Monday, December 1, 2008

Free Money

Photo by CleanWalmart

I read about this elsewhere in the blogosphere last week, but it bears repeating. The kids and I took a trip to the grocery store to find the CoinStar Machine a few days ago. Why? Because not only does CoinStar waive fees if you request a gift certificate instead of cash, but they are also offering an additional $10 gift certificate if you redeem over $40 before December 7.

We had previously scoped out all the local banks, and could not find one that a) had a coin counting machine or 2) didn't charge a fee to count the coins. For little Paul Poorhouse, it didn't seem fair to have to give up some of his hard-saved $65 in coins. The problem is the same with Coinstar, but only if you take the money in cash.

Paul didn't really want to spend all his money at one place. So here's what I did: We emptied Paul's jar plus Mr. Poorhouse's drawer, plus my kitchen coin stash all together. I will request (by mail) an Amazon gift card for the $132. I will give little Paul his $65 (I can finally swing that) and I will spend the gift card on holiday presents for my remote family, which now, thankfully I don't have to mail, because I have Amazon Prime which gives you free shipping for a year.

So, I have $77 in free money--cuz face it, when it's in the drawer, it isn't money--to spend on gifts that I didn't think I had.


Win win win.

Here are the details from CoinStar's site.

Be careful not to lose your receipt from the machine though. This is a mail-in program, kinda like a rebate. I'm guessing there are lots of people who end up not claiming their gift cards. Don't be one of them!

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