Na Na pinches her pennies

Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.

Disloyalty required

Over the last couple weeks I’ve had a series of wake up calls from reality. Reality tells me I’m way too old fashioned and outdated for a technology world. I’m a vintage person living in a disposable society. When I was young loyalty to a product or a company had great value. Apparently the way people live today requires lots of disloyalty and frequent changes. Absolutely everything comes with a “shelf life” – from the doctor we choose to the phone service we have to the appliances in our homes – everything requires frequent upgrades and changes in order to work.

Have you ever noticed how (without notice) the people and places you’ve been dealing with for several months (or years) suddenly become difficult to work with? Apparently no business or product wants customer loyalty any longer. So, for the frugal minded person loyalty is a money waster.

Disloyalty gets rewarded. If you are a patient loyal customer the chances are very good that you are paying much more than disloyal switchers who signed up more recently. Let me give you an example of what I mean by a disloyalty reward. Suppose a phone and cable company is offering a deep discount on services for new customers. The existing loyal customers can’t get this “new customer” discount. But, by becoming a disloyal customer and switching to a competitor down the street you get a deep discount service. So what if its only for a year? Simply become disloyal again to switch for another company as a new customer discount.

Over the last couple weeks I’ve been researching and reading about several things and services that will update my life from the past into the present. I seriously don’t want to do these upgrades but they are “required” without any chance of saying no. Unless, of course, I become a hermit and live in a far away cave without any technology anywhere.

Hmm, could I become a technology hermit? I could have my home phone line and internet connection turned off completely. No internet connection or phone certainly would save me money. I’ll keep this as a future option.

Actually I’m working on updating my life. I’ll be going through a series of changes that I’ll be talking about as I go through them. A much loved reader angel suggested I might want to use Ibotta for a few extra dollars setting me on this path to renovate myself. I have a couple questions to ask you readers. Does anyone use Ibotta, Fetch Rewards, Rakuten, Retail Me Not, or something similar? Please let me know if its worth the time effort to use them. If I sign up for one I’d be happy to give credit as a referral so you get any bonus. Next, I know of one reader across the big pond that does surveys but does anyone else do online surveys and does it actually pay a little? What about Swagbucks or Coupons.com?

I’m not expecting to get a fortune. Just a few dollars a month to help pay for healthier food and buy warm clothes before winter.

Hugs to everyone! Stay safe.

26 comments on “Disloyalty required

  1. Nicole from Canada
    August 18, 2021

    I don’t know if it’s just a Canadian site but I do surveys on Surveylion, I find it’s the only site worth the time. Each survey is a few dollars and you can let it accumulate and then choose when you would like them to send you a cheque. I only do a few a month while watching TV but it’s enough to keep me doing it.

    Like

    • Anita
      September 3, 2021

      Hi Nicole, I just found your comment. I looked at their site which appears to be for Canada residents but thank you for the information.

      Like

  2. Marybeth
    August 6, 2021

    I do Ibotta. I am not into brand names so some weeks I only get 25¢. The free items are the best. I have been doing it with my regular food shopping the last 3 years and I have earned about $200 back. My dad does swagbucks and loves it. He earned about $600 last year in gift cards that he gives out as birthday and Christmas presents. He does it more in the winter when he can’t be out fishing or in his garden. He is retired.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 7, 2021

      Thanks Marybeth. I’m leaning toward doing swagbucks for the gift cards. I can use them for fresh produce or use as gifts. I probably won’t use the Ibotta because I rarely buy anything processed and not many non-edible items.

      Like

      • Tracy
        August 11, 2021

        I just looked at Swagbucks and it says ( third step after registration completed! ) that phone number is required so I decided to pass.

        There was a lovely website a few years ago I did it was part community part surveys etc and I loved that but it folded.

        Since the pandemic I have been doing Social Nature, you write reviews for free products; they are mostly health foods so I love them but it means stopping at different places like Sprouts or Whole Foods to pick them up; I get them on my way when I go to work bookings.

        I’m doing the local internet provider’s $20 a month for a year package, it goes up significantly after that so I may return to using the wifi at the library, which I have before.

        Like

  3. Will
    August 6, 2021

    I have not used Ibotta or Fetch rewards before, however I do use Prolific, which allows users to take academic survey’s for money. I don’t know how SSI works in your state, so this might not be useful for you, as I know for my Dad he is highly limited in how much money he makes while on SSI.

    Here is my experience with Prolific:

    How much you make per survey varies, however the lowest I ever gotten for a survey was $0.12 and the survey was only a minute long. Prolific enforces a minimum pay per minute rule and most survey’s are from universities so they are trust worth sources of payment.

    I have made money from Prolific, about $500 over the past couple years. The minimum amount can withdraw money into your PayPal account is $5.00. For me, that can be easily done in a couple days with a couple 20 minute surveys, depending on what is offered to me.

    Personally, when I was unemployed, I liked using Prolific to help me stay sane and produce a side-income.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 6, 2021

      Thank you Will. I’ll look into Prolific. Anyone over age 62 can get full social security. I’m much older than that so I’m on full social security. I can earn as much as I want providing I pay taxes on anything above the standard deduction. I believe the standard deduction for 2020 was about $12K. I seriously doubt I’d make more than $5 or $10 a month doing coupons or surveys. My hope is to earn a few dollars each month to buy healthier food than I get from the outdoor foodbank.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Will
        August 7, 2021

        Haha, fair enough. I am in a mid-twenties so worrying about social security is a far off issue for future me.

        But take care and hope Prolific can bring you some good money coming in.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. mia
    August 5, 2021

    Have you tried Swagbucks or My Points?

    Like

    • Anita
      August 6, 2021

      I haven’t tried any of them yet. I’m still researching options and asking opinions.

