5 Ways to Splurge On Something Without the Guilt (Or Financial Ruin)

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What do you covet?

C’mon, admit it. There must be something.

Something you really want. Something you could theoretically buy at some point, but you probably shouldn’t. Not yet, at least. Because it’s probably just a little too expensive, right?

What’s your next splurge? Is it a pair of shoes? A bag? A phone? A bottle of really good wine? A bathroom remodeling? A muscle car?

Whatever it is, we’ve got five suggestions for how to make up the difference in your pocketbook:

1. Get $50 in Gift Cards Just for Buying Groceries

We bet $50 would make a difference toward your next splurge, right? Well, a free app called Fetch Rewards will reward you with gift cards just for buying toilet paper and more than 250 other items at the grocery store. Right now, it’s even offering shoppers a $10 gift card when they spend $30 on dozens of Unilever products at the grocery store. You can do this five times, or up to $50.

Here’s how it works: After you’ve downloaded the app, just look for products branded with the Unilever “U.” Then take a picture of your receipt showing you purchased an item from one of the participating brands. For your efforts, you’ll earn gift cards to places like Amazon or Walmart.

You can download the free Fetch Rewards app here to start getting free gift cards. Over a million people already have, so they must be onto something.

2. Make a Little Savings Account Just for Splurges

This way, you can steadily save up money for your guilty pleasure, your heart’s true desire. Create a category just for splurges and let it build up over time.

Here’s the deal: If you’re not using Aspiration’s debit card, you’re missing out on extra cash. And who doesn’t want extra cash right now?

Yep. When you sign up for a debit card called Aspiration, you could get up to 5% back when you swipe at certain stores — plus they give you up to 50 times the normal national interest rate on your savings balance.

It’s perfect for earning extra cash for things that are already on your shopping list. You were going to buy these things anyway — why not get this extra money in the process?

This card used to have a huge waiting list, but now you can sign up for free.

Just enter your email address here and link your bank account to see how much extra cash you can get with your free Aspiration account. And don’t worry. Your money is FDIC insured and under a military-grade encryption. That’s nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”

3. Let This App Pay You up to $83 When You Win Solitaire Games

Here’s one way to save up for your next splurge: There’s a free iPhone app called Solitaire Cash that lets you play on your phone for real money. You could get paid up to $83 per win.

You might be thinking: There’s got to be a catch. This is definitely one of those spammy apps, right?

Wrong. There really isn’t a catch. Sure, you can pay to play in some higher-stakes tournaments, but there’s no pressure. And, in fact, there aren’t even any annoying ads.

With each game, you’ll battle it out against at least five other players. Everyone gets the same deck, so winning is totally a matter of skill. The top three players who solve the deck fastest can win real money — anywhere from $1 to $83.

Over on the App Store, it has over a million downloads and more than 15,000 ratings, averaging 4.7 stars (out of 5).

To get started, just download the free app and start playing your first game immediately.

4. Make Sure You’re Not Overpaying for Something Else

To get closer to your splurge, it’s best if you don’t overpay for some other purchase — no matter what it is.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you got an alert when you’re shopping online at Target and are about to overpay? That’s exactly what this free service does.

Just add it to your browser for free, and before you check out, it’ll check other websites, including Walmart, eBay and others to see if your item is available for cheaper. Plus, you can get coupon codes, set up price-drop alerts and even see the item’s price history.

Let’s say you’re shopping for a new TV, and you assume you’ve found the best price. Here’s when you’ll get a pop up letting you know if that exact TV is available elsewhere for cheaper. If there are any available coupon codes, they’ll also automatically be applied to your order.

In the last year, this has saved people $160 million.

You can get started in just a few clicks to see if you’re overpaying online.

5. Cancel Your Car Insurance

Speaking of overpaying for things, when’s the last time you checked car insurance prices? Paying less for mandatory bills like that will get you closer to your splurge.

You should shop your options every six months or so — it could save you some serious money. Let’s be real, though. It’s probably not the first thing you think about when you wake up. But it doesn’t have to be.

Use a website called EverQuote to see all your options at once.

EverQuote is the largest online marketplace for insurance in the US, so you’ll get the top options from more than 175 different carriers handed right to you.

Take a couple of minutes to answer some questions about yourself and your driving record. With this information, EverQuote will be able to give you the top recommendations for car insurance. In just a few minutes, you could save up to $610 a year.

C’mon, what’s your next splurge?

What do you covet?

There must be something. Whatever it is, following these five tips will get you closer to it.

Mike Brassfield ([email protected]) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. He covets.

The Aspiration Spend & Save Accounts are cash management accounts offered through Aspiration Financial, LLC, a registered broker-dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC, and a subsidiary of Aspiration Partners, Inc. (“Aspiration”). Aspiration is not a bank.