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Leverage Your Savings With Gift Cards

America is on its way to become a cashless society. Almost every store and restaurant accepts some form of cashless payment, be it credit card, debit card or gift cards. I don’t carry as much cash with me anymore like I used to back in Germany. All I have with me is a very small business card holder packed with my ID and a bunch of credit cards. In the back there is a 20 dollar emergency bill in... read more

What You Should Know About Speeding Tickets

Germans like me who are used to the Autobahn probably have the hardest time on America’s interstates with its strict speed limits of anywhere between 60 mph to 85 mph. In fact, 85 mph is only allowed on a 41-mile segment somewhere in Texas. A few other parts of Texas as well as the whole state of Utah set the speed limit to 80 mph. With everybody usually being in a rush to get from A to B, traffic... read more

Q&A: Sales Taxes, Driving Automatic and Speeding Tickets

How much is the sales tax and why does it vary so much? Sales tax varies from state to state and can be under 1%, but also 10% or higher in some areas. It’s been administered on the state level and food is usually a lot lower than other goods. States determine a base rate and the individual counties in that state can then add even more on top of that. Charlotte, NC for example is in Mecklenburg... read more

How to Earn a Commission On Your Own Purchase

Ever since I moved to America, I’ve always been on the look out for new ways to save on my spending, earning cash back or just landing good deals on stuff that I am going to purchase anyways. There are just so many great opportunities out there. Besides Travel Hacking to cut down on travel expenses and the use of various credit card cash back programs, I recently stumbled over a very interesting... read more

Cutting the Cord… and Your Monthly TV Bill

I remember how excited I was when I first signed up for my new TV, Internet and Phone package in my second week after moving to the US. A wide screen TV was one of our first pieces of furniture and of course we signed up for a bundle with over 100 channels plus some premium channels like HBO and Showtime. Our excitement about all these different TV channels suddenly died down about six months later, when... read more

Q&A: Open Container Laws, HOV and the $2 Bill

Why is drinking alcohol in public prohibited? In order to avoid public intoxication or even worse, being drunk behind the steering wheel, America has Open Container Laws that can slightly vary from state to state. In the majority of US states this law prohibits posession and/or consumption of open alcohol containers in public places like on the street or in a park. However, most states adhere to that law... read more

Armed to the Teeth – Gun Ownership in America

It’s not surprising that gun violence in the U.S. is much higher than in any other rich country in the world. There is just a huge number of firearms in the hand of American civilians, because it’s very easy to purchase a gun. New York journalist and author Stephen J. Dubner from Freakonomics.com was looking into this topic a bit further in one of his latest podcast episodes. He found out that... read more

Bargain Hunting at Police Auctions

The other day I spent a few hours at an auction for unclaimed property seized by my local police department. The auction itself was hosted by a professional auction company and over 300 items were up for grabs. Every six months they are selling all the items that they seized and the public can try to get a good deal on them. Here’s what I’ve learned. What items are for sale It really depends... read more

American Wedding Traditions and What It Will Cost You

Have you ever seen the movie Father of the Bride? It’s one of the very few movies that I actually own on DVD, because I just love to rewatch it. The part that I like most about it, is how much daughter Annie adores her Dad, George Banks, (played by Steve Martin) and how he eventually always does everything to make her happy. It’s a film about a typical American wedding and how costly it can... read more

American Football Rules for Die-Hard Soccer Fans

Yes, I said it, the “S” word. 8 years of living in America has made me refer to our beloved football as “soccer”, just so that Americans know what I’m talking about. They are claiming the term “football” for their most popular sport, which is American Football, where you don’t necessarily kick the ball like in soccer, but mainly throw and carry it. And still... read more

English Proverbs and Puzzled Looks

“Great Minds Think Alike.” That sounds pretty awesome and compliments both of you. I don’t know how this popular saying is translated in other languages, but in German it’s more like “Two Fools, One thought” for lack of a better translation. You get the idea… and it’s a guaranteed laugh every time I bring it up to Americans. This is just one example of a 1:1... read more

What’s the Best Wholesale Club?

There are many different ways to save money on your purchases in America. One way is by signing up for a wholesale club, that will currently charge a membership fee of $45-55 per year, so that you can buy items at a lower cost. It does pay off, if you buy in bulk and maybe even split the content of the larger items with friends. Three major wholesale clubs are competing on the U.S. market, which is... read more

5 Daily Deal Sites Worth Checking Out

Not everybody who decides to immigrate to America can afford to bring all of their belongings in a big container. Some people sell a lot of things before the big move to ship only the essentials and others can afford to keep their apartment or house in their native country and newly furnish their home from scratch in the USA. No matter the circumstances you probably can’t bring everything and end up... read more

Make Money from Home with Affiliate Marketing

Willing to work but stuck at home is the fate that many immigrant spouses face every day. Some of them are having a hard time to land a job in the same profession, even if they’ve beem working in the same field for years back home. Depending on the job, American companies won’t hire you unless you’re retaking classes and get an American degree or license for it. But there are also ways... read more

Build an Outstanding Credit History from Scratch

You might have paid off credit in your country already, but once you move to America, this is all in the past. Banks will need you to start over and prove that you’re credit worthy by building a great credit history with an outstanding FICO score. This may take a little while and there are some pitfalls to be aware of during the process. So read on to learn about the science behind credit and the... read more

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