Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment

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Follow these tips to find clothing deals online, score bargains on tickets, get discounted gift cards and throw a high-class bash on the cheap.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 2 of 8

Sign Up for E-mail Alerts

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ShopItToMe.com notifies shoppers of online discounts. Subscribers tailor their accounts to include preferred brands, sizes and mail delivery days (Mondays and Thursdays are best). The site then dispatches regular customized e-mails, complete with pictures of sale items. Clicking on a photo takes the user to the retailer's Web site.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 3 of 8

Discounts on Designer Goods

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Gilt Groupe is a shopping site that offers designer goods at up to 70% off. E-mails remind users of upcoming sales, which usually start at noon eastern time -- the juiciest deals sell out within hours.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 4 of 8

Get Group Deals

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Groupon.com e-mails subscribers a daily coupon for 50% to 90% off a product or service. But there's a catch: The promotion applies only if enough members purchase the voucher. This encourages users to invite friends or family to buy the deals. If a sufficient number cash in, the deal goes through and credit cards are charged.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 5 of 8

Scan and Save

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Use free smart-phone applications to scan an item's bar code with your phone's camera (you can also enter product codes manually), and then compare the price with prices at other retailers. Top shopping apps: Google Shopper (available for Android phones), RedLaser (iPhone) and ShopSavvy (Android and iPhone). If you show a competitor's price to managers at some stores, they may just match it on the spot.
And Coupon Sherpa (iPhone) will produce any available in-store coupons, which you can show on your phone's screen at the register.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 6 of 8

Buy Gift Cards for Less

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Gift cards are great when you have no idea what to give your sullen teenage nephew for his birthday. They're even better when you can buy them at a discount and use them yourself. PlasticJungle.com, GiftCardRescue.com and GiftCardCastle.com buy unwanted gift cards from consumers, sell them at less than face value and ship them free. GiftCardGranny.com compares offers from several such sites, plus eBay, to help you find the best deals.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 7 of 8

Score Cheap Tickets

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Use RazorGator.com, StubHub.com and TicketsNow.com to find seats for games and shows. The trick is to check each resale site and original sellers because price differences can be dramatic.
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Save $50 a Day, 2011: Shopping and Entertainment | Slide 8 of 8

Plan an Affordable Party

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Want to give a cocktail party for 50 without breaking the bank? Elizabeth Mascali, coauthor, with Dawn Sandomeno, of Plan to Party (Yorkshire, $20) and www.partybluprintsblog.com, offers alternatives to a fancy-schmancy approach.
Send free electronic invitations from www.punchbowl.com. Create your own centerpieces with red carnations and glass votives. Hire college students, rather than pros, to serve. And save big by making your own food (try roast beef on a croustade) rather than having your party catered.
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