View Full Version : How do you save money?



Kacky
05-25-2008, 12:16 PM
I'd like to do an episode on cheapskate caching. What do you do to save money? What are some good strategies if you don't want to be a Premium member at gc.com? You can answer in this post, leave voicemail at 333-8651, email me an MP3 file, or let me interview you!

vicbiker
05-25-2008, 07:45 PM
Geocaching is becoming a very expensive sport simply because of price of gas. Other then getting together and carpooling to caches I don't know of any other way of saving money. I could do caches on my bike, especially in the cities. But you still have to get to the city and that's where most of the mileage would be. If I take my bike to Portland it's a 300 hundred mile trip there and back. How much would I save by riding around the city on a bike? Once the caches in your immediate area are done, it becomes very hard to walk or bike to any others.

My answer so far has been not doing other things that cost me money.I don't snowmobile or fourwheel. Don't own a boat, go fishing or hunting any more. I ride my bike, hike and kayak locally. Save my money for gas on the weekends. How long I can justify this in my mind, is only a guess. We all know we shouldn't be spending any money to support the corporate greed that is going on in this world we live in. But when we stop enjoying ourselves altogether...who wins?

I know this was a little off topic Kacky ....sorry about that.

Kacky
05-25-2008, 08:51 PM
Good stuff!

brdad
05-26-2008, 08:45 AM
For active cachers, not spending money on a Geocaching.com membership is like driving across town to save a penny a gallon on gas.

dí76
05-26-2008, 08:46 AM
One way that we save money sometimes is bring a lunch for the day with drinks so that you arent stopping to buy it all the time. And sometime head for the largest cache density so to elimate much of the driving.

Kacky
05-26-2008, 08:53 AM
For active cachers, not spending money on a Geocaching.com membership is like driving across town to save a penny a gallon on gas.

Whatever the reason. The vast majority do see the wisdom in it, but it takes a few months for some.

Sabby
05-26-2008, 09:21 AM
I've stopped rushing out for the FTF and only one cache. I wait until there are several caches in an area and then try to make a day of it.

Caching with a friend and sharing the gas cost also helps. The extra eyes also makes for a greater find ratio.

When I travel from NY to Maine I have the caches along my route in the GPSr and get those that I can.

WhereRWe?
05-26-2008, 09:24 AM
For active cachers, not spending money on a Geocaching.com membership is like driving across town to save a penny a gallon on gas.

How you pay for gas makes a difference, too. We use a credit card that pays us 5% back on all purchases at gas stations, drug stores and supermarkets. As long as you pay the balance on your credit card each month, that can add up to REAL savings. :D:D

vicbiker
05-26-2008, 09:34 AM
And sometime head for the largest cache density so to elimate much of the driving. No matter the reason, be it the numbers, the sense of getting more for the buck, or whatever, this is todays trend in our sport. I've talked to a number of cachers lately, and have witness this myself, who put out caches in an area without other caches around and after the FTF no one comes. I know that when I leave Abbot on a caching trip I'm looking for density or at least caches on a route or loop. Will we one day be doing only LPC's and GRC's in Wallyworlds across the country? Maybe virtual caching on google earth, zoom in, rotate, tilt, write a log entry and send it into cyber space.:rolleyes:

TRF
05-26-2008, 12:25 PM
I'd like to do an episode on cheapskate caching. What do you do to save money? What are some good strategies if you don't want to be a Premium member at gc.com? You can answer in this post, leave voicemail at 333-8651, email me an MP3 file, or let me interview you!


Saving money? LOL. I cache because I enjoy it. Money is always a concern but I don't really think of ways to economize geocaching as it is a "luxury" to be able to go (GPSr, ammo boxes, swag, backpacks, appropriate clothing, gas etc. etc.). That is not to say that I'm not always looking for a deal but my real concerns are economizing my fuel oil, the price I'm willing to pay for a car, groceries (generic vs. brand name), medical bill, dentist etc. etc. but as far as worrying about how to get the most caches out of a dollar that seems kind of absurd in the scheme of things. I understand the question and the validity and there is no question that you will get some thrifty geocachers to respond but if an individual is concerned about the cost of geocaching then that individual maybe should consider refraining from going or at least limiting their geocaching adventures. I also think to get an accurate answer to your question you have to ask what is the "type" of cache that the individual perfers. Are the numbers more important than the location? The answers to these last two questions are personal to the individual and there is no wrong answer but to accurately gauge "cost savings" we would have to understand what the individuals consider a "value." That way each person could apply the answers given to their own personal geocaching expectations. I spent alot of dollars to get only 3 geocaches in Australia but to me they were a good value.

