Cheers to 2012 & an even better 2013!



Happy New Year! Thanks for discovering and reading Boston on Budget for the second half of 2012! I started Boston on Budget in the summer of 2012 with the hopes of saving money on wicked fun things to do in Boston & Beyond, and hoping that I could share my finds and interests with other locals and travelers as well.

I think 2012 was a great year for me. I bought my first home in Massachusetts, earned my Masters a week or so ago, and, oh, started Boston on Budget after my dream trip to Italy for a belated honeymoon! I can’t wait to see what 2013 will bring!

I will (hopefully) be a little less busy in 2013 since I will no longer have grad work (whew), so I’m hoping to post even more deals and savings to Boston on Budget! I am hoping to add ski deals in addition to updating the Boston college discounts and always cheap eats tab so look for that in January 2013.

I also am thinking of adding more daily deals, like a daily or weekly round-up of the best daily deals. I have been going back-and-forth with that addition for awhile. Daily deals can be a great way to save money, but at the same time, if you don’t redeem your voucher, it isn’t.

Let me know what you would like to see on Boston on Budget in 2013 by contacting me directly or leaving a comment below! Cheers to a wicked awesome 2013!!!



New Printable Coupon for the Christmas Tree Shop + Holiday Clearance Event!!

If you are looking for after Christmas sales (decorations, wrapping paper, boxes, etc.) you may want to print this coupon out. The Christmas Tree Shop released a new printable coupon for $10 off when you spend $40 or more. The coupon expires on Friday, December 28, 2012 and you can’t use it on prior purchases or gift cards, but it doesn’t exclude clearance or sale items on the print.

The Christmas Tree Shops have also marked down a lot of holiday items too so this is a great time to stock up on items you will need for next year, if you have the space & time to do so. If you don’t have a Christmas Tree Shop, don’t worry almost every store will mark down some holiday items, so hopefully you’ll score an awesome deal!

What is your favorite after Christmas sale items to buy?!

LivingSocial 20% Promo Code + $25 Deal Bucks with V.Me Account

Are you a fan of the daily deal site!? If so, you may want to note that for a limited time you can use promo code PARENTS1 to save 20% site-wide!

There is also another deal available on LivingSocial, and I would say it’s one of those use at your own risk type of things, since there are a lot of restrictions and terms to follow. When you pay with your V.Me account at LivingSocial for the first time, you will receive $25 in LivingSocial deal bucks. V.Me is very similar to paypal, and although it is part of the Visa family, you can attach any credit card to your V.Me account. The LivingSocial/V.Me promo is been valid from 12/16/12 to 12/22/12, and people have had luck with it from what I’ve read, but I haven’t tried it personally yet.

The only reason why I’ve been hesitant is because their are a lot of blackouts (not valid on escapes, takeout, delivery, shops) and you receive the credit a few days after you make the purchase. Also, from what I’ve read and researched, it looks like you have 30 days or so to use your $25 deal bucks once it is your account. I personally do not use LivingSocial that much nor see too much intriguing daily deals at the moment. However, if you are going to make a purchase in the next few days anyways, why not give it a try? If I do decide to make a purchase, I will report back and let you know!

Please note that I am an affiliate with LivingSocial, if you have any questions, please read my disclosure policy here.

Try MegaBus For Free in January and February!


Are you traveling in January or February and looking for a great deal!? MegaBus is offering free bus trips starting January 9, 2013 to February 28, 2013 with promo code TRYMEGABUS.

Last time they offered a similar deal, the best dates and times went fast, so make sure you book today and this is limited to the first 200,000 people! I looked a few minutes ago for Boston to NYC for MLK weekend, and their were a lot of buses still available (with a lot of Friday times booking up fast)! Free transportation to NYC… not bad!

Happy Free Traveling!


Free Six Flag Tickets for Grade K-6 Kids Through Reading

If you have kids (of your own or in a classroom) you may be interested to read about the Read to Succeed Program offered by Six Flags. Children in grades K-6 who complete 6 or more hours of recreational reading can earn free tickets to Six Flags!

If you participated in the program last year, you will need to register again for the 2012-2013 school year by March 1, 2013. More information about this program can be found here.

Free Trojan Vibrators at the Boston Center of the Arts Today!

Ok, I like to share the best deals and freebies in the local area so here is a very unique one for all you adults out there! Trojan Vibrations Pleasure Carts will be arriving at Cyclorama at the Boston Center of Arts from 12-4pm on Monday, December 3, 2012 to giveaway free vibrators. This is a while supplies kind of thing, so if you would really like one, you may want to stop by on the earlier side.

