Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cool Way to Save Cash: Groupon.com

Our local San Francisco Bay Area news radio station, KGO, interviewed the founder of groupon.com, and the concept peaked my interest as one who does not turn down free or discounted opportunities. What's the catch? None. Just register at the site picking your city (or one very close to you), and away you go. What is a groupon? It's a portmanteau of "group" and "coupon" ... effectively, businesses will offer a discounted deal to a group of people for a finite time period (usually 24-hours); the actual groupon is good for about a year or less much like a gift certificate. What kind of things can you buy? The daily emailed offerings vary, but they have been for things such as:
  • Farallon Island boat tour
  • Yoga sessions
  • Spa treatments
  • Coffeeshops
  • Restaurants
  • Hotel stays
  • Rafting trips
  • Car services

The best part of all is they're all at a discounted price. For example, I bought a $50 (face-value) Groupon for Pucinella's restaurant in San Francisco for $20 (a 60% discount). This is great for my wife and I as we like to go out on a regular basis, and we're not breaking the bank. One of the best parts is that purchasing the current groupon is very easy. After logging in, you simply indicate the quantity that you want to buy, and click one button. Your credit card info is stored by Groupon so you won't have to enter each time. Today's San Francisco groupon (Dec 15, 2009) is for a 2010 Snowbomb Tahoe Card (regularly $40 on sale for $20); it includes a bunch of free stuff including a lift ticket at Dodge Ridge. Where can you find a lift ticket for $20??? If you're interested in gettting these deals, sign up here: Groupon