I’m always on the hunt for a good bargain, and with the large number of voucher sites cropping up, you really can make a big saving on everything from a relaxing spa day to a new vacuum cleaner. But there are certain points you need to bear in mind before embarking on your next voucher venture, so I’ve put together this guide to ensure you’re making the most of money saving opportunities. With handy hints and tips from Save The Student’s Jake Butler, read on to avoid getting caught out by offers that are too good to be true.
What can you get using coupons?
Signing up to and making use of internet coupon offers are a great way to save money, but beware of paying up front for treatments, lunches and getaways you might never get around to claiming. Used wisely, however, coupons can help you save tons of money on everything from your monthly beauty treatments to your annual summer holiday. Internet coupons tend to offer massive savings on life’s luxuries rather than the bare essentials, but for this reason they’re also a smart place to look for gifts and treats for others.
Where can you find them?
The best coupon sites to sign up to are Groupon, LivingSocial and Wowcher, which all offer a range of daily deals based on your location (which you can change to make use of offers in nearby counties and cities). As expected, there’s some dross to trawl through but more than a few very good deals are to be had.
You take up an offer by purchasing a voucher for the chosen item or service, and then you redeem your voucher with the supplier themselves. All offers have a set time limit within which to purchase and redeem the product or service, so read the small print before committing.
VoucherCodes is another site well worth signing up to for daily deals. It’s also a smart place to refer back to before you purchase anything online. There’s a fair chance there’s a relevant discount code for your retailer waiting to be found on the site, and they’re updated several times a day. VoucherCodes is especially good for offers and discounts in chain restaurants like Pizza Express, Prezzo and Café Rouge as well as for publicising offers from high street retailers like H&M, Karen Millen and Boden.
As with all offers - and at risk of stating the obvious - they’re only good value if they’re saving you money. Were you always planning on having tea at the Ritz? If not, that 50% discount is a false economy. But if you were planning to take your best friend out for birthday treat, for example, then it makes great sense and enables you to experience something you’d never normally do.
The same goes for the electric scooter, the Segway experience and the tooth whitening offers. Be discerning, and as mentioned above, read the small print. Make sure you can book or redeem your coupon within the stated period, and don’t forget to. So many do!
5 top tips from Jake Butler from Save The Student
With the amount of money saving sites and pages out there these days, you should have no excuse not to take advantage of vouchers and coupons. Paying full price for items, either online or offline, is no longer an option. We've seen some students slash up to 90% off buying items from groceries to fashion.
Having said that, there's a few top tips to remember when using vouchers and coupons:
1. Always check the T&Cs
In an ideal world all the vouchers and coupons out there would work for everyone at all times but most companies are yet to be that kind.
Always check who can use the voucher and if there are any other restrictions such as time and the amount you are allowed to spend. A lot of online vouchers also require you to be a first time user of a site so look out for that too. Some vouchers or coupons can’t be combined with others either.
2. Voucher codes don’t always make items cheaper
You might be enticed by a voucher offering 30p off a bag of apples in supermarket X but how do you know that they aren’t £1 more expensive at that supermarket in the first place?
Remember that there’s always a reason behind a company offering a money off voucher. Make sure that you’re the one who’s benefitting.
3. Only buy if you NEED to
Relating to the last point, if you saw a voucher for £1 off Coca Cola for example and you never really drink fizzy drinks then you may want to steer clear.
Don’t just use vouchers for the sake of it.
4. Always search for vouchers
The internet is there for you, and not just for watching Youtube videos of cute cats! Whether you’re buying something online or offline there’s no excuse for not having a quick Google for any vouchers or coupons that might save you a little bit of dosh!
5. Know where to find ‘em
Apart from a quick Google, there’s a couple of other places that you can source out vouchers and coupons including: newspapers, company newsletters, Facebook pages, magazines and in store.
Read more from Jake at Save The Student
A massive thank you to Jake for sharing his fab money saving tips. Got a tip you’d like to share? Comment below – we’d love to hear from you.
I’ll be back soon with more thrifty money saving and money making tips. Good luck saving!