While it's critical not to overindulge your children, rewarding them for a job well done is perfectly healthy. Instead of using bonus ice cream or TV as motivators, consider stocking up on a few inexpensive treats that can be treasured and kept as proof of their success and efforts. Here are some of our favorite creative reward ideas.
- Foursquare — The current king of geo-location apps, participating Foursquare businesses can offer deals and discounts for mayors and frequent visitors, ranging from free frapps at Starbucks to 25 percent off at stores like Sports Authority.
- Loopt — Loopt has been known to offer an automatic 25 percent off purchases at Gap and deep discounts on Virgin America flights, and even show you available rewards near your current location. Now it's even integrating Groupon's Groupon Now deals into the app, so you can find great deals on the go.
See the rest of the list (there's quite a few) after the break.
Google just recently added check-ins and Google Maps integration to Latitude, and in an effort to compete against popular apps like Foursquare and SCVNGR, the company is now incorporating deals to its geo-location app.
Google's list of deals partners is extensive (launching with Macy's, RadioShack, American Eagle Outfitters, and many more), but rather than allowing anyone to take advantage of the significant deals up for grabs, Google is adding another layer on to its process: status.
Find out more about it after the break.
The richest American Express cardholders (who hold the Centurion or black card) are about to find the process of negotiating for cars a lot easier. Privileged members will now be able to negotiate the price of a car through an AMEX website without even having reveal personal information online, according to the New York Times. Wow, imagine not having to deal with the stress of haggling with the car dealer!
Out of curiosity, I went to check out some of the best perks offered by the black card. Here is a list of them:
- Automatic upgrades in several airlines to business or first class
- A 24/7 personal concierge who will do all your bookings and find that elusive bag that seems to be sold out everywhere
- Personal shoppers at high-end department stores and extended shopping hours if you need more time
- Instant hotel upgrades and late check out times
- A complimentary air ticket for your partner on certain international flights if you buy a full priced ticket
- Travel expert who will do all the bookings for you, find the best deals, and negotiate the best travel perks on your behalf
I know that these are credit card benefits that aren't realistic for most. After all, few can afford spending at least $250,000 a year. I'm wondering, if anything were possible (fees and spending minimums aside), what kind of credit card perk would you love to have?
Citibank credit cards are going to become more advanced next month, with their new high-tech makeover, according to The New York Times. Apparently, the new cards, named 2G, will have two buttons that let you choose how you want to pay for the purchase. One button allows you to pay with reward points while the other lets you pay with credit. The 2G cards will have little lights and a battery life of four years. Other types of electronic cards are popping up as well — one that will let you carry multiple accounts on a card and another that shows you part of your account number if you type in your pin. Do you think these new credit cards are a good idea, or are issuers just making things too complicated for users?
So I use my credit card and always pay it off each month, so I never carry a balance. I use it since it rewards me with points and while I could easily just use my bank cards, I feel at least with my credit card I get a little back. Initially I was cashing in my rewards for gift cards, one year I bought nearly all of my gifts with gifts cards from my credit card. But I also noticed with these gift cards, I would end up spending more money at the retailer. Not the best for a budget, of course! With a little more research, I realized for the same amount of points my credit card company would credit cash towards my balance. So rather than spending a little more money with those gift cards, I now have the cash rewards applied to my balance. Much better for the budget! I started to wonder how do others use their credit cards rewards?
To read about or spill similar savvy revelations, post in my How Do You Save group.
- Have an hour-long massage or other spa treatment.
- Go for a mani/pedi with some girlfriends.
- Buy a new exercise outfit to show off your new body and motivate you to keep up the trips to the gym.
- Treat yourself to an expensive pair of jeans you've had your eye on.
- Splurge on a decadent dinner out.
- Pick up some fun jewelry or another accessory.
- Get a new haircut.
- Buy new fitness gear like a heart rate monitor, new iPod, or a treadmill.
- Pick up something new for the kitchen like a fancy veggie slicer or indoor grill.
- Go away for a skiing, surfing, or yoga weekend, depending on your interests.
- Do something active you've always wanted to do like horseback riding, take a snowboard lesson, or go rock climbing.
- Buy new workout music.
- Get a private lesson with a personal trainer to help you get on your way to reaching a new fitness goal.
If you have any other ideas, share them in the comment section below.
Many parents reward their children monetarily for deeds well done. For some, a high scoring report card may warrant a wad of cash or a shopping trip while others may delight in dinner with the family or a movie night.
Shiny new gifts can sometimes be exciting, but what some children crave more than anything is attention and affection. I will certainly do my fair share of material spoiling, but the moments that I look forward to more than anything are family celebrations that require little cash and lots of love.
If you are a goal oriented person, like me, then you also probably are reward oriented as well.
We all have daily goals -- The goals can range from getting to the gym at some point during the day to not allowing yourself to bicker with your husband. Achieving such goals feels good, but you know what feels better? A reward.
SparkPeople.com has created a REWARD ROSTER for you to pick from, so chose your favorites from the list and go crazy.
- Compliment yourself. Write down what you would say to anyone else who accomplished what you did.
- Create an actual plaque or trophy.
- Give yourself badges of honor for different levels of accomplishment.
- Take a vacation or weekend getaway.
- Take a day off from any goal activities.
There's more, so read more