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Archive for July 2008

Outsourcing Call Center Jobs To India Leads To Bad Customer Service

Published 7/31/08  (Modified 3/9/11)

By MoneyBlueBook

We live in an extremely politically correct country these days, which means anyone who even mentions anything negative about someone different (like negatively pointing out a foreign accent), or criticizes someone for their inability to speak the language properly, he or she is immediately labeled as prejudiced, racist, or somehow inciting hateful views. I'm truly none of those things, but I feel a personal finance blog platform is as good as any to express my own personal views about my own experiences on the matter. While I was born overseas, I came to the U.S. when I was only 2-3 years old, so I've pretty much grown up as an American and learned to identify strongly with the crux of American culture and its values. While a key component of American culture is the ability to embrace diversity and appreciate differences between different types of people, both foreign and domestic, there are some circumstances when I greatly prefer the services of a fellow American.

This preferential situation comes up whenever I call a live customer service help line. When I pick up the phone and make that affirmative decision to seek help via a toll free telephone number, my reasonable expectation is that I will reach someone who can communicate with me in an intelligible way, and help me resolve my consumer business problem quickly and efficiently, so that I can go along my merry way. It's bad enough that I often have to spend 30 minutes or more waiting on hold before I can

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Save Money By Eating Out At Local College Town Area Restaurants

Published 7/28/08  (Modified 3/9/11)

By MoneyBlueBook

This weekend a good buddy of mine and I decided to meet up and go for a round trip cross country bike ride from suburban Maryland, through the tree lined bike trails of Washington D.C., and into the outskirts of Northern Virginia. Neither of us owned decent bikes (none with suitable seats that wouldn't give us wedgies anyway), so we decided to rent a pair from a local bike rental shop near my old university stomping grounds. Since I hadn't been back to visit my old college in some time, we decided that after bike riding we would spend some time looking around and grabbing a bite to eat somewhere in the college town neighborhood.

The bike ride through the shaded forest trails and paved roads was fun and the subsequent pit stop at the National Zoo in D.C. was very relaxing (although, where were all the animals we wondered?), but the biking experience left me utterly exhausted, with aching legs, and a pair of sore butt cheeks. I completely underestimated the painful long distance hill climbs and the sheer distance that we needed to travel. Despite my cross country running background, I've been slacking off in the exercise department of late and wasn't in the best of shape to embark on a long bike ride.

Next time, I would definitely do a better job planning the route. For one thing, I would arrange it so that we faced the long uphill climbs in the beginning first half of our bike ride during early

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Is My FDIC Insured Checking Or Savings Account Safe If My Bank Fails?

Published 7/24/08  (Modified 3/9/11)

By MoneyBlueBook

Updated With The New and Current FDIC Insurance Limits For Bank Deposits! (New Law Went Into Effect October 3, 2008)

As the American and world economies endure a period of economic recession, the once stable and thriving marketplace can seem like a distant memory. Not only does it seem like unemployment warning flags and disappointing corporate earning reports lurk around every corner, it's all too easy to succumb to the financial despair. When you combine the mortgage market meltdown with increasing housing foreclosures, and you mix that with high gas prices, fears of another major Islamic terrorist attack, and snowballed consumer pessimism, you have a spicy cocktail for widespread financial depression. While I'm not a financial fortune teller, nor am I a guru who can predict when the recession or lingering credit crisis will pass, all I can do is reassure you of areas in your life where you ought not to be overly distraught or paranoid about.

One segment in the economy that has spawned a huge surge of concern and irrational panic is the area of bank failures and bank bankruptcies. Because of the excessive subprime lending to consumers totally unqualified to receive home mortgages made by irresponsible mortgage lenders in the past few years, the economy is now reaping the terrible financial whirlwind result of defaulting loans and home foreclosures. This calamity is currently happening on a massive scale as huge banking giants like Citibank and Bank of America, as well as major thrift saving institutions like Washington Mutual are getting

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Pest Control: How to Kill Roaches

Published 7/21/08  (Modified 6/17/11)

By MoneyBlueBook

I have a little secret to share. Well it's not really a secret so much as it's a phobia that I've held since I was a little kid. Here's the�  secret - I am deathly afraid of household insects, but in particular - cockroaches. There, I've said it - the cat's out of the bag - go ahead and laugh, but it's not funny (maybe just a little bit). Funny or not, it's something that makes my heart beat fast, makes my pupils dilate like saucers, and summons forth caveman like instincts to grab the nearest bunny slipper or rolled up U.S. News and World Report magazine for some self-preservation-inspired bug pounding.

