Friday, April 01, 2005

Making Cheap Cheaper

Yesterday my favorite morning show, Dwyer & Michaels, got on the topic of earned deals. Seems one of them has a relative that wrangled a major company (AOL I think) into giving him a better deal. All he had to do was ask.

So hosts wanted to know how many of their listeners earned themselves good deals. Here’s a (small) sampling.

- A 60% reduction in monthly payments for internet from AOL.
- A two point reduction for a credit card rate.
- Free tickets to Six Flags to stay with AOL.
- A check for $125 for switching phone companies.
- 25% (instead of 10%) off that day’s purchase for signing up for the store’s club card.
- A zero percent rate for credit cards by switching from card to card and taking advantage of the intro rate.

All of these bonuses came simply from asking for it (except the last one, which carries some risk via your credit report and requires continuous effort). People would simply call up the company, tell them they think they deserve a better rate and, after being passed around to a few people, get it. It doesn’t take very long, either. Over the course of the bit, a listener got inspired and called AOL. By the end of the segment, he had a lower monthly fee (from the $30s to $9.95).

Capitalism is great for the vast majority of society and for those who are willing to work at it, it can be even better. Thanks to a small government, competition is fierce. All it takes on your part is a bit of backbone and some patience.

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