Easy Ways To Save Money Right Now Without Even Thinking

by Hank Coleman

Stopping yourself from spending money and wasting money is often not as hard as you think. We often psych ourselves out of saving money because we think that it has to be harder or more elaborate than it really needs to be. But, the truth of the matter is that there are tons of easy ways to save money right now without even having to think about doing it. Here are some of my favorite easy ways to save money without having to think about actually saving money.

Write Your Savings Goals On Credit Card Sleeves

Paper sleeves on your cardsI have mentioned it a couple of times and even recently talked about these little credit card sleeves on my podcast, Your Money Your Choices. But, I am a huge fan of using credit card sleeves to control you spending. Sounds kind of counter intuitive, right? I write directly on to these card sleeves that come with your ATM cards, the plastic key card from hotels, and other cards that you collect. There are even a few in Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace kit. Plastek Cards even makes custom sleeves too. These card sleeves are  one of the easy ways to save money without even realizing that that is what you are doing. It is sort of like tricking yourself into saving money and not spending it on frivolous things. It is very hard for me to reach for a credit card or my ATM card if I see one of my family’s financial goals, like a summer beach vacation, written down right there on the card sleeve and staring right back at me every time I reach into my wallet.

Carrying Your Loyalty Cards With You

I am also very bad at carrying the grocery store loyalty cards and other store loyalty cards. Instead of asking someone around me to borrow their card or making sure that I’m carrying the loyalty card before hand, I typically continue with the purchase anyway, missing out on the deal or coupon associated with using the loyalty card. Like coupons, this one bad habit alone costs me probably $100 or more every year. There are so many loyalty cards that stores give to their customers now. There is no excuse not to carry your favorite store’s card and save. It is one of the easiest ways to save money without having to think about it. You just hand over your card. There are even applications on your smartphone that you can download to help you keep track of all the loyalty cards as well if you forget to carry the physical ones.

Planning Ahead With Your Coupons

One of the biggest wastes of money that I commit is by not using coupons. I have every intention of using them and carry coupons with me. But, I typically get through the cash register and forget to even hand the coupons over to the cashier. I estimate that I lose $50 to $100 every year by not using the very coupons that I’m carrying with me when I make the purchases.

I’m not sure when the fix is. I could carry the coupons in a special place in my wallet where I am sure to see them. Or, I could try and put the coupons in the credit card sleeve where I carry my debit card. This is definitely a problem and a place where I waste money. A few dollars here and there may not seem like a lot, but it can add up over time.

What about you? Am I the only one who carries coupons but forgets to give them to the cashier? Please tell me that’s not the case. There must be others out there making this simple mistake. I’d love to hear from you in the comment section below.

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About Hank Coleman

Hank Coleman is the founder of Money Q&A, an Iraq combat veteran, a Dr. Pepper addict, and a self-proclaimed investing junkie. He has written extensively for many nationally known financial websites and publications. Hank holds a Master’s Degree in Finance and is currently pursuing his Certified Financial Planner credentials. Email him directly at Hank[at]MoneyQandA.com.


Hank Coleman has written 525 articles on Money Q&A. Learn more about Money Q&A on Twitter @MoneyQandA and @HankColeman.


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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Connor Harley

I never fail to carry my loyalty card with me everytime I go out on a grocery or buy something in a mall. Really saves me a lot.
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Hank Coleman

There are so many. I have trouble keeping up with them all. That’s why I’m always forgeting them and don’t carry all of them.
Hank Coleman recently posted..Easy Ways To Save Money Right Now Without Even ThinkingMy Profile

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Jan Cullinane

The merchants can often look up your loyalty info. This happened to me at Panera today – still received $1 off a drink even though I didn’t have my card.

I also use an Epic Movie Theater Loyalty card. I’m an avid movie-goer. Lots of free tickets, drinks, and popcorn.

Jan Cullinane, AARP’s The Single Woman’s Guide to Retirement

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Hank Coleman

I often find that merchants have trouble finding me in their computer system when they try to look me up. Then, I just end up giving up and having to pay full price.
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Fernando R

These are good pointers you are throwing out. The car sleeve will definitely work for me, reminders about what is priority is always a good way to stop you from spending money on something that is not.

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Caesar F

I’m intrigued by this credit card sleeve you mentioned. Interesting use of it.
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