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Weekly Update: Cheap Souvenirs, Inexpensive World-Class Hotels, and More

Posted on 7/3/2015 3:55 EST

This Fourth of July, our taste tests can help you select the best inexpensive hot dogs for the grill and tasty ice cream treats for dessert. If you're hitting the road for the long weekend, don't forget to pick up a souvenir from each state you visit. Taking a vacation abroad? Stay at a 4- or 5-star hotel for less than $100 and see if a nearby wine region promises good value. Also new this week: the 15 cheapest cars to insure in 2015, easy meals for picky eaters, and more. Read More

Picky Eaters? Try These 10 Easy 20-Minute Meals

Posted on 7/2/2015 10:25 EST

In a rut when it comes to dinner and dealing with finicky kids? Turn to these 10 family-pleasing meals -- picky kids included -- courtesy of Cheapism.com. Better yet, they cook up in 20 minutes or less and cost just $2 to $4 a serving. (Cost calculations based on data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Safeway, and Walmart.) Ingredients such as eggs and rotisserie chicken help make dinner prep a snap. So enjoy the light of a summer day some place besides a hot kitchen and still serve up a tasty repast. Read More

8 Tips for Finding Pet Care Before You Go on Vacation

Posted on 7/2/2015 9:10 EST

Bringing the family pet on vacation may seem appealing, but it can inflate costs dramatically. Airlines and other transit providers charge up to $200 one way for traveling with animals, while fees at hotels that allow animals can hit $100 a day. Once at the destination, you may be limited in choice of attractions, forcing you to make decisions based on restrictions rather than interests. Moreover, travel can be nerve-wracking for pets, and there's always the risk of the animal getting sick or wandering away. In other words, make alternate plans for your pet. Read More

Taste Test: Best Cheap Hot Dogs for Summer

Posted on 7/2/2015 7:57 EST

It should come as no surprise that July has been dubbed National Hot Dog Month. The hot summer month plays host to the annual Nathan's Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest and National Hot Dog Day on July 23. For hot dogs that will tickle your taste buds without leaving much of a scratch on your budget, consider the results of a Cheapism.com taste test. Eight packs of inexpensive beef and pork-based hot dogs from Ball Park, Eckrich, Nathan's Famous, Oscar Mayer, and two Kroger store brands were grilled up and offered to a panel of hot dog tasters. Read More

What's Cheap to Buy in July?

Posted on 7/1/2015 11:52 EST

In case you're wondering, there are simple answers to what goods are worth buying in July. The Independence Day holiday is a turning point and once past, retailers start setting their sights on fall, which makes July a good month to snatch up deals on mattresses, paint, jewelry, grills, and more. July is also National Ice Cream Month and National Hot Dog Month, as well as the height of the summer fruit and vegetable season. If you want to be really frugal and enjoy fresh produce for months to come, stock up now and freeze for later. Read More

25 Tasty and Cheap Places to Eat in NYC

Posted on 7/1/2015 10:26 EST

New York restaurants are infamous for being expensive, with multi-course tasting menus costing hundreds of dollars per person. Still, by exploring the variety of cuisines and fusion food on offer, residents and visitors can sample some of the city's best for just a few bucks. Read More

12 World-Class Hotels Under $100 a Night

Posted on 7/1/2015 9:15 EST

Want to stay in luxury hotels around the world without blowing your whole vacation budget? It's entirely possible -- depending on where you go and how discerning you are in choosing accommodations. To find affordable 4- and 5-star hotels, Cheapism.com consulted Five Star Alliance for hotel ratings and travel sites such as Kayak, Booking.com, and TripAdvisor for price estimates for two adults traveling July through September (all prices converted to U.S. dollars). These 12 lavish hotels in Europe, Asia, and elsewhere start at less than $100 a night. Read More


Taste Test: Cheap Ice Cream Treats vs. Premium Brands

Posted on 7/1/2015 8:08 EST

In the heat of summer, not much sounds better than an ice-cold ice cream novelty. National Ice Cream Day falls on the second Sunday of July every year (July 19 in 2015). Ahead of the celebration, Cheapism.com conducted a blind tasting to determine the best ice cream treats and see how inexpensive novelties measure up to premium brands. Read More

