- Bank fees. They already get to use my money (practically) free of charge so I don't feel bad about searching out banks with zero fee checking and savings account (I use two credit unions and now Wells Fargo because the account is fee-free).
- Tipping. I know it is a social custom but I really wish the system was changed to one similar to what is used in other countries, namely you pay a fair price for a meal and the restaurant staff gets paid a living wage. While we never skip tipping wait staff in sit-down restaurants, we rarely go to these types of restaurants (they are expensive and kind of a waste of money when hubby is such a good cook). We also park our car instead of having it valet parked.
- The myriad of airline fees. I always buy our air tickets online (skipping the added fee of using a travel agent), we only bring carry-on bags (skipping the baggage fees), we don't pay extra for aisle or window seats, etc.
- Credit card fees. It's easy to avoid annual credit card fees, over limit fees, etc. when you don't use credit cards!
- I paid a cell phone contract termination fee...once. Never again. Now we go strictly with pre-paid cell phones.
- We always pay our bills on time and in full to avoid paying late fees.
- I always carry cash with me. Occasionally I have run into places that charge a fee for using a debit card (illegal at this point but they still do it). Either I go elsewhere or in a couple of cases, when there weren't any other options, I skipped using my card and just paid cash.
- I avoid any kind of convenience fee. I never pay for overnight shipping (I can wait a few days for my package), I don't call 411 to get a number when I can look it up just as easily myself, I buy (the very rare) concert ticket from the venue instead of through Ticketmaster, etc.
- I like to read boring documents so I generally catch any "extra" fees on some services I am using and look for ways to waive or avoid these fees (ie: my cell service doesn't charge for roaming, I got a couple of refunds on our home's closing costs because there were extra fees that didn't necessarily need to be there, and to avoid ATM fees before I had a bank here I would buy something at Walmart then get cash back instead of going to an ATM).
- I keep good records and look for deductions and ways to lower the amount of taxes we pay. Not a fee technically, but there are a lot of ways to lower the amount of taxes you pay legally which is worth the extra effort.
Thursday, August 16, 2012
I Hate Fees!
I don't mind paying for the services that I use but when companies start tacking on fees for this and fees for that I usually start searching for cheaper options. Here's ten fees I try to avoid: