get the most out of those deals.

So for those who are determined to take part in the Black Friday Shopping ritual, we bring you some of our favorite sites and articles for finding Black Friday deal previews, tips and tricks:

UPDATED 11/12/13: – – –

Delio –

Catch more holiday shopping tips –

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12 (Awesome) Gifts Under $10

Gifts that are thoughtful, clever, fun and beautiful for under $10? YES! Here are 12 ideas that are perfect for the “Grab Bag” event, stocking stuffers, hostess gifts, thank you gifts, and even THE gift for THE friend or THE family member… you’ll find ideas here that will make a great impression for anyone on your gift list – and won’t put a dent in your wallet, either.


Bright Porcelain bowls. Serve dips, hold fruit, nuts, chips, or brighten  your morning cereal with these welcoming porcelain colorful vessels created in collaboration with Potter’s Workshop, a collective of South African artists known for their signature bead-like patterns. Microwave and dishwasher safe. 3.75 ” diam. x 2.5″h.  From West Elm. $5 each.

Colorful bracelets made from real guitar strings! Designed by Hannah Garrision & Steve Bernstein. The guitar strings are made in China; the bracelet is handmade in the U.S. with lead-free nickel and brass. Available at UncommonGoods. $10 each.

The healing power of comedy is now available in an over-the-counter form. Apply this Emergency Clown Nose liberally as needed. A necessary accessory for removing splinters or applying band-aids. Side effects may include chuckling, chortling and guffawing. Nose made of polyester. From UncommonGoods, created by professional clowns Rosie Cole and Lloyd Brant to promote their philosophy of healing through laughter.  $5.

Key Tool Keyring Multi-tool – This tiny tool packs the power of 8 different tools: 3 screwdrivers, tweezers, wire stripper, and more. It fits on your keychain and it comes with a fake key to “park” in. Made of stainless steel for strength and durability. From think geek. $7.99

Glass Candlesticks. Handmade from handblown and heat-tempered clear borosilicate (“beaker”) lab glass these candle holders are graceful glass sculptures in three light-as-a-feather yet durable styles. From CB2, $4.95. each.

Bud vases. Showcase your fresh flowers in this sleek, iron, teardrop-shapped bud vase. Handcrafted in India.  From CB2 $9.95 – $10.95.

Bright green cable with eight magnets displays photos, memos, cards and notes without the need for overwhelming your walls with excessive pins, nails or tape. Weighted end keeps the 59.5″ cable straight.  At CB2. $6.95


Bamu Cork Coffee Cuff reusable mug holder is an eco-friendly alternative to paper protectors. Fits various sized cups, glasses, cans and thermoses.  At $9.75.


A fresh idea for wall display or a bulletin board alternative; Darice Cork Sticky Shapes are great for one-handed posting of messages, lists, notes, photos. Items stick securely and remove easily with or without tacks or pins. These cork shapes will stick to most surfaces. Ideal for interior rooms, offices, dorm rooms, bedrooms and/or where sound dampening is needed. Available in a variety of shapes (hearts, crowns, flowers, skulls, etc.). Includes 8 cork sticky shapes per pack, $4.70.

Quench your dog’s thirst while on the road with the Pet Water Bottle Top. The plastic top fits most standard water bottles and the flow can be adjusted for any size pet. Made of plastic with an adjustable flow for any size pet. The bright orange color ensures you won’t mistake your pet’s bottle for yours.  Includes an adapter to fit different bottle types. From $7.95.

You don’t always need staples! This handy (and environmentally friendly) staple-less stapler device cuts a tiny flap in the corner of your paper, and folds it in on itself, tucked in a tiny paper pocket. Sleek and small, the Staple Free Stapler can clip together up to five sheets with ease. We personally use this and love it! Amazon.  $7.02.

