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How I Saved $21 in 10 Minutes Shopping on Amazon

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Being loyal to a retailer sometimes pays off.


Key points

  • Pets are wonderful, but they can be expensive.
  • Price comparisons are a smart way to save money.
  • Credit cards can improve your financial situation if you use them wisely.

Thanks to rampant inflation, life is getting more expensive these days. So I try to make money where I can, and although I like to spoil my pets, I still need to save money on the sometimes expensive things I buy for them. , be it food, furniture or a new cat carrier.

Pets are not cheap!

I added a third cat to my household last fall, but had put off buying a third carrier even though I needed one. Emergencies happen, what if I had to take all three of them to the vet at the same time? I was dragging my feet because carriers can get expensive, and I tried to control my expenses.

As I do so often, I turned to the internet for my research. After asking some cat-owning friends for their carrier recommendations, I decided on a promising make and model, and started checking out a few online and local retailers for their prices. The prices were pretty much the same on every site I looked at, and while I could have picked up the carrier I chose in person rather than waiting for it to ship, the pet store the closest to me that had it on its shelves is 50 miles away. . Have you got seen gas prices lately?

Improve my Amazon game

I sometimes joke that Amazon Prime is my lifeline, so of course I was going to check if they had the carrier I wanted at a good price. And it probably won’t come as a surprise if this Amazon fan also uses the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card. I got this credit card in early 2020, shortly before the COVID-19 pandemic changed many people’s relationship with online shopping. I’m no exception, as a frequent Amazon shopper. My annual Prime membership has paid for itself in free shipping every year since 2015 when I joined. It’s very easy for me to shop with Amazon: it knows where I live and I don’t need to create a new account on its site. And it turned out that a nice little surprise was waiting for me when I checked the price of the cat carrier.

What a story!

Here I have to admit that I usually don’t keep a close eye on the 5% back I earn with the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card. I really appreciate the occasional surprise I get when I can save a large amount of money on an Amazon purchase. But I don’t always use the rewards when they’re offered at checkout, sometimes preferring to save them for a bigger purchase if I know there’s one waiting for me. Lately I’ve been trying to reduce my spending in general, in the face of inflation, and in my continuing mission to become better with money. So since I knew I wasn’t going to be making any bigger Amazon purchases anytime soon, I happily used the $21 in rewards that were waiting for me and marked up my new carrier for the very reasonable sum of $14 $.

Credit cards often get bad press. It’s very easy to overspend, throw your budget out the window, and rack up big interest charges on a credit card balance. But credit cards also offer some perks, including “free money” in the form of cash back or rewards points that can add up to savings on purchases. They can also help you build or improve your credit. I had money in my checking account and could have used my debit card to purchase the new carrier. I had even budgeted for it as an expense for my senior cat’s upcoming dental work this summer. But by using a credit card instead, I got a new carrier for less than half of what I would have paid otherwise, and I can take less money out of my vet fund.

We’re all trying to save more and spend less these days. While $21 isn’t really a lot of money in the grand scheme of things, I’m definitely happy whenever I can save even a little money by being a smarter shopper. My cats have all been checking out the new carrier thoroughly since it arrived, and one even took a nap in it the other day. Money well spent, indeed!

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