Yep, I didn’t Groupon. Then I tried it once. And now I think I am a Groupon regular. I wouldn’t call myself an avid user yet, but I definitely have figured out the draw…
My First Groupon
Okay, so my first Groupon was actually a gift that I simply repeated. My younger sister wrote Mr. BFS and me a really sweet thank you note in January when she moved in…and accompanying the note was a $10 Groupon to Orange Leaf Frozen Yogurt (OLFY). You already know that I think frozen yogurt is crack (and my sister knew too since she reads my blog, lol), so that was like the best thank you gift ever!
We ended up using the Groupon together later the same week and it worked just as advertised. We got our yogurt, checked out with the Groupon, and successfully got $10 of credit for a $5 Groupon purchase overall. So my younger sister sent me a referral link a few days later, I signed up, and I bought a $5 Groupon for $10 at OLFY that we used a couple of weeks later. Yay for yummy firsts!
(Side note: If you end up wanting to try Groupon out after this, please feel free to use my referral code: http://www.groupon.com//raf/UserReferral_rp/121015/10r1act/lk/uu46873974)
My Groupons to Date
Since January, I have bought 5 other Groupons. Having more friends that live close by has led to more activities including seeing movies in actual theaters instead of just our media room (although, we do enjoy Redbox movie nights very frequently too). So all 5 of my other Groupons so far have been to movie theaters. 🙂
- I bought 2 Groupons for $8 that covered 2 movie tickets to our local Movie Tavern. So, a ticket for hubby and me twice for a total of $16, which is half price ($32 total value). We used those pretty quickly.
- Then I bought 3 tickets to the Studio Movie Grill for $19.50 total that covered three evening shows and a free drink with each ticket ($36 value total). My friends and I used those the same night.
- Finally, I have 2 Groupons for 2 movie tickets each waiting for the Alamo Drafthouse that I bought for $18 (a $40 value). They expire towards the end of April, but I think we will be using them at the end of March for a group outing.
How to Use a Groupon
They try to make it really easy. Here is how it boiled down for me:
- Go to Groupon (hopefully via my referral link) and enter your location.
- Either browse the results or try searching for a specific category or place.
- When you find one that interests you, click on the title or the green button that says “View Deal”.
- READ ALL OF THE DETAILS so you know exactly what you are buying and when it expires. Remember, READ IT ALL!
- If you find one you want, click “BUY” and it will take you to a checkout screen.
- If you have a gift code, check the box that says “Use a promotion or gift code”.
- If not, fill out your checkout info and submit by clicking “Complete Order”.
- Once your order is complete, you can print your Groupon or find it in “My Groupons” anytime you log into your account.
- Follow the instructions on the Groupon for redemption you will be good to go! One of my close friends usually uses her smart phone to get her Groupons redeemed since the bar code is scannable. I print mine out since I am always worried about my cell phone battery. Either way, it works.
Tricks of Grouponing Correctly
I know you’ve probably heard of amazing deals AND horror stories about group discount sites. I have. Some of my friends and family swear by Groupon while a few people I’ve spoken to seem to think they are like payday bad credit loans. There seems to be some definite rules that you have to set for yourself:
- Don’t buy a Groupon for anything that you wouldn’t have done anyway, UNLESS
- You specifically are buying a Groupon to try something new that you already had on your mind.
If you don’t already go to that movie theater, event, or restaurant AND you never even thought about it before you saw that Groupon in front of your face, DON’T BUY IT! You probably won’t use it. It only turns out to be a good deal if you use the suckers an have a great time for like half price. 😀
Do you Groupon too? Why or why not? 🙂
FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $80,000-$100,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!). I even have all of my favorite tools on a resource page - I hope they help you too. Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!