- Don't walk into a hotel without a reservation- once in the lobby, hotels figure you're already committed. If necessary, phone from the parking lot, and ask for their best rate. Then ask if they can do any better.
- Don't buy air filters and windshield wipers at the oil change place. Changing them is not rocket science, and you can use the cash you save for another gallon of gas.
- Don't put the empty box from your new big screen TV in the trash can. You might as well put a neon sign in your window announcing "expensive electronics inside". Cut the box up into strips and bag them first.
- Don't sell your diamond to a jeweler without getting three bids. A jeweler's bid will reflect his need and his bank balance. If either is low, you'll get a lowball offer.
- Don't buy extended warranties. If the item you're buying is so crappy you need an extended warranty, find one that isn't.
- Don't engage in a complicated deal for your car. So many people drive a hard bargain for a new car, then give away the ranch with their trade-in. Treat them as separate transactions. If you have the patience, sell the used car yourself. You can save thousands, I repeat, thousands of dollars.
- Don't ask your mother, your husband or the salesperson if those slacks make your butt look big. If you have to ask, you already know the answer.
- Don't buy on the first day of release. Unless you live for the thrill of whipping out the latest gizmo, waiting a bit will allow the bugs to be fixed (hello, Firefox) and the supply to catch up with demand.
- Don't trust your sex partner about herpes.
- Don't buy anything but Girl Scout cookies sold door to door. Unless you really want a non-ending stream of salespeople at your stoop. Are you really that lonely?
Ten for Tuesday: Avoid these mistakes and save