5 Ways to Splurge On Something Without the Guilt (Or Financial Ruin)
What do you covet?
C’mon, admit it. There must be something.
Something you really want. Something you could theoretically buy at some point, but you probably shouldn’t. Not yet, at least. Because it’s probably just a little too expensive, right?
What’s your next splurge? Is it a pair of shoes? A bag? A phone? A bottle of really good wine? A bathroom remodeling? A muscle car?
Whatever it is, we’ve got five suggestions for how to make up the difference in your pocketbook:
1. Get $50 in Gift Cards Just for Buying Groceries
We bet $50 would make a difference toward your next splurge, right? Well, a free app called Fetch Rewards will reward you with gift cards just for buying toilet paper and more than 250 other items at the grocery store. Right now, it’s even offering shoppers a $10 gift card when they spend $30 on dozens of Unilever products at the grocery store. You can do this five times, or up to $50.
Here’s how it works: After you’ve downloaded the app, just look for products branded with the Unilever “U.” Then take a picture of your receipt showing you purchased an item from one of the participating brands. For your efforts, you’ll earn gift cards to places like Amazon or Walmart.
You can download the free Fetch Rewards app here to start getting free gift cards. Over a million people already have, so they must be onto something.
2. Make a Little Savings Account Just for Splurges
This way, you can steadily save up money for your guilty pleasure, your heart’s true desire. Create a category just for splurges and let it build up over time.
Maybe you’re just looking for a place to safely stash your money away — but still earn money. Under your mattress or in a safe will get you nothing. And a typical savings account won’t do you much better. (Ahem, 0.05% is nothing these days.)
But a debit card called Aspiration lets you earn up to 5% cash back and up to 16 times the average interest on the money in your account.
Not too shabby!
Enter your email address here to get a free Aspiration Spend and Save account. After you confirm your email, securely link your bank account so they can start helping you get extra cash. Your money is FDIC insured and they use a military-grade encryption, which is nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”
3. How You Could Hit a $25K Jackpot — Just for Saving Your Own Money
Here’s another way to look at saving for a splurge: If you combine the excitement of potentially swimming in money like Scrooge McDuck with your seriousness about saving, you end up with a PrizePool banking account.
So how does PrizePool work, exactly? When you download the free app, you’ll connect your existing bank account and make a deposit. It uses Plaid, a Visa company, to ensure your information is safe and secure.
Here’s the fun part: Each day, Prize Pool gives you an entry ticket for every dollar you have in your account. So if you have $100 in your account every day in October, you’ll have 3,100 tickets.
Then, on the first of every month, PrizePool enters your tickets into its monthly drawing. (The more tickets you have, the better your chances of winning!)
You could win any amount — from $2 to $25,000. It gives away a combined total of $50,000 in cash prizes. Every. Single. Month.
Unlike the Powerball tickets you keep trying your luck on, there’s no buy-in or fees. If you’re 18 or older and live in the U.S., this is just a safe place to potentially grow your money for free. If you download the app and make a deposit today, you can increase your odds of winning this month’s $25,000 grand prize immediately.
4. Make Sure You’re Not Overpaying for Something Else
To get closer to your splurge, it’s best if you don’t overpay for some other purchase — no matter what it is.
Wouldn’t it be nice if you got an alert when you’re shopping online at Target and are about to overpay? That’s exactly what this free service does.
Just add it to your browser for free, and before you check out, it’ll check other websites, including Walmart, eBay and others to see if your item is available for cheaper. Plus, you can get coupon codes, set up price-drop alerts and even see the item’s price history.
Let’s say you’re shopping for a new TV, and you assume you’ve found the best price. Here’s when you’ll get a pop up letting you know if that exact TV is available elsewhere for cheaper. If there are any available coupon codes, they’ll also automatically be applied to your order.
In the last year, this has saved people $160 million.
You can get started in just a few clicks to see if you’re overpaying online.
5. Knock $540/Year From Your Car Insurance in Minutes
Speaking of overpaying for things, when’s the last time you checked car insurance prices? Paying less for mandatory bills like that will get you closer to your splurge.
You should shop your options every six months or so — it could save you some serious money. Let’s be real, though. It’s probably not the first thing you think about when you wake up. But it doesn’t have to be.
A website called Insure makes it super easy to compare car insurance prices. All you have to do is enter your ZIP code and your age, and it’ll show you your options — and even discounts in your area.
Using Insure, people have saved an average of $540 a year.
Yup. That could be $500 back in your pocket just for taking a few minutes to look at your options.
C’mon, what’s your next splurge?
What do you covet?
There must be something. Whatever it is, following these five tips will get you closer to it.
Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. He covets.