Nectar Points


When most people think of Nectar points they immediately assume that they are only for people who do their food shop in Sainsburys, which is correct but also far from the only place that offers these beautiful golden points of awesomeness. So for my first money making post of the year I will explain exactly how these can be of use to those who don’t necessarily shop at this particular supermarket.

Like most savvy shoppers, the husband and I don’t put all our eggs in one basket when it comes to our monthly shop; we tend to split it between Aldi and Sainsburys with Aldi being our main shop of the month. There are some things, however, that we need to get from Sainsburys such as the cats food because she is a fussy thing. Also our local is situated in a shopping centre/retail park so if we need to be out that way we will do a top-up shop while there to save on petrol. The bulk of our points do come from our shops and this year will be no different.

So, why should you get a Nectar card when you don’t shop at Sainsburys?

  • Petrol: If you drive then filling your car up at Sainsburys or BP garages will reward you with points. You’ll gain 1 point per litre of regular fuel purchased at BP and 1 point per litre of fuel at Sainsburys garages.
  • Gas & Electric: If you receive your energy supply from British Gas then you could be earning points by simply paying your bill, they also offer points when you take out other services such as boiler cover. If you are thinking of switching Sainsburys fuel offer points too.
  • Credit card: The Nectar Credit Card offers 2 points per £1 spent on the card with additional bonus points when buying things with Nectar partners.
  • Online: The biggest earner for many in this area will be eBay, for every £1 you spend on the auction site you will gain 1 point which is great for all you bargain hunters. That said eBay isn’t the only site to offer points for online purchases; we recently discovered that Just-Eat also offer 1 point per £1 spent. You can also collect online with Argos, DHL, Oxfam, Expedia, First Trains and Virgin Trains.
  • In Store: As well as the obvious supermarket purchases you can earn points on every spend at Homebase and Hertz rentals.
  • Bonus points: Certain sites will also offer double or triple points for limited periods. At the time of writing Mothercare were offering 4 points per £1 spent. Check out bonus point offers here.
  • No purchase: Believe it or not there are a couple of ways to earn bonus points that don’t involve a purchase. The first is having the Nectar Toolbar installed on your web browser, it is pretty unnoticeable but will alert you to any sites you can accrue points on (which is how I found out about Just-Eat); just for installing it you get a bonus 100 points. Then using it to search the internet will earn you 1 point for every 2 valid searches (up to 200 points per month)

A full list of where to collect can be found here.

You may be thinking that collecting these points is all well and good but you don’t have a Sainsburys near you to use them. Not a problem! Whilst I will be saving my points to pay for gifts and food in Sainsburys for Christmas there are still many other ways to spend your accrued points. Handing over your card at selected stores and venues can see £2.50 per 500 points knocked off your purchase, even more at certain retailers. Argos, VUE Cinema, Pizza Express and eBay are a few of the companies that will allow you to use your points for payment. Where to spend them can be found here.

If that wasn’t enough, selected members can “bank” their points in what is called the Hive which is currently in beta, I will do another post about this if/when it comes out of beta and is launched.. Points transferred to the Hive will collect 10% interest which is paid every Friday; great if you are wanting to save for something special, like Christmas.

To get your Nectar card click HERE to be taken to the registration page.

I started this challenge with 1658 (£8.29) already collected which are being discounted for this challenge and so far, 6 days in I have accrued 264 points. I will admit we did a rather large shop on Saturday which will have added to this.

I hope you have found this useful. There are many other places that offer rewards like this such as Tesco with their Club Card and more recently Morrison’s with their Match & More card, so if a Nectar card still doesn’t appeal to you then check those out. I don’t use them so don’t feel that I can honestly tell you all the benefits.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask and I will try my best to answer them.

Happy New Year: What is the Challenge?


Happy New Year from Cash Free Christmas Challenge.

Happy New Year to all my readers, I hope Christmas was a nice and relaxing time for you and your families; now on to 2015 and the challenge.

Today is the start of my Cash Free Christmas Challenge for 2015, and if you are wondering what it is then this is the post for you. Over the next 11/12 months I have set myself the challenge to earn an additional income online that is purely for Christmas this year. I am hoping that I won’t need to spend a penny of my husband or my own wages on anything from presents to treats.

