How can loyalty cards help
I am a great fan of loyalty cards a examination of my wallet reveal an amazing array of cards and my favourites are the coffee shop cards that are very useful. Here are a few of the cards that I have that are not meant to be an exhaustive list.
- Coco Veranda – 10% discount on this card
- Coffee bean and tea leaf – loyalty and topup card
- Nexus mobile card – point system different amounts from each vendor
- Arpico Loyalty card
- Cargills card – star points
- Labadiyawa Laugfs Card
- Odel loyalty
- Star points by Dialog
How much can you save from a loyalty card that offers a 10% discount? I spend a about Rs 2400/- for a family take away – so this converts to a saving of Rs. 240 per purchase. Say, for a month I have 4 take aways thats Rs 240 x 4 = Rs 960/- for a month and for a year Rs 11,520/- This annual amount converted to take away meals is 4.8 extra meals. Not bad for a loyalty card
Credit card points
Also consider collecting points on your credit card – I need to collect 40,000 points to get a “free” (I pay for taxes additionally) ticket to Singapore on my credit card – this I am able to do every two years of collecting points. This can add unto considerable saving.
Also convert credit card points to shopping gift vouchers or free dinner vouchers.
I regularly check credit card websites for deals that I need – all these can lead to improved purchase decisions – also note that impulse purchasing can also be a problem when there are too many good offers so buy only the stuff really needed.
Also be aware that points expire – so use them before the deadline.
Further, beware that you need to pay stamp duty on all credit cards – so control credit card expenses – I used to pay about Rs 4000/- per month on stamp duty thats a staggering Rs 48000/- per annum.
So I prefer to use a debit card for my day to day purchases – There's no stamp duty on debit card transactions.
Track cash transactions
Keeping track of cash expenses is important and I use an IPad app to keep track and analyse monthly expenses for any trends that need to be controlled. That are many iPad apps that are free that do this very well so I don't won't to recommend any one app. Take a look at the strengths of each app and see what best fits your own unique needs.
Filing and reviewing your old bills is a good way to make sure that you know whats costing you the most. A monthly spreadsheet review of your expenses will ensure that you don't overspend and keep you in sight on your financial goals.
Budgeting is also a good idea if you have the right spreadsheet skills use Google Drive to store your budget in the “cloud” so that you can access and update/review it at anytime/ anywhere.