Money saving/cost cutting tips anyone?

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Veganlove

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After reading the great forum post about freebies from companies & with a lot of people feeing the pinch financially at the moment, I thought it'd be useful to share money saving tips:) Here's some of mine, i'd love to read anyone else's idea's so if you've got any - please add them on :)

Ebaying/booting to raise some cash? Don't waste money on bubble wrap....My local asda throws away all the bubble wrap from their fruit boxes [ i assume all branches would do the same ] so i usually grab some out of the boxes when i'm doing my shopping and it all goes through the checkout for free.

ditto broccoli stalks: I mooch through the broccoli boxes in Asda, theres usually loads of stalks at the bottom which i bag up and tell the checkout girl they're scraps for the guinea pigs & i don't get charged.

I also managed to get a bag full of cauli leaves for free from Morrisons the other day [they were in a box not quite hidden enough under the cauliflower display :)]

I asked the veg man on the market if he had any offcuts for the guinea pigs and he handed me a carrier bag, pointed to a box and said help yourself > i filled the carrier to the top with slightly bruised apples and loads of fresh cauli leaves! Unfortunately in Tamworth they seem pretty quick off the mark collecting the stallholders rubbish - so if your market is the same you'll have to get there early [which sadly i can't often do]

My lovely next door neighbour has a large family and always has a house full for Sunday lunch, i asked her if she'd mind saving me her veg offcuts & now she very kindly lobs a big bag of cauli and other offcuts over the fence for my guineas every Sunday ~ are your friends or neighbours throwing away lots of fresh leaves?

My guineas get through an amazing amount of veg every week so i'm really glad of any freebies to reduce my food bills - cauliflower leaves seem to be the most "waste" item, luckily my lot adore them :))

I know it doesn't seem much but if we only saved a couple of pounds a week with any of our money savers - over a year that adds up to £104 which could pay a vets bill or build a fab c&c ? :)
 

flips

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I asked my local independent carpet shops for offcuts of lino (to line hutches) and the cardboard inners from carpet rolls (to cut into smaller tubes for piggies). They have been very generous and given me lots for the rescue (CrawleyGuineaPigRescue). It was mainly bits that were going in the skip which they have to pay to have taken away (and also reduces the amounts going to landfill).

It's well worth looking on freecycle to see what's up for grabs. We got a 4ft hutch for the rescue. My local Easistore also advertised wooden pallets on freecycle. I got 6 for the rescue to raise the rabbit runs off the ground over the winter. Again they would have to pay to get rid of them and would go in landfill. Also great if you want wood for fires/ stoves and are prepared to do a bit of chopping.

:)
 

sophiew (EAGPR)

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If you have a few guineas or can share with a friend, buy hay in bales from your local feed merchant - at about £4 a bale, it's much cheaper than buying in bags from petshops, and is good hay for keeping their teeth down! Same for other beddings - if you can store enough to buy in bulk, it is hugely cheaper. Same goes for food. 20kg sack of guinea food costs about £9!

Agree with above about carpet roll inners - you'll never buy a Chube again!

Toilet rolls stuffed with hay are good toys / entertainment too.

Sophie
x
 

Veganlove

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I asked my local independent carpet shops for offcuts of lino (to line hutches) and the cardboard inners from carpet rolls (to cut into smaller tubes for piggies). They have been very generous and given me lots for the rescue (CrawleyGuineaPigRescue). It was mainly bits that were going in the skip which they have to pay to have taken away (and also reduces the amounts going to landfill).

:)
Flips thats a great tip ~ thanks :) I'll pop into my local carpet shop asap and see what they say!
Your reply reminded me that i recently got some plastic pipes from a building site skip [i did ask the workmen if i could take them] they're those ribbed plastic pipes for electricity cables to run through - they were really easy to saw into different lengths [i had to rub the edges afterwards to make sure there were no sharp bits] They will be great for the outside runs in the summer :)
 

Gems

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Great tips :)

I don't really have any to add, though I have decided today I'm going to start a little veg/salad patch in my back garden next year so hopefully I'll be able to grow some of the piggies food ( and veg for us ) myself, thus saving me a small fortune! Keep an eye out for free seed samples at the beginning of the year, newspapers often have offers on where you only pay the postage and packaging. I got 10 packs of seeds for the 99p postage I paid!
 

Teresa J

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Local pubs, resturants etc usually have loads of veg peelings, leaves that they just throw in the bin. The ones near me are more than happy for me to go and collect it all twice a week and they're even really helpful and dont put the potato and onion bits in :)

An advert in the local newsletter for newspapers works really well - if you use them of course :)

Teresa xx
 

MrsWilsoncroft

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my money saving ideas are planning my meals ahead, I tend to write out a weeks worth of meals for me and hubby and try and use up everything I have in the fridge, freezer and cupboards.
It's easier this way as I then find I'm not shopping all the time for food but only picking up the odd bits I need.

