The best things in life are Free!
I love a bargain. It gives me a little buzz every time I walk away from purchasing something, feeling like I’ve got good value for money, or something extra.
For me it’s not just about saving cash, (or being measly with money!) more it feels like a small victory, a small win when you get a discount or added value to a purchase you are making regardless, be it a new appliance, pet food, a hair cut, the weekly shop or even at the petrol pump.
We’ve been living on quite a strict budget for the past year, which has only increased my desire to make sure we’re getting a good, fair deal.
We still have room for bought coffees, a night out at the movies or the occasional family weekend away, (life wouldn’t be fun otherwise!) but we now operate with mainly cash in our household. We have a fixed supermarket budget and separate bills account to help combat our ginormous Auckland mortgage.
It was tricky for the first few months, but after 18 months tracking our spending and setting quarterly financial goals, it’s become quite natural. There’s far less frivolous spending, and as a consequence, more cash in the revolving mortgage account.
Pulling out a bright green $20 note from your wallet certainly makes you think twice about handing it over; wondering do I really need/want/feel like this?
We switched to a diesel Ford Territory a few years ago, and every time I go to fill it up from empty (which is now not as often), I feel quite smug that the payment is well below what it used to be.
And with the free AA Smartfuel card I picked up at my local BP (Caltex have them too!), it means the price I pay at the cashier is always lower than it is at the pump!
This week we saved $6.18 on gas – which, after that nice saving, I promptly spent on a lovely café coffee – a win win!
The AA Smartfuel rewards system is great for busy people as it’s instant; there’s no waiting for the voucher in the mail, going through a rewards catalogue or logging on to redeem points to an account you’ve forgotten the password to. And you accrue points (that don’t expire!) every time you use it.
I always use the discounts on the day, but you could be smart and save them for a bigger saving which could give you a free fuel up occasionally! Or you could gift them to a family member or a community group, someone else who would benefit from big fuel savings.
If you’re a two or more car family, you can combine the memberships to share the points – the biggest challenge will be deciding who gets to use them first!
And now, if you’re a Contact Energy customer, the rewards are even greater.
Reassessing our spending and looking for a few small wins for our wallets has been a great exercise for us. We’re trying to teach our kids good money habits, especially in an era where I think, things can seem to come a little easier for them than perhaps they did for other generations.
We’ve become more financially savvy, and we have boundaries in a time where credit card spending is rife, and household debt has skyrocketed.
Having this little yellow card contributes to a feeling of being on top of our budgets – and the best thing is it’s free to sign up – see - the best things in life really are free :)
This post was made possible thanks to Contact Energy.
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