Free 2-day shipping for life

If you have an eligible American Express card, ShopRunner is offering free 2-day shipping for life! They have a fairly decent list of companies that they work with, and I’m thinking this will be a huge benefit around Christmastime. Most companies offer free shipping when you spend a certain amount, but not many deliver in two days. It’s free, so why not sign up?

ShopRunner’s members save time and money with benefits including free 2-day shipping with no minimum order, free and easy return shipping, exclusive member offers, and easy 2-click check out. Participating stores include Toys”R”Us, Brooks Brothers, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, GNC, American Eagle Outfitters, Drugstore.com, Blue Nile and hundreds of others.

How’s your credit?

Do you know what’s on your credit report? You really should. What’s on there can affect you for the rest of your life. Mortgage lenders, banks and credit card companies will check your credit report when you apply for an account and then check it regularly once your account is open. Some employers even check them before they’ll hire you.  Typically the better your credit, the lower your cost of borrowing (interest rates).

The U.S. government has made it free and easy for you to know exactly what’s on your credit report. AnnualCreditReport is the official site. Do not go anywhere else for your free reports!

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) requires each of the nationwide credit reporting companies — Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion — to provide you with a free copy of your credit report, at your request, once every 12 months. 

Don’t check it from a public computer. Understand that you will be inputting your very personal info and answering verification questions to which only you should know the answers. You’ll get to see exactly what’s being reported and be able to dispute inaccuracies. You don’t get to see your credit score for free but each credit reporting company will offer to show your score for a fee.

Make checking your credit report a recurring annual task on your calendar. Print it out each year so you can compare the current report to last year’s report. Know where you stand in the world of credit.

New mom. Cheap mom.

I just heard about the referral program on the Familyhood collection of shopping sites that offers a killer deal for its members. You earn $5 for each friend that uses your unique referral code and makes a qualifying purchase.  As diapers.com is part of their family, this is an amazing deal for new moms and dads.  Also, with the referral, the recipient gets a 20% discount on their first purchase (except at beautybar.com) and free 2-day shipping on purchases of $49 or more. Set up your registry on the site and your family and friends can save on your gifts. It’s a win-win for everyone!

  1. Sign up for a free account at any one of the Familyhood sites.
  2. Save at least one credit card in the account and choose the “Place referral credits in my account” option.
  3. Load up a shopping cart.
  4. Use my referral code for your 20% discount: SARU6350
  5. Check out.
  6. Start inviting friends and family to start building your referral bank and save them 20% and earn yourself $5.

The referral program works across the whole family of sites below and it’s a $5 referral fee PER SITE.

Say a friend of yours who has never shopped any of our sites uses your Refer-a-Friend code or email address to shop all ten of our sites. That would be $5 multiplied by ten sites, or up to $50 of account credit or charitable donation.

Their sites include diapers.com (baby superstore), soap.com (home essentials), wag.com (pet products), yoyo.com (toys), casa.com (home decor & linens), vine.com (natural groceries), afterschool.com (activities & sports equipment), bookworm.com (books), look.com (clothes & shoes), & beautybar.com (prestige cosmetics). 

Alert! Alert! Cheap flights!

When I’m planning a trip, I set up flight alerts to let me know when airfare between my airport(s) and the destination airport(s) drop.  My go-to site is AirfareWatchdog.

The site lets you search current fares, which is nice, but I still prefer Kayak’s search function. I love AirfareWatchdog’s My Fare Alert function. The alert function let’s you choose your departure and destination airports and they e-mail you when prices drop. There’s an option for “Anywhere that’s cheap” from your departure airport, too. They’ve also added the “Meet me in” option which lets you choose a destination airport and they send you cheap airfare from multiple locations (Might be great for a destination wedding or a reunion).

It’s a free and useful service. It’s taken me to Hawaii a few times.

Free Credit Monitoring from Target

You know I love my Target.  I’ll still shop away, with very little abandon, even after the whole security breach thing. I feel like it could happen anywhere and to any retailer. It doesn’t mean you need to freak out and only pay in cash. You just have to be vigilant and check your accounts as much as possible. Use Mint to monitor your card activity. Also, use a credit card rather than a debit card. At least if there are unauthorized charges, your checking account won’t be instantly depleted.

Anyway, if you used your credit or debit card at Target between November 27 and December 15, 2013, Target is offering one free year of credit monitoring.  Sign up by April 23, 2014 for an activation code. They aren’t verifying whether or not you actually used your card during that time period. Hint. Hint.

Happy shopping!

Pretend you’re a mechanic

If you have a car that was made after 2000, you probably have a “cabin air filter” that needs to be changed at some point (Usually every 12,000 or 15,000 miles). The filter cleans the air coming into your car when you use the ventilation/heating/cooling system. It removes dust, pollens and other particles so that you don’t have to inhale them.

My car dealer’s service department charges $60+ to change the filter for me. Thanks to some wonderful people on YouTube, I’m now a master at changing my cabin air filter for about $16 and in less than 60 seconds.  Really! It takes me less than one minute.

The first time I changed it, it took me about 5 minutes. I was a little nervous about breaking something. But it was so easy and now I know exactly what I’m doing.  I buy the replacement filter for around $16 at the dealer or a local auto parts store.

You can totally do it, too! First check your owner’s manual to see if you even have a cabin air filter to change.  Then go to YouTube and type in the year, make, and model of your car and the words “cabin air filter” (Example: 2005 Acura TSX cabin air filter). I almost guarantee there are several videos that will walk you through changing the filter. If your exact model isn’t on there, pick a similar model from the same maker and year.  Watch a few of the videos and when you’re comfortable, give it a try!

You can find how-to videos for anything you can possibly dream of on YouTube. As far as my car maintenance skills go, the cabin air filter and light bulb replacement are pretty much the extent of my expertise. But, it saves me enough to make it worth my minute.

Fun cheap stuff to do in San Francisco

You might be looking for something to do that is both fun and cheap.  This is the place to start. I don’t remember how I found this site, but I love it.

Their “About” page says it all:

“Going out and having fun in San Francisco is just too expensive. That’s why we started FunCheap – A free website where cheap bastards like ourselves get together to share tips and recommend free and affordable upcoming events to one another.”

Sign up for their newsletter and you’ll never have a boring weekend again. They also have giveaways most weeks! This cheap bitch loves these cheap bastards.