Profiles in Frugality: Hawaiian Sam

Every now and then you meet someone living their life in a way that you had never even considered.  You have a “lightbulb moment” that sticks with you for a long time.  I want to tell you about one such person.IMG_3580-private

My husband and I were out of town in Washington, DC, where he was in training and I was along for fun.  At the time we were making decent choices with our money, but we didn’t really have any master plan or goals.  We made money, invested some, and spent the rest.

One evening in DC we went over to the Harris Teeter grocery story to pick up a few items.  My husband ran into another fellow from his training group – “Sam” who was from Hawaii.  We were in the check-out line and Sam offered to swipe his customer loyalty card for our purchase.  He lived in Hawaii but he had a loyalty card for an East Coast grocery store!!  That is just off-the-hook, black belt frugality!

He explained that in Hawaii food is so expensive that the average person really has to coupon and use loyalty cards, and he brought his frugal habits along on his business trip even though he was on a per diem and didn’t necessarily need to cut corners..  I followed suit and for many years whenever we went to DC, I brought that Harris Teeter card along and shopped like a local!

Think about my Hawaiian friend the next time you are on a week’s vacation away from your city, or are on an extended business trip.  Who knows, your key chain may take on the looks of a jet-setting frugalista!

Free coffee too!

Free coffee too!

Postscript: While looking around for my Harris Teeter card to show you, I found a completed punch card entitling me to 1 free lb of coffee.  I don’t think I have bought coffee beans at this store since my husband and I were sleep-deprived new parents 8 years ago!  You know I wasted no time in redeeming that.


5 thoughts on “Profiles in Frugality: Hawaiian Sam

  1. GirlCountingPennies

    I have to say I always use my Tesco Clubcard to collect points whenever I go food shopping, it’s an old habit, and sometimes when I’m with friends who don’t have their own Clubcard, I always give them mine to scan… uhoh one step too far?! 😉

  2. Economies of Kale

    I love my discount cards too, but they are nowhere near as common in Australia. Your story kind of reminds me of my mum, who brought back packs of toothbrushes on her recent trip to Bali because they were so cheap over there. Never mind she is retired, the mortgage is paid and my dad is on a good income. I’m not complaining anyway, she gave some to me 🙂


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