Smart SpendingSmart Spending

Allegiant Air joins Spirit Airlines in charging passengers an extra fee for bringing their luggage on board.

By Giselle Smith Apr 3, 2012 4:22PM

As if flying wasn't expensive enough, a second U.S. airline has announced plans to charge a fee for carry-on bags.


Beginning Wednesday, Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air will charge up to $35 for a carry-on. One small  "personal item" that can fit under a seat will be allowed without an extra charge, according to news reports.


They're called '0% promotional balance transfers,' and they can save you money -- or they can drive you deeper into debt.

By Stacy Johnson Apr 3, 2012 1:32PM

This post comes from Jason Steele at partner site Money Talks News.

Money Talks News on MSN MoneyWhen you're mired in credit card debt, it's tough to make a dent in your balance when you're paying double-digit interest rates. And if you're still clinging to a good credit rating, you'll be tempted by the 0% balance-transfer offers that are flooding your mailbox.

Image: Man paying with credit card (© UpperCut Images/UpperCut Images/Getty Images)While zero is always a great interest rate, there has to be a catch, right? In fact, there are several. Before you sign up for a promotional balance-transfer offer, ask yourself these questions:


If you are using a paid credit score service, other than myFICO, to look at your score, you probably won't get the same one your lender will.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 3, 2012 10:54AM

This post comes from Miranda Marquit at partner blog Bargaineering.


Image: Woman with laptop (© Noel Hendrickson/Digital Vision/Getty Images)By now, many people are well aware that the credit score is an important factor in finances. Your credit scores can have a bearing on the interest rate you receive, possibly saving or costing you hundreds of dollars. Additionally, your credit scores can also influence the insurance premium you pay, and affect other decisions related to finances.


But the main reason people worry about their credit scores usually has to do with borrowing money. And, in many cases, the credit score used is the FICO score.


Spring cleaning? We can't do your manual labor, but we can save you some time when it comes to going through piles of paperwork.

By Stacy Johnson Apr 2, 2012 5:47PM

This post comes from Brandon Ballenger at partner site Money Talks News.

Money Talks News on MSN MoneySpring is here -- the season of allergies, taxes, and cleaning house.

When you get around to cleaning, don't forget the paperwork. Since tax time is when we're often sifting through paper, it's also a good time to spring clean the family finances.


Details are still unclear on the security breach that may have compromised Visa, MasterCard and Discover credit and debit cards accounts.

By Giselle Smith Apr 2, 2012 5:07PM

Despite assurances from the card-processing company that a data breach that came to light Friday has been contained, security experts are urging credit and debit card users to be cautious.


Image: Credit card (© Fancy/Veer/Corbis/Corbis)A "massive" data breach was originally reported last week by Krebs on Security. Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal reported that Atlanta-based Global Payments, a company that processes credit and debit transactions for banks and merchants, had acknowledged a security breach.


Global Payments said Sunday that fewer than 1.5 million account numbers had been "exported" and that the security breach had been contained.


Cruises, tablets, jewelry for Mother's Day, and home improvement items are attractively priced right now.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 2, 2012 3:30PM

This guest post comes from Lindsay Sakraida at Dealnews.


Dealnews on MSN MoneyApril is here, and if you're stuck indoors waiting out showers that will bring May flowers, consider it a blessing: You'll have an excuse to devote more time to shopping around for deals.


Image: Cruise ship (© Keith Wood/Corbis)In an effort to guide you toward savvy purchases, we dug through the Dealnews archives from years past to see what goods are, well, good to buy in April, and what you should hold off on. From early home improvement sales to aggressive tablet prices, here's what's in store this month for the smart shopper.


If you've ever filled out a job application or applied for a credit card, you have what it takes to open a Roth IRA account. It's easy.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 2, 2012 12:56PM

This post comes from J.D. Roth at partner blog Get Rich Slowly.

Get Rich Slowly on MSN Money


Note: This post was part of the Roth IRA Movement event organized by Jeff Rose at Good Financial Cents.


Image: 401k (© Photodisc/SuperStock)Most of us know we should save for retirement, but sometimes it's tough to get started. If your employer sponsors a retirement plan -- especially if it offers a generous match to your contributions -- that's usually the best place to begin. But even if you don't have a retirement plan through your job, you can still save for the future. One of the best ways to do so is through a Roth IRA.


You don't have to have a spending problem to waste hundreds of dollars on bank fees. You just have to be ignorant about your account.

By MSN Money Partner Apr 2, 2012 10:24AM

This guest post comes from Andrea Whitmer at So Over Debt.


Image: bank ATM (© Image Source/Corbis/Corbis)My 21-year-old cousin signed up for the National Guard recently. He leaves for basic training in a few weeks, where I'm guessing he'll be tortured with physical activity, then emerge a "real man" by the time he graduates. While I think this is a great idea for him, I overlooked one caveat: Someone has to take care of his bills while he's gone. And I'm sure you can guess who got nominated.


Yesterday we went to his bank to add me as a joint account holder. I was interested to visit the branch, since I've heard him complain over and over about excessive fees. His income is beyond adequate, and he's not an outrageous spender (especially considering his age), so I've never been able to figure out why a simple checking account has cost him so much money.



Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


Smart Spending brings you the best money-saving tips from MSN Money and the rest of the Web. Join the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.