The Credit Card Lightbulb means no more struggling to find your keys, or squinting while trying to read the menu when the restaurant is too dark. Handy when traveling, too. This unusual card looks like a flat incandescent bulb, but push the bulb vertical and it unexpectedly lights up. The rest of the card serves as a stand. The same size, though slightly thicker than a credit card you can easily store one in your wallet or purse. From Batteries included, $3.99 – $5.99

More Gift Ideas that Won’t Stretch Your Wallet in our posts:

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12 Gifts Under $30

Giving a gift that lets someone you care about know you are thinking of them does not have to cost a fortune or break your budget. Here are 12 unique gift ideas all for less than $30, that would suit anyone, anytime, from kids to great-grandparents – while suiting your bank balance as well.

Give the gift of warmth and comfort with a cozy throw. These welcomed cozy down-alternative throw is available in an array of colors and patterns to suit any personality and every decor. From JC Penney. Machine washable. $19.99 – $25.

Carafe and Cup set: This elegant glass and pitcher duo is made entirely out of recycled glass bottles, giving it a unique pale green color and a sculptural aesthetic. The textured bands of glass allow it to be grasped firmly, preventing accidental slips and spills. Beautiful on nightstands, dressers, and desks, and tables, even when it’s not bearing water. Handmade by fair trade artisans in Bolivia. $29.99

Chill the party with this festive red  party cooler that’s ultra-hot! This Metal Party Tub offers a great way to ice drinks and snacks in the back yard, park, or stadium parking lot. Made from a durable and rust-resistant alloy with a bright finish, this reinforced Metal Party Tub comes with steel carrying handles and is built to last. Available is several colors at Party City, $19.99.

This versatile serving platter set is made of gleaming white durable porcelain with a clean sleek design. Dishwasher, microwave, and conventional oven-safe. Made in China. 5-piece set includes: four small platters; one large platter. From CB2. The set: $22.75.
The Fozzils Solo Flat Pack Dinerware Set is great for your outdoorsy friend or adventure traveler.  Made of durable polypropylene and is leak-proof and easy to clean. Just throw the flat sheets in your backpack and later fold into cup, bowl, and plate and spoon in seconds. The Fozzils Pack Set comes in a reusable packing sleeve that can also be used as a prep tray or cutting board. $15.95 a set.
Bring memories home with this darling Sandy Feet Casting Kit. You can use it for either footprints or handprints. Simply make a foot or hand print in dense, moist sand. Collect beach water in the cup provided; mix in the special powder to it, then pour the mixture into the print impression. You can even personalize your print with the included stylus, and use the cord to make your footprint ready-to-hang. Allow 20 minutes for it to harden, then gently scoop the print out. Use the special keepsake pail to tote your creation home! The kit can make two children’s feet (up to size 2) or one adult foot. Parental supervision required. Contents made in the USA; tin made in China. Sand not included. From UncommonGoods. $15.

Charge your cell phones in style with the Garden Charging Station. Keep your counters looking neat and tidy and add a little decor with this “grass” filled decorative container.Easily hide all your charging cords by placing them under the grass and run 1 extension cord to the Charging Station. Available in black or white. 10.5″ L x 6″ W x 3.5″ H. Extension cord not included. At Convenient Gadgets & Gifts. $27.95

Guitar Pick Punch – Create your own recycled guitar picks quickly and easily with the Pick Punch. Turn expired credit cards, old gift cards, hotel key cards, and other thin plastic into perfectly-shaped guitar picks. The heavy-duty Pick Punch features a steel head that can cut through materials up to 1mm thick. Good idea for DIY earrings or necklace pendants too! From UncommonGoods. $25.

HABA/TC Timber Master Builder Series. This large block set allows children to use and learn the same engineering principles the Romans followed. In true Romanesque style, this 54 pc set of solid wooden blocks is sure to entertain young and old architects alike. Note: This set does not come with building instructions. From$29.99

The Hess Toy Truck – We just can’t help it – we love this gift! (yes, it was on last year’s list, too) Since 1964 Hess has released a new model toy truck in November each year; and kids (no matter what age) never tire of collecting them and playing with them. They often are actually two vehicles and feature high quality realistic fun with extras like flashing lights, sirens, lifts or ramps. Available at participating Hess Gas Stations, starting November 11, 2011, and they sell out fast! Batteries included, $26.99.

