5 Unique Holiday Discounts

by Matt Ong 6. December 2012

Holiday Gift

The holidays can put a strain on even the most careful budget. But with good food, good company and good times to be had, you’ll want to push the money worries to the back of your mind. One simple way to do this is to find great savings on one of the largest spending pitfalls of the holidays – gift buying. To help you manage the costs of the toys, clothes and jewelry you need to buy, we’ve compiled a “quick hits” list of sneaky ways to save on gifts this holiday season.

1) Card-Linked Offers

If you forgot your coupons at home, don’t double back to pick them up. Card-linked offers are coupons tacked right onto your credit, debit or store rewards card. Simply activate your offer and shop as you always do. Your rewards for your purchase will be loaded back onto your card statement.

Because you don’t have to print or clip any coupons, there will be no holdup at checkout and no confusion about coupon restrictions. These annoyances are particularly aggravating during the holidays when you’re tight on time and retailers are holding holiday sales that often can’t be combined with coupons.


2) Social Media Promotions

As we get deeper into the holiday season, retailers will be ramping up their efforts to get their customers engaged. One way they love to connect? On Facebook and Twitter. Follow your favorite merchant on social media platforms to receive exclusive coupon codes, get wind of special sales, be entered for giveaways, and more. If you’re not a fan of being blasted with e-commerce solicitations, create a separate social media account just for shopping.

3) Independent Retailer Coupons

It's no longer difficult for small sellers to get into the discounts game by offering their own individualized sales, deals and coupons. Use these discounts to get good prices at handmade sellers, such as those featured at online marketplaces like Etsy or Big Cartel. Etsy coupon codes will make finding a unique gift for the hard-to-please a breeze, and you can even buy an Etsy gift card if you can’t find a piece to match your gift recipient’s style.

4) Rewards Malls

Reward malls are online shopping portals that pay you in bonuses for shopping with them. Start your shopping trip at a rewards mall’s website, browse the discounts you’ll receive at hundreds of popular online merchants, and click through to the merchant’s site to begin shopping.

Your browsing path will be recorded with cookies, and you will receive your rewards after you purchase an item. Rewards can amount to 40% back on your buys.

Choose your rewards mall based off which type of reward you’d like the most. Looking for free airline flights? Shop through an airline’s mileage mall, such as Delta SkyMiles, to earn frequent flyer miles. Just looking for cash back, with no strings attached? Try FatWallet.com or eBates.com.

5) Free Shipping

December 17th will be a holiday from the holidays. This Monday is known as Free Shipping Day – a whole day dedicated to making your retailer pay for your seasonal shipping costs. Order online on Free Shipping Day and get guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve with no shipping charges attached to your purchases.

If you'd rather not wait for your gifts but love the convenience of online ordering, try in-store pickup. Many retailers are now offering this as a way for customers to get the best of both the online and offline retail environments. You can order from the comfort of your couch but visit the store within minutes or hours of your purchase to pick it up. You can shop in your pajamas and pick up your purchase without having to enter the crazy and crowded aisles of the store.

Matt Ong is a retail analyst for NerdWallet, a consumer finance website that builds tools to help people save money. His present project is creating a database of online coupon codes to get shoppers discounts and keep retailers honest.

If you found this article useful, be sure to check out these related articles:

How I'm Staying on Top of My Finances (and Not Becoming a Grinch) This Holiday Season

2nd Annual 5 Things We're Thankful for This Holiday Season

Traveling Tips: Keep the Costs Low and the Fun Level High

Happy Thanksgiving from 1st Mariner Bank!

by Stacy Tharp 20. November 2012

We love this time of year, and we had such a great time making last year's Happy Holidays Video, we decided to do it again this year...twice! Our Holiday Video Part One focuses on Thanksgiving. We interviewed our 1st Mariner Bank employees and asked them what they are thankful for this holiday season. We also tested their Thanksgiving knowledge by asking them a few trivia questions. View the video below to see how much our employees know about Thanksgiving!