I also go to my local butchers and buy a huge sack of potatoes for only £5, much cheaper than buying supermarkets small bags of potatoes which are £2 a bag. Also the potatoes are great sizes making them excellent for jacket potatoes.

I always make me and hubby a packed lunch for work too, I dont like to pay the ridiculous prices for sarnies in shops which are not even that tasty.

This year I also grew my own tomatoes and lettuce, they lasted me months and it was great for only 99p for the seeds.

As for my animals, I buy in bulk, so I always buy the 48 pouches of cat food for Coco if they are on offer, big sack of seed for my cockatiel and I buy my hay/sawdust and food for my piggy in big packs too but also look out for money off coupons or discount codes when ordering online.

i often try to take up offers for going out too, like the two for one cinema on wednesday with Orange and I get discounts through on email for meals out etc.
Meals out and the cinema can be expensive so it all helps.

x
 
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alisont

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If I go to Birmingham I go to the big fruit/vege market and always come away with a bag of greens, when its sweetcorn season I'm often found under a stall collecting the husks:))

I signed up for city deals groupons as I was fed up with local hairdressers charging £36 a cut. Last 2 cuts have cost £12 and £15 at top Birmingham salons includnig conditioning treatments. I got Aveda organic cruelty free colours and a cut for £30 recently. Also got £120 voucher for £35 that is for another top Birmingham hair/beauty salon for next 6 months - booked next cut and will use it for massage/nails/hair. You can sign up for daily offer for nearest town.

I get carpet tiles free or the samples - use them for Leo bunny in his run so he can sit out even if the grass is damp as he loves run time.

I take my own food and drinks to work - saves a small fortune when I see what others spend in a day, am vegan so have to take my own meals. If I go to somewhere like Pizza Express I ring up and check I can take my own wine as I'm vegan my local branches let me as they dont sell vegan wine so that saves on drinks!

I have a student card and get 10% off at places like Superdrug.

I also love Travelodge sales and get up at 2am to book London rooms for £9/£19/£29 if I need them. Train tickets I book well in advance too.

I try and save where I can then do treat myself or save up for some things:)
 

Sarah from Chucklebunnies

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If you have a garden then plan ahead and plant the big stuff that you can use for the piggies. Fruit trees, branches and leaves are good. Passion fruit and grape vines, ditto. Don't just buy seeds, plant up the dandelions and get them fed and watered. Then crop with care so that they last all summer. They may be seen as a weed now but they weren't always (and the piggies love them!)

I had a washing up bowl of parsley (the roots don't need much room) that came from one of those tubs for sale in the supermarket, there's loads of plants in one of those to spread out. The piggies have had had loads of good fresh herbs off that and it was easy to grow. I recommend this for any amateur gardeners - a cheap washing up bowl and ordinary compost is fine.
 

Sarah from Chucklebunnies

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I forgot to say that the parsley grows well indoors too - mine was. So you don't even need a garden for that one, just space to put a washing up bowl somewhere.
 

alisont

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If I go to Birmingham I go to the big fruit/vege market and always come away with a bag of greens, when its sweetcorn season I'm often found under a stall collecting the husks:))

I signed up for city deals groupons as I was fed up with local hairdressers charging £36 a cut. Last 2 cuts have cost £12 and £15 at top Birmingham salons includnig conditioning treatments. I got Aveda organic cruelty free colours and a cut for £30 recently. Also got £120 voucher for £35 that is for another top Birmingham hair/beauty salon for next 6 months - booked next cut and will use it for massage/nails/hair. You can sign up for daily offer for nearest town.

I get carpet tiles free or the samples - use them for Leo bunny in his run so he can sit out even if the grass is damp as he loves run time.

I take my own food and drinks to work - saves a small fortune when I see what others spend in a day, am vegan so have to take my own meals. If I go to somewhere like Pizza Express I ring up and check I can take my own wine as I'm vegan my local branches let me as they dont sell vegan wine so that saves on drinks!

I have a student card and get 10% off at places like Superdrug.

I also love Travelodge sales and get up at 2am to book London rooms for £9/£19/£29 if I need them. Train tickets I book well in advance too.

I try and save where I can then do treat myself or save up for some things:)
 

Brittany

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Former Zookeeper Here

Hello everyone, I am a former zookeeper that worked with guinea pigs. I saw this thread and realized that an article I wrote may help you out. It has money saving tips regarding guinea pig bedding, houses and chew toys. Feel free to PM me if you have any other questions. There are lots of ways to save money with these guys! Anyway, link is below.

http://voices.yahoo.com/money-saving-tips-caring-guinea-pig-11761610.html?cat=53
 
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