The Inner Thoughts of an Ozbargainer

As a bargain hunter I feel the need to get the best deal possible. Whether that be on a home appliance, an electronic, a can of tomatoes, chicken schnitzel whatever! But often I find myself doing the following:

  • When someone tells me a good deal they found or a good special I think to myself…yeah right I could probably do better.
  • Mum will say to me, Harris Scarfe/myer whatever have a BIG sale on at the moment maybe you could get your new manchester/home appliance there….I think gee, BIG sales, they are so fake and not as good as they used to be…
  • I receive a present as a gift thinking….i hope they got a good deal, would probably have rathered cash…
  • Alternatively I get a giftcard thinking….well a gift card isn't too bad, but often (insert business here) doesn't have very good specials which can make it difficult.
  • I try to tell people about some good deals on various things but they don't seem to really take it in, possibly with the notion of if it looks too good to be true, it probably really isn't.
  • Or tell them about a good deal but they don't have the cash handy to spend so they say they'll wait till they have the cash which is of course too late!
  • Somebody organising an event eg paintball, drinks, dinner and I think…gee could have organised it somewhere better at a better price etc.

I feel all of these things on a weekly basis but try to tell myself…don't verbalise these feelings as you just come across as an arrogant cocky prick who isn't grateful which I do try to be!

Please share your thoughts on the above and any inner thoughts you might be feeling.



  • +9

    Haha. I talked about bargains and had vouchers so often that my friends called me the "voucher queen". I started a blog that I post on my FB where I post extra good bargains especially for students around my age. I don't really like talking about bargains a lot because I don't want to seem too cheap/stingy, but I'm often asked to keep an eye out for good deals on specific items. Once my friend had to fly to Perth and I told them they could get Jetstar to pricebeat, but they were too lazy to call up themselves so I ended up doing it for them cos I couldn't comprehend why they would be too lazy to make a short phone call to save almost $100! I don't really understand people that don't want to use vouchers/coupons though.. I mean, the company made them to be used and obviously calculated that it would not be an overall loss to the company so why not use them!

  • Haha yeah some good points!
    What's your blog?

    Ohh and also things like mobile phone plans. People go on about how they are with company a and pay $90 a month and get a samsung galaxy s3 and think it is the best deal ever. I point out to them that I only pay $17.99 (through tpg) purchased the same phone they have for $350 get more calls and sms's than them. Then try to explain to them that if they can afford the phone up front at the beginning they will be way ahead, it is just a matter of being a little more patient and save up $50 a month for a few months and they'll be able to afford it. I then just get nods of the head and say nothing much more probably thinking i'm being a cocky prick and there much be a catch of some sort. No one ever listens!

    • Wait, so you can bring your own mobile phone into the plan through TPG?

    • +1

      Yeah, I never get the contract thing. Spending $50 a month…I don't get it. Buying outright seems a no brainer to me. Im on TPG too, never come close to exceeding monthly limits.

  • +1

    I think you may be my secret twin - apart from my direct family most of my relatives (and certainly some work colleagues) have cast me off as a complete nob for simply mentioning savings/bargain/coupons etc too frequently. Some even get offended when I try to encourage them to take up free sample offers etc.

    • Yeah I feel for you! I try not to do it a lot as it doesn't seem to work and people just seem to ark up!

  • +2

    I can definitely relate.
    When it comes to presents/gifts I have found a good approach is to ask for things that are rarely on sale, or that I would never buy for myself.
    In my case it is things like micro-brew beer, tickets to events, CDs/merch from independent artists. These things often have just one price year round, or can reliably be purchased at the best price in one place (e.g. Dan Murphy's) .

    • Haha yes I have done that too! But not everyone asks you what you want but wherever possible I do that!

  • I share similar thoughts, but it could be your tone and delivery that could make other people think you are acting arrogant - that's if you feel other people think that way.

