Happy Thanksgivukkah!

ThanksgivukkahHope everyone has a Happy Thanksgivukkah!

There will be no posts on the blog today, but the usual posting will start back up again tomorrow! Hope you have a great holiday(s)!

Also, if you are going out tomorrow for Black Friday, don’t forget to check the Black Friday store hours in MA beforehand since Massachusetts is a little different!

Also, meter parking is free in Boston from starting today through Sunday so check back here tomorrow for more information on that!

Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Holidays! :)

Free Tolls and Coffee for Thanksgiving Travel in Massachusetts

MassDOT logo

One of my least favorite things about Thanksgiving is the traffic. Okay, it’s my least favorite thing. MassDot encourage drivers to hit the roads early or after 8 p.m. on the busiest travel days, which are today and Sunday, December 1, 2013.

On Wednesday, November 27, 2013 Plymouth Rock Assurance will once again sponsor free tolls at the Exit 19 Allston/Brighton interchange from 3pm-4pm.

Also, starting at 10pm on Thursday, November 28, 2013 through 5am on November 29, 2013 there will be free coffee at state service plazas in Massachusetts.

For more about these offers or for MassDot travel tips, please head here.

Black Friday Store Opening Hours in Massachusetts

 Black Friday MA Hours

Looking for 2016 Black Friday Store Hours in Massachusetts?

As you probably know, Massachusetts has blue laws that prohibit Mass retail employees from opening and working on Thanksgiving. If you have seen ads for different stores advertising Thanksgiving Day shopping for Black Friday, those are national ads and do not apply to Massachusetts. More importantly, please remember that the Blue Laws also apply to Liquor stores, so please plan accordingly. You don’t want to be that person on turkey day :)

If you do plan on heading out on Black Friday, I have rounded up some store opening hours from some of the bigger chains and local malls in the Greater Boston Area. Also, if you plan to head to a mall, keep in mind that a big outlet located in a mall may have different hours than the mall itself, so make sure to call if you have an individual store in mind.

However, please keep in mind that *doorbusters* are meant to lure you into the store, and retailers tend to have very little inventory available for these items. Also, 92% of items and sale prices in this years Black Friday ads are the same as 2012. Also, make sure you know what items to buy and what not to buy on Black Friday since you can usually get a better price at another time!

Also, a friendly reminder that you can find a lot of great Black Friday deals online as well as on Cyber Monday, and you can use cashback websites to get a little back on your purchases where you cannot in the store (and it’s typically warmer shopping online). Just keep in mind some deals online go just as quick as in-store, so go quick if it’s something you really want! If not, just skip it!

If you are heading to the store, here are some store opening times for Black Friday in MA:

Walmart: 1:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013 (select stores may be 5AM)

Target Corp: 1:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

Best Buy: 12:01AM or 1:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013 (check your local store)

Kmart: 12:01 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

Kohls: 1:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

Toys”R”Us: 1 AM or 5 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013, depending on your local store

Wrenthem Village Outlets: 12:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

Shops at Prudential Mall: 9:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2012 (there may be a few store exceptions, so contact the specific store directly for hours)

Copley Place: 8:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013 (there may be a few store exceptions, so contact the specific store directly)

CambrideSide Galleria: 12:00 AM-6:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013. Select stores open at 12am, 12:30am and 1am, and the remaining stores will open at 6:00 am. Schedule here.

Mall at Chestnut Hill: 7:00 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

Square One Mall in Saugus: 12:30 AM on Friday, November 29, 2013

South Shore Plaza in Braintree: 12:30 AM on Friday, November 23, 2013

If I missed any big retailers, please leave the store hours in the comments if you are heading out. Are you participating in Black Friday this year and what deals are you most looking forward too!?!

Good Luck!

Money Making Monday: Make Money Through Mall Shopping


*Money Making Money is a Boston on Budget ongoing series during the holiday season to give simple ways to make money online and more. None of the suggestions will make you rich but hopefully cover a holiday gift or two. All suggestions are personally used and recommended by me.

