saving money using Amazon Prime

How I Save Money Using Amazon Prime

save money using amazon prime


In honor of Amazon Prime Day, I thought I would share some of the ways I use  Amazon Prime to save money. You can sign up below to get a free month of Amazon Prime and see if it is something that works for you. The regular membership rate is $99/year, which equates to $8.25 per month. If you have a .edu email address, you can sign up for a reduced student rate (which I did with my faculty email address). Even at $99, however, it would be a value for me.


Here’s what you get:

  • Free two-day shipping
  • Free Prime Instant Video (Amazon’s version of Netflix)
  • Free Prime Music (Amazon’s version of Pandora or Spotify)
  • Unlimited photo storage
  • Access to one free Kindle book per month through the Amazon lending library


I save money with Amazon Prime because I got to cancel Netflix and all of my music app subscriptions (other than Sirius for my car). I also save about $10 a month using that Kindle lending library. That alone exceeds the monthly cost of Prime.


More importantly, using Prime I am able to avoid a lot of extra money spent on gas and impulse buys when I have to leave the house and go to a store. Realistically, what would happen if I drove to Target to buy printer ink (which I need all the time during the school year)? I’d end up with the Target $100 PLUS my $20 ink and a Starbucks on the way out the door. With Amazon Prime, I get what I need shipped to my door in two days and get a great price. Plus, I don’t have to find time in my schedule to go to a store and don’t buy anything other than what I actually need. I also keep a lot of wish lists of items that I might like to purchase in the future for school or gifts. Because prices change pretty frequently on Amazon, I can go check my wish list (or set up an alert) to look for deals on those specific items. When the price goes down, I can go ahead and place my order (kind of like electronic stock trading haha).


Plus, Amazon loves its Prime Members so much that we get a special holiday once a year. Today you can grab deals like this:


Amazon Fire starting at $33.33! I got one a few weeks ago, and it’s great. You seriously can’t beat what you get for the price.



Click below to sign up (Amazon affiliate link):

13 Ways to Save on Summer Fun

13 ways to save on summer fun

So, school is out, and summer is officially here. If you are anything like me, summer tends to really ignite your sense of wanderlust.  Parents not used to having their kids at home all the time also start to get a little desperate looking for ways to keep the kids occupied. Don’t let these things break the bank. There are some really inexpensive ways to get out and have fun this summer.


  1. Check out your local library. Pick up some fun, free summer reading and see what activities they have planned for your kids.
  2. Visit your local park.
  3. Pack a picnic lunch and take the family on a day hike.
  4. Try geocaching around your town.
  5. Make popsicles in your favorite flavors.
  6. Rather than going out for ice cream, make your own ice cream or frozen yogurt bar at home.
  7. Help your kids create their own version of the Olympic Games (and get ready for the Olympic festivities in August while you do it).
  8. Practice your photography skills.
  9. Try something new. Have you been wanting to learn a new language, how to use some software, or how to cook a particular dish? Start learning this summer.
  10. Take a free online class.
  11. Plan a movie marathon with your friends or family.
  12. Instead of going out to a bar, create a new summer signature drink and invite your friends over to try it.
  13. Volunteer your time. Find some way to give back to your church, homeless shelter, food pantry, school, or pet shelter.


Do you have a fun, free (or nearly free) plan for the summer? For more ideas, click on over to my Summer Savings Roundup Pinterest board!

Six Summer Blockbuster Savings Tips


source: Salvatore Vuono at
Summer is the season for blockbuster Hollywood movies, and a trip to the movies is a great way to escape the rain or stifling heat on a summer day with the kids. Movie prices in major cities, however, are outrageously high. Consider a family of 4 or 5 and some extras, and the cost can easily exceed $100 for a family trip to the movies. I don’t think I am the only one who finds this ridiculous. Costs are a little less where we live, but it can still get expensive when we  go to the movies as a family. Summer is usually the only time we are not too busy to see a movie, but when we go I am still looking for ways to save. Here are some ideas for enjoying your summer movie experience without breaking the bank.


1. Go early. Late afternoon and night are the busiest times for the movie theater, so go earlier in the day. You get better seats, and most theaters offer discounted matinee tickets.


2. Don’t buy online. Sure, buying your tickets ahead of time online through Fandango or some other service is convenient. The service charges, however, can add up if you are buying several tickets. The money you save by purchasing tickets at the theater will pay for your popcorn.


3. Bring your own snacks. Check on the rules of the theater, but you may be able to bring in your own snacks and save money at the concession stand. Now, it they sell M&M’s and you bring your own M&M’s, this may not fly. If you bring your own trail mix or chips in a ziplock bag, however, they are less likely to say anything to you. So many people have dietary restrictions now that it is easier for the theater to just let it go. Like I said, unless you are bringing a giant bag of Sour Patch Kids.


4. Snack Economics. Pack individual brown bags for each of the kids, buy one giant tub of popcorn, and divide the popcorn among the kids. It’s a lot cheaper than buying 4 or 5 popcorn buckets. Also, ask about the policy on popcorn and drink refills. Some theaters will give you a free refill if you buy the large popcorn or drink.


5. Join a rewards program. Some theaters offer discounted tickets or snacks for rewards members. If the program is free, sign up right now! Our theater charges a small fee to join, and our visits are so seldom that it never seemed worthwhile. For movie buffs, however, it would definitely be worth the cost.


6. Check out summer movie specials. Most movie theaters have a special kids summer movie series that is a great deal. The movies are not new releases, but they are still great movies. Our local theater offers their summer movie series two mornings a week. Admission, a small box of popcorn, and a kids drink is just $3.50! They have been showing great movies too like The Lego Movie and Shrek! Go see what is available in your town!


What summer movies do you want to see? What have you seen this summer that you loved and would recommend? We’ve only managed to see Jurassic World, but it was excellent.