Warehouse-club staples, such as vats of mayonnaise and crates of toilet paper, aren’t the only products for which buying in bulk can translate into serious bargains.
We’ve discovered eight unexpected buy-in-bulk values. For people who need these items in mass quantities, the savings can be significant. Just remember: This strategy requires commitment. To snag the lower per-unit prices (all listed prices here exclude taxes and fees) and capture the full value of your purchase, you have to be willing to pay the larger upfront costs and use all of your supplies.
Happy bargain hunting!
Sky-bound commuters and serial vacationers can save hundreds by buying plane-ticket packages.
JetBlue famously offered the "All You Can Jet" pass in 2009 and 2010, which allowed travelers to fly on as many trips as they could in a month for $599. This year, the discount airline targeted business travelers with Go Packs, ranging from $699 to $2,499, that included ten nonstop, one-way flights between certain airports from September 13 through December 19. JetBlue would not say for sure whether Go Packs will be offered again, but the ticket packages have proved popular with its customers.
To keep an eye out for other plane-ticket packages, enlist some help from AirfareWatchdog.com. Sign up for alerts based on your selected departure city, and the Watchdog will let you know via e-mail when it finds a cheap flight or package of flights, even aboard smaller airlines that might not show up on bigger search engines, such as Kayak.com and Bing Travel.
(See more: January's best shopping deals)
A chatty Cathy need not hold her tongue for savings. Avoid hefty overage charges by embracing your loquaciousness with an unlimited, low-cost, prepaid plan. Same goes for texting addicts and data suckers.
For example, Boost Mobile, one of Sprint's prepaid brands, offers unlimited minutes, texts and data for Android phones starting at $55 a month. (With its "shrinking payments" incentive, Boost lowers that monthly payment gradually as you make on-time payments -- to as little $40 for punctual Android users after 18 months.) For other unlimited options, check out our picks for the Best Smart Phone Plans for You.
You need a spotter anyway, so why not get a deal for multiple memberships while you're at it? Many gyms, including Bally Total Fitness and Washington Sports Club, periodically offer friends-and-family discounts if you sign up together or if current members recruit newbies.
For example, 24 Hour Fitness recently offered a deal for current members to add family to their membership for $30 a month per person with no initiation fee. Regular rates can range from $40 to $75 per month per person, depending on your location.
If your gym isn't currently advertising this kind of deal, ask about a discount anyway; membership costs may be negotiable. (See Master the Modern Art of Haggling for tips on talking your way to a better bargain.)
No surprise here, sports fans. If you're really invested in a team, buying tickets for the whole season all at once instead of game by game can be a big financial win.
And if the season heads into extra innings, you'll get first dibs on playoff tickets. For example, when the Washington Nationals extended their 2012 season (the first time since 1933 that D.C. sent a baseball team to the playoffs), season-ticket holders paid $50 each for postseason tickets that were going for triple that amount online, reports Liz Farmer, of the Washington Examiner.
Season-ticket deals can be found outside the sports arena, too. Many theaters, museums, aquariums, amusement parks and other venues offer discounted passes for frequent visitors.