MoneyMagpie has scanned the web to find you the very best money-saving websites.
These will all save you money on pretty much anything you can imagine, whether it’s your weekly food shop or a night out on the town. Read on to see how much you could save by going online and making the most of your money with clever websites.
- Best for slashing your food bill
- Best for fun on the cheap
- Best for cheaper everyday living
- Best for cutting your energy bills
Mysupermarket – compare supermarket prices and find the latest special offers
Use this site to compare your weekly food shop. All you do is fill up your trolley with one of the supermarkets (choose from Tesco, ASDA, Sainsbury’s, Ocado). Once you’ve finished shopping you can see how much that trolley of food would have cost in all the other supermarkets at the click of a button.
Mysupermarket then sends you to the supermarket of your choice for payment – which means that you’ll still be able to earn your loyalty points.
For the health conscious there’s also the option to compare the calorie, fat, sugar and salt content of various items by pressing the apple button. The ‘top offers’ sections are also really useful for sniffing out the best bargains.
One of the best things about shopping online is that you can make a list of everything you need – and stick to it! There are no sneaky supermarket selling tricks to lure you in and you can simply buy what you need, all from the comfort of your own home.
Delivery charges are around £5 which may sound like a lot but really isn’t much to pay if you normally drive to and from the supermarket. If you want to reduce this cost see if the next-door neighbour wants to buy their groceries at the same time and split the delivery charge in half!
OpenTable.com- earn reward points every time you dine for a free meal
Book a restaurant through OpenTable and you can earn reward points and access exclusive special offers. It’s completely free to join and really simple to use – you’ll even get 200 points just for signing up.
Choose from a host of restaurants all over the UK and in various European cities including Paris, Madrid and Turin. You earn 200 points every time you book and once you’ve accumulated 1,400 points, you can have a free meal!
There is a great selection of restaurants to choose from and a constant stream of bargains and special offers for you to enjoy, with prices starting at just £10.
It’s also a good idea to sign up to 5pm – this works in the same way as OpenTable, is free to join and will help you to cover even more restaurants. 5pm also offers reward points per person – you’ll get ninety points per head – so if you’re planning a meal with lots of friends and family you’ll be better off using 5pm.
A booking for ten, for example, would get you a massive 900 points. Save even more by grabbing the latest meal deal vouchers and see our credit crunch munch article for more ideas.
Tesco Clubcard Deals – spend your points online for better value
Tesco Clubcard points are worth four times more when you spend them online here – rather than in-store. So for every £2.50 worth of vouchers you can spend £10 worth of deals tokens. These tokens can then be spent on fun days out, Avios, restaurants and activity days.
Applausestore.com – see your favourite shows for free
This is one of several sites where TV fans can get free tickets to see their favourite programmes. Applause Store is one of the biggest offering tickets to big shows like Britain’s Got Talent, Big Brother, The X Factor and The Million Pound Drop. There’s also the website Lost in TV for tickets to The Cube and The Apprentice: You’re Fired! Plus go to the BBC website to apply for free tickets to your favourite TV shows, tour and live events and promotional events for new music. Other site include SRO Audiences and TVRecordings.
Skype.com – phone calls for free
Chat to your friends and family for free with Skype – all you need is broadband then you can download it for free here. Once you’ve registered you find the username of the person you want to call and then click the green phone. If your computer doesn’t have a microphone built in you’ll need to buy earphones and a microphone – visit Amazon which has lots of reasonably priced headphone and microphone sets. Find out much more with our article on phone calls for free.
ReadItSwapIt.com – grab free books
Get free books by swapping the ones you’ve already read with other people. There are plenty of new books available on ReadItSwapIt so take a look and search for by author, title, or description. Once you’ve finished reading a book register it on ReadItSwapIt then search for a book that you want to read. Next click ‘Swap with this member’ and the owner will be sent an email letting them know you’re interested in swapping. They then search through your library of books and if they find one they want to read they can confirm the swap. You’ll receive an email along with the address to post the book to.
DaysOutGuide.co.uk – cheap days out for all the family
This has lots of great ideas for ways to spend your free time if you live in London and the South East. Even better, there are lots of special offers available on the site so you can save yourself some money. The ‘news’ section is good for getting some ideas on what to do and the search options can be as vague or as specific as you like so it should be easy to find what you want.
