My week was a bit about the window-shopping. And let’s face it nobody likes window-shopping. But, more about that in a minute..
Last week I invited you to follow along with me on the Interac 21 Day Credit-Free Challenge journey to see what I have learned, and I figured it might help you save a few dollars too. This week I tried to pay close attention to my spending, so that I could accurately help some of you to succeed at saving money this month too.
Itís hard to save money when you are also shopping for some really big-ticket items, like I am. My family is currently in the market for a few big things like appliances and luggage and furniture. Plus, itís also the start of a new school year, which naturally comes with extra expenses. Like Picture Day and teams and extra-curricular sports. Those are big-ticket items and they add up and itís very challenging to be on top of all of that. But, one thing that helped this week was the fact that my husband and I actually couldnít agree completely on the look of the luggage, so that purchase fell through. It ended up being a big research mission. Iím a bit sad we left without what we wanted but at the same time I know I didn’t use my personal credit card at all this past week. I know I saved money and there was a lot of temptation to use credit cards to spend this week.
My Five Large Transactions this week, How I Avoided Using Credit and What I learned in the Process:
- My Hair. Listen, I am like most Moms and I avoid my needs most. I’ve been doing the pin the bangs back with a barrette thing for weeks now and my roots are way too (well let’s just say they don’t match the rest of my hair) so this week, I set up time to get my hair done. That is a big spend for me. It’s only about 3 times a year but there are many days OLD ME would have whipped out the credit card at the salon. I don’t do that anymore. I estimate what it is going to cost and I always use Interac debit. Same can be said for what I did this week. WHAT DID I LEARN? I have actually also learned that I am smarter about not being upsold at the hair salon when I pay by cash or debit.
- Me again: Nails and Toes. I needed some personal upkeep because in the summer I had no time to do that so I went and had them done. I went to the least expensive of all the salons I have ever used. I still haven’t paid by credit card. (Pats self on back.) WHAT DID I LEARN? I have learned that sometimes spas also seem to charge more when you pay by credit, so no thanks. And taking a month to pay off a manicure and pedicure is just poor planning. In anticipation of both these personal expenditures this week, I made sure I knew how much was in the account before I went in. That way I am not spending anything I don’t have. So make sure you always know how much you have in the bank before you go out. Take cash or use debit. Avoid credit. That small fact helps you to save.
- Bras, uniforms and clothing: School clothing. My kids had a big growth spurt and one needed bras in light shades for light-colored uniforms. So I had to spend some money there. If you have girls you know how much this costs. It could have easily been a credit card transaction, but I didn’t use my credit card. I used my Interac Debit card again. Plan ahead and you don’t overspend.
- School photos: The spot for credit card payment was glaring at me as I filled the paper out for my daughter. I chose to send a cheque for that one instead. Although, it would have been convenient to use Interac e-Transfer.
- Groceries: I was honestly too busy to actually be able to buy groceries more than once this week. That works in my favour. I spend less time and money when I do one big shop. I always flash my Interac Debit card to pay for groceries. I occasionally spend cash too. I always bring my points card (usually Air Miles) with me.
As the temperature gets colder I am really already feeling the pull of the travel agency. Will I be able to avoid using my credit card there? Not sure, but I am willing to give it my best try.
Disclosure: This post has been a sponsored collaboration between Interac Association and SheKnows.
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