The mere sight of the creepy crawly legs and wiggling antennas of the common household cockroach jetting out from dark corners and scampering across bathroom counters and kitchen floors utterly freaks me out. While I don't instantly jump onto chairs, call my mommy, or scream at the top of my lungs like a little girl, I do become visibly startled and immediately shift into fight mode whenever I encounter a lost spider or resident evil roach in my apartment. I'm sure you PETA fanatics out there may be turned off by my disdain and opposition to the plight of roaches and other household vermin, but I don't care. Roaches and insects have no place in my home and I'll do whatever it takes to eradicate the pests. I've had too many unfortunate experiences and bad memories of living with roaches during my student years.


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How To Get A Free Roller Coaster Photo At Six Flags or Disney World

Published 7/17/08  (Modified 3/9/11)

By MoneyBlueBook

Cheapskate, Appropriately Frugal, or Brilliantly Simple? You Decide

Well we've finally reached the dog days of summer - the hottest stretch of heat sweltering days of July and August. For those of you who live in colder climates, bless your hearts - enjoy the mild temperatures while you can because colder weather will be upon you soon. But for everyone else who lives in a state or region that enjoys four seasons year round with hot and humid summers like I do, it's time for all of us to get outside and enjoy that nice sunshine warmth.

One of the best ways to get some mild exercise, and enjoy the great outdoors with the family at the same time is to visit an amusement theme park like Six Flags, Busch Gardens, or Disney World. Now you might be thinking to yourself - wait, visiting an amusement isn't exercise and it sure isn't the great outdoors. Where is the huffing and puffing, and where are the essential greenery that make up the great outdoors? I guess that's where you and I differ - I consider the great outdoors to be anywhere that's not cooped up inside an air conditioned house or apartment on a summer's day spent watching TV or playing Nintendo Wii. As long as you are out and about, walking around outside, enjoying the sun's natural Vitamin-D inducing rays, you are immersed in the great outdoors my friend.

In addition, all that walking around, waiting in line, and strolling from roller coaster ride to concession stand is

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The Best Credit Card Rewards For Google Ads and Search Advertising

Published 7/17/08  (Modified 12/19/13)

By MoneyBlueBook

Updated List Of The Best Credit Card Cash Back Rewards For Google Adwords, Yahoo Search Marketing, and MSN AdCenter

Editor's Note: Thank you for your interest, these offers have expired and are no longer available.

As a personal finance blogger and a dot com mogul-super affiliate tycoon wannabe (I'm joking), I regularly spend sums of money on domain name registrations, web hosting services, and home office computer supplies. However, the bulk of my tax deductible business expenses consist of expenditures for online advertising through top search engines like Google, Yahoo, and MSN. While compared to the big boys (and girls) my advertising budget is comparatively puny, I still seek to maximize my money however I can, whether that means utilizing free promotional coupons for extra savings and free online advertising, or taking advantage of credit card offers to earn cashback rebates on Google Adword purchases.

Online Advertising Through Pay Per Click Works, But It Can Get Expensive Depending On Subject Niche

Those who are familiar with online advertising know that there are a variety of ways and methods to get your website brand or blog name into the search engines and thus into the public eye for maximum traffic. However, this doesn't necessarily mean that all of the methods are created equal. Currently the most popular search engine with the most capability to leverage the most search traffic by far is run by Google. But while the Google Adword program's certainly the most dominant player in the online marketing world, there are also other lesser options worth mentioning - most notably Yahoo Search Marketing and Microsoft's MSN AdCenter. Neither Yahoo Search nor MSN

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