Traveling to a "high cache" density area sounds like a way to get the most caches per dollar but personally I think doing 1 or 2 hiking caches is a better value than 15 or 20 GRC or LPC. I'm not downplaying or condemning the LPC or GRC as they are truly part of geocaching but from my perspective I would be willing to spend more money to do a mountain top cache than I would to do a downtown Waterville cache. Although I think I'd be willing to spend more money to do some downtown caching in Toronto or London. :-)

Cache on!!

brdad
05-26-2008, 06:43 PM
How you pay for gas makes a difference, too. We use a credit card that pays us 5% back on all purchases at gas stations, drug stores and supermarkets. As long as you pay the balance on your credit card each month, that can add up to REAL savings. :D:D

True. And One thing I point out to people is as the price of gas gets higher - generally the percentage of difference between regular and mid-grade and super gets smaller and smaller, making it more of a possibility that using a higher grade of gasoline might be more economical. For example, If you are currently running regular gas in a vehicle that gets 22 MPG, and lets say the price of gas is $3.40 reg; $3.50 mid; $3.60 super. You would only have to get 22.7 MPG on mid grade to make it worth your money, or 23.3 MPG on super. Not all vehicles will show an improvement in mileage with different grades of gasoline, but many do. We have an '93 Dodge Dakota which does not seem to benefit from the different grades. We also have an '04 Ford Escape that gets 2 MPG more on mid-grade than regular, making it well worth the extra price. Super does not make as big a difference in this vehicle. Something to consider, nonetheless.

If you want to calculate how many MPG you would have to get to benefit this is the simple formula:

Current MPG X Price of gas for the better grade / Price of your current grade

So for a current MPG of 18 MPG on regular gas at $3.45 a gallon compared to mid-grade at $3.55 a gallon:

18 X 3.55 / 3.45 = 18.5

So, for this example, you would only have to gain .5 MPG to make the mid-grade pay for itself.

NativeMainer
05-26-2008, 07:03 PM
This is probably relatively minor in comparison some other suggestions, and I'm guessing that some people are already doing this, but I build a little extra time into my morning commute for a quick search along the route to work (I live in Biddeford and work in South Portland). The same with returning home from work (I get out of work late, and my wife is usually asleep at that time, so showing up at home fifteen minutes later than usual doesn't elicit a response :D).

Yesterday (May 25th) was our 6th anniversary. We dropped the girls off with my mother so that we could have an evening alone. Along the trip back home (between Waterboro and Biddeford), I searched for three caches, found two. I have such a loving and understanding wife. :D:D:D

squirrelcache
05-26-2008, 07:04 PM
1. Buy good software! The savings in efficient trips can more than pay for it. Looking at all the available caches on a map and planning your route ahead of time can save time and money. 2. Don't trust the 'find next closest waypoint' option on your GPS. While it may only show it at 1.73 miles away, the next closest cache may easily cost you 3-5 miles driving time. 3. Make sure your tires are at the proper P.S.I. Buy new ones where you can have them rotated for free, and have it done every 5k miles to extend their life. 4. Change over to a quality synthetic oil if you haven't already. A really good one can save you time and money in extra oil changes. It'll give you better mileage in the mean time too. 5. Look into a downloader or a local mechanic that can re-program your car's computer to run more efficiently in our region and with our dirty local fuel. 6. Clean out the trunk and lighten the load. That also means riders that aren't contributing. 7. Don't think that stopping to pick up bottles and cans will make you money to pay for the trip. All the fuel lost in deceleration, acceleration, and idling while you're picking them up Will Cost You. 8. Plan a trip to the city where you can use your bicycle. Save Gas......Peddle Your Arse.

firefighterjake
05-26-2008, 08:03 PM
Interesting topic . . . and very timely.

First off, as some other folks have stated . . . for me geocaching is a hobby and as such a discretionary "line item" in my household budget . . . but when I stack this hobby up against ATVing or sledding (costs to register, fuel, eating out, trailering on occasion, etc.) it seems as though geocaching is a real bargain . . . more importantly the benefits for me outweigh the costs (i.e. the views, getting outside, getting some exercise, meeting up with friends, etc.)

That said . . .

1) I've been opting to run my new "beater" car . . . it's not a real beater car like my old 1990 Celica, but nevertheless the Honda does get pretty comparable gas mileage and is a heckuva lot better than the gas guzzling 4Runner. Honestly, I prefer the gas sipping Accord better . . . except when my stupid Magellan takes me down a gravel road with washouts . . . major washouts . . . in the middle.

2) I intend to see if folks might want to partner up and car pool . . . and I should add that other than grabbing local caches near home or at work I tend to wait and do a day or a weekend of caching rather than running out for an evening of caching. For me caching is a real treat and so I tend to go out on just one or two "big" outings rather than lots of shorter ones. Usually I try to combine these outings with camping . . . that way I get a "two-fer" . . . well "three-fer" if you're able to go caching and camping with friends.

3) I often skip meals while caching . . . I know, I know . . . sounds hard to believe. However, this past weekend I tended to snack more than eating real meals . . . although I did run into Parmacheenee while eating my "lupper" near a cache site. I also try to pack drinks in coolers and often stock up on water (even though I'm not a big water drinker) when I find free tap water at parks, springs, etc.

4) Like Squirrelcache said . . . plan out the day. Don't rely on the "caches closest to you" feature on the GPSr -- oftentimes that will direct you to go one way and then the next. Instead use good software or at the very least take a look at gc.com's google maps and plot out your trip.

5) Like Vicbiker said . . . I often look at cache density when choosing where to go on my caching adventures since I'm a pretty busy guy and I honestly don't want to drive several hours to find just one cache (that's just me . . . and my opinion). However, I also don't want to spend all day looking for GRCs and LPCs . . . I tend to pick a location farther from home in a place that looks interesting or with caches that sound scenic, historical, etc . . . so density plays a part for me . . . but it's density + location that really matters (i.e. one reason I went to Eustis last year was due to the fact that a particular gcmainer had put out a lot of caches in an area that appealed to me . . . and there's another gcmainer that put out a bunch of caches in the Abbot area a few weeks back that I noted would be good to check out.)

6) Finally as Native Mainer mentioned . . . I also will try to incorporate caching into my commute . . . but eventually you either reach a point where all you have left are new caches in the area or you end up driving 1 1/2 hours and 66 miles to work for what is normally a 45 minute and 33 mile commute . . . but ah, at least I can justify it to myself . . . it was technically on the "way to work." ;):D

vicbiker
05-26-2008, 09:14 PM
I think we should all hire Jake as a driver...guide....tour director....historian....use his vehicle and all his equipment.....that would save money. When I said hire....I actually meant take advantage of.

vicbiker
05-26-2008, 09:23 PM
[quote=firefighterjake;there's another gcmainer that put out a bunch of caches in the Abbot area a few weeks back that I noted would be good to check out.)[/quote] Don't forget about all those great caches in the Canaan area.

Hiram357
05-26-2008, 09:49 PM
I think we should all hire Jake as a driver...guide....tour director....historian....use his vehicle and all his equipment.....that would save money. When I said hire....I actually meant take advantage of.

when ffj, medawisialboaoufoeuaga, and I went down for your party jake did all the driving, and I paid for all the food. It worked out really great, but everyplace we went to served alcohol, and that jake guy drinks alot... :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::D (and just to not make jake look bad, for those of you that don't know him, he doesn't drink)


so all in all it was a pretty well worked out carpool:D

dubord207
05-27-2008, 07:08 AM
I think sharing your cell phone #'s with fellow cachers is another way to save a buck or two. This can save needless return trips. I recently found the Jamie's Pond cache after FOUR attempts. Wish I had a lifeline the first few times. I've done almost all the caches within 20 miles of Augusta and am happy to help all fellow caches who get stuck. Drop me a note if you'd like my number, and are willing to reciprocate!

Hiram357
05-27-2008, 07:17 AM
I think sharing your cell phone #'s with fellow cachers is another way to save a buck or two. This can save needless return trips. I recently found the Jamie's Pond cache after FOUR attempts. Wish I had a lifeline the first few times. I've done almost all the caches within 20 miles of Augusta and am happy to help all fellow caches who get stuck. Drop me a note if you'd like my number, and are willing to reciprocate!

heh, ya know, I was just thinking that same thing the other day, when we tried to find ems daniels grand lake stream cache, all we had were the coords in the gps, but decided to try and find it anyways... we wandered around for about half and hour with no luck. It made me wish I actually owned a cell phone...

firefighterjake
05-27-2008, 07:53 AM
I think we should all hire Jake as a driver...guide....tour director....historian....use his vehicle and all his equipment.....that would save money. When I said hire....I actually meant take advantage of.

I like being used ;):D . . . actually I'm hoping to become a little more "social" and plan to start throwing out invites for my geocaching forays.

firefighterjake
05-27-2008, 07:54 AM
Don't forget about all those great caches in the Canaan area.

What? There are caches in Canaan? Why didn't anyone mention this to me? ;):D

firefighterjake
05-27-2008, 07:58 AM
when ffj, medawisialboaoufoeuaga, and I went down for your party jake did all the driving, and I paid for all the food. It worked out really great, but everyplace we went to served alcohol, and that jake guy drinks alot... :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::D (and just to not make jake look bad, for those of you that don't know him, he doesn't drink)


so all in all it was a pretty well worked out carpool:D

I thought it worked out well too . . . I ended up going down to see Vic and family, nabbed a bunch of maps, hung out with some great friends (the real treat for the day) and did 425 miles or so (just one tank of gas) and got several great meals out of the deal . . . I'll be ready to go again and maybe do some camping when I get back from Vegas in June . . . maybe we can go up north to grab some more maps.

Incidentally . . . I do drink . . . everyday in fact :D. . . but what I mean to say is that I do drink alcohol on the very rare occasion . . . and my alcoholic drink of choice is Vermont's own official alcoholic drink -- Woodchucks . . . Woodchuck hard cider to be precise . . . for some reason however Foxgloves says she has never heard of this drink.

firefighterjake
05-27-2008, 07:59 AM
heh, ya know, I was just thinking that same thing the other day, when we tried to find ems daniels grand lake stream cache, all we had were the coords in the gps, but decided to try and find it anyways... we wandered around for about half and hour with no luck. It made me wish I actually owned a cell phone...

. . . or if you had me there I could have shown you right where it was . . . but alas I was elsewhere. :D

What did you think of GLS? I love that town . . . namely because I think it's pretty neat that you can ride around town on your ATV legally!

kayaking loon
05-27-2008, 09:21 AM
I thought money was to spend, to help the economy? Right, Hollora?? I do try to either pick up caches when we have to go to a destination anyway, or in Augusta when we go to Boothbay Harbor where we have family, and I only take "geocaching vacations". Last year we did Greenville and Jackman, and Stonington so far this year, stay one or two nights. And I also have a whole WEEk planned in Orrington in August! :D I've even just learned how to pick up caches in Boston when we have to accompany our daughter to the hospital there twice a year.

But if I wanted to save money, I'd carpool (no one here to carpool with :(), TNLN or make my own inexpensive signature items, put out only micros and make my own logs for them, not buy coins or pathtags, not host events, at least not the kind that cost you money, use a small car instead of my truck. But this is my favorite hobby! To compensate, I don't drink, smoke, use any motorized toys, kayak instead of using a motor (of course you have to buy the kayak and I have 5 of them.....)

Maybe I'm not a good one to ask. I'm going to buy a Palm Pilot this week! Happy caching! Happy spending!!

PS The idea of being able to call someone when you get a DNF is good. Anyone coming to Eustis can have my home phone number, just e-mail and ask.

Hiram357
05-27-2008, 03:48 PM
. . . or if you had me there I could have shown you right where it was . . . but alas I was elsewhere. :D

What did you think of GLS? I love that town . . . namely because I think it's pretty neat that you can ride around town on your ATV legally!

it's not my fault you chose to go to canadaeh instead... :p

i thought it was a neat lil town, the stream itself was a lil disappointing because it was literally shoulder to shoulder flyfishermen...

Hiram357
05-27-2008, 03:49 PM
I thought money was to spend, to help the economy? Right, Hollora?? I do try to either pick up caches when we have to go to a destination anyway, or in Augusta when we go to Boothbay Harbor where we have family, and I only take "geocaching vacations". Last year we did Greenville and Jackman, and Stonington so far this year, stay one or two nights. And I also have a whole WEEk planned in Orrington in August! :D I've even just learned how to pick up caches in Boston when we have to accompany our daughter to the hospital there twice a year.

