Holiday Savings

So maybe I’ve mentioned once or twice how I love saving money. Or not spending it. Or earning it. Or looking at it.

You know how sometimes you get emails that are all “Save 50% off at Old Navy!” and then there are only about three things that are really on 50% off and they’re all DOG collars and SWEATERS for dogs? And you still have to pay shipping. And tax. And basically you saved no money at all and now have a polka-dotted sweater for your dog, which means I’ll be forced to mock you inwardly.

This is not like that.

Kristi was the good soul to tell me about Ebates. I don’t do a lot of online shopping, and I’ve still made some $100 on this in the last 18 months (and if I was more diligent about looking up what stores were on there, it would have been a lot more (PRICELINE, HOW DID I NOT KNOW YOU WERE ON THERE?!)).

Basically it works like this:

1) Go to Ebates.
2) Sign up for an account (if you really like me, you can put my ebates email address in the “Referring Member” section and we’ll both get a $5 bonus or perhaps a choice of various $10 giftcards. . . it varies. My email address for ebates is jcgates at gmail dot com).
3) Find the store you plan to shop at (there are THOUSANDS of stores; Amazon is one of the few that isn’t on there).
4) Click through to the store from Ebates – it will look just like the normal website (mainly because it is).
5) Place your order just as you normally would. Ebates will credit you the correct percentage for your purchase total (it may take a few days to show up on Ebates and if it’s through something like Expedia, it won’t show up until you actually take the trip).
6) Every three months, Ebates sends you a check. Of real money.

Seriously. Money for the purchases you were already planning on making. It’s like . . . well, it’s really just like free money.

I bought some things from Barnes and Noble the other night. Eight percent of my purchase back to me. Our Christmas cards? Sixteen percent back. Crate and Barrel? 4.5% back.

And then they send these awesome emails like, “Hey don’t forget to use us this year for Christmas. Any order you make, we’ll give you an extra $5 back.” Last year, when I bought books from the nieces and nephews, they gave me $10 for making any purchase, plus 6% back, and there were coupon codes galore and free shipping, so my total cost for the 5 books I ordered ended up being something like. . .  $9. I love looking like a good aunt without spending a fortune. Or even $10.

Basically, I cannot say enough good things about Ebates. Or, looking back at this post, you might disagree.

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  • Reply Lisa December 2, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    I discovered ebates two nights ago. I do a lot of shopping online for the holidays (well, percentage wise, I don't do a lot of shopping in total) and can't wait to see what I'll get back.

  • Reply TheMoncurs December 2, 2009 at 3:33 pm

    Wait. JCGates?

    It occurs to me that I have NO IDEA what your middle name is. Carol? This feels like a gaping hole in our friendship.

  • Reply Lisa December 2, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    That really is an excellent question. Christine?

  • Reply Heather December 2, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    wow, I've never heard of it. Thanks for the heads up

  • Reply Jess December 2, 2009 at 4:56 pm

    THIS. Is AWESOME. Thanks!

  • Reply Shelly December 2, 2009 at 5:00 pm


  • Reply Packrat December 2, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    Cool! But, you didn't know about Priceline?

    I vote for Christine

  • Reply S December 2, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    You had me at "Ebates sends you a check. Of real money".
    Just signed up! Thanks!

  • Reply Jodi December 2, 2009 at 6:41 pm

    You've got a dangerous blog. I'm signed up for all the money spending. Or saving. Depending on how you look at it.

  • Reply RA December 2, 2009 at 8:17 pm

    Whoa. This is going to be big for me, as the vast majority of my shopping (and especially Christmas shopping) happens online.

    I'm so sad that Amazon isn't included! That is my number one online source.

  • Reply Tina's Blog December 2, 2009 at 11:50 pm

    I signed up already…almost makes me want to order something now just to see if it works! Thanks for the great info.

  • Reply Amy Sorensen December 3, 2009 at 6:35 am

    Awesome! I just signed up.

    If you really do want to buy a polka-dotted dog sweater at Old Navy, though, you should get an Old Navy card. They send you $10 every time you spend $200 (I think) AND you get free shipping.

    I mean…not that I want to encourage debt! Because I pay my bill of the second I get it, but if you do that, and never pay any interest, it's free money.

    Plus…Old Navy is on ebates.

    Just wish Amazon was!

  • Reply Lisa C December 5, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    I joined ebates. Thanks for the heads up! So as I was clicking the continue button to create my account I saw the link of where to put your name, but it was too late and now I can't find anywhere to put who referred me. Any ideas? I already bought something through it so you would definitely get $5 if you can find a way!

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