If you are heading to the mall or a shopping plaza with a smartphone, there are a few fun and easy ways to earn a little side money with apps!

Shopkick is an app that has been around for a few years, and is perfect for a frequent mall shopper! Simply check in to various stores, browse items, and more to earn points for rewards. You don’t need to spend money to use Shopkick, as you can earn points for just walking into a store!Shopkick usually does fun and extra promotions for Black Friday too, so make sure to checkout Shopkick on Friday, especially if you are out and about!

Another great app to earn a little extra money is Ibotta. Ibotta allows users to upload receipts of items purchased from participating stores like Target, Home Deport, Chili’s, and hundreds more. You can take polls, engage with Facebook, and more to save even more on items you use often. If you buy a participating item simply upload your receipt to get a rebate in your account. Some stores don’t require a receipt upload, as Ibotta technology is constantly advancing. You can link your PayPal to Ibotta to get paid as well. For more information or to sign-up for an account, please head here.

Okay–now what is your favorite app to make some extra money while you are out shopping for holiday gifts!?!

Previous Money Making Monday Posts

Week 3: Making Money Through Online Shopping {Ebates & Shop At Home}
Week 2: Making Money Through Freelance Gigs {Elance & Fiverr}
Week 1: Making Money Through Search Engines {Bing & Swagbucks}

*This post contains my referral links. Please see my disclosure policy here.

Frugality Gal

Free $15 Uber Credit with PayPal

Uber and PayPal

If you link your PayPal account to your Uber account, you will get $15 off your next Uber ride when you pay with your PayPal account (excludes UberTaxi) through 11/28/13. For more information and restrictions, please head here.

Note: I linked my PayPal and Uber account the other day, and I had to commit to always pay with my PayPal account. I’m not sure if this can be changed in the future, but something to keep in mind if you don’t want to pay with PayPal or need to switch between credit cards.



Shaw’s Holiday Gift Card Promotion 2013

Shaws Gift Card Promo 2013

Shaw’s is doing a gift card promotion this week which is perfect if you are doing a little holiday shopping soon. Buy $100 in select gift cards, and earn $20 off your next grocery purchase now through 12/5/13. Here’s a few of the terms that you can’t read in that little gray print in the box above.

“See store for participating gift cards. $20 free grocery coupon issued at checkout and may be redeemed on your next grocery purchase. Coupon expires 1 week after issuance. Coupon not valid on previous purchase and cannot be used to purchase gift cards… while supplies last…”

I did this gift card promotion last year. Only select gift cards will get you the $20 grocery coupon, but they’re will be a sign on the gift card display with the eligible gift cards, and if not, just ask. I personally like doing it because I am going to spend over $100 in holiday gifts this year at some of the stores above, and I’ll get $20 in free groceries.

Also, the Stop & Shop Gift Card deal is also still running, so if you’d rather have gas than groceries, check that out! Happy shopping!

Money Making Monday: Earn Cashback from Online Shopping


*Money Making Money is a Boston on Budget ongoing series during the holiday season to give simple ways to make money online and more. None of the suggestions will make you rich but hopefully cover a holiday gift or two. All suggestions are personally used and recommended by me.

Yes, you do need to spend money to make money with this Money Making Mondays post, but hear me out. You probably spend money online, especially during the upcoming holiday season, you mine as well get a little something back, right? When I shop online, I always check out cashback sites like Ebates and Shop At Home to see how much I can get back for my onlne purchase.

Shop At Home and Ebates are the two main cashback sites that I use. Cashback sites award you from checking out through their website and will usually give you back between 2%-8% back on purchases, but sometimes it can be more. Both sites pay quarterly and it’s great to get back a little something for doing pretty much nothing.


Ebates is one of my favorite cashback sites mainly because it’s really easy to use, and they have a few perks. When you sign up and spend $25 online, you will get a $10 gift card in the mail. (I got one from Target about 1-2 years ago, and they are still running the promo!) Also, Ebates has a great Tell-A-Friend promotion too and constantly have great promotions for telling friends. For example, I referred my mom last holiday season and got a $25 bonus. Another feature I like about Ebates is the PayPal option, which lets you get paid quick and easy.

