Is it wrong that this is the time of year that makes me want to shop - for myself? It's the Winnipegger in me, but I can't seem to pass up all the bonus offers that retailers offer this time of year. I'm not the biggest fan of giving gift cards to other people, most of the time it seems fairly impersonal; however, giving them to myself is just good financial planning.
For example, fude, one of my favourite places to nosh, is having their annual Christmas offer, in fact I think this one is better than usual - if I buy myself a $100 gift card, they will throw in a $50 bonus one. So, if I basically pre-pay for a place that I'm going to eat at anyway, I get myself a free dinner in the process.
All sorts of places do bonus offers this time of year (I'm going to cite examples from previous years), so if you know you're going to eat at McDonald's anyway throughout the year, why not buy the gift card and get the bonus Big Mac. Offers like that are pretty common at fast food places, but you're not limited to fast food - Tony Roma's will throw in a bottle of their signature BBQ sauce, and I think Boston Pizza does something every year as well. Do you watch movies? Well, buy yourself a Cineplex gift card and get yourself their bonus coupons - one of them was a % off coupon for Chapters which you can use on yourself or discount your Christmas present shopping.
As if we don't get enough emails already, but signing up for those weekly ad reminders and such can bring about some pretty great deals as well - bonus airmiles from Safeway for buying things like gift cards can help make it worth it. And if you are extra crazy (like me) then you know that when you buy gift cards at Safeway, not only do you earn airmiles on the total purchase, but if you have an Aerogold Visa you also get 1.5 times the Aeroplan points...
Does anyone else do this? I mean it makes November/December particularly expensive, but the rest of the year benefits.
*It is okay to start talking about Christmas now because Egg Nog is now in store. Has anyone else ever noticed that the French side of Egg Nog basically translates as Chicken Milk?