Raise.com = Shopping nirvana
!!!!Update added at end of this article.
Ever since Aunty turned 55 almost a decade ago, Tuesdays at Ross Dress for Less became her favorite shopping excursion because they gave 10% off to seniors.
Pal Jim turned Aunty on to Cardpool.com and Aunty could buy Ross (and other) gift cards at 20% savings. However, over time, Cardpool offered less and less of a discount, and recently Ross cards, if available, were at a 13% savings, which is still a good deal, especially when shopping on Tuesdays and also getting the senior 10% discount.
Then, just last week, hanabata days (from kid time) pal Cookie said, “Eh, you heard of Raise.com?” Pal Cookie is a shopping guru on steroids. She knows everything about everywhere and finds the best bargains and products all over the place.
“Better than Cardpool.com?” Aunty asked. “Go look”, she said, and Aunty did.
OMG – better than Cardpool.com because the discounts are higher and there are more retails stores in the offerings. Aunty just purchased her Ross gift card at 18% savings – woohoo! When it arrives in the mail, Aunty is going shopping at Ross’ on Tuesday with a 28% (18% + 10%) discount pass in hand!
It is also a site to search and search because discounts vary for each establishment depending on the dollar value as well as the day of the week. According to Cookie, Fridays are good bonus days to buy cards because they sometimes have an additional 5% discount thrown in the mix! They also run “specials” which can be easily found on the left of the menu.
On top of that (this is killing Aunty because it just keeps getting better and better!), Raise.com offers $5 credit to referred newbies after the first purchase – one credit to the newbie and one credit to the referrer!
When you sign up, you will get a user name that is made up of the first letter of your first name and the rest of it with your last name. (hint: if you want a custom user name, put a first letter in the first name line and the rest of the name in the last name line. Example, “aunty” was entered as “a” in the first name line and “unty” in the last name line. You can then change your name in your profile afterwards, but you will not be able to change your user name – ever. Another example, if you want “jalna” as your user name, enter “j” as your first name and “alna” as your last name. Change your first and last name after you complete sign up.)
After you get signed up, then you can refer people to sign up with emails, facebook, etc. When they come to the section of referral code, they enter your user name (like “aunty”, ahem) , and BAM! you get $5 and they get $5. Reminds Aunty of Paypal when it first started years ago. Rewards for referring people to join earned both parties $5. Then, Paypal got so huge and popular, it didn’t need referrals anymore.
Even if Raise.com didn’t give referral credits of $5, Aunty still thinks it is a great place to acquire discounts from favorite stores such as Whole Foods, Apple Store, Taco Bell, oh my! This is going to be delicious dangerous research into forced shopping due to purchased savings.
Much mahalo to Pal Cookie for her great tip and helping Aunty to spend money. To shop is human, to share discounts is divine.
*Update, update!!! Aunty was very pleased with her new Ross gift card and was going to shop with it. However, something told Aunty to check the card first. These cards come from somebody else – someone who is selling their card.
On the back of the gift card is a toll free number to Ross’ balance inquiry customer service line: 1-800-798-4055. Aunty followed the prompts, then put in the gift card number followed by the # key. Blip blurp oh oh, Aunty was informed that this card account was closed. Closed? Yikes?!!
So then, Aunty called the Raise Member Services number: 888-578-8422 and waited for an available customer representative. After a few minutes, Aunty got Bryce – a very nice young man who apologized and informed Aunty that sometimes cards are invalid for various reasons. Raise.com has a 100 day money back guarantee (so check or use your cards quickly, fellow shoppers!) and the refund process was begun. Phew!
Will Aunty use Raise.com again? You betcha! Aunty was impressed with Bryce’s niceness (Bryce, nice, get it? heh heh heh) and also the money back guarantee. Aunty’s shopping excursion to Ross’ will have to wait for another Tuesday in the near future. Perhaps that is a good way to save money, sort of.