    For example, when someone is organising dinner or an event, why not suggest next time you organise it. Then when everyone's had fun at your organised dinner/event, you can then let them know, guess what I only got this for $x.

    A lot of people don't have the bargain mindset and it can be hard to introduce others into it and some not until they themselves get a few good bargains. However, one negative experience could tarnish it forever.

    • Basically they are my inner thoughts, I usually don't verbalise them I generally keep them to myself. Good advice though!

  • +6

    I find myself explaining to people how I bought something from the US using my 28 Degrees card to avoid fees, had the thing posted to a mail forwarder to avoid the ridiculous shipping prices and to get around the international brand restrictions, and as a result I made some massive saving on a pair of shoes etc.

    Somewhere in the story, around the bit where I mention the 28 degrees card their eyes start to glaze over!!!!!

    Also, I feel really bad, to the point where I would go without something I really need, if I cant find a great deal. I almost feel 'dirty' if I ever have to pay retail!

    • +3

      What mail forwarder services do you use? Have any links?

      I may need this later. I purchased items from amazon US and the shipping was like $70!

    • Please share the love, I am drooling at the mouth at the idea of using a freight forwarder to save on shipping cost. Esp since most sites offer free shipping within the US

      • go to OB wiki page for a list of freight forwarders

        I used Price USA Pty Ltd-

        very happy with the service.

        you send them a link for what you want to buy. they check it out and give an estimate on postage + fees. they then give a total figure. you deposit money in their australian agents bank account. took about 2 weeks to receive item.

        I bought an item which cost $61 in total. In Aus it would have $140. score.

  • I can relate. Especially with flights and trips - for example my mum get's a quote from a travel agent and I'll just say to her - let me check to see if that's the best price. Check ozbargain, check skyscannner - 20 mins later boom - $100 cheaper.

    I've caught myself recently though and have been thinking:

    • All this obsessing over bargains - do I really need this, and would I have been interested about this gadget if I hadn't seen it on ozbargain? The age old question - am I really saving money if it's not something I was not 100% planning to buy in the first place?

    • Also the reluctance to pay retail - I've actually waited months and months for a particular item to go sale, putting up with broken things just to save a few bucks. Maybe being miserly actually cost me in terms of the time I could have spent enjoying it vs saving a few bucks?

    Haha just throwing it out there…

    • For your point "•All this obsessing over bargains " - best bargain or saving is not to indulge in buying something which is bargain but not needed. Not to buy unnecessary stuff is also bargain and can help you save more.

    • +1

      "Also the reluctance to pay retail" spot on. I find myself waiting months on end to make a purchase on even small things because of this. It actually makes me angry to go into stores and see the ridiculous prices. When I do make a purchase, buyers remorse generally settles in pretty quick.

  • "Somewhere in the story, around the bit where I mention the 28 degrees card their eyes start to glaze over!!!!!

    And that's such a shame, they are so used to overseas bank charges its like there cannot possibly be any other way :(

    I have had one person take up my offer of me explaining how they can save 3-5% on there overseas holiday.

    They immediately got the 28 degrees card. Learnt of its goodnesss and proceeded to tell others. To exactly the same blank stare.

  • Agree with all this.

    The weirdest thing though, I get friends/family who ask me for advice on a bargain, I save them 10-30% and they are so thankful etc

    Yet half the time they don't ask… it seems like they get so caught up in buying it, they don't realise they could just give me a quick call and ask….

    Then its the issue if I want to tell them they spent too much or not..

  • I hate shopping with family/friends. I always in the back of my head think I can buy it cheaper online, or in a different store. Especially when they shop for TV's at Hardly Normal(Harvey Norman). You only go to that place if you feel like getting asked if you'd like finance by a lot of overweight blokes that stair at your misses.

    But the question is now, where does it stop? I mean, it's harder for bricks and mortar stores to make money competing with hiring people, and the online shops against the physical shop overheads. Insurances, Rent, Workers, Superannuation, when you can have 1-2 working on an online based store.

