These are some of my favorite stores for shopping. This includes both in person and online.

Whenever possible I’ve included shopping codes to help you save.


First of all, you know that is a site where you can buy anything and everything. But you may not realize how much you can save with the Amazon Prime program.

Since signing up for Prime Student, both of my daughters have save thousands–literally, thousands–on college textbooks each year. You can try Amazon Prime for a 30-Day Free Trial. Or you can give the gift of Amazon Prime to someone you know and love.

Amazon has also started an Amazon Wedding Registry and an Amazon Baby Registry. I know that from time to time, when you start a registry, you get a free gift from Amazon.

NEW: Check out my personal shopping recommendations page on Amazon.


It took me a few years to discover the benefits of Costco membership. Now I’m hooked.

Also, because I pay for an Executive Membership, I get extra cash back from the shopping I do at Costco.

Costco Membership Deal via Groupon

The best deal on a Costco Membership right now is through Groupon. When you sign up, you’ll get your one-year membership plus a $40 Costco Digital Shop Card for free.

In case you didn’t know, the Costco Shop Card is the store’s gift card. You can use it in store or online.

This offer is for new Costco memberships only or for former Costco members whose membership expired more than 18 months ago. So, if you’ve moved, there wasn’t a Costco nearby and you let your membership lapse for more than 18 months, you’re good to go to sign up for this deal again!

Also, you can avoid the lines at your Costco location by signing up for this Groupon Costco deal. This was the crowd at the new Costco in Maine near where I live. Yikes!

lines at costco on opening day
Photo credit: Leah Ingram.

Terms and Conditions

  • After purchase you’ll receive an email from Costco confirming your membership details. To pick up your membership card, stop by the membership counter at any Costco location and bring a copy of that email with your photo ID. Incentive will be emailed within 2 weeks after sign-up to qualifying members.
  • You’re receiving a One-Year Costco Gold Star Membership
  • A membership card for the Primary Cardholder and one additional Household Card for anyone living at the same address, over the age of 16
  • A $40 Digital Costco Shop Card (valid at Costco locations and
  • Valid only for new members and those whose previous memberships (Primary and Household) have been expired for at least 18 months or more.
  • Please allow up to two hours to receive your confirmation email from Costco. You must have either your Costco or Groupon confirmation email to receive your physical membership card at a Costco location.
  • A physical membership card is not required to shop online or receive your incentives.
  • Incentive includes a $40 Digital Costco Shop Card
  • Digital Costco Shop Card will be emailed within 2 weeks after sign-up to qualifying members.
  • Digital Costco Shop Card will be emailed to the email address provided by the Primary Member at time of sign-up.
  • Not valid for the renewal of an existing Costco membership.
  • To purchase this package, you must be 18 years of age or over, and agree to Costco’s Membership Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.
  • All sales final.
  • $40 Digital Costco Shop Card is not redeemable for cash, except as required by law. Digital Costco Shop Cards are not accepted at Costco Gas Stations, Car Washes, or Food Court Kiosks.

Again, this a Groupon-only deal for a Costco membership.

Other warehouse club memberships

Perhaps you prefer to shop at another warehouse club because it is more convenient to where you live than Costco is. Good news: Both BJs and Sam’s Club have Groupon deals right now for memberships. Plus, both tend to have gas stations where members can get a cheaper price when filling up the gas tank.


As someone with extra wide feet, I’ve found that Nordstrom is one of the best places to buy shoes for wide feet.

Over the years Nordstrom has become one of my favorite stores. It has made a name for itself by offering outstanding customer service.

Its staff is well trained, professional and polite. I’ve never had a negative experience shopping at a Nordstrom department store.

Nordstrom Rack

Nordstrom Rack is the off-price division of Nordstrom. It offers clearance merchandise from Nordstrom stores as well as items purchased specially for Nordstrom Rack.

The store offers significant savings on great brands with most at 30-70% off.”

Rakuten (formerly Ebates)

Rakuten (formerly Ebates) should really hire me as a spokesperson. I’ve been shouting its benefits from the rooftops for years now.

It really truly is one of my favorite products, because it is the place that I start all of my online shopping. Why? Because when you shop through Rakuten, an online mall of sorts, you get cash back on your purchases.

Since starting to use this service in 2010, I’ve made more than $1,700 $1,900 cash back on things I was going to buy anyway, like holiday presents or client gifts.

Furthermore, when you sign up, you get a free $10 gift card to a retailer of your choice. So if you haven’t yet signed up to shop online through Rakuten, what’s holding you back? Remember: I’ve earned nearly $2,000 in free money on things


One of the reasons I love Sephora is the birthday freebie you can get each year. Also, Sephora is generous with free samples.

Finally, Sephora has great free makeup services for getting your face on. Of course, you should be planning to buy makeup, too. Don’t take advantage of Sephora that way.


When shopping at big box stores, my go to is Target. We love Target Drive Up for convenience, for sure.

target employee at drive up location.

Also, Target is the best place to shop for dorm must haves. And I’ve done well shopping for plus-size bathing suit separates at Target, too.


Another favorite place to buy hair products and makeup is Ulta. Some Ulta stores have hair services and eyebrow counters.

Ulta has a generous rewards program, too.

Finally, now there are Ulta stores inside Target–so convenient!

ulta inside target