In the software world, easter eggs are unexpected bonus features that you can activate with sneaky keyboard shortcuts or other tricks. In the real world, there are also hidden tricks you can use to make life easier and save yourself money. Here’s a quick selection of our favourites.
Easter eggs in software or on Google are fun, but don’t really improve your life. These tips and tricks are often just as well-hidden, but can actually make a difference to your wallet and your schedule. (The idea for this post came from a similar list on our US parent site, but the regional differences are big enough that it was easier to start from scratch.)
Get unclaimed money
I can’t imagine having a bank account and forgetting about it, but lots of people apparently do. ASIC has a search facility that lets you check if you’ve got money in an unclaimed account. There’s also a similar tool for checking for unclaimed superannuation, which is worth checking if you’ve had a varied employment history.
Get free birthday meals
We pointed out recently that Subway will give you a free sub on your birthday if you register with its Eat Fresh club. Many restaurants offer a similar deal, so if you’ve got a regular eating haunt, it’s always worth checking. Yes, that does mean you have to give them a few personal details, but you can use a disposable email address if you don’t want to be bombarded with stuff.
Skip YouTube ads
We appreciate that YouTube has the right to make money, but endless pre-rolling ads can become irritating. Skipping the ads is pretty easy though — just refresh the page and you’re good to go.
Focus on student discounts
Plenty of places offer student discounts, and given the tiny amounts of money most students have to live on, that’s just as well. To maximise student discount value, make sure you grab as many bargains as possible before you finish your studies — it’s sensible to grab copies of Microsoft and Adobe software at student prices, for instance. And try and hang on to your .edu.au email address as well — that offers potential ongoing discounts through services such as Dropbox.
Lifehacker’s weekly Loaded column looks at better ways to manage (and stop worrying about) your money.