15 Cheap Party Foods for July Fourth

Posted on 6/30/2015 11:00 EST

America's birthday, Independence Day, July Fourth, call it what you will, this is a day for casual celebrations. It's a stress-free holiday filled with outdoor fun and fireworks that goes hand-in-hand with low-key cookouts based on recipes that are cheap and easy to prepare. With the harvest just coming in, ripe and ready fruits such as blueberries, strawberries, watermelon, and raspberries, and vegetables such as corn, peppers, and tomatoes, fetch budget prices at the farmer's market and deserve starring roles in July Fourth meals. Build them into a red, white, and blue theme with an occasional boost from a little food coloring or red and blue sprinkles. Read More

Bring Back Memories: Cheap Souvenirs From All 50 States

Posted on 6/30/2015 9:39 EST

Splurging a bit on vacation souvenirs for yourself or a significant other is understandable, but bringing home mementos adds up quickly when buying for friends and family. In this case, the ideal souvenirs won't tax your luggage or your wallet; that is, they're small, lightweight, and inexpensive. Cheapism.com identified representative keepsakes from each of the 50 states that satisfy these requirements. Read More

Cheap Moisture-Wicking Gear for Sweaty Summer Workouts

Posted on 6/30/2015 8:48 EST

Whether it's a damp workout shirt or stains showing through a dress shirt, sweat can be unsightly and odorous. The solution: Moisture-wicking clothing, which moves moisture away from the body and keeps wearers comfortable with better air circulation during strenuous activity. Synthetic fabrics used in these lightweight garments, such as nylon and polyester, absorb but don't retain fluids (sweat ends up on the outer surface) so they feel less damp and clingy. Cheapism.com found seven budget-friendly options, all for $25 or less. We also note factors to consider when shopping for moisture-wicking apparel. Read More

Top 13 Regions for Value Wines Around the World

Posted on 6/29/2015 9:28 EST

It's no secret among wine connoisseurs that certain regions stand out for the exceptional value of their wines. With a little bit of guidance and insider info, you too can enjoy the bounty. Cheapism.com compiled a list of regions around the world that offer the best deals on wine. Now all you need do is to scan the shelves for countries or regions whose wines deliver consistency of quality, price, and style. Read More

The 15 Cheapest Cars to Insure in 2015

Posted on 6/29/2015 8:06 EST

There's a lot to take into account when buying a new vehicle. How it feels and looks is important, but how much it costs -- including fuel consumption, potential resale value, and monthly auto insurance premium -- is usually the deal breaker. To help buyers determine which cars are truly the cheapest, Cheapism.com turned to a recent comparison of insurance rates for more than 1,500 vehicles by Insure.com. This list of the 15 cheapest cars to insure reflects the annual cost of full coverage by six major insurers for a 40-year-old male driver with good credit, a clean record, and a 12-mile commute in 10 ZIP codes in each state. Unsurprisingly, family vehicles that are typically driven by cautious parents are cheaper to insure than flashy sports cars, but other affordable models may not be what you expect. Read More

How to Tame Frizzy Hair Without Pricey Salon Products

Posted on 6/29/2015 8:05 EST

Humid summers can wreak havoc on hair, especially if it's curly or wavy. Pricey salon products may prove tempting to anyone with out-of-control hair, but Cheapism.com found several inexpensive hair products that tame a wild mane. The picks here garner strong reviews from users with all types of hair textures. Read More

Weekly Update: Dollar Store vs. Walmart, Beat Summer Boredom, and More

Posted on 6/26/2015 15:12 EST

There's so much to do this summer for free or on the cheap. Host a cookout with a tantalizing array of affordable cuts of meat and mix refreshing rum cocktails with the best bottles under $30. Free yoga classes are taking place in parks and other outdoor spaces across the country. It's not all summer fun on the blog this week, though. Also new and notable: what's cheaper at the dollar store than at Walmart, the best hotel rewards programs, and more. Read More

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