Shop At Home

Shop At Home is the other cashback site I use regularly and the first one I signed up for. It doesn’t have as many perks as Ebates (in my opinion) but it is just as easy to use and the cash back amount is sometimes a little better, so I always check between the two. Also, Shop At Home guarantees that you will save the most with their website and they’ll beat competitors if you find a better deal elsewhere.

If you are new to the whole cashback thing, I’d recommend choosing one site and sticking to it for awhile, and then maybe expand to another once you are comfortable and like it, but it’s up to you.

Also, don’t forget to log in through your cashback site before you make a purchase online. Sometimes I forget right until checkout, so I quickly pull up a cashback site to get redirected to my shopping cart through the site and then make my purchase. Also, they’re are so many participating retailers and more for your online purchases like Kohl’s, Target, JetBlue, Priceline, Groupon, and much more. Sometimes I find that one cashback site doesn’t have a retailer I’m looking for but another one does, so make sure to check!

Yes, you are spending money to make money but shopping through cashback sites are a great (and very easy) way to earn on everyday online purchases.

Update 11/26: After asking my husband to sign-in to my Shop At Home account before purchasing our new hardwood floor (exciting, I know) I realized I could have been a little more clear since he had a million questions for whatever reason. You simply need to upload Shop At Home or whatever site you want in your browser, and type in the website you want to purchase from. Click on the link (and it will say the cashback amount and if any promo codes are available) and it will re-direct you over to the site. Once you are there, you just make your purchase and you will get an e-mail later from the site saying the amount has been applied to your account. You don’t have to do anything once you are redirected from the cashback site, and you won’t see anything indicating the cashback at the time of checkout like a promo code, unless you are using a promo code too, which you can. You’ll get your check on a quarterly basis, but it depends on the cashback site. Very simple.

Do you shop through cashback sites and do you have a favorite?

Previous Money Making Monday Posts

Week 2: Making Money Through Freelance Gigs {Elance & Fiverr}
Week 1: Making Money Through Search Engines {Bing & Swagbucks}

*This post contains my referral links. Please see my disclosure policy here.


Stop & Shop Gift Card Gas Rewards Deal Perfect for Holiday Shopping

Stop and Shop Gas Point Deal

Stop and Shop has a gift card deal that will give you 4X gas rewards on (almost) all gift card purchases when you use your Stop and Shop card now through December 5, 2013.

To break it down, you will earn 4 gas points for every dollar spent on a gift card. If you spend $100 on gift cards, you will receive 400 gas points which equals .40 off a gallon of gas. If you have a 20 gallon tank you would be saving $8 at the pump, which isn’t too bad. The maximum savings in this scenario would be $14 since 35 gallons of gas is the limit for gas rewards.

Obviously if you buy more gift cards, you will save more on gas. You can only redeem 22000 points at a time for a maximum savings of $2.20 per gallon and leftover points would rollover to the next time. Gas points typically expire within one month, but will have the exact date on the receipt when you check out.

If you have a car and are looking for ways to save on gas, this is a great way to do so. You can give the gift cards for holiday gifts or you can buy gift cards at specific stores you plan to shop at to help lower gift giving costs.

For example, if you plan to go Christmas shopping at Kohl’s, buy a gift card that matches up with your budget and pay with the gift card. You can also combine the gift card with Kohl’s coupons and other promotions to help lower costs. You will also get the gas deal which helps with gas to the store. This is a great way to save even more money on your holiday shopping.

How do you plan to save with your holiday shopping? Have you done Stop & Shop gas points before?

*Also, I won’t be doing weekly grocery deals each week since there are so many great blogs that do the match-ups already, and they were a lot more work than I initially thought! However, if there’s anything great promotions or gift card offers like this, I will share them!

Thanks, How to Shop for Free!