But if I wanted to save money, I'd carpool (no one here to carpool with :(), TNLN or make my own inexpensive signature items, put out only micros and make my own logs for them, not buy coins or pathtags, not host events, at least not the kind that cost you money, use a small car instead of my truck. But this is my favorite hobby! To compensate, I don't drink, smoke, use any motorized toys, kayak instead of using a motor (of course you have to buy the kayak and I have 5 of them.....)

Maybe I'm not a good one to ask. I'm going to buy a Palm Pilot this week! Happy caching! Happy spending!!

PS The idea of being able to call someone when you get a DNF is good. Anyone coming to Eustis can have my home phone number, just e-mail and ask.

If it makes you happy, and you're able to do it, go for it. Besides, I really like your pathtag so you can keep doing those :D

vicbiker
05-27-2008, 05:44 PM
I like being used ;):D . . . actually I'm hoping to become a little more "social" and plan to start throwing out invites for my geocaching forays. Social is good. I'd sure like one of those foray invites. (as long as that Waterville guy isn't going):rolleyes::D

firefighterjake
05-28-2008, 12:58 PM
it's not my fault you chose to go to canadaeh instead... :p

i thought it was a neat lil town, the stream itself was a lil disappointing because it was literally shoulder to shoulder flyfishermen...

I'm telling you that you've got to get over your Canadianophobia . . . they really are nice over there and the caches can be quite spectacular . . . I really, really think you guys would love the caches on Campobello Island and the camping at Cobscook Bay State Park is among the best anywhere . . . this past "busy" Memorial Day Weekend I had a lot with no one around . . . I mean the lots are spaced quite a distance from each other already, but the closest person to me was four or five lots away.

And trust me . . . when you come back to the US after a short trip over you're not suddenly talking non-stop "aboot" things like hockey and Molson. I mean look at me . . . two days and I'm still the "normal" old Jake . . . eh? ;):D

firefighterjake
05-28-2008, 01:00 PM
it's not my fault you chose to go to canadaeh instead... :p

i thought it was a neat lil town, the stream itself was a lil disappointing because it was literally shoulder to shoulder flyfishermen...

My sister in Alaska lives near the Kenai Peninsula where the salmon fishing is about the same . . . "combat fishing" they call it since the place is shoulder-to-shoulder with fishermen, folks rafting in the river and as soon as one guy lands a fish and steps away to clean it another person steps into his "vacant" spot . . . doesn't sound like much fun to me personally, but then again I'm not a fisherman (now if only I could go fishing for rib-eye . . . then I would be interested!) :D

firefighterjake
05-28-2008, 01:02 PM
Social is good. I'd sure like one of those foray invites. (as long as that Waterville guy isn't going):rolleyes::D

Well at some point Hiram and I and Medawisla (I owe Hiram big time since he once did me a huge favor . . . and no it wasn't the time he paid for the pizza at UHOP . . . so I'm kinda stuck with him ;):D) are hoping to travel up north for some caching and camping as we're slowly working on our maps . . . and we also were thinking about doing a day trip to Vinalhaven sometime this summer. We'll keep you in mind.

Opalsns
05-28-2008, 04:59 PM
Well at some point Hiram and I and Medawisla (I owe Hiram big time since he once did me a huge favor . . . and no it wasn't the time he paid for the pizza at UHOP . . . so I'm kinda stuck with him ;):D) are hoping to travel up north for some caching and camping as we're slowly working on our maps . . . and we also were thinking about doing a day trip to Vinalhaven sometime this summer. We'll keep you in mind.


OH SURE!!!!!! SOUNDS LIKE A FUN TRIP NORTH!!!!!!!HAVE FUN UP NORTH!!!!!!!!!!HOPE YOU DON"T GET STUCK,OR LOST, UP NORTH OR ANYTHING!!!!! I HOPE YOU DON"T GET ANY DNFs UP THERE IN THE NORTH COUNTRY!!!!HOPE THER ARE NO BIG SPIDERS IN YOUR SLEEPING BAGS UP THERE IN THE NORTH, SO MANY MILES AWAY FROM UNITY!!!!!!!
BON NORTH VOYAGE!!!!!!:):(:confused::mad::p;):D:o:rolleyes:a nd:eek:,
Always one ladder away!
Opalsns