I saved £1,600 after making a simple change to my shopping habits


With prices rising everywhere, we’re all looking for the easiest way to save money on our essential purchases.

Although the money saving forums are full of ideas, many of them seem to involve making big changes to your shopping habits, going out of your way to get to a particular place, or looking for codes to get extra money – all a lot of faff for pennies reward.

I made a simple change to the way I shop online several years ago and was surprised when I recently checked my account settings and realized I had indeed saved £1600 at during this period, buying the things I intended to buy anyway.

Read more: How to switch energy providers and get money back at the same time

As someone who is constantly working from home and constantly seems to be switching from after school clubs to kids birthday parties, doctor appointments, family commitments and all the things we all struggle with in the modern world, most of my shopping is done online.

I know it’s not ideal, I’d love to walk the aisles, but most of the time shopping is something to check off a to-do list, usually done on my phone at night while I watch the television.

This week so far, not including my usual online supermarket store, it’s been something red white and blue for children’s school jubilee celebrations, a birthday present for a six year old who we’re going to party on the weekends and a hay fever remedy that actually works.

I’m always keen to get the best deals and shop around for the sites with the best prices, but once I know where I’m going to buy something, there’s one simple thing I do that has allowed me to save hundreds of pounds over several years.

Quidco is one of the biggest cashback sites in the UK and although I have tried others I have found the interface and ease of use to be as good as it is the one I like. I was able to incorporate into my online shopping routine, especially because with 4,500 businesses attached to it, just about anything I need to order can get some sort of Quidco cashback.

For Regular Internet Shoppers, Regular Use of Quidco Can Help Save Hundreds of Dollars

You can sign up for Quidco for free. It works by referring customers to a wide range of online stores. If those customers make a purchase, Quidco earns a commission, a portion of which is then paid back to the customer themselves.

In addition to a direct cashback percentage, many companies also work with Quidco to offer additional offers throughout the year, which means you can get bonus cashback for ordering at specific times or buying types of particular products.

I found their Mother’s Day flower deals particularly handy, giving me 15% cash back on a beautiful Bloom and Wild bouquet for my mom that I would have bought anyway. ShopDisney often offers additional limited-time cashback offers that are great for Christmas and birthday gifts, too.

Paying cashback may take some time. Basically, the purchase is tracked the moment you click “buy”, but the money from the retailer can take up to a few months to appear in your account. Once entered, you have an earnings balance that you can withdraw via Paypal, bank transfer or gift cards for many relevant stores.

Quidco is totally free, although if you continue and find you’re earning cashback well, you can upgrade to their Premium service which for £1 a month when you earn cashback (so you’re not charged if you don’t don’t use) gives you higher commission rates and the ability to earn bonuses on the money you withdraw for gift cards.

I did this once when I withdrew money from a Not on the High Street gift card to buy a personalized wedding gift for a friend. Not only did I get an extra 10% on the value of the money I took out, but when I ordered the item, I was even able to get Quidco cash back on it, starting the process all over again. saving.

For me, practicing checking out Quidco before buying anything online has saved me hundreds of pounds.

My account currently stands at £1,628.58 in cashback earned since I opened it, with £483 waiting to be withdrawn as pocket money for the holidays later in the year. You can withdraw it whenever you want once you’ve earned £1 in income, but I’ve found it very handy as extra “bonus” money to cover treats or vacations when I’m feeling low.

I also cashed in my winnings as Amazon vouchers – getting an extra 2% on top – to help cover Christmas shopping. The key is to remember to use it every time.

Often it’s made up of small amounts on, say, our Domino’s treat, which could run at 30p. But, as long as I remember going through Quidco first, the moment I bought used workout gear on eBay, we had a Just Eat takeout, or I bought clothes from kids school for September at M&S ​​it all starts to add up – all on purchases I was going to make anyway.

The maximum I got in a single transaction was £150 for Sky when we signed up as new movers. Getting a new mobile contract from Three got me £60.

A British Airways flight cost £19 and a host of cheap Travelodge and Hotels.com nights to stay with the family cost between £5 and £11 at a time.

When we started my husband was a bit dubious and to be fair to get the most out of it it’s good to take a look every now and then at the cashback on offer and any extra offers they do, sometimes you can choose a “boost” of £5 or £10 if you make a certain number of eligible transactions during the month.

But in the end, he also opened an account, and while he doesn’t tend to shop online as much as I do (he doesn’t need a platinum jubilee-themed tattoo to six-year-olds), he picked up a few. hundred pounds by choosing a new home broadband provider and buying white goods on AO.com.

Of course the easiest way to save money on online shopping is not to, it’s important not to get sucked into buying things you didn’t intend to. do anyway and the cashback is still money you have to spend upfront.

But as someone in our household who organizes the weekly shop, birthday presents and a host of other things all ordered online, signing up for Quidco and using it regularly has been a simple and effective way to get some of the money we spend. back with minimal faff.

Do you use Quidco or any other cashback site, or do you have any money saving tips you would like to share? Have your say in the comments below.


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