every girl loves a deal

11:15 AM Sian Mei Yeoh 0 Comments

i haven't really been going to new restaurants lately because i'm trying to be eat in more and try out some new recipes i got from my mom while i was back at home in march. (also explains the lack of update besides being busy) but honestly, my main reason is to save some dough. in fact, i hear that saving money is quite the in-thing-to-do these days :) and people are looking to save $$$ by any means necessary.

method one | groupon
one of my favorite ways to "save" is through groupon. i've concluded that i am addicted to groupon. every morning when i get to work, it is one of the first links i check. 

i've semi blogged this before in my previous blog on wordpress but lemme give you the quick run down of what this is again. so what is it? on their website, they define it as such:
"each day, groupon features an unbeatable deal on the best stuff to do, see, eat, and buy in your city. by promising businesses a minimum number of customers, we get discounts you won’t find anywhere else. We call it “collective buying power!”
wanna know how this works? you can check out the video that explains how do they make this magic happen. they offer a new deal each day which could range from 50% off at some hip restaurants that you've never tried before, spa certificates, cooking class for those who are in dire need of help with cooking, trips to local attractions or coupons on grocery food.

so far i've been getting a ton of food related coupons : (like that's a surprise.. lol)

01| $25 for $50 worth of sushi at kyoto sushi restaurant (50%)
02| $45 cooking party at bespoke cuisine (44%)
03| $20 for $55 worth of regional italian cuisine and drinks at trattoria gianni (64%)
04| $20 for $40 worth of maki, nigiri, tempura, and more at tank sushi (50%)
05| $20 for $40 worth of cuban and mexican cuisine, mojitos, and more at café 28 (50%)
06| $30 for a three-course prix-fixe menu at spring (49%)
p.s. discounts are in parenthesis

looking through these groupons i have reminds me to use them before it expires. i guess my over-enthusiasm for deals is kinda working against me right now....groupon's popularity is growing rapidly because ppl are always on the lookout to save buckaroos. and good news to a lot of ppl outside of chicago.  i remember when i knew of groupon about a half year ago, there were only about 15 states participating in this program but groupon is expanding their influence throughout united states rather quickly including these cities:

 they were even featured in a local news publication, redeye.

it was an interesting read and they have one section where it covers groupon etiquette. in a nutshell, these are the important things to know about:

01| present the coupon immediately.
02| enjoy the meal but don't set up shop.
03| tip fairly (i.e. tip on the full amount of the bill)
04| don't do it on a date.. at least not the first one.

there are similar websites to groupon such as living social and half-price chicago.

oh and also if you are interested in joining, click on the groupon link under "loves <3"and join/purchase your first groupon. (i ain’t gonna lie, i get a small reward for referring you guys.. help me save some money too!) plus if you have an facebook account (which most of you probably do), you can also sign in using your fb login.

method two| club/loyalty cards
i love me a cup of tea in the mornings. more specifically, argo tea... mmm...soy mate latte. anywho, a lot of tea/coffee cafe chains are offering loyalty club cards to their regular customers. and i have my favorites:

with my argo loyaltea card, these are the benefits: i get 11th drink of my choice for free (small size if you are wondering), a free drink on my birthday, 10% off for food and drink combo to name some of the awesome stuff. one could even load money onto the card and for every $50 one gets an extra $5 bonus.
and who can forget this:
i collect points as i purchase yummy goodness from red mango and after every 500 points, i get a $5 coupon. :) it's awesome. getting to 500 points shouldn't take too long since you get 10 points for every dollar spent.
method three| mailing lists
i don't particularly recommend this for the potential of getting spam in the mailbox, but i made and exception and joined the mailing list for noodles & company called noodlegram. (btw they have the cutest website but it takes too long to load!) doesn't it make you smile when you see this:
they are a lot nicer on your birthdays where they will usually give gift of free noodles to the birthday girl/boy.
i found a comprehensive list of restaurant websites you can join in order to get free somethings written on an article online. so check it out to see if any of them that might be your fav. and doesn't it feel nice when you get something free? i guess in this case, there is such a thing as free lunch :)
method four| online coupons
online coupons is kinda a new thing for me. i often go to dominick's for my weekly grocery shopping and before my visits, i usually check out their website to see if there are any coupons i could use  which i could either print or load in the dominick's card. it may not be a lot of coupons i could use but saving money is joy to my wallet. now if only i could remember to bring along the coupons when i go grocery shopping.....

there are actually a ton of websites online where you are able to obtain online coupons that is not only limited to groceries. just google online coupons and you'd find long lists of websites you could visit.

there are a ton more ways of saving money so you could splurge on something else. best way to save is probably not getting anything unnecessary but i can't do without shopping for a very long time. hehe.

don't think of saving money as being cheap, it's being smart :)

p.s. happy cinco de mayo. this day just makes me want to eat some mexican food although i don't celebrate the event.