Tabletopics. Played with family, friends or during a candlelit dinner for two, each card in a Tabletopics sets asks a different thought-provoking, conversation-starting question. Choose from four different sets – Couple’s Edition, Family Edition, Original Edition, and Dinner Party Edition. All four sets are guaranteed to keep the fun and conversation flowing. (we can personally attest to that!) The set of 135 cards are housed in acrylic 4 x 4″ square cube. Appropriate for ages 12 and up. From RedEnvelope. $29.95

This leather and stainless steel  heart token manages to be both rugged and refined. The versatile leather necklace is expandable up to 35 inches and is available in four colors. The necklace is available in Black (pictured), Brown, Red or Pink. Specify necklace color and up to six letters for custom engraving. Not suitable for children under 12 years of age. From Enchanted Memories $25.99

This cheeky money clip serves its purpose, even if you’re light on cash. The engraving, rich in humor, says it all (and then some):  “The safest way to double your money is to fold it over once and put it in your pocket.” – Kin Hubbard. Made of aluminum and made in the USA, from UncommonGoods. $18.

More creative and wallet-friendly gift ideas in our posts:

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How to Save Money Dining Out, Traveling or At Home

Whether you are on the road traveling or touring your own home town, dining out can be a real wallet drain. You are at more of a disadvantage when you are in new unfamiliar places with limited resources and in a rush. But you can still enjoy dining out without busting your budget even while traveling, vacationing, or touring your own town by simply keeping a few easy tips in mind.


A Hotel restaurant may be convenient, but… that little bistro or cafe down the block may be a far better value. For example, we randomly selected the Hilton Hotel on Ave. of the Americas in NYC. We checked the weekday breakfast menu at the New York MarketPlace Cafe. The full American Breakfast Buffet is $35 per person. The lowest priced item on the breakfast menu was $12 for granola with yogurt, berries and honey. At the Europa Cafe, just two blocks away, you won’t get the Hilton atmosphere, granted, but you’ll get a lot of local flavor and a spinach and cheddar cheese omelet with potatoes, toast, and coffee or tea for $7.53 – that’s a savings of $27.47 over the hotel cafe. Europa Cafe’s large homemade granola with yogurt and fruit is just $4.25 – which is a $7.75 savings over the New York MarketPlace Cafe.

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Hidden fees can appear on your dining tab. Before you pay or sign ask if a gratuity has already been added in. This applies anywhere, including in your own home town neighborhood. Some countries customarily add a gratuity in, or a “service charge”. Often a gratuity is included for larger parties of 6 or more. Ask your lodging hosts or hotel ahead of time how much of a tip is customary. Watch for extra platting charges for splitting an entre; it might be worth it to order something small and pack the extra to go, instead of incurring a $6 fee that you get nothing in return for. Ask before you order if they accept credit or debit cards, and if there is an extra surcharge for using them.

Ask your hosts or hotel if there are any specials, vouchers or coupons for restaurants.  However, when asking for a recommendation, keep in mind some concierges get kickbacks for sending you to pricy tourist traps so be sure to ask for their unbiased opinion and suggestions.

Some establishments may offer lower prices or freebies on certain holidays, or on specific days of the week, or during certain hours, like before 7:00 pm or after 9:00 pm. Check the specific restaurant you are interest in online for any current promotions, and also check online for coupons and specials at sites like

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Eat off the beaten path. Head for eateries in areas that outlie the more popular busy tourist centers. These restaurantuers livelyhoods depend on serving local residents and business people quality fresh regional dishes for reasonable prices daily, and that works in your favor.

More tips in this video:

Street Food. This can be a great way to have a quick sample of local cuisine at a real bargain, but this can also be tricky.  You want to be sure the vendor is well equipped, hygienic, and the food is good quality and fresh.

