4 Ways to Save Money With Online Shopping in Canada

how to save money with online shopping in Canada

(Note: The links in this post may be affiliate links. Read the disclosure policy here.)

How to save money with online shopping in Canada

It seems as though there’s always something to shop for. Upcoming birthdays, new clothes for the kids, work clothes…the list can go on! Whenever I have something to purchase I tend to always look online first.

In most cases I find it easier then hauling a kid around that will most likely put up a fuss at some point during our outing. 😉  I also enjoy reading the reviews that other buyers have left if I’m contemplating a product that I’m not really familiar with.  

Now, if you have your list in hand, budget in mind and are ready to begin shopping, here are 4 ways to save money with online shopping in Canada:

how to save money with online shopping in Canada

Use Coupon Codes

A simple tip, but learn to look for coupon codes! If you’re going to purchase something online, start by doing a simple search online for a coupon code that could save you money. To find a coupon code, simply do a Google search for the store you would like to make your purchase at!

Or, my favourite right now is Honey! Honey finds and applies coupon codes at online checkouts for you so you can get back to the more important things in your life quickly. Basically, it’s amazing because Honey finds the deals on the things you need without any effort on your part.

Shop through a Cash Back Site

Why not get a percentage of your money back for making an online purchase through a cash back site? Cash back sites work together with online stores to offer you a percentage back as a rebate. Usually somewhere between 3-6%.  It’s nice to get some cash back on something you were going to purchase anyway!

I highly recommend Rakuten.ca. Rakuten is an awesome site that pays you Cash Back when you shop online. With over 750 stores, including Hudson’s Bay, Indigo.ca, Old Navy, and Sephora, get paid to shop for things you’re already buying.

Bonus, join today and spend $30 within 90 days of your sign up day, and you’ll receive a $30 bonus!

Don’t pay for shipping

I really don’t like paying for shipping. Quite often the cost of shipping can be a deal breaker for me. Especially when the shipping costs more than the product I’m buying! For this reason, I like buying from Amazon.ca, Well.ca and Indigo.ca for example, since you only have to spend $30 or $35 to get free regular shipping.

Most of the time, retailers offer free shipping when you spend a certain amount. Occasionally, they offer a coupon code for free shipping. However, I think it’s best if you shop when a store is offering free shipping without a coupon code. This way, you can also use a coupon code to save on the cost of the product, since many stores don’t let you combine coupon codes.

It pays to be patient so you can score free shipping when companies offer it.

Go in with a friend

You can also save on shipping by chipping in! Ask your sister-in-law, ask a friend, ask a neighbour, or ask a co-worker. If you all shop online regularly, check with each other before placing an order. Splitting the shipping can be an effective cost saving measure, especially when done time and time again!

By combining coupon codes, rebates and free shipping, you should be able to get a great deal on all your online purchases! Do you prefer shopping online or in store? Do you have any additional tips for saving money when shopping online?

Cheap Family Activities for Family Day

cheap family activities

Cheap Family Activities for Family Day

It’s extremely important for any family to intentionally take the time once in a while to have fun as a family. Life can be very busy so making a conscious effort to slow down together without the demands of other friends/family/work/school can be so beneficial.

Family fun, however, does not have to cost a lot! Sure, there are activities that can cost a lot (and those are fun!), but there are so many fun cheap family activities too.

With Family Day in Canada quickly approaching, I thought I’d share some ideas for cheap family fun!

Cheap Family Activities:

cheap family activities
  • Have a picnic inside
  • Start your garden seeds inside – Use this as an opportunity to teach your children about patience, responsibility and how things grow!
  • Movie night – Pick a movie that you haven’t watched in a while and make some homemade microwave popcorn! We’ve been having fun watching some of the movies my husband and I watched when we were kids.
  • Have a theme night/day – Mexican, Italian, pirate…the list goes on. Plan dinners and activities around your theme!
  • Have a craft night – paint, sew, make bracelets, draw…etc!
  • Head to your local library – stock up on reading material or even sit in on story time!
  • Have a game night – pull out those board games and cards!
  • Unplug – Turn off the cell phone, TV, computer and just reconnect with your wonderful family!
  • Shop at a thrift store together.
  • Have a dance party.
  • Build stuff with Lego.
  • Make everyone a nice warm drink, then read together with your own books.
  • Go bird watching – see how many different types of birds you can spot. Maybe bring along a bird book from the library.
  • Go ice skating – many ice rinks offer free skating on certain days
  • Build an indoor fort – camp out in it or have a picnic in it!
  • Have another family over for dinner – this is way cheaper then eating out!
  • If it’s a holiday weekend, see if there are any free events taking place.
  • Visit a local ski hill and wander around. Maybe grab an inexpensive treat to enjoy.
  • Go tobogganing.
  • Go snowshoeing.
  • Bake something together.
  • Write a simple story together.
  • Face painting. Here are some easy face painting designs.
  • Do a scavenger hunt. Either inside or outside would be fun!
  • Redecorate or rearrange a bedroom with things you already own.
  • Play video games together.
  • Go for a walk around the neighborhood.

