I’ve completed fours week of the new job in New Jersey and I realize how much I miss New York. Everything was literally within walking distance. I had an awesome routine. I was on a first name basis with a few of the folks in my routine like the cashiers at CVS, the clerk at the Post Office, and many others.
It worked because it was a routine. I would be there on a near daily basis and my purchases would always stand out in their minds. Like when CVS restarted to stock Vanilla Reloads, I was buying $500 denominations and that stuck in the cashier’s minds. Each time a new cashier was there, they called the manager. I was really friendly with the overnight/early morning manager. In the course of our exchanges, I found out he was an avid coffee drinker. It was also shortly after I came back from Hawaii, so I gave him a bag of coffee as a thank you. After that, he told all the new cashiers if they ever saw me, to always let me buy any gift card with a credit card, within the confines of the CVS system. In addition, they would purposely leave Vanilla Reloads behind the register for me.
Duane Reade was a little different because I would be going to the bigger stores and I was never getting the same cashier each time, but they all recognized me and stopped asking the manager on duty if it was OK for me to purchase with a credit card. It was a bit frustrating with them because one store allowed me to buy Paypal MyCash Cards with my AMEX Old Blue Cash, meanwhile the store on the other end of the block said no, but would allow me to buy the Vanilla prepaid cards.
The Post Office was my favorite. He and I would chat about anything. Any issue regarding postage, how certain things worked, he was my go to guy. While many of the supplies can be had for free if you order online, he helped me with the entire process all the way to getting it down to the T so that I can write about it and let you know the process as well.
With the new job, I thought having a car I could drive to different paths and go to more manufactured spend friendly stores. The office location is nearly in the middle of nowhere and I haven’t found many places on my route. I’m still learning the best way to go to and from work and see what stores are available. There are two grocery stores in my path that say they sell ReloadIts, but only one sells it. The clerk turned me down in my attempt to purchase it with a credit card. She saw it said “Cash Only” and wouldn’t allow me to buy it. Like starting a new job, finding new manufactured spend avenues will be back to square one.
With the change, there is one thing I don’t expect to do: drive an extra 5 to 10 minutes that’s “on the way” to my destination. My route needs to already include the location because that’s what I’ve done when I was in New York and that’s all part of my efficient route. It’s part of what Matt mentioned at TravelCon when we were in LA, he won’t go out of his way to do it.
For the longest time, I have been looking for a bank that would allow an unlimited amount of transactions per account that was for free. On my drive, I finally found one. Something I couldn’t find in NYC. If I spend $35/month, I could sign up for Capital One’s Spark Business Checking, but I would rather not.
One of the things about manufactured spending in New York was that not many techniques worked, so it forced you to look outside the box. The one in person activity that I do see changing is more frequency to grocery stores and see what’s available, because as the old New York lottery slogan used to be “hey, you never know!”