Catch this video from a curbside cuisine expert for tips on how to do that:

Cook in. Of course, a big dining money saver is to prepare at least some of your own food. You can do this, even if you’re traveling.  Shop at local farmer’s markets or nearby grocery stores and prepare a picnic. Creating your own meal just once a day can easily save you $35 or more, per person, per day.

More money saving travel posts:

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Traveling? Save Money Getting There and Getting Around

Planes, trains and automobiles… busses, bikes, and taxi cabs… airport ticket prices, extra fees, and transportation costs in general take a hefty toll on your travel budget. But it doesn’t necessarily have to completely drain your wallet. Go ahead! Tour the town, sight-see, enjoy museums and historical landmarks. We’ve assembled great travel money saving pointers from the best experts in the field to help you get the most transportation cost cutting bang for your travel buck.

Booking a flight:

  • Ticket prices are usually lower when purchased three weeks to several months out.
  • Prices drop a week and a half from your departure date.
  • Prices jump when within one week to your departure date.
  • Cheapest flights leave on a Tuesday or Wednesday or Saturday.
  • Being flexible by even one day can often lead to big savings.
  • Often there are extra fees for booking over the phone. Online is the better way to go.
  • Check airline prices constantly, as often as several times a day.
  • Visit several online booking sites, like Orbitz or Kayak each lists different carriers, no two are alike.
  • Check sites that purport to be able to “predict” ticket price trends. Though not always accurate, it’s worth a try. The following were suggested in a USA Today Travel article:
  • Foreign, budget, or start-up carriers sometimes have cheaper rates. For those try MomondoSkyScanner, WhichBudget.
  • After checking around, go directly to the airline’s websites. Often they are cheaper and you are more likely to be able to place a hold on a ticket for 24 hours. That’s long enough to possibly find a cheaper ticket somewhere else and still have that saved ticket if not.
  • Sign up for membership in credit card and airline loyalty clubs. You’ll receive email notices of special promo deals being offered to airline club members. Accumulate points to trade in for tickets and upgrades on future travel. For updates on programs & offers check WebFlyer and FlyerTalk.
  • 26 years old or younger?  Check for student discounts and/or youth discounts.
  • Senior? Check for senior discounts.
  • Travel Agents are often the best source for international travel savings.
  • Check prices for surrounding airports.
  • When booking for a party of more than three people process each ticket as a separate order. If you do them all together, they will all be booked at the highest price listed. If you do them separately you may be able to get some of the tickets at lower prices.
  • Avoid those extra fees – they’re hidden all over from the moment you try to purchase your ticket to the luggage surcharges and even check-in fees when you try to check in…And important to remember: different countries have different fees and surcharges.  Here is a list from USA Today of some of the U.S. airlines and their fees, as of 3/10/2011.
  • More tips in these videos:

Booking an all-inclusive tour as a way to secure cheaper airfare may sometimes, though not often, work.

  • More tips in this video:

Around Town  and Nearby Transportation:

Ask about the details ahead of time. If you are not renting a car or taking public transportation, ask your hosts or hotel ahead of time if there are specific transportation arrangements your place of lodging will provide you from your entry port. If your lodging hosts don’t offer this service, ask if they could recommend a reliable service, or advise you on which taxi cab service to use, what fees to expect and what tip would be appropriate. Confirm that fare with the driver before your ride begins, and ask if that fare includes extra charges like tolls and taxes.  This would also apply to anywhere else you later might be touring.  A useful site for to and from at airports around the world:

Taxi’s around town can be pretty pricey. Again always try to confirm the fare or approximate fare with the driver ahead of time. Sometimes if you find a driver you feel particularly comfortable with, you can discuss a flat-rate option, reserve pick up times in advance, or even ask them to host as a tour guide for a reasonable price. Important to note: sharing a cab does not always mean a reduced rate. Many times the fare quoted is per person. Always check first.

