Top 3 Tuesday: Finding Hidden Perks

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — How often have you signed up or purchased something, but never really paid attention to the fine print? Well you could be missing out!  You might be eligible for free stuff, and not even know it.

They’re things like extended warranties to tech support, free insurance to photo storage.

When it comes to hidden perks, Kevin Brasler, of Delaware Valley Consumers’ Checkbook, says his team found lots of them.

“We just kept finding perk after perk after perk,” said Brasler.

First are some perks that come with credit cards. Buying an appliance or electronics anytime soon? Brasler says, “A lot of credit card companies will double that warranty for it if you pay using the credit card.”

Planning a trip? According to Brasler, “Travel-related credit cards, airline credit cards, other ones where you get your travel rewards, a lot of them come with free trip insurance.”

Having some credit cards, can even give you free access to certain places and events.

“Bank of America offers its cardholders free access to a lot of different museums first weekend of every month,” Brasler said.

Then there are perks that come along with joining a wholesale club:

Buy a TV or computer at Costco, Sam’s Club or BJ’s, and you’re entitled to free tech support to help you set it up. If you buy tires there, you could get like services like fixing flats for free. And if you need ink for your printer? Brasler says, “Costco’s a really unique deal, in that they’ll offer to refill your printer cartridges and it’s not for free but it’s for very little money, especially compared to what you have to pay to buy new ones.”

Finally, there are perks that come along with certain memberships.

So before signing up for a gym, weight loss or stop smoking program, check with your insurance company.

Brasler says, “A lot of these plans offer free, or heavily discounted services like those things that kind of encourage their members to be healthy and therefore reduce costs.”

Traveling and need a car seat? Well if you’re a member of AAA, Brasler says, “You can borrow a car seat from Hertz for free and you don’t have to rent a car from  Hertz to get it.”

And if you’re music lover, Brasler says, “Instead of paying for Spotify or one of these other fee based music streaming services, if you’re an Amazon prime member you basically get the same thing free.”

By the way, Amazon prime members also get free unlimited photo storage.

For more advice from Consumers’ Checkbook on hunting for hidden perks, visit: https://www.checkbook.org/cbs3/perks

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