CouponTrade.com: How to Stretch Your 2012 Tax Return

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Online marketplace offers four ways for consumers to make the most of their tax return

CouponTrade.com

Retail sales exceeded March projections in spite of high gas prices. This trend is expected to continue as consumers stretch the value of their 2012 tax refund.

Despite the rise in gas prices, consumers adapted and increased spending as retail sales exceeded projections in March (Bloomberg News). This trend is expected to continue with shoppers inheriting an average tax return of $3,000 (IRS.gov) this Tax Day. CouponTrade.com, the secure marketplace for discount gift cards, wants to offer ways to help consumers stretch the value of their 2012 tax return.

Plan ahead and save on vacation: Since 11.9 percent of consumers will spend their tax returns on vacations (National Retail Federation), consumers should consider buying tickets ahead of time to save before prices increase. Airfare prices fluctuate based on gas prices and availability, so it is best to buy tickets ahead of time. A round trip flight from Chicago to San Diego for the first weekend in June might be $500 in mid-April, but given the cost of fuel, it could skyrocket to at least $700 by mid-May.

Save at the store with gift cards in large denominations: With a portion of the tax return, discount gift cards with large values can be bought online and used with in store specials to stack savings. Gift cards can also be paired with manufacturers and in store coupons to make an item be had for less, which puts more money back in the hands of consumers.

Check for discounts before doing home improvements: The amount issued in a tax return can serve as a starting point for families who are looking to do upgrades to their homes. Projects like installing a new front door, upgrading lighting, replacing windows and finishing an office can be done for half of the tax return, with the other half going to savings. Working with the existing components of a home can keep the price of upgrades reasonable, as can checking online for coupon codes to hardware stores.

Shop online and make retail prices optional: The remaining value of the tax return can be used to take advantage of all the options for saving when shopping online. Gone are the days of going to the store and doing price checks, since CouponTrade hosts opportunities for savings in one central location and can be accessed online or from a smartphone. For instance, if a shopper is looking at a suit that costs $125, it can be lowered to $110 with a gift card and free shipping coupon, making paying retail prices an option when shopping online.

"Nearly two-thirds of Americans are expecting a tax return this tax season," CEO and founder George Bousis said. "Since the majority will spend what they get back, they should consider stretching the refund to get more for less."

For more information on how to stretch your return this tax season, visit coupontrade.com.

About CouponTrade Inc.
CouponTrade is the first consumer secondary gift card driven marketplace where consumers are put at the center of the shopping experience, helping people get a discount on the items they want through using online coupon codes from the site’s extensive database of over 2,000 retailers. Since the Chicago-based startup’s inception in May 2011, the site has grown from a marketplace consumers could list and sell their unwanted gift cards and daily deals to helping its users get a deal on everyday purchases. It is CouponTrade’s mission to help consumers take advantage of savings – free money that should never go to waste.

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Ross Meister