How will I do this? I will complete this by using a variety of websites and phone apps. This year is a learning process for myself more than anything. Certain sites I already know how to use such as Swagbucks others are very new to me so I will be learning as I am earning. Each week I will produce a blog post about the opportunities I am using so I can give you a more in-depth view of how it works (or doesn’t) which means if you want to take up the challenge yourself then you know where to start.

I will also have some posts about my other sources of income that I will not be including in my own personal challenge because some months they can bring in a pretty good income for the family; such as December saw one Mystery Shopping company pay me £100 for that month. For now check out my money making website page for an idea of the sites I will be using.

Most of the sites being used will allow me to collect points which can be redeemed for gift vouchers or paid out via Paypal, for me these are appealing as I can allow the balance to build up through the year and not be tempted to spend the money. This is the main reason why I have opted out of using sites that pay monthly into Paypal or my bank as the money will get lost on bills or treats. I will also be saving my Nectar Points over the year which will allow me to pay for all the food and drink over the festive period, topping these points up a daily visit to the ads site.

I would also love to hear from anyone who decides to take on the same challenge, we can share ideas and update our progress; please feel free to leave a comment or follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

I look forward to sharing this journey with you, hopefully it will be a successful one, and one that I can continue with for years to come.

Why Cash Free Christmas?

5am Christmas morning, my sister and I are wide awake but know that there is no chance of being allowed downstairs until 6am (at the earliest) so we dive into our stockings that are hung carefully on the end of our beds. They are filled with all the small gifts that would just get lost under the tree such as make-up, nail varnishes, socks and knickers; along with a hand full of chocolate coins and a satsuma. Next we move on to our gift from Santa on the end of the bed which we already knew would be a new pair of Pyjamas; somehow we made this annual ritual last for the hour or so needed before being allowed downstairs.

6am, all dressed in our new nightwear, we jump on our Mum and Dad who slowly rise from their bed to escort us downstairs to the living room which is adorned with decorations and a huge real Christmas tree. We take our places, Mum and my sister on the sofa, myself on the chair and our Dad arrives with a needed cup of coffee for Mum and himself before taking his place by the tree to hand out gifts. Once gifts had been opened we munched down a bacon buttie and a glass bucksfizz before popping over to our Grandad’s house for more Christmas morning madness. Our Dad then left to go to work for the afternoon while Mum prepared our dinner and we explored all the wonderful gifts we had received.

This is what I always imagined my Christmas would be like once I got older. I imagined spending the whole of December shopping for the right gifts and the excitement of seeing my children’s faces as they opened present after present; the small gift my husband will have taken the time to choose for me and I for him. I never thought that Christmas would become such a chore and I would spend the most of December wishing it would hurry up so the “hard-work” was over.

You see, my husband never celebrated Christmas as a child; or Birthdays or Easter. His first Christmas was when he was 18, he spent it round at his best friend’s house then his next one was with me. He didn’t get excited about it and I just assumed that the Christmas cheer that I, and many others, felt would eventually catch up with him. After almost 3 years together he still wasn’t bother by it but then we found out we were expecting our son and I was hopeful that this was what he needed to get excited; I was wrong.

Over the last 5 years he has got better, he loves putting the tree up the first weekend in December and he loves the food so I have come to realise that it is the present buying he dislikes about the holiday. He doesn’t like being forced to buy gifts and spend money when people don’t need anything. For example, our son gets EVERYTHING he could ever want from his Nan which leaves us struggling what to get him and because he feels we have to buy something it frustrates him.

This is where the idea for my Cash Free Christmas Challenge came in, I have figured that if I can take the expense out of the holiday and use a selection of sites to generate an income that will a) not effect our household income and b) generate enough to “do” Christmas with then he may enjoy it a little more.

This blog is my journey to that goal, documenting my progress and showing others that it can be done.

Coming soon

Hello to anyone who has stumbled across my blog. I thought I’d do a polite “Coming Soon” post as I am not quite ready yet.

I am aiming to have this up and running in the new year when I start my challenge so please bare with me until then. The site will no doubt go through a few themes/layouts between now and then while I figure out what works best.

In the mean time I do have a quick “About” written up so take a look to see what this site is all about and feel free to follow/subscribe ready for the start of this journey.

Thank you