Use The Clock And Google Voice To Actually Reach The IRS

Use The Clock And Google Voice To Actually Reach The IRS

Sure, it’s not peak IRS season right now, but there is quite a variety of reasons that you might have to deal with the ever-present government agency anyway. Tax Cat is out of the office, vacationing at his offshore kitty condo in the Cayman Islands, so it’s up to reader Christopher, a tax preparer, to serve us up with handy tax advice. See, sometimes you have to call the IRS. You can’t avoid it. But so does everyone else in the country. What Christopher figured out is that the IRS call center doesn’t have fixed hours like most. Its open hours depend on what time zone you live in. His solution? Use a Google Voice number to fudge what time zone he’s in, and call late in the evening when the business day is done for most of the continental U.S. [More]

Verizon: You Totally Need This Unnecessary FiOS Upgrade

Verizon: You Totally Need This Unnecessary FiOS Upgrade

Verizon really wants Sean to sign up for FiOS. Really, really wants him to sign up. He’s happy kicking it old-school with a regular old copper landline, and dumping the barrage of FiOS ads in the trash. So it was interesting when he got a letter apologizing for nonexistent “service issues” in his area and urging him to upgrade to the newer, shinier fiber optic network. The letter assures him that he can totally keep his current phone plan at its current price – even though the equivalent plan under FiOS is cheaper. [More]

Is Jonathan's Card A Starbucks-Brewed Viral Marketing Gambit?

Is Jonathan's Card A Starbucks-Brewed Viral Marketing Gambit?

As we reported yesterday, a guy named Jonathan generated positive buzz for Starbucks by opening up his gift card to the public, allowing users to use and contribute to it at will. According to a coffee industry blogger, the card may be a viral marketing campaign geared to net the company priceless amounts of good publicity. [More]

Report: Car Dealers May Be Selling Chevy Volts To Each Other To Get Tax Credits

Report: Car Dealers May Be Selling Chevy Volts To Each Other To Get Tax Credits

The government offers tax credits of up to $7,500 to those who purchase hybrid electric vehicles such as the Chevy Volt. Word that demand for the vehicles has far outstripped supply has led some to speculate that dealers may be selling the cars to each other in order to take advantage of the tax break. [More]

Car Seats Fly Free, So Pack Other Stuff In There To Avoid Bag Fees

Car Seats Fly Free, So Pack Other Stuff In There To Avoid Bag Fees

It’s sort of sneaky, but you can take advantage of the fact that a few items, like strollers, car seats and some medical items, never get a fee for getting checked in order to avoid checked bag fees on your other stuff, writes the Money Crashers blog. [More]

Travel Industry Trying To Beat Complaining Customers To The Punch

Travel Industry Trying To Beat Complaining Customers To The Punch

The right to complain when your travel experience wasn’t what you paid for is being preempted by many airlines and other agencies, but does that mean you have to accept what you’re being offered right off the bat when something goes wrong? [More]

Psychological Tricks Warehouse Stores Play On You

Psychological Tricks Warehouse Stores Play On You

Warehouse stores like Costco and Sam’s Club attract an unqualified devotion of hardcore devotees, myself included. They provide havens that sap away your frugality and coax you to happily part with large sums of money and buy more food and supplies than you’ll logically go through in any imaginable length of time. [More]

How To Switch Your iPhone From AT&T To Verizon And Make Money

How To Switch Your iPhone From AT&T To Verizon And Make Money

Are you an AT&T iPhone 4 owner with Verizon envy? Dan over at MoneyTalks News has formulated a minimally devious, moderately labor-intensive and somewhat risky way of switching carriers and getting a Verizon-capable iPhone and end up in the black. [More]

Regift Without Getting Caught

Regift Without Getting Caught

Don’t frown when you get awful, impractical gifts. They can serve as valuable currency in the countless occasions in your life in which you’re required to distribute trinkets to people you don’t know or care much about. [More]

Keep Getting Those Student Discounts Long After You Drop Out

Keep Getting Those Student Discounts Long After You Drop Out

Glory be to grad students, whose existence allows geezers in their 30s and beyond to be able to ask for student discounts with a straight face. [More]

GameStop Is Out Of The Game You Want? Order It For In-Store
Pickup, Return 10 Minutes Later

GameStop Is Out Of The Game You Want? Order It For In-Store Pickup, Return 10 Minutes Later

The bad news: the GameStop where Ambyr went to buy a copy of Call of Duty: Black Ops for her husband only had enough copies of the game to fill pre-orders. The good news: In GameStop’s universe, to “pre-order” means that you leave the store that just refused to sell you a game, order that game online, and then return fifteen minutes later. Bad for logic, good for Ambyr. [More]

Why Did Walmart Add A $3 Warranty To This DVD Purchase Without Asking?

Why Did Walmart Add A $3 Warranty To This DVD Purchase Without Asking?

Would you buy an extended warranty for a DVD? We can’t imagine that most people would…and if they did, it would last longer than a year. John, however, sent in this receipt from a Texas Walmart store. He writes that the store tried to sneak a $3 “protection” plan along with his ex’s purchase of a $15 DVD. And not just any old warranty: it’s an extended warranty that, as far as we can determine, Walmart doesn’t even sell for DVDs. [More]

Progressive Direct "Glitch" Hikes Premium From $800 to $2,000

Progressive Direct "Glitch" Hikes Premium From $800 to $2,000

Kevin received a surprise when he checked the renewal notice for his car insurance recently. A 260 percent surprise, in fact, even though he’s not a bad driver and hadn’t been in any accidents. [More]

Customer Says Supermarket Sold Rotten Chicken With New Sell By Date

Customer Says Supermarket Sold Rotten Chicken With New Sell By Date

A woman in Brooklyn has accused a local grocery store of slapping a new “sell by” sticker over an expired one in order to unload some old poultry that was past its prime. [More]

14 Ways Hotels Slash Costs

14 Ways Hotels Slash Costs

Coupon Sherpa came up with a list of ways hotels get sneaky to cut down on overhead. [More]

Chase Raises Interest Rate On Closed Account

Chase Raises Interest Rate On Closed Account

David closed his Chase credit card account instead of accepting a rate increase earlier this year. That should have been the end of it, but it turned out Chase later went ahead and increased the interest rate anyway.

Capital One Calls To Dun For Payment Before It's Even Due

Capital One Calls To Dun For Payment Before It's Even Due

Cory says Capital One‘s Collection Department called his mother-in-law the other day in an attempt to reach him, which was weird because his account is in good standing. Their reason? They just wanted to remind him that his credit card payment was due soon. Oh, and to try to upsell him.

Overdraft Fees Up 35% In Past Two Years

Overdraft Fees Up 35% In Past Two Years

As a nation, we pay more each year in overdraft fees than we do for books, cereal, or fresh vegetables, says the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL)—and considering how outrageously expensive cereal is, they must be talking about a huge sum. They are: “Banks and credit unions collected nearly $24 billion in overdraft fees last year, an increase of 35 percent from just two years earlier.”