Everyone can be a superhero when it comes to saving money, and you don’t have to cut out coffee or couch surf, I swear. Here are some easy tips and tricks to make saving money your superpower.
Staying in touch
Most people sign up for a cell phone plan and then forget about it. This practice could literally cost you hundreds of dollars a year. I recommend reshopping your plan on a regular basis. Look through your last three months of cell phone bills to see how much call time, data and roaming you use versus how much you pay. If you’re going over your limits, you may save money overall by cutting out overage fees and paying more for your plan up front. In fact, I recently switched from a $55/month to a $85/month plan because it means I’ll still save money on roaming charges. Don’t forget: Plans vary from province to province, so if you are moving look into a new local plan.
I recently joined Sinemia which makes it possible to watch three movies a month for just $9.99. You can catch one regular movie and one iMax, VIP, or 3D movie and the pass works at all movie theaters in Canada and the US. They charge you for the whole year up front, but if you see at least one regular movie a month, you’ll save money. If you’re in a couple, I recommend getting individual passes (and not the couple pass) so you have more flexibility to go to the movies.
If you’d rather stay home, split a subscription service with your roommates. The Spotify Premium family plan is for anyone who lives at the same address, and it’s only $3 a month if you split it with five other people. (If you have a personal Spotify Premium account, you pay around $10/month.) Have a quick peek at your subscription plans to see if there are any others you can share with friends.
Public transport may be the cheapest option, but sometimes it takes twice as long as driving. I find that car sharing services like Car2Go are cheaper than grabbing a cab or Uber. Plus, they can be more convenient than driving your own car in some big cities, thanks to designated parking areas. If you’re travelling, try renting a car with Turo. It’s the Airbnb of cars. And the best part about the service? If you’re traveling in Canada, the booking fee includes $2,000,000 liability insurance in the rental fee.
Hitting the road
Whenever I’m traveling, I try to minimize my expenses by booking accommodation last minute. It’s not as convenient as planning ahead, but I routinely save 30-50% on hotels. For great savings, try booking your hotel on the same day that you need it. I use the HotelTonight app as a benchmark for prices, but I also check out Airbnb and scan either Expedia, Hotels.com or Hotwire before picking a spot. If you travel for work (and are less price sensitive), you can book 10 nights with Hotels.com and get the eleventh night free, which you can use later when you are travelling on your own dime.
Earning helps you save, too
Many companies have referral programs that help you save or earn real money. Uber, for example, has a program that lets you earn ride credit by referring friends to the service. With Moka you can give $5 and get $5 every time you refer a friend. We help you earn cold hard cash and then automatically invest the money so your savings grow.
You can also earn money while you travel (or sleep on a friend’s couch) if you Airbnb your room or apartment. Hosting requires some prep–I recommend purchasing some extra sheets and towels–but it’s an easy way to make a little extra. I only accept guests with verified accounts and excellent ratings, so my experience hosting has been great. I made my first booking within 12 hours of posting my place. You can give it a try by registering your home.
What do you do to save money? We’d love to hear your tips and tricks.