What other free or cheap family activities can you suggest?

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Low Cost Date Ideas Everyone Will Enjoy

low cost date ideas

Low Cost Date Ideas You’re Sure to Love!

Valentine’s Day is around the corner so today’s post is going to focus on low cost date ideas! I’m not only going to list frugal ideas to do with your significant other, but also ideas you can use with any special kids in your life. After all, it’s crucial to any important relationship, that you spend some quality one-on-one time together.

However, when money is tight, it’s hard to justify spending money on a “date”. Even dinner and a movie can really add up!  With that in mind, I hope you enjoy my ideas for low cost date ideas the whole family can enjoy:

Date-Night with your significant other:

Visit a Winery or Brewery – This can really be a fun and informative afternoon!  Most wineries and breweries offer free tours that include free tastings at the end.

Use those Daily Deal Sites – Keep an eye on those daily deal sites like Groupon and WagJag.  I often see offers for romantic getaways, restaurant deals and even local attractions.  You’ll save yourself a big chunk of money if you take advantage of a deal, especially if you intended on heading out on the town anyways!

Wash the Car Together – Sometimes doing the mundane chores together can be a blast and a great way to catch up.  This is a great idea for when life is so busy you’re having a hard time finding a solid chunk of time to spend together.

Get back to your Roots – Did you use to love playing a particular board game together in your younger dating/married years?  Pull it out and play it once again.  Or maybe you used to love browsing the thrift stores together?  Or enjoyed the satisfaction of volunteering?  Do something that takes you back to the early days!

Go for a Drive – One year for our anniversary, with a new baby in tow, we took a scenic drive and stopped at a quaint little coffee shop in a nearby town.  This was one of our most memorable dates!

low cost date ideas

Dinner at Home – Not a new idea at all, dinner at home, but how about calling up your date’s mother to get the recipe for their favourite childhood meal?  Or if you both enjoy a fancy meal, how about going all out at the grocery store to recreate your favourite fancy restaurant meals?  The thought of a picnic on the floor might hit the spot as well!  Maybe this year could be your first fondue?

Go to the Beach – Obviously for the warmer months, but we like to bring along a couple of chairs and some good books and spend the afternoon relaxing at the beach. When we get hot, we just jump into the water!

Go for a Hike – or snowshoeing since it’s winter!  My husband and I are really fond of hikes. There’s just something about enjoying nature together and getting a little bit of exercise at the same time. Plus, our region has some pretty fantastic hiking locales if I do say so myself.

Date-Night with your Children/Whole Family:

Get the ideas flowing with these suggestions that will work for one on one dates with your children or for the whole family unit!

Have a Picnic – Inside or outside depending on the weather.  Pack some sandwiches, a fun beverage and an extra special treat that will be enjoyed.

Have a Movie Night in – grab a movie off the shelf that you haven’t watched in a while or find something on Netflix and make some homemade microwave popcorn!

Have a Theme Night/Day – Mexican, Italian, pirate…the list goes on. Plan dinners and activities around your theme!

Have a Craft Night – Paint, sew, make bracelets, draw…etc! This would have been a dream date with my mom when I was younger. Actually, now that think about it, we used to spend quite a few nights making greeting cards!

Head to your Local Library – Stock up on reading material or even sit in on story time!

Have a Game Night – Pull out those board games and cards! Some of our favourite games include Mexican Train, Carcassonne, Ticket to Ride, Sequence, Old Maid, Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza Card Game and Zingo.

Go Bird Watching – See how many different types of birds you can spot. Maybe bring along a bird book from the library. Here’s are some free Bird Watching printables you may enjoy.

Build an Indoor fort – Grab all your blankets, pillows and boxes to create an epic indoor fort. Camp out in it or have a picnic in it!

Check out the free community events offered in your area – Many of the free community events are geared towards family fun.

Go for a Nature Walk – Bring along a bag that you can use to collect all sorts of neat nature things in. Bring the bag home and create some crafts using your haul.

Have a Garage Sale – Involve the kids and help them set up a lemonade or hot chocolate stand.  They’ll have fun earning some money and you’ll all enjoy being together!