More information can be found on Trojan’s Facebook page about this freebie today!

City of Boston Toys for Tickets starting November 29th, 2012!

Starting on November 29th, the City of Boston will once again trade parking ticket fees for toys. This promotion is available to drivers that are issued a non-safety issue ticket on Thursday, November 29th to Saturday, December 1st! Bring toys at an equal or greater value of the ticket to waive your ticket fine for those three days to three different locations in Boston. The ticket exchange is available until Saturday, December 8, 2012 but keep in mind that safety violations are excluded from this promotion.

This is a great way to pay your fine and give to needy children this holiday season. For more information, locations and violations included, please visit here.

Kate’s Six Cyber Monday Tips to Survive Cyber Monday 2012

Hello! I hope you all survived Black Friday and still have some cash left for the Holidays! I must say that I like Cyber Monday a lot better than Black Friday, and you can shop from the comfort of your own home! Anyways, I wanted to give you all a few tips about Cyber Monday and Christmas Shopping in general because I know it can be totally overwhelming! Last year was my first serious Cyber Monday experience and I was totally overwhelmed. So here are my (very un-Boston related) Cyber Monday Holiday Tips:

1. Have a rough idea of what people want. Write down everyone on your shopping list and jot down a few ideas that they may like & what your budget is for each person. When great deals pop-up, I sometimes forget who would be a great fit for what and may forget someone on my list momentarily. Also, I may have someone on my list that always wants something that never goes on sale (sound familiar?), so Cyber Monday is a great day to cross those people off your list. This is because many stores will offer free shipping and a percentage discount on everything. You will just need to search for what you want specifically without it popping up on a deal finder. If you stay organized and know what people want sooner than later you can avoid doing a last minute splurge and paying full-price for something.

2. Know (and use!) the right resources. There are so, so many different online deal & money-saving websites that have list so many great Cyber Monday deals and use a combination of websites to find your favorites and best deals. These deal finders and resources can spark some great gift-giving ideas at rock bottom prices! There are also some deal sites that are especially dedicated to Cyber Monday like & that will share the very best Cyber Monday deals! Also Boston-based company, has a toolbar that you can download that will let you know when there are promo codes available at checkout if you don’t feel like Googling various promo codes constantly to ensure you grabbed the highest discount available.

3. Shop Early. Just like Black Friday some of the hottest deals will sell out quickly, so think about waking up a few minutes early to see if you can snag a great buy before work. I had a hard time sleeping last Cyber Monday, and there wasn’t anything losing sleep about at 3 AM so go back to bed but set your alarm a few minutes early, just in case.

4. Use Cashback Sites to save more. This is one of my favorite online shopping tips because you save even more money shopping online through Cashback sites. and are two cashback sites that I use often. Before checking out at an online store, I log into my one of my cashback sites (usually I check both to see, which one is offering the higher cashback amount) and then click my desired store to be redirected through their link. I then receive a percentage back into my account and then they’ll cut me a check for buying something I was already going to buy! Don’t forget about credit card companies and air mile possibilities, because most credit card companies offer a percentage off to shop through their website too. So do a little research to figure out what cashback sites will get you the most money back and make the most sense for you.

5. Don’t buy it, if you won’t use it. It can be really easy to get caught up in a good deal, but if you or your gift-getter will not wear those deeply discounted Jets pajama pants for .79, then why are you even buying them? Know the return and shipping policies of each store before shopping, and take a second to breathe and think if it something you really will use or give to someone else to use.

6. Oh, and not everything is a great deal. Just like Black Friday, not everything on sale is a great deal. Do you research beforehand and know what is a great deal for a product you are interested in and what isn’t. For instance, typically the best time to buy jewelry is during the summer, the best time for toys is two weeks before Christmas and for TV’s is during the Super Bowl. However, just because those are typically the best times to buy those things doesn’t mean you still can’t find good deals, but be able to spot a good deal when you see. Also, just because a store offers free shipping and a percentage off may not make it a great deal, especially if the price is always cheaper at Walmart or Target who will holiday price match for example.

Do your research, know your audience, and don’t worry… deals always cycle back through if you get too overwhelmed, so if you missed something, it will most likely come back around again soon. Oh, feel free to brag in the comments below; I would love to hear what cheap finds you found! Best of luck!

(And I did include referral links to my two cashback sites so I would get a little something back if you did sign-up. Feel free to read my disclosure policy here if you want).