Parking fees add up quickly. Ask if the hotel might wave your fees. For parking around town, there are often coupons and discounts, available. Check with your hosts, hotel, visitor’s bureau, and check online.

Bicycle. There are alternative modes of transportation that could be fun as well as less costly.  Bike tours include the bike rental in the cost of the tour.  A typical bike-only rental in the NYC metro area starts at $7 an hour on up to $40 for 24-hours with helmet included.

  • More tips in this video:

Rental Cars. There are ways to save on car rentals. In our previous post, Cheap Car Rentals, Money Saving How-to Tips, we list 22 ways to save money and/or get more for your money on a car rental.

Public busses, subway, inner city rail and light rail are good options for getting around within the town and to nearby areas. You can often purchase discounted multi-use passes for busses, mass transit and railways, some of which allow for multiple or unlimited use over a designated time period. Many do a “continuous loop” around town and offer points to jump on and off at anytime throughout the day or night. These are usually offered as a 24-hour pass, a multi-day pass, or for a week. Another option for either city-to-city or around town travel are privately owned bus or tour companies.

Country to Country Rail. Just like with airline tickets, there may be discounts available for rail. They can differ from one source to another, so do a little price checking online first, or seek assistance from a travel agency, who is privy to insider international travel offers.  And in addition, you can often purchase discounted passes for busses, mass transit and railways, some of which allow for multiple or unlimited use over a designated time period. Check these sites for more rail info: Canada: VIA Rail Canada. Europe: Eurail. U.S.A: AmtrakRailServe is a comprehensive world-wide search directory for all things rail.

Across the board, for just about anything: Don’t forget to ask about group discounts – sometimes even just a party of two can constitute a “group.”

Google maps has a feature where you can map routes for  bus, train, bicycle or by foot between 448 cities throughout the world.

  • More in this video:

More money saving travel posts:

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Free Pretzels and Discount Coupons for National Pretzel Day

2011 “Unofficial” National Pretzel Day: April 26.

There is no actual “official” National Pretzel Day, but pretzel folks have deemed April 26 as the day to celebrate pretzels, and that works out well for pretzel lovers because there are usually special offers to be found. Here are a few freebies and discount coupons that will help satisfy even the strongest pretzel-lovin’ cravings!

Pretzelmaker: The second largest soft pretzel concept in the United States, Pretzelmaker, is donating $30,000 to the VH1 Save the Music Foundation to help celebrate National Pretzel Day on April 26th and the brand’s support of music and the arts. On April 26th, customers are invited to visit their local Pretzelmaker, sing a snippet from a song of their choice and receive a FREE soft pretzel (salted or unsalted) while supplies last. Patrons who prefer not to sing won’t go hungry – they can simply say “National Pretzel Day” to receive their free pretzel.

Auntie Anne’s: Sign up for Auntie Anne’s “Pretzel Perks” on their Facebook page and receive an email coupon for a free pretzel!

Annie’s Homegrown Organic: You can save $0.75 on Annie’s Homegrown Organic Pretzel Bunnies with this coupon when you enter your email at newsletter. Valid through April 30, 2011.

Pretzel Crisps: Buy-1-Get-1 Free Printable Coupon – valid through May 31, 2011.  If you haven’t tried the Snack Factory’s Pretzel Crisps yet, the flat pretzel cracker that are perfect for serving with dips and as a base for appetizers, now’s the time.

Wetzel’s Pretzels “Like” Wetzel’s Pretzels on Facebook and they’ll give you a Wetzel Buck good for $1.00 off your total when you purchase any Drink and a Fresh Pretzel, Wetzel Dog or Wetzel Bitz at the regular menu price, valid till July 31, 2011.

Super Pretzel: Save $0.50 on the purchase of any Superpretzel Soft Pretzel item with this printable coupon being offered by

Lean Pockets: With their Pretzel Bread Sandwiches, Lean Pockets has untwisted the pretzel and stuffed it with three flavor combinations. You can save $1.50 when you purchase any three 2-pack boxes of Lean Pockets brand Stuffed Sandwiches of any variety. Give their Facebook page a “like” to receive the coupon.

