I don’t know if this is actually a productivity tip or not. It might actually waste more time than anything else, but I feel like it is a good thing.
Do you have a huge collection of pennies that are building up? My wife and I have a metal box full of our loose change. We run most of our expenses through our credit cards, but we still end up with a bunch of coins. I have found a use for pennies.
The toll roads in Chicago take pennies. I don’t know if this works in many other major areas or not. There is something deeply satisfying about throwing 80 pennies into the machine to pay for your toll. Of course you probably don’t want to sit at the toll booth counting out 80 pennies. If you have a passenger in the car, that can be their job. Otherwise, you can count out the pennies into appropriate quantities when you are at home and keep them in the car for use while you are driving.
Let me reiterate that this is unlikely to directly make you more productive, but for me it provides me with a deep inner happiness and when I’m happy, I am more productive.
Not to be a smart ass, but wouldn’t it be better to just get the ipass and take the pennies in to the bank to be counted? I mean, with the iPass, it’s good in several states AND it saves you 50% because iPass tolls are only 40 cents on 294. Plus, you don’t have to wait in the ridiculous lines a tthