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Making a reservation before dining out can cut the check by up to 30%.

By Karen Datko Sep 15, 2010 11:34AM

This Deal of the Day comes from Kelli B. Grant at partner site SmartMoney.


Avoiding a lengthy wait for a table has long been incentive enough for many diners to make advance reservations. Now, new standalone reservation websites offer a few more reasons to plan ahead, including discounts, extra credit card rebates and reward points.

Many of these sites cater specifically to city dwellers., which offers discounts of up to 30% at partner restaurants in exchange for a $10 fee per reservation, has begun offering deals in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago.


These apps will help you take notes, track assignments, and look up words and formulas, among other things.

By Karen Datko Sep 15, 2010 8:50AM

This post comes from Ray Jamali at partner blog Wise Bread.


If you have ever been a student, you know that student life is not easy or cheap. With rising tuition costs, high unemployment, and busy schedules, finding ways to manage your time and budget seems impossible. No need to panic. Last week, we showcased back-to-school savings tips. This week, we have 10 iPhone applications that can help you manage your student life.

Rate My Professors. Ever had a lecture where the monotonous tone of a professor puts you to sleep? 


Nevada beats out South Dakota as the state with the longest stretch -- as the crow flies -- with no Golden Arches.

By Karen Datko Sep 14, 2010 7:08PM

Sometime, somehow, in the desert of northeastern California, a McDonald's restaurant closed its doors. So why are we telling you this?


It means that this particular corner of the world -- actually a spot in nearby northwestern Nevada -- can now claim title to the farthest distance in the lower 48 states to or from a McDonald's fast-food restaurant. It's 115 miles as the crow flies.

We know it because one blogger has made it a mission to keep track of this.


$25 million campaign seeks to portray nutritious veggie as cool and sexy. The Halloween version will come with tattoos.

By Teresa Mears Sep 14, 2010 6:30PM

We've all heard about extreme sports. But did you know about extreme baby carrots?

That's right. Baby carrots have gotten a makeover. No longer are they merely the meek little vegetable you used to pack in your lunch when you were feeling virtuous.


Baby carrots are cool. Baby carrots are sexy. Baby carrots are the extreme junk food.


At least that's the message of a $25 million advertising campaign launched by "a bunch of carrot farmers."


 Post continues after video. (A baby carrot commercial appears following the news story about an agitated candidate.)


Everyone knows the standard advice about reducing premiums. Here are some less obvious suggestions.

By Karen Datko Sep 14, 2010 3:44PM

This post comes from Jim Wang at partner blog Bargaineering.


When it comes to saving money in this economy, it appears that many people are reducing their auto insurance coverage. It's a bit of a gamble, but adjusting your insurance, whether it's homeowners or auto or anything else, can be a way to save a few more dollars if things are looking tight.

The subject of how to lower auto insurance costs has been covered a nearly infinite number of times, and everyone knows the basics -- shop for alternatives, increase deductibles, drop comprehensive and collision on older vehicles, package together policies for a discount, etc.


I would like to think that you all know that you should shop around for insurance, just as you would shop around for anything else. I would also hope that you understand the relationship between your premiums and your deductible. Hitting those points again just smashes the same tired old ideas back into your brain and, honestly, wastes your time.


So, this post will be about the more novel ways to lower your car insurance costs.


Furniture firm's Life Improvement Project encompasses furniture and community service.

By Teresa Mears Sep 14, 2010 2:32PM

Do you feel as if your life could use some improvement? We all certainly see a need for improvement in the lives around us.


Ikea thinks it can help.

The Swedish furniture retailer has just unveiled a new advertising campaign that includes The Life Improvement Project. The store also is adopting a new slogan, "The Life Improvement Store."


We didn't know you could buy life improvement at a store, but we're willing to go window shopping.


Fall loyalty offers reward bonus points -- but there are strings attached.

By Karen Datko Sep 14, 2010 1:18PM

This Deal of the Daycomes fromKelli B. Grantat partner site SmartMoney.


The kids are in school, the skies are gray, and hotel room rates are rising. Could there be a worse time to travel?

Perhaps a free night's stay would convince you otherwise. Or reimbursement of those pesky checked-bag fees. And how about triple rewards points to sweeten the deal? A flock of hotel chains is offering these promotions and more to lure reluctant travelers into the shoulder season.


Great deals can be found on new cars. Here's where to look, along with buying tips that could save you thousands.

By Stacy Johnson Sep 14, 2010 11:06AM

This post comes from Michael Koretsky at partner site Money Talks News.


If you're in the market for a new vehicle, bad news for car dealers can mean good news for you.

Last month was the "worst August for U.S. auto sales since 1983," according to an Associated Press report, prompting dealers to offer bigger incentives for new-car sales. 



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