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20 Ways to Save Hundreds

Travel Calendar, 99 Ways to Save

Dan Saelinger

Tip: Pull out your calendar when booking your flight — some days are much cheaper than others.

Upgrade your dishwasher. A new dishwasher that is Energy Star-certified will use on average $323 in energy and water over its lifetime, versus $754 for hand-washing. Savings: $431.

Pay off credit cards faster. Credit cards charge interest daily. If you have a $5,000 balance and pay $121 every other week rather than $242 at the end of the month, says you can cut interest payments by $359 a year on a card with a 17 percent interest rate.

Buy glasses online. It can be 70 percent cheaper to buy at sites such as than at a store. That's $210 off a $300 pair of specs. AARP members can save at EyeMed.

Shop around for meds. Area drug prices can vary widely. For example, a customer in Raleigh, N.C., was quoted $249 at a national chain for duloxetine. Costco charged $43 for the same prescription. Savings: $206.

Be a chill driver. Hard braking and speeding can lower your gas mileage by 30 to 40 percent. At an annual gas consumption of 480 gallons, you could save $460.

Ask for open-box items — display models or unused products returned to the retailer (but not returned to the factory like refurbished items). A $1,200 MacBook Air, for example, was purchased in an open box for $230 less.

Get taxes done free. AARP Foundation offers free tax preparation to people with low to moderate incomes. Go to or call 888-687-2277. Save $273 on average.

Adopt a mutt. Many shelters offer pets for free or a small fee; a breeder can charge $500 or more.

Buy gas on Monday. It's the cheapest gas day in 23 states, according to GasBuddy. Thursday is the most expensive day. Stick to Mondays and save $325 a year.

Hire a haggler. Companies such as BillFixers and Shrinkabill will haggle with your cable TV company or other service providers for one-third to half of your first-year savings. BillFixers claims it saves clients an average of $300 per year.

Beef up your computer. Many PCs include only 4GB of DRAM, the active memory used when your computer is on. Add another 4GB ($33) for smoother operation. Then add a solid-state drive ($114) for more and faster storage. Save $500 or more compared with a new computer.

Add digital coupons to your supermarket loyalty card. At, for example, digital coupons range from $1 off Hefty trash bags to $3 off Tide detergent. Save $10 per week with these coupons, or $520 a year.

Pick your flights carefully. The cheapest days to fly are Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. revealed that a Boston-to-Las Vegas round trip cost $500 from Friday to Sunday but $228 from Saturday to Wednesday. Savings: $272.

Shop for new car insurance. In a 2015 study, drivers who switched insurers saved an average of $388.

Drive safely. Some insurers offer discounts if you prove that you drive safely by using, say, a plug-in device for your car. Nationwide insurance, for example, offers a SmartRide discount of up to 40 percent, or up to $400 off a $1,000 policy.

Take a driving class. Insurers can offer up to 15 percent off for older drivers who take an online safety course — that's up to $675 over three years on a typical policy.

Cancel collision. If your car is paid off, collision insurance is optional. You could save around $300 per year.

Get the good-student discount. If your teen gets good grades, you could get an average annual auto insurance discount of $263.

Swap steak for pork chops. They cost 55 percent less than rib eye. Sub two pounds of chops every other week and save $230 yearly.

Buy plane tickets separately. Airlines require each person on a reservation to pay the same, even if cheaper seats are available. Buy separately and save the group $1,000.

99 Great Ways to Save

Next: How to save thousands of dollars


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