A while back, I was shopping with my mother at a small chain clothing store. After picking out a couple of things on clearance, we went to pay for our clothing and Mom whipped out her wallet.
“Oh!” the sales associate said as Mom reached for a debit card, “is that a military ID I see?”
Mom confirmed she was a military dependent and the sales associate replied, “Well, it’s your lucky day! We offer a ten percent discount for showing a military ID.”
We were absolutely shocked as there were no signs on the store windows or at the register that mentioned any kind of discount whatsoever. The sales associate said that the owner did not like to advertise the discount, but that they were instructed to go ahead and offer it if asked or if they spotted a military ID in someone’s wallet while they paid. While she said she didn’t agree with keeping it a “secret” discount, she was happy to offer it to us anyway.
Another time, my family visited a children’s museum in another town. I’d checked admission prices online before we left and we were expecting to pay about $30 in admission for all of us. When we got to the ticket window, the lady manning the window looked up and asked, “Any military ID? Triple A membership?”
Surprised, I pulled out my Triple A card and we received $5 off our admission. I asked the lady when they had started offering a Triple A discount, as I had just been on their website and did not see any mention of a discount anywhere. She said something similar to me—it wasn’t an “advertised” discount, but they offered it anyway when asked, or if the person at the admission counter decided to tell people about it.
Since those incidents I’ve gotten into the habit of asking about “secret,” unadvertised discounts whenever we visit somewhere. My husband is a grad student and often “student ID” discounts apply to him, too. Sometimes, my inquiry is responded to with, “We don’t have a discount but we did mail out coupons for a few bucks off to our members last week. I’ll go ahead and apply the coupon for you anyway as a favor!” Every few bucks saved adds up over time. Don’t be shy about asking for discounts—you may be pleasantly surprised the next time you go out!
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I love shopping at Amazon. And I thought that I was getting the best savings and deals possible. But, I learned a few things about saving money that I thought I’d share with you!
Getting Refunds. You might be surprised at all the different ways you can get refunds or cash back by shopping at Amazon!
- Get cash back after a purchase. One of the things I love (and sometimes hate) about Amazon is how quickly prices can change. I try to keep an eye on my favorite items (by keeping them in the ‘Saved Items’ in my shopping cart) so that I can take advantage of prices when they are low. However, once in a while, after you make your purchase, the price may drop on that item. If it does, you can request a refund for the price difference (as long as it is within about 7 days from the date of your purchase).
- Get cash back by price matching on televisions and cell phones. If you buy a television or cell phone and see a better price on the same item, Amazon will refund you the price difference. You’ll just have to make sure that you email Amazon within 24 hours of the purchase or call them within 14 days of shipping.
- Get a refund or replacement for items that arrive broken without having to ship them back. Just call Amazon and tell a customer service representative what happened and they will ship you a replacement immediately.
Get upgraded shipping if your package is delayed. If it has been 3 or 4 days since you placed your order and you notice that it hasn’t shipped yet, contact customer service. They will likely either expedite the shipping or create a new order and have it shipped next-day delivery.
Keep track of price changes at CamelCamelCamel.com. You can get notifications when prices drop on your favorite Amazon products. You can also see a price history on those items. That’ll give you a gauge as to what’s a good deal for that particular item.
Are you an Amazon shopper?
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