Money Mistakes: 24 Things To Drop From Your Shopping List

Looking to save money? You're going to want to drop these items from your shopping list ASAP. 

1. MLM Products

Multi Level Marketing or MLM as Concept 3D Render
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Many people agree that Multi Level Marketing products are a waste of money. I always feel a sense of dread when a friend invites me to join their Mary Kay or Scentsy Facebook groups. These items are usually overpriced to compensate for the chain of people who need to get cut before the product gets to you. 

2. Extended Warranty

Extended warranty label or sticker. Badge, icon, stamp. Vector stock illustration.
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This confuses people, especially when the extended warranty costs almost as much as the item you're buying. If the thing breaks down, it's cheaper to buy a new item than go to the effort of getting the warranty fulfilled. 

3. Celebrity Preachers

07.10.2021 Cape Town St George's Cathedral - Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak preached at the 90th birthday of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu
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This one is really confusing. Why do people give money to people who are obviously multi-millionaires with private jets? Do they believe that it will somehow buy them a spot in Heaven?

4. Annually Replacing Smartphones

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The saying goes, “If it ain't broke, don't fix it.” Also, don't replace it. If your phone can still get all the updates and the apps are still functioning, why must you upgrade to the latest and greatest phone? Save your money. 

5. Paid Followers

3D minimal pastel color follow button with heart icon and arrow for UI, mobile app, website, social media, blog, mobile game.
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Paying for followers on socials is a strange thing to do. Sure, it makes it look like you're popular, but most of those followers won't interact with your posts, so you might as well be posting to a brick wall. 

6. Gym Supplements

A fit sportswoman standing in a gym and taking pre workout pills, gym supplements
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Studies have confirmed that the only thing you're gaining by buying gym supplements is a hole in your wallet. It was noted that after subjects were given supplements for a certain period, they had gained no muscle mass and lost no weight. Of course, the people selling the things will tell you otherwise. 

7. Walkathons

NYC - May 18, 2014: People participating in the AIDS WALK NYC 2014 walkathon to raise money for AIDS charities and research

One forum member says they would never participate in these. They would support the charities the walkathons are meant to be for; they believe that the charities receive very little of the profit — most of it goes into event planning and costs. 

8. Huge Weddings

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You love someone and want to take the next step and get married. Who exactly is the huge wedding for? Several contributors felt they were a big waste of money if you were marrying for love.

9. Cigarettes

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As people wise up, cigarettes are slowly fading out of society in the US. They're addictive, will wreck your health, and cost you a lot of money. Nothing is appealing about that. 

10. Cheap Toilet Paper

Toilet paper gone
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Many people on the forum agreed that while thin one-ply toilet paper might be very cheap, you use much more than some of the more expensive brands. 

11. Sirius Xm Subscription

Cellphone with logo of American broadcasting company Sirius XM Holdings Inc. on screen in front of website.
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This radio subscription service boasts hundreds of stations, stream-only channels, and podcasts. However, some thought it was a waste of money because they would only use a few stations. 

12. Ticketmaster Fees

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Why does Tickmaster have such exorbitant fees? Years ago, it made sense; someone had to print the ticket and post it to you or hold it at the box office. The processing fees seem out of line now that it's primarily digital. 

13. Multiple Streaming Services

A person in red socks watching Netflix
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Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video — the list seems endless, and they certainly all add up, especially when you only watch one series on one and a couple of movies on the other. It's easy for these to accumulate and waste money.

14. Food Delivery From Third-Party Apps

 A delivery person with a DoorDash branded tote on his bicycle in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York
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Have you noticed that the in-house menu prices differ from if you're buying from Uber Eats or DoorDash? That's not the restaurant being greedy; it's the third-party company charging the restaurant 30% of the total cost, so of course, they need to put their prices up.

15. In-App Game Purchases

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Forum members are in two minds about this. Paying a little now and then for some upgrades was okay because then the game developers could keep the game going. However, buying in-app upgrades and items in excess is a waste of money.

16. Fast Fashion

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The piles of clothing waste from discarded garments are appalling, and fast fashion is to blame. This causes environmental and money issues. One person says they worked in a discount fashion store and put so much of their paycheck back into the store and then ended up taking most of it to Goodwill.

17. Taking Young Kids on Vacation

Happy infant baby lyes in special bassinet in airplane at his stomach. First flight of the baby, she is impressed and looking in the window of plane
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This was another suggestion that caused a stir. The argument was that the child would never remember the trip, so it was a waste of money. However, one person says the joy on their child's face upon taking them to Disneyland was worth it. Perhaps it depends on where you're going.

18. Alkaline Water

Closeup of a clear glass of seltzer water with a slice of lemon
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Paying extra for alkaline water because you listened to some odd fad diet wastes money and brain cells. Drinking large amounts of it may result in several unwanted side effects. Do your research, and don't rely on celebrity endorsements. 

19. Scratch Lotteries

close up view of silver coin in hand of gambler scratching lottery ticket
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Spending a few dollars on these can be tempting when you're at the gas station or store. Though, now, some of them are so complex that you need an instruction manual just to figure it out. Yes, your odds of winning a small prize are about 25%, but if you're hoping to get lucky with a big payout, your chances are more like one in millions.

20. Diamonds

diamond engagement rings
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If you weren't aware, diamonds only became popular after De Beers put out advertising campaigns in the mid-20th century; now you know. As a result, a lot of people, they're a symbol of love and wealth. There are so many pretty precious stones, but that's the one people will pay a small fortune for.

21. Bottled Water

Bottled Water
Image Credit: Adoscam – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

This is another item that has been heavily marketed. As one forum member points out, if you're not a fan of tap water, buy a filter for it or a filter jug. Spending money on individual bottled water for the home is not only a waste of cash but a waste of resources as well. 

22. Homeopathy

Homeopathic Medicine
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Sometimes, it can be hard to tell the difference between homeopathic meds and normal meds when you're in the local CVS or Walgreens. This form of alternative medicine works on the premise that illness should be treated with small doses of substances that would cause the ailment in larger amounts. It's a pseudoscience and best avoided. 

23. Ebooks and Audiobooks

woman listening to audiobook
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One forum member points out that your local library offers convenient apps like Libby and Hoopla, providing access to a vast selection of free books. However, someone felt this wasn't fair to the author. Another says there's such a long waiting list for some books that it's not worth it. Research your options at your local library to see if it works for you. 

24. Money for Rich Politicians

Joe Biden
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I'm not versed in how politics work, but it always seems strange to me when you see very wealthy politicians on campaign trails to raise funding. One forum member mentioned a particular politician who is seen doing this frequently, but it's a common occurrence. It's not illegal to use your personal finances to fund a campaign. 

Source: Reddit.

Journalist at Wealth of Geeks | + posts

Ree Winter is a freelance food, travel, and lifestyle journalist. She is an Australian who enjoys traveling the globe and currently calls New Orleans home. Her byline appears in The Thrillist, Inside the Magic, The Streamable, Mashed, The Daily Meal, Apartment Advisor, and Weekend Notes. Fellow Australians may have seen her printed work in The Geelong Advertiser and Docklands News. Besides this, she follows her passions in history and travel plus will gladly admit to being a crazy cat lady.