    But at the end of the day, people like the above comment want the TV on the spot; and that's what a lot of them want as well. If they spend $2000, $3000 on a TV they want it there and than. That's one if the big con's of eCommerce. But I do have to say OzBargain has turned me into a Tightarse; literally. I hate looking at prices on menus without coupons, but than I am generation Y and a lot of my mates thing I am weird? so I just pay the full price. When I can I try and organize the event before, add any coupons or gift vouchers etc before I go that way I don't need to discuss it. I never ever take the savings as profit, I make sure everyone else saves too.

    • I don't mean to nit pick, but I've found just directing them to the good guys for example which is often close to Harvey Norman works well.

      You go in with them, they pick the TV, then you haggle with the staff member on the TV that was already cheaper the Harvey Norman.

      Might not be the best price, but its often very close to it and is without hassle of convincing someone to buy it from some random store or online etc.

  • I have more or less stopped trying to advise friends on how to purchase anything cheaper. So many can't be bothered to do a little research. However I do which has resulted in great deals on goods, holidays, free samples etc.& then they have the cheek to ask " how do you do it?"
    Just a little time & effort can save so much !

  • +3

    I've recently spent a good deal of time 're-training' my parents to do research, ask for deals etc. We now spend dinner vists compairing what deals we've gotten our hands on.. hubby converts me, I convert them. Love it!

  • +6

    Re idiots people who buy things for full price always - I am grateful that they are giving retailers the profit margin which allows the retailer to offer me the occasional bargain!

    Yes I know that it doesn't actually work this way, but I'm not against retailers making money…I would just like the cost to me personally to be as low as possible! :)

  • +7

    I usually have to fight off the urge to rescue people while I'm waiting at checkouts. I saw a guy buying a Galaxy Ace at the post office for something like $200.00 and I felt like catching his hand as he went to fork his money over. Maybe I could wear a mask and cape and patrol the shopfronts looking for people who are about to get jipped.

    People hate going drinking with me. Instead of paying ridiculous bar prices I will try to have a few heartstarters at home and then while at the pub I will try and sneak in beers from the much cheaper bottle shop next door. When its my shout I will disappear and then come back with six beers that I shoved down my pants.

    Same when I'm at a restaurant. I will sit there thinking screw this I could have made it at home.

    I love going down to the Pizza shop after Ive managed a good coupon stack and then forking over $5 or $6 for a bucketload of food and then walk out leaving all the other customers wondering: how the hell did he do that?

    • "When its my shout I will disappear and then come back with six beers that I shoved down my pants." So….. how dooooo you keep those beers cool?

  • +1

    Friends are jealous because I have a lot of stuff…..Maybe if they didn't pay RRP and rent/finance every single thing they would find the money to have nice things. :)

  • +1

    Try talking to somebody who pays $120+ for Foxtel and explain that you have a 100% better deal with Netflix+Unotelly for a fraction of the cost….

    I must have told at least 20-30 people and only 3 have asked me to help them set it up.

    They rest just shrug and say I don't mind..

    How can you want to pay all that money, get ads & be told when to watch something.
    Yes I know that you can record shows on IQ but really I much prefer to watch something from S01E01 until the end whenever I want to.

    For newer stuff just add Huluplus, ads but at least you are still saving heaps and get it before foxtel.

    • +2

      'Hey Macfanboy, could you maybe make a detailed post (wiki?) when/if you have the time on how to do this? I am clueless!

    • +1

      I would also like to have a detailed post about the netflix and unotelly. Recently upgraded to 200gb and dont want it going waste :) Thanks in advance.

    • Me too! Parent's are wasting so much money on it. They still go to the video shop sometimes I'm like ARE YOU SERIOUS! Can you get the AFL wth the Netflix+Unotelly set up?

      • Can you get the AFL wth the Netflix+Unotelly set up?