Lastminute.com – cheap cinema tickets
Head to this site where you can buy tickets at any one of 14 participating Vue cinemas for only £4.99 (plus 50p booking fee). The tickets are for any film with available seats from noon on a weekday (Monday to Thursday).
Kelkoo- compare prices for everything and snap up the cheapest goods
This shopping comparison site came out on top, along with Ciao, when we tested out a whole host of price comparison sites for you. Both sites found five out of seven of the best prices on the products we searched for. One of the most useful features on Kelkoo is that prices almost always include delivery – unless stated otherwise – so you can be sure that the price you’re being given is inclusive of any extra charges which might distort the results. Do remember to press the ‘sort by total price ascending’ button though, as the default setting is ‘popularity’.
It’s by no means perfect so you should always use at least three different comparison sites to be sure you’re getting the very best deal and covering as many retailers as possible. But it’s worth it and you can save yourself a lot of money by using sites like Kelkoo carefully.
Gumtree.com – find the best freebies and jobs in your area
Don’t underestimate this online community site – there are so many aspects to Gumtree that are quite simply brilliant. One of the best is all those freebies! Check under the ‘Stuff for Sale’ tab and click ‘freebies’ for a list of free things in your area. You’ll need to collect the items – the posts will provide a contact to call or email – but that’s a pretty small price to pay for a free TV or bike! You can also try posting an ad of your own saying what items you need and see if anyone gets in touch.
Looking for work? Check the Gumtree job lisitings – the jobs are all in helpful categories. It’s particualrly good for part-time employment and you can also post your own ad offering work if you need some handy jobs done or some help in the house.
Gumtree is also really great for selling off any items that you don’t want or need anymore – as well as buying things that you do need at low prices. Don’t give out any personal details and be sure to set up a separate email account for them to contact you through. Never exchange money until you’re face to face and try to avoid meeting alone – head to a public place and bring along a friend just to be safe.
LetsLinkUK.net – swap skills for freebies
Swap your skills with other people to get jobs done for free. Local Exchange Trading Schemes (LETS) have been set up all over the country to help communities swap their skills. They work by creating a unit of ‘currency’ which can be collected when you provide a service – and then used to ‘pay’ for someone to provide a service for you.
Each scheme has its own unique currency and ‘offers’ and ‘wants’ are displayed on the scheme’s website – ‘wants’ could be for any kind of skill or task, such as gardening, teaching a foreign language or baking a cake. Read our article on skill swapping for more information.
JUSTPARK.com – park for less at someone else’s house
Want cheaper parking? Head to this site where other people post their driveway or parking spot for rental – usually at competitive prices that beat council parking hands down.
JustPark tells you when a particular space is available, how much it will cost you to rent it plus some extra information such as whether it’s underground or has security guards. Once you’ve chosen the space you want, send the owner a quick email and make an offer – whether it’s short term, long term, or just for the occasional one-off.
PriceCutReview.com – find the cheapest Amazon products
Take a look at Price Cut Review which lists all of the current Amazon products that are selling at half price or less. It’s all sorted into categories for you, so it’s well worth a browse to see if there is anything you need that you could get for a lot less. Delivery is free for orders of £5 or more – Amazon’s great for bargain books and mega cheap if you want to buy albums or singles in MP3 format – you can buy top albums for as little as £3 and singles for less than 60p!
Bumblebeeauctions- This auction site sells unclaimed stolen property from police stations around the UK.
It’s especially good for cheap bicycles. There are full descriptions of the items so you know what condition the item is before you bid.
The most recent high bid will be shown when you click on the item so you can see how much it’s going for and decide whether you want to start bidding on it. Search for products by town so that you’ll be able to collect them from the station and avoid p&p costs. Read our article on police auction bargains for more details.
Lakeland – buy the most innovative household products
Here at MoneyMagpie we cannot get enough of Lakeland and all its clever gadgets to help homeowners cut their costs. There are loads of innovative products to slash your laundry and cooking costs.
Helpfully Lakeland allows its customers to add comments – good and bad – so every time you click on a product you can see what other customers thought of it. See our article on clever products to cut houshold costs for more info.
EthicalSuperstore.com – go green for big savings on your energy bills
Cut down your energy bills with green products – EthicalSuperstore has a huge variety of money-saving products that will enable you to use less electricity and gas at home. You can search for products by ethics and pick from a range including fairtrade, vegan, recycled, as well as products recommended by the Energy Saving Trust. Each product has a really helpful description so that you understand exactly what you’re buying and how it’s going to save you money.