Thanks for watching and we wish you a safe and happy beginning to your holiday season!

If you enjoyed this video, be sure to check out these related articles/videos:

2nd Annual 5 Things We're Thankful for This Holiday Season

How I'm Staying on Top of My Finances (and Not Becoming a Grinch) This Holiday Season

A 2011 Holiday Video Message from 1st Mariner Bank


2nd Annual 5 Things We're Thankful for This Holiday Season

by Erica Starr 20. November 2012

Baltimore - The Greatest City in AmericaThis year, as families prepare for the 2012 holiday season and family traditions, we thought we’d start our own tradition here at 1st Mariner Bank. Last year, we featured our “5 Things We’re Thankful For This Holiday Season” blog post in our November eNewsletter. This year, we’d like to officially make it a tradition by bringing you the “2nd Annual 5 Things We’re Thankful for This Holiday Season.”

We’re thankful to serve the “greatest city in America.”

We know – we said that last year. What can we say? You rock! Year after year, the people of the Baltimore community continue to blow us away with their sense of family and camaraderie. In good times and in bad, Baltimore continues to come together, proving that our park benches seem to know what they are talking about - Baltimore really is the “greatest city in America.”

We’re honored and privileged to have served you for the past 17 years and look forward to continuing to do so for many years to come.

We're Thankful for YOU - Our Customers

We've said it before, we’ll say it again. Without you, our customers, we’d be nothing. We’d like to take this time to thank all of our customers for your loyalty and support. Here at 1st Mariner, we consider our customers to be a part of our family and we’re thrilled to hear that you feel the same.

Thanks for Being Our Customer

Our online conversion process had some bumps in the road that we hadn’t anticipated. We were overwhelmed by your patience and understanding as we continued and will continue to work together toward providing better services and a better bank for Baltimore.

We’d like to sincerely thank you for affording us the privilege and opportunity to serve you. There’s no place like Baltimore and there’s no customers like 1st Mariner customers. You are truly one of a kind.

We're Thankful to Be Able to Offer Our Customers Enhanced Online Services

As you may have noticed, Online Banking got a nice facelift this year as an early Christmas gift. We’re thrilled about the new and enhanced online capabilities our customers can now take advantage of. From being able to pay bills using the 1st Mariner Bank App, to the new and improved Mariner360, we think it’s safe to say that 1st Mariner’s Online Banking is now playing with the pros of electronic banking.

We're Thankful for Flacco Fridays

We're honored to have Baltimore’s favorite quarterback announce to the region that he proudly banks at 1st Mariner – but he doesn’t stop there! Joe Flacco’s dedication to his Baltimore-area fans is truly evident by his eagerness to team up with us for “Flacco Fridays,” a series of weekly Facebook contests that will run through the end of the football season. For five straight weeks, Joe took the time to look through the questions that you submitted, choose his five weekly favorites, and compose thoughtful responses. By the end of week five, Joe was so overwhelmed with the great questions that had been submitted that he took it upon himself to go back and answer a few extra bonus questions. For our current contest series, Joe has given us permission to alter photos of him for a series of Photohunt-style contests. We are grateful for Joe’s continuous support, and we can’t wait to see what he will help us with next!

We're Thankful to Be a Community Bank

We've all had experiences with businesses and customer service departments where we’re left feeling unimportant, annoyed, frustrated and that we’ve just been treated as a number instead of a valued customer and member of the community. While we may not be the biggest bank out there, we pride ourselves on knowing that we’re small enough to be able to provide our customers with one-on-one, compassionate, personal service. Have an issue or a concern regarding your banking relationship with us? Pick up the phone and give us a call...if there is a hoop we can jump through for you, we will.

Customer Testimonials


Here’s to wishing you and your family another happy holiday season!

If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check out these related articles:

Happy Thanksgiving from 1st Mariner Bank! Video

How I'm Staying on Top of My Finances (and Not Becoming a Grinch) This Holiday Season

2011's 5 Things We're Thankful For This Holiday Season

© 2008- 1st Mariner Bank