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Frugal Retiring News, October 2011
October 23, 2011

Frugal Retiring News Oct 2011

Just returned from a visit to see my 91-year-old uncle who lives in Branson Missouri... As you can tell from the above, this a great time to visit the Ozarks.

I mention this not to bore you with family details... But to be on the lookout for good airline deals... The airlines are raising prices, the planes are full, and you really have to dig to find a decent fare.

Frontier Airlines just started a once a week nonstop service from Phoenix to Branson... It's a two-hour flight nonstop... The alternative is going through Dallas or Denver and that takes about eight hours start to finish.

We got a flight for two of us for $405... Including taxes... I know this is a good deal, because at church this morning, a lady informed us that she was also going to Branson... On Frontier... thru Denver...she was paying $550 for herself.

I think I might have ruined her day.

You can look for flights on Travelocity, Hotwire, Expedia...etc... But don't forget to just Google the exact flight you want... Phoenix nonstop to Branson... That's how we found out about the Frontier flight.

A credit card you may want to look at

I normally would not recommend using a credit card that charges an annual fee... I found an exception and I am more than willing to pay the $69 annual fee for this card.

It is a Chase Southwest Airlines card...why is this a good deal?

You get 50,000 miles up front that is enough for two round-trip tickets to anywhere Southwest flies. So what you say?

Southwest is the only frequent-flier airline program that I know of that has no blackout dates or restrictions on the number of frequent-flier seats.

If you ever have to fly someplace for a medical emergency, or funeral for instance... The chances of you not paying through the nose for your flight are slim.

So I think $69 a year is cheap insurance for a flight that I have to make in an emergency, irregardless of the cost... So if this fits you you may want to take a look at a credit card that earns miles for the Southwest Airlines frequent-flier program.

Refinance your home

For those of you that took my advice a few weeks ago and refinanced... You are quite welcome... For the first time in several years mortgage rates increased a few days ago.

Is not too late to check it out... Here's the link to Quicken who I recommend using...Here is the page on site

Medicare enrollment dates

You have until December 7 to take a look at changing your Medicare coverage...go to To find out what plans are available in your state.

We should find out Wednesday, how much they will be taking out of your Social Security check to cover Medicare... It will probably take care of a good portion of the 3.6% cost-of-living adjustment we are going to get effective January 1, 2012.

Here is the page on site that explains my thought process on choosing the right plan for you

Identity theft

Everyone should have one of these in their house... Please shred all information you get in the mail that someone could use to steal your identification.

Baby boomers especially are targets for identity thieves.

Help protect yourself from identity theft for $10/ month with LifeLock.

Sign up through this link and you'll receive a discount of 9 dollars a month for the basic service...

This is very cheap insurance folks.

Frugal tip of the month

If you enjoy taking cruises like my wife and I do's a way to save yourself big bucks...NEVER pay for a shore excursion that you purchased on board.

Find some friends and hire your own taxi to take you on an island tour or excursion of any kind...

Several years ago, we stopped in Alexandria, Egypt...we wanted to see the Pyramids , the Sphinx, and the national Museum of antiquities in Cairo.

The tour sponsored by the cruise ship was $400 per person.

We got off the ship and negotiated a rate with a taxi driver who took us to all the above attractions... About a 3 to 4 Hour drive as I recall...for $120. We used him the next day to tour Alexandria for the same rate.

Let's do the math...4 x $400= $1, that to $120, plus paying are own entrance fee to the museum in Cairo.

That is a serious saving...

But be careful about telling other people on the cruise how much you saved... We told a few at breakfast or lunch, and wish we had not have done so... It got very quiet at the table after we told them how much we paid...they had paid $800 a couple.

Here is the page on site on how to retire to a cruise ship...check out the link on how cruise ship speakers cruise for free.

One of my pet peeves

I have a friend... Who shall remain anonymous... Who has been unemployed for quite some time.

I do not belittle the fact that he is unemployed, it is extremely sad and hard on his family.

However, when we meet for Bible study at 630 AM he invariably has a Starbucks cup in his hand.

I went to Starbucks while I was in Branson to use the computer, they have Wi-Fi... I felt obligated to buy a cup of coffee...a small coffee of the day cost $1.80... I almost threw up.

Here's a page on site that has links to many of the basics on saving money... Maybe it's a good time for a review.

While I was gone... My website faithfully cranked out income even though I did not spend much time working on site... Answered a few e-mails, accepted some advertising links... They pay from $100-$200 a year... Now that is easy money folks.

Want to know how I do it?

Closing thoughts

I never tire of reading some of the uplifting e-mails I receive from readers... It keeps me going and makes me think that I am providing a service for people that are giving up on retirement... a reward everyone should be able to enjoy...

So submit your stories here .

Got something to say or share? Other folks are interested in what you have to say so make a submission.

Stay frugal... God bless,

Gary and Julie Pierce

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