      Like

  5. Silver
    August 5, 2021

    I completely agree – I shop around every year for our providers as you say, there’s no point in staying loyal to a provider. They have good offers for new customers but sadly nothing for customers who stay with them.
    The exception this year is our internet provider. Because I am still working from home, I didn’t to switch providers in case we had days where we had no service ><

    Like

    • Anita
      August 6, 2021

      Thank you Silver. My daughter stays with her internet provider because of working at home too.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Silver
        August 8, 2021

        Yes, I think many people are in the same boat. Many of my colleagues are staying with their provider as well.

        Like

  6. Diane
    August 5, 2021

    I was Ibotta and fetch, although neither are as good as they used to be. Ibotta has rebates for any brands, like any milk, and cereal etc, and they usually have a few free items. I get the free items usually and if I can’t use them I donate them to the little food cupboard we have in town. I probably earn $100-$150 a year with Ibotta, maybe a little more,so I still think it’s worth it. Fetch is a lot slower for me. I approaching $50 worth of points is all and I haven’t cashed it out for almost 2 years, but it’s super easy so I keep using it. When I hit $50 worth I will get a gift card to use towards Christmas shopping. I also still use rakuten but that’s pretty much a joke now. I might get $15 a year, but again it’s easy enough. I also use my rewards Visa a lot to get the points. I pay it off in full. In fact I just got home from a trip and went online this morning and paid off the $1600 in charges and saw that I earned $30 worth of statement credits so that’s nice. I like free money as long as I don’t have to jump through a bunch of hoops to get it. I used to do other rebate programs but have quit the rest. These are the ones that work best for me.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 6, 2021

      Thank you Diane. I don’t expect to earn much. Maybe $5 or $10 a month for fresh fruits and vegetables. I agree with you. I like free money providing there are no hoops to jump through.

      Like

  7. Donna
    August 5, 2021

    I don’t think I purchase enough to make Rakuten or Ibotta worth it, nor Coupons.com. I have in the past used Swagbucks, and that is a very easy way to earn points that add up to Amazon giftcards, all you do is watch videos or take easy surveys (I will read something while videos are playing) daily. I think Safeway reward points are worth it, just something worth a $1 free here and there, but nice to get a dozen eggs or a donut once in awhile! We pay all our bills via a Visa rewards card that is thru a hotel chain, so that adds up to a few free nights at a motel once a year too.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 6, 2021

      Thank you Donna. I probably wouldn’t buy enough for Rakuten or Ibotta either since most of my food comes from the outdoor foodbank. I like the free items from gas points too. Especially the yogurt, bananas, oranges, & apples offered early mornings. That’s not much in the way of fresh food but for free its good.

      Like

  8. J O
    August 5, 2021

    I use Rakuten and Honey. I have in the past used Retail me not. We have an Amazon Chase card that gives points on most everything including the bills, medical etc..not just Amazon. I have a CVS, Walgreens and Kroger’s card. Ibotta does not work for me nor does coupons.com as I don’t buy much of premade stuff. I can most of our veggies and fruit and am looking at starting to can the meat.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 5, 2021

      Thank you J O. I have a key ring full of loyalty cards but only used them at the registers. Until now I never even thought of using the points accumulated. Actually I’m not sure I even registered most of those cards. Just put them on the keyring and started using them. I never heard of Honey so I’ll check it out. I rarely buy premade stuff either. I can meat to extend the storage time but also to make room in the freezer. Or in case of an extended power outage.

      Like

  9. Linda Ladner
    August 5, 2021

    I have used Rakuten (formerly EBates) for several years. I received quite a bit of money in the beginning because I had to buy some high price items. After that I noticed most of the stores I shop at on-line offer very low rebate amounts. Like 1%. However, I did catch a few good ones (40% back when my husband bought a jacket from Penney’s) but those are few and far between. Rakuten sends checks every three months if your rebate total is more than $5. I have stopped using them because it just doesn’t seem worth it.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 5, 2021

      Thank you Linda. Thank you for explaining your experience. Waiting three months for a small rebate does sound like a long time.

      Like

  10. Leslie Saunders
    August 5, 2021

    I just spent a nightmarish hour on the phone with American Express,trying to pay off a bill and request a rewards card. The wait times were incredibly long,and the accents of the workers difficult to understand. More jobs gone overseas,I guess. Not blaming the workers or being racist…..just sad over lack of care and formerly easy people to talk to.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 5, 2021

      Leslie I hope you looked or plan to look into changing to another rewards card company for a better rate. The competition among companies seems pretty aggressive right now so you might do well switching. Hiring workers who are hard to understand is deliberate. The idea is to frustrate people so much that they give up and just go with the flow so to speak. Keep in mind that ‘debt is slavery’.

      Like

  11. simplywendi
    August 5, 2021

    Hi Anita, it is good to see you here! 🙂 Yes, I use Fetch Rewards and Ibotta and out of the two, Fetch is my favorite. Fetch is super easy phone app to use, I just snap a picture of any receipt and I have received no less than 25 points with each receipt and my receipts have been from any purchase, not just groceries or food.

    Like

    • Anita
      August 5, 2021

      Thank you Wendi. Its been awhile since I saw you here too. I hope you are feeling well these days. How often are you able to exchange your Fetch points for a gift card? Monthly? Does doing Ibotta consume a lot of your time?

      Liked by 1 person

      • simplywendi
        August 7, 2021

        thank you Anita……I am not on as much as I use to be……there is no specific time, it all depends on how many receipts you have to scan and if those receipts have bonus points involved. it does take quite a bit of time to stack up enough points to receive an e-giftcard. Ibotta is not very time consuming it is just not as easy as snapping a photo. 🙂

        Like

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