Sorry for the lapse in the series this week but with my husband throwing his back out, a two day garage sale, and myself not feeling so good some things were put on the back burner.
Another way to save money is to collect store loyalty cards, or in some cases, punch cards. Many stores offer a loyalty card (which is free to sign up for) and when they scan it at the register you either earn points from a purchase or get immediate savings. I have the PetSmart card which earns me discounts at the register. I know that many drug stores offer these cards, as well as several big chain grocery stores. If it's free to sign up, and you get savings, why not sign up?
Just recently I learned that a Target debit card will earn you 5% off all your purchases, and will net you free shipping online. I knew this about their credit card, but hearing about a debit card was a new things for me. We steer clear of credit cards due to the fact that if we don't have the cash for something we don't buy it (though I do have a Kohls card in order to take advantage of their discounts at one time or another but pay the bill off in full when it comes), but I am open to a debit card which comes directly out of my bank account. While I don't shop at Target too often due to the distance of one, when I do I usually purchase a cart full of groceries so a 5% savings for doing nothing seems smart to me. I recently learned that our local gas station, Kwik Star, offers a debit card with similar rewards (10% back on all groceries purchases, and this is where I often buy my milk, bananas, eggs, and butter due to the excellent prices) and 3 cents back on every gallon of gas. Considering that I use my debit card at the pumps and in store anyhow, why not just sign up for their debit card, which takes the money directly from my bank account and get a little rewards back at the same time? This same gas station also offers a milk punch card, where you receive a punch on your card for every gallon purchased and when full you receive $1 off your next gallon. They have a Kid's Club as well that all three children are signed up for. When I purchase a gallon of milk the kids get to choose a treat for free (their choice of an apple, orange, bagel, muffin, cookie, or donut). Three free treats for the price of a gallon of milk ends up being a great deal and it makes them behave when we stop in for some needed essentials.
Many smaller stores, such as consignment shops and thrift stores in the area, offer punch cards. For every $10 or $20 you spend in store you will receive a punch on your card, once you fill the card you usually get either a percentage off your next purchase.