Friday, January 06, 2006

Simple Solution to Manage Store Affinity Cards

Sometimes my goals of frugality and simple living conflict with one another. An example is how to manage all those store affinity cards. I'm talking about punch cards ("buy 9, get your 10th free!") or membership cards like those you have to scan at the grocery store to avoid being charged $18 a pound for bananas. The frugal side of me adores those cards. But my simplicity side hates having the cards junk up my wallet.

Some stores will tie your affinity card to your phone number, allowing you to make a purchase without the card. But not all stores are that sophisticated. I devised a simple solution that allows for the best of both worlds. I purchased a zipper-top coin purse to be the new home for all those cards. Now my wallet contains only my drivers license, ATM card, Visa card and library card (that one scored a precious spot in my wallet because I use it so often). All other cards now live in my little coin purse, happy and snug, always with me, and easy to locate in my purse.

When shopping for a coin purse, be sure that the zipper is long enough to allow you to easily slide the cards in and out. I tested coin purses at the store with my drivers license and found that many coin purses are a little too small for cards.

Now I never find myself at the Greek deli kicking myself because I left my gyro punch card back at home.

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