        Free to Air still shows this..:)

        • Hey Macfanboy, is there a way we can get access to English Premier League without foxtel?

    • +1

      Live sport in HD is a major reason why some people stick with Foxtel.

    • Read My Blog:

      Bit dated now but will give you the basics.

      Now I have Unotelly and not UnBlockus and I buy 12 months of Netflix at once for about $65-70

      The above method will also work on iPads and PS3's etc.

      • Thanks guys :)

  • +1

    I am the same wagon. Recently I am looking for ways to save big time on a Macbook air…

    So far my plan is:

    1. Wait a 10% Off from JB-HIFI, Myer, ETC
    2. Use some Gift cards I have from JB-HIFI from CC points and price match who is doing it on #1
    3. Pay all the outstanding balance using the ING Paywave card for (5% back), splitting the bill in payments of $99.99
    4. Buying it 60 prior to my overseas trip so I can claim GST back

    Total savings around 25%

    Extras tidbits for this are:
    a. pay $1 dollar using AMEX this way I can extend normal warranty into 1 more year
    b. try to get a deal where they give you 10% and one apple tv or itunes gift card as well…

    Any extra hints guys?

  • +7

    NQR have some good deals sometimes but they don't calculate the unit price (argh how am I meant to know if something's a good deal or not?) like Aldi and Coolies do, so I have to do it myself to see if something's worth getting. I just did it for toilet paper, had to zoom in really far into the pdf because the key info of ply / dimensions / sheets per roll are obscured.

    Store Ply L x W (mm) Sheets / Roll Rolls Price Total Sheets c / 100 Sheets
    Aldi (regular price) 2 110 x 100 260 12 3.79 3120 12.15
    NQR (special price) 2 95 x 95 180 18 3.99 3240 12.31

    Larger sheets and slightly cheaper at Aldi, problem solved. Productive use of my time :p

    • +1


      • +2

        I'll show myself out

        • +2

          The looney bin is that way >>>>>>>>


          I'd love to see your calculations for a packet of chips.

  • +4

    I used to try and help people I knew save on things but I've long given up.

    A few examples - We know a family that spend over $300 a week on groceries, I offered to help them save a huge amount by shopping when things are on sale and bulk buying. Not to mention 5% off with ING or gift cards. I've had to lend these guys money all the time so they could pay bills and put basic meals on the table.

    My brother refuses to listen to common sense, he will go to a servo and buy a bunch of junk food and cokes instead of literally crossing the road and buying from a supermarket.

    Some people never listen so I've given up on trying to help, I know who will accept the help so I'd prefer to help those people. My wife thinks I'm cheap but she's more than happy to enjoy the fruits of my cheapness.

    • I hear you. My family members all take shots at me for being cheap but they don't turn cash from me when they need it. My mum had a go at me for using the free muesli bars coupon at woolies and I thought yeah if you were a bit more careful with your cash woman I wouldn't have to keep pulling your nuts out of the fire.

  • +5

    One of my co-workers was watching something on TV the other night where they talked about the ING 5% card. She thought to herself "altomic will have one of those".

    Receiving gifts from people, yeah I always think "how much did you pay for this as I saw it for $X".

    If I see Free/cheap stuff my mind bounces between "do I need it", "will I need it", "can i sell it", " does someone I know have a need for it".

    Listening to people talk about stuff they have bought - I go to a quite place inside my head until it's over.

  • +12

    If you show the person a better deal/price on a product they just bought, they hate you. Source: Life experience

    • +1

      This. One of the things that makes me cringe is people lining up at the boxing day sales just to get a crappy 20% off an already inflated price for a set of sheets or a cooking pot. Every year the cameras are there to catch them running through the gates and I just think : what a bunch of rubes. They'll hate you for it if you ever tell them they could get a much better deal elsewhere.

      These sorts of wannabe tightarses annoy me. My mum goes down to the good guys and knocks $40 off the price of a fridge and reckons she has got a bargain. Please.

