3 Simple Tricks to Slash Your Holiday Shopping Bills by 50%

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The holiday season is a wonderful time of the year, full of fun, friends and family.

Unfortunately, however, it’s also a stressful time of year. And an expensive one.

But there’s no reason to stress or spend more than you have to, especially when there are simple, no-cost tricks to save big bucks.

Here are a few quick examples.

Trick No. 1: Shop through a rebate site

If you’re buying online, make your purchase through a rebate or “cash-back” site. These sites often offer 3%-20% cash back at thousands of stores. You’ll pay the full amount when you buy, but receive the discount back in the form of a rebate.

Two of the most popular:

There’s no catch. Cash-back sites simply share the commission they get from participating stores when you make a purchase.

It takes two seconds to sign up — all you provide is an email address, and you’re in. You don’t have to provide a credit card number, personal info or anything else.

Plus, they periodically offer sign-up bonuses, like $10-$20 in cash. (Click the links above and see what they’re offering now.) To get your bonus, you’ll need to spend a nominal amount, like $25, through the site within 90 days. But that shouldn’t be a problem, right?

Since it only takes a couple of seconds, scope out both sites to see which one’s got the retailer you want, as well as the highest rebate.

Tip: Both these sites offer browser plug-ins. Download them. Then, whenever you search for something online, it will automatically tell you if there’s a rebate available, right there on the search page. Also, whenever you visit a participating store’s website, you’ll get a pop-up reminding you to click the cash-back button.

Easy peasy!

Take a minute right now and sign up for both Rakuten and Swagbucks. You’ll get a bonus from each just for signing up, then save money every time you shop year-round.

Trick No. 2: Use a cash-back credit card

Another way to take a slice out of your costs is to use a cash-back or rewards credit card.

Looking for a great cash-back card? Check out the cash-back category in our Solutions Center’s credit cards section.

Rather have rewards? Click here to see the best rewards cards.

Depending on the card and what you’re buying, you’ll generally get cash back of 1%-5% on every purchase — and sometimes more.

As with rebate sites, you’ll pay the full price at purchase but receive the cash back as a rebate or statement credit.

The best part: Some of these cards offer a bonus after you spend a certain amount — just in time to pay those holiday shopping bills! For example, many cards offer a $500 bonus after you spend a certain amount, like $1,000, over the first three months.

Won’t that come in handy next month?

Of course, using a credit card comes with the caveat that you must always pay off your balance when the bill arrives. Paying interest on a credit card is a surefire way to destroy any benefits you receive.

Trick No. 3: Automatically apply coupon codes

Don’t waste your time and money when shopping online. You can have Capital One Shopping, a free online shopping assistant, automatically apply the internet’s best coupon and promo codes to your shopping cart in seconds.

If you like saving money, add Capital One Shopping.

Another option for finding coupons, as well as hooking you up with cash back, is Honey. As with Capital One, you download the browser extension and from that moment forward, every time you go anywhere online, it’s going to suggest ways to save and automatically look for coupons.

All these things are free, all are available with minimal time and hassle, and all will save you some serious bucks. Click a few links and check them out for yourself!

Bonus: Get free, expert advice on everything money-related

What’s free and gives you tips to spend less, make more and avoid rip-offs? The Money Talks Newsletter. Every day we provide free tips and tricks that will make you richer. And it doesn’t cost a dime.

Our readers report saving an average of $941 with our simple, direct advice. That’s enough to offset nearly all your holiday spending!

Click here to sign up! It only takes two seconds. And if you don’t like it, it only takes two seconds to unsubscribe. Don’t worry about spam: We never share your email address.

Try it. You’ll be glad you did!

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