Money Saving Tips: Bring Your Own Oil For An Oil Change

Bring your own oil for an oil changeMost people think the only reason to buy their own engine oil for their vehicle would be if they wanted to change the oil themselves to avoid paying someone else to do it. The truth is most garages and dealerships will allow you to bring your own oil if you simply ask. They will even charge you less for the oil change because they typically remove the cost of the bulk oil they would normally be putting in your car from the bill.

Changing your own oil can be a huge pain because you have to learn how to do it first of all, then buy the oil, filter, and other necessary stuff, then get dirty doing it, and finally find an environmentally responsible way of disposing of the oil. When a standard oil change can be as cheap as $30, it hardly sounds worth all that hassle to me!

Related: Car Parts And Repairs For Up To 90% Off!

However, simply buying your own oil and bringing it with you to the oil change is so dead easy that anyone could do it. But, the real question is: will it save you money?

If you are using standard engine oil and buying it at the regular price at Canadian Tire, then the answer is almost certainly no. If you are using synthetic oil on the other hand and getting it at a good price, then the savings can be huge. Keep reading » about Money Saving Tips: Bring Your Own Oil For An Oil Change

Netflix Canada Doesn’t Suck

Netflix Canada doesn’t suckAbout 2 years ago, shortly after Netflix was launched in Canada, my good blogging friend Simon from Sustainable Personal Finance proclaimed confidently to the world that Netflix in Canada Sucked after trying out the service for a short while. Conversely, I have been a subscriber to the service paying the $7.99 a month faithfully almost since the service launched. It can’t suck that much to have me be a customer this long, can it?

So, Does It Really Suck?

At first, I was almost inclined to agree with Simon because the Netflix Canada selection was severely limited and nowhere near the calibre of movies and TV series that Netflix USA had. Not only that, but there was also no way to efficiently browse their entire library and save titles you were interested in watching when you did happen come across a good one. The movies displayed on the front page when you log in were always changing so it was easy to lose track of something you wanted to watch and never find it again. Fortunately, things did improve quite dramatically over time and there was just enough good stuff to keep me interested and stay on as a subscriber.

Did It Have Anything Going For It At Launch?

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Free Money: $100 Gift Card And Up To 5% Cash Back On Gas & Groceries

It’s time for another one of those posts where I talk about some company giving away practically free money for doing something that requires very little effort. Last time it was Aeroplan and it worked out VERY well! This time it’s time it’s in the form of a free $100 gift card for signing up for a credit card with no annual fee that I heavily endorse all the time and that is a great addition to your wallet anyway.

Anyone who has spent any time on my site knows that I highly recommend the Smart Cash Mastercard by MBNA because it was the best cash back credit card in Canada for a long time. It used to give 3% cash back on your gas and grocery purchases (5% for new cardholders in the first 6 months) and 1% cash back on all your other purchases, which is a great deal. Unfortunately, MBNA recently announced some changes to the card (you can read about them here) so it isn’t quite as good anymore. But, it is still well above average as far as credit cards go and I currently have two of them in my household and still use them for all our gas and grocery purchases.

How To Get The Free $100 Gift Card

Our friends over at are putting on a holiday promotion where if you apply and are approved for the Smart Cash card I mentioned above, they will send you $100 gift card to your choice of, Toys R Us, Futureshop, or Boston Pizza. Here’s how it works: Keep reading » about Free Money: $100 Gift Card And Up To 5% Cash Back On Gas & Groceries

Plan Ahead: My Best Financial Tip!

 Planning ahead is my best financial tip

November is financial literacy month and in honour of that occasion, Glenn Cooke over at Life Insurance Canada decided to organize a large group of personal finance bloggers to each publish an article on their best financial tip and this is mine.

Lack of planning is one of the biggest and inconspicuous drains on your personal finances there is. Think about it. A little bit of planning goes a really long way in almost every area where money is concerned. If you don’t do at least a bare minimum of planning, I guarantee you are going to overspend 99.99% of the time and most of the time it is 100% avoidable with just a little bit of extra work.

It Pays To Plan Ahead

There are so many way that it pays to plan ahead, but I always find that concrete examples help people understand things better so here are a few thoughts to open your eyes about just how much a difference this can make in your everyday life.

Plan Your Groceries

Adding a dash of planning to your groceries makes for one of the best financial recipes you could hope for! Taking a few moments to glance at the sales flyers for several of the nearby grocers and jotting things down on a grocery list will help focus your shopping trip so that you purchase mostly items that are on sale and that cost a lot less. After doing this for a short while you’ll get to know the regular and sale prices of the items you consume most so you easily spot what is a good deal on a particular food item and what isn’t. This will help you save even more as you hone your skills!

In contrast, if you just walk into the grocery store, you’ll likely just buy whatever looks good at the time and be oblivious to how much you could have saved through buying that product elsewhere for less or by neglecting to buy another product that is just as good for half the price. Even better, if you take a second to be smart and eat a good meal before you go to the grocery store, you’ll also have better self control to choose only those items that are on your shopping list and avoid the expensive indulgences your rumbling stomach tells you to buy that you don’t really need. Keep reading » about Plan Ahead: My Best Financial Tip!