      This other guy I know bought commercial equipment for his shop, and spent ages trying to haggle the vendor down. After he told me how much of an astute businessman he was I found the exact same thing on alibaba for a fraction of the price. I think he still hates me for that.

      • +1

        I think OZbargain members should heckle the boxing day sales crowd.

        • +5

          —-===BREAKING NEWS===—-<

          Angry mobs calling themselves 'The Ozbargainers' have begun violent protests at many of the nations department stores. Screaming and disturbed masses telling customers that bargain items can be had 'much cheaper' from online outlets and other stores.

          Thankfully the police and psychiatric nurses have carried the crazed group away and the boxing day sales can resume.

        • +6

          The oz bargainers were remanded to appear next Thursday at the roma st magistrates court after posting bail of 18 pairs of Levis irregular sized jeans and 20 000 coke unleashed points.

      • The Super Saturday sales at Myer are pretty much mini boxing days sales anyway without all the queues.

    • +1

      If you discover that you could have got a better deal/price on a product you just bought, you'll hate yourself. So why surprise when other people do it? :)

      Just keep quiet, at least until their initial joy at their purchase wears out before telling them for the next time.

  • interesting topic and insightful…
    well i'm a bit the same. I justify the bargain psyche by "its a bit o'fun" mantra but it can be addictive.
    how many times do you check ozbargains a day…same ol' same 'ol…but keep goin' back to the well…

    it does a little bit on my nerves when as a known bargainer when the "how much $…" questions come out off topic (my agenda) and I guess its an outcome one has to accept due to my bargainer wrap sheet.
    the other aspect is sometimes you feel 'how much' is a bit irrelevant to the discussion and a response is can be a conversation stopper/demotivator.

    • do you introduce the concept of "it took me x minutes to find a discount of $y, which in relation to an hourly rate is the equivalent of z hours at work"?

      I find that this line of argument brings people about to the concept of spending a few moments comparing/searching/price matching/ etc.

      • Its slightly more complex then that you need to pay income tax if you work X hours..

        An when they give you money to buy their product you pay zilch tax.. none nada..

        Plus you can have a good chuckle once in a while about what you paid for it.. which is priceless

        • +1

          I think altomic means something like this … Cinema ticket as an example

          It took me 5 mins more to buy movie ticket for $10 that would cost $17.50 if I bought it full price.

          That $7.50 difference would take me about 20 mins to earn

          Hence I am ahead :)

          Gets even better when you do something more expensive

  • +3

    The common theme of this thread is that family/ friends are not appreciative of receiving ozbargain knowledge (which is my own personal experience).

  • Decided to change the title of thread as it is not just the inner thoughts of a bargain hunter but inner thoughts of an ozbargainer. We are a different breed.

  • Ozbargain is like a religion - if you don't want to believe in it then you miss out.

  • OZB can help you save a lot. Some popular bargains may require some effort to get (and may lead to waiting in a long queue). Most people will queue up and get the bargain, but not all though. One of my mates will definitely wait in the queue, but his dad will not. His dad is the type of person who cannot stand waiting in the queue at MSY and rather spend $5-$10 more to get the item right away in a store nearby.

  • I need ozbargainers as friends. My regular friends have no interest in saving money. They are just happy to complain. Just don't understand why anyone would pay retail for anything!
    I'm always excited to get something at a friction of the cost, and wish I had more understanding friends to share it with. When's the next ozbargain meet up?

    • Good point. I would LOVE an Ozbargain meetup. I talk about frugality, budgeting and Ozbargain to my friends, and they look at me like I'm the world's biggest freak…yet, the thing I constantly hear from them is, "I just don't know how you do it!" Would be good to catch up for a chat with some like minded people :)

  • +1

    I have friends who comes to me whenver they need to buy phone/xbox/flight ticket ets. and for them im their bargain hunter. :D

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