More money saving tips for food lovers in these SLTV Channels:

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10 Luscious DIY At-Home Spa Ideas for Almost Free

Watch for Spa Week in April to receive amazing deals on spa treatments in your neighborhood! But in the meantime:

Enjoy our 10 DIY At-Home Spa Ideas that you can do with items you probably already have on hand! (see below)

Excerpt from a San Francisco Chronicle article online about Spa Week, April 11-17, 2011:

Spa Week: An Affordable, Healthy Wellness Lifestyle for All. Spring 2011 Event Offers the Most Cost-Conscious Way to Rejuvenate
New York, NY (PRWEB) January 19, 2011
Spa Week, created in 2004, is the original, largest and most successful Spa Marketing Event in the history of the spa industry. Nearly 1000 spas across North America concluded their participation in the Fall 2010 Event, and bowing to popular demand,
Spa Week will further expand into even more cities for the Spring 2011 Event. Taking place from April 11th – 17th, the 14th edition of Spa Week will provide consumers across the United States and Canada with the most luxurious and wellness-focused treatments available. Day spas, medical spas, resort spas, yoga and Pilates studios, and fitness/weight-loss centers among other beauty and wellness facilities will offer 2-3 of their most exclusive services, originally costing anywhere from $100 all the way up to $500, for a discounted price of $50 each.

For seven years now, the signature $50 price point has afforded consumers nationwide the ability to try different treatment types at different spas, putting an end to the old myth that the spa lifestyle can only be afforded by the rich and famous.

We hope there’s a participating Spa week salon in your neighborhood and that you are able to take advantage of the opportunity to experience treatments you would not normally have access to, to try something you’ve always wanted to, or to just relax and recharge for a few moments. (Sounds good to us!)

But no matter what week or day it is, you can enjoy your own spa right at home, and virtually for free. We’ve got 10 Top Video Tips for fantastic, luxurious, practically free DIY beauty indulgences that will have you feeling pampered and refreshed in no time, anytime!

Enjoy these Fantastic DIY Spa Ideas you can do in your home with items you probably already have!

Spa Treatments for Less – Consumer & lifestyle reporter Janette Pavini shows how to find discounts & budget prices for spa, hair & beauty treatments to stay pampered without breaking the bank.

Aspirin Facial Mask – How to make your own beauty face mask easily using aspirin to brighten and exfoliate your skin from beauty advisor Michelle Phan.

Tomato Scrub – Michelle Phan shows how you can take a tomato and turn it into an invigorating complexion beauty scrub with this comprehensive beauty tutorial.

Healthy Skin With Rice Water – How to use rice for healthy glowing skin. You can use rice water as a facial toner or  mask for glowing complexion, it’s super simple and practically free! Michelle Phan, the official video makeup artist for Lancôme, shows how.

Beauty Secrets From Your Kitchen – Natural beauty remedies for great beauty treatments that won’t stretch your budget from Rachel Hayes, editorial director of

Beauty Secrets of Models & Celebrities with At Home Items! – The surprising beauty secrets used by models & celebrities for head-to-toe spruce ups that anyone can afford from author and beauty researcher Diane Irons.

Create a Calming Spa Bath – Entertaining & lifestyle expert Colin Cowie demonstrates how to make a calming spa bath in your own home using simple natural ingredients that you probably already have.

Spa at Home for the Guys – Lisa Kasanicky of whips some simple at-home spa remedies for the guys.

Hand Massage Lesson – Health-Choices Massage School gives an excellent simple tutorial on how to give a gentle relaxing and rejuvenating hand massage for a little DIY spa at home… sounds good right?

Simple Foot Reflexology Massage – A quick demonstration of some of the basics in a reflexology foot massage that you can easily share as part of a calming DIY spa experience right at home.

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