Go Ice Skating – I recently took my daughter out for the very first time and she had a blast. While she refused to try on the skates, she had fun building her confidence on the ice wearing her boots. We have several local rinks that offer free family skate times, so yours may as well.

Many of these low cost date ideas can be adapted to every season, but the important thing is that you get out there and have fun together as a couple, parent/child or family!  Enjoy each other!

What are your ideas for low cost date ideas?

22 Smart Purchases that Save Money in the Long Run

purchases that save money in the long run

Clever Purchases That Save Money In The Long Run

(Note: The links in this post may be affiliate links. Read the disclosure policy here.)

Sometimes, the secret to saving money is actually spending a little more money in the first place.

As long as you spend it on the right things, that is.

That might sound illogical, but in reality, it can make a lot of sense when you start thinking about long-term savings.

This is where thoughtful, intentional spending comes in to play.

In this article, I’m not going to be talking about gadgets that you will only use once, like a Cake Pop Maker for example. I am going to list out products that you will use time and time again, allowing you to see financial savings in the long run. Smart purchases that will save money in the long run!

On that note, to help you save cash and satisfy your gadget purchasing desire, I’ve rounded up 22 smart purchases that will end up saving you tons of cash in the long run. The best part? They don’t require you to change any of your everyday habits.

Smart purchases that save money:

Low flow shower head – Why not have a great shower and save water at the same time? A low flow shower head doesn’t cost a lot to replace, but the savings on your water bill will really pay off in the long run!

LED light bulbs – While they cost more upfront, LED lightbulbs are a smart choice in your home. they save money on your energy bill and last way longer than incandescent light bulbs. There are many different options to get just the right color warmth that you like.

Solar powered outdoor lights – Light up your yard to add safety and ambiance by using solar powered outdoor lights. Once purchased, these won’t cost a cent on your energy bill!

Drying rack – Do we always need to use the dryer? You can save a lot of electricity by using a drying rack instead! You will also find your clothes last longer too. If you have yard space outside to have a drying line, this is a fantastic way to dry stuff

Smart thermostat – Monitor your energy usage easily with a smart thermostat in your home! This will adjust heating/cooling according to your schedule. You can even control it from anywhere using your Android or iOS device. No more heating and cooling an empty house when you’re gone!

Reusable food storage bags – Stop throwing plastic bags (and money) in the trash. These reusable storage bags are easy to clean and ready to use for a long, long time. I especially like that these ones are self-standing…makes it easy to fill!

Brita water jug – Very, very rarely will we buy bottled water. We do, however, use our Brita every single day. We fill up glasses at home or fill our reusable water bottles for adventure days.

purchases that save money in the long run

Reusable water bottle – Speaking of reusable water bottles, never buy bottled water again! I really like this Simple Modern one. My daughter uses it for school and dance and it never leaks! Even when it’s on its side.

Air fryer – Hear me out on this one. It might seem like a gadget, but our air fryer has really made my life better. It has made lunch making and heating up leftovers a breeze. Let’s not forget to mention that it saves so much money because I’m not getting takeout as often!

Wool Dryer balls – These don’t seem like anything special, but this is one of those purchases that save money like crazy. They save money on fabric softeners and dryer sheets because they soften naturally. They also lessen the drying time needed so they will save you money on your energy bill.

Rechargeable batteries – If you find yourself going through batteries often, investing in rechargeable batteries is a smart idea!

Fire TV Stick has been a TOTAL game changer for us! We bought one when we decided to eliminate cable tv. It plugs into the back of your tv and has a homepage for all your streaming services. Save a TON of money with the free tv apps it offers.

Hair clipper kit – This one might not be for everyone, but we have saved a lot of money by cutting my husband’s hair at home. I give him a very basic hair cut every 6 weeks or so and he’s always pleased as punch.

Vacuum Sealer – How many times have you thrown away foods that are so badly freezer burned? Well, say goodbye to freezer burnt food by investing in a vacuum sealer. Once you’ve sealed your food, toss it in the freezer and you’ll find it stays fresher for so much longer.

Reusable K Cup Coffee Filter – Those little K-Cups can really add up after awhile! If you own a Keurig machine, think about buying a reusable k-cup coffee filter so you can buy your favourite grounds to use in the filter. You’ll have delicious coffee and save money!

TubShroom – I don’t even remember how I came across this in the first place, but I purchased a TubShroom and LOVE it! It’s been years since we’ve been using one and I will never go back to an ordinary drain protector. It catches so much hair. I’m convinced that this is one of those purchases that save money in the long run.

Makeup remover cloths – I really like those disposable, pre-moistened face towels so I really think these makeup remover cloths would be just as convenient. Plus, they’re reusable of course!

Personal finance books – I’ve got a list of highly rated personal finance books right here. First though, why don’t you see if your library has any copies available?

Memberships – Do you find yourself often visiting the same places and paying the daily rate? It might be time to purchase the membership! Buying a membership to places that you frequent often can save you so much money in the long run. Think swimming pools, science centers, amusement parks and more!

Drain snake – Having a drain snake on hand will without a doubt save you money on expensive drain cleaners that don’t necessarily work. Not to mention, a drain snake could save you having to hire a plumber too!

Bamboo towels – These bamboo towels are such a great idea. Especially if you think it will be hard to get away from using regular paper towels. These bamboo towels are washable and can be used just like how you use regular paper towels.

Fabric Defuzzer – Before you discard of any pilled sweaters or even furniture, try a fabric defuzzer! For less than $15, you can save your favorite things and make them look brand new again with this simple tool!

In conclusion, making smart purchases that prioritize quality and durability is not just a matter of saving money in the short term; it is a strategy for long-term financial well-being. By choosing products that stand the test of time and offer lasting value, you can enjoy the satisfaction of smart purchasing decisions that will contribute to your financial stability. As well as taking steps to be a more intentional consumer.

What are some smart purchases that you would add to the list?

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Fall Bucket List for Frugal People

The best fall bucket list

Create the BEST Fall Bucket List with these ideas. These ideas are perfect for frugal people, who are looking for free or low cost activities to do this fall.

Fall is nearly here! One of my favorite seasons (besides Christmas time) is Fall! I love the comfort food, the way the light changes in the evening, the crisp fall air, and warm, cozy sweaters. Along with those things, Fall is a great time to do fun, frugal activities specific to the season.

Here is a Fall Bucket List for Frugal People that you are going to love! There are plenty of ideas to fill up your fall calendar with frugal fun.

fall bucket list for frugal people
  1. Go to a Pumpkin Patch.
  2. Have a pumpkin carving contest with friends/family.
  3. Find fall festivals and harvest events happening in your area.
  4. Go to a local apple orchard to pick delicious apples.
  5. Go for a hike. The temperature will be much more bearable than in the summer time!
  6. Try Halloween themed cookies. Like Oreos. You can only get them this time of year.
  7. Try using fallen leaves in one of these ways.
  8. Go to a thrift store to find your Halloween costumes.
  9. Make apple crisp! This recipe is amazing!
  10. Throw a football watching party. To save money, make it a potluck and have everyone bring something.
  11. Make your own fall wreath.
  12. Make a pot of chili.
  13. Enjoy a pumpkin spice latte or apple cider.
  14. Make a Frugal Fall bracelet.
  15. Go through a corn maze.
  16. Take your own fall pictures.
  17. Rake up the leaves into big piles, then jump in them!
  18. Make a scarf out of an old sweater.
  19. Have a Halloween (or Fall) movie night at home.
  20. Bake pumpkin cookies.
  21. Visit your local library and check out some fall themed books.
  22. Check the kids’ school calendars to see what free family-friendly events are coming up.
  23. Attend a high school football game.
  24. Volunteer.
  25. Go geocaching
  26. Take a scenic drive around your city.
  27. Visit your local farmer’s market.
  28. Try a new soup recipe.
  29. Host a fall brunch, pot-luck style.
  30. Light fall candles around the house.
  31. Decorate your home with a few Fall decor items from the dollar store.
  32. Help a neighbor rake their leaves.
  33. Make a batch of these Fall M&M Monster Cookies.
  34. Create your own haunted house.
  35. Make your own Halloween costumes.
  36. Check your city’s website, you will find a ton of free events and activities happening around you.
  37. Knit a fall scarf.
  38. Write little happy fall notes to your friends.
  39. Decorate your porch with fall foliage from the neighborhood.
  40. Toast pumpkin seeds.
  41. Have a fall canning party.
  42. Go on a hayride at a local farm.
  43. Eat dinner by candle light.
  44. Have a nap!
  45. Make Pumpkin Butter

28+ School Backpacks for $50 or Less!

Find the best School Backpacks for less. This selection will take the stress out of shopping while saving money too.

the best school backpacks

The best school backpacks

Can you believe it? Back to school is just around the corner. Save money on back to school shopping by purchasing your school backpacks at a price that feels right.

It can be overwhelming in-store so shopping online is a great option.

Browse this list and save time while getting the best deals. No need to spend a ton of time or money when the deal hunting has been done for you!

This list truly has something for everyone to start the school year off right. There are even some backpacks listed that include lunch kits and more. Go ahead and start shopping today for the best selection.

From solid color options to school backpacks with patterns, the options are endless for the school year. This list has it all.

(Note: The links in this post may be affiliate links. Read the disclosure policy here.)

1. Ripzone Kids’ Edison 20L Backpack $44.99

This Ripzone backpack is a sturdy, highly rated backpack that is perfect for higher elementary grades.

2. adidas Adicolor Backpack $44.99

This classic Adidas backpack has great reviews and seems suitable for kids that are in the earlier elementary grades.

3. Ripzone Kids’ Recess 15L Backpack $34.99

Another Ripzone backpack with great reviews! This one is smaller than the first one listed above so is probably suitable for younger kids. Here it is in another colour.

4. Ripzone Kids’ Newton 15L Backpack $34.99

This Ripzone backpack is the same size as the one listed above. It’s just slightly different in its shape.

5. Under Armour Hustle 5.0 Backpack $37.97

This Under Armour backpack is generously sized with all the pockets one could need. Perfect for the school athlete.

6. Puma Challenger Backpack $39.99

This Puma one is from Costco Canada. It looks great for high schoolers and has a lot of pockets!

7. Kids Recycled Backpack $37

I realize that this one is more than $50, however, it’s from Gap Canada and they always seem to have some sales or coupon codes happening. So be sure to check Gap often to snag it on sale!

8. Minecraft™ Canvas Backpack for Kids $39.99

Perfect for the kid that loves Minecraft! This Old Navy backpack is sure to be a hit with early elementary aged kids.

9. Hilroy Animal Print Kids’ Multi-Pocket Backpack $17.99

Great price for a highly rated backpack! This crocodile print backpack is perfect for daycare or preschool.

10. Outbound Kids’ Multi-Pocket Backpack $19.99

This Outbound backpack has a deeper pocket for a water bottle and would be great for elementary aged kids.

11. Skip Hop Zoo Big Kid Backpack $36

Oh man these are cute and perfect for younger kids! This is a bigger version of the classic Skip Hop backpack that I’m sure you have seen.

12. Skip Hop Zoo Little Kid Backpack $30

Here’s the smaller classic version of the Skip Hop backpack. Perfect for daycare or preschool.

13. Patterned Backpacks from The Children’s Place $49.95 or less

The Children’s Place has a great selection of backpacks! You’ll see Spiderman, Minecraft, princess, leopard and more! They are currently on sale too!

14. Roots Recycled Backpack $32.98

This Roots backpack has the perfect amount of pockets for younger elementary aged kids.

15. SoYoung Neo Rainbows Backpack $48.98

This SoYoung backpack is a cheerful backpack in two different sizes. Like all backpacks I find, this one is machine washable.

16. Jansport Crosstown Backpack $49.98

This Jansport backpack is perfect for the kid that just wants a plain black, functional backpack.

17. Impact 3-Piece Backpack Set $19.98

You can’t beat the price on this one! This is a backpack set that includes a lunch kit and a pencil case.

18. Dickies Varsity Backpack $24.97

This Dickies backpack is everything you need in a backpack. Has a front zipper pocket, side mesh water bottle pocket and interior padded laptop sleeve.

19. All Canadian Backpack $29.97

Another black backpack with lots of pockets, perfect for carrying everything that’s needed at school!

20. Reebok Backpack $34.97

This Reebok backpack has storage for a laptop, sunglasses, water bottles and so much more!

21. Jetstream Marble Print Backpack $29.97

So much storage! This Jetstream backpack has pockets everywhere. Includes my favorite water bottle holders and more.

22. Dog Paw Prints Backpack $44.64

Perfect for the child who loves dogs! This Paw Prints backpack is another with lots of pockets.

23. Foldable Backpack $39.99

So this backpack is different than the others because it has a separate section on the bottom for shoes and a pocket on the front for holding wet items.

24. Lightweight Water Resistant Backpack $44.99

This one looks like a really durable backpack perfect for preschool or kindergarten. Lots of different patterns to choose from!

25. Casual Style Lightweight Bag $41.99

This backpack comes with a lunch kit and a pencil case! There are a ton of different designs to choose from too. Perfect for the high schooler.

26. Water Resistant Backpack $46.99

Sometimes, a solid colour backpack is just the thing that kids want. This water resistant backpack with high ratings is perfect for teens.

27. Jansport SuperBreak Backpack $49.98

This Jansport SuperBreak backpack is another solid colour option. Great for teens.

28. Pastel Ombre Backpack $29.98

This pretty Ombre school backpack is a great price and perfect for elementary aged kids.

There you have it! A great selection of school backpacks found in Canada for under $50! Which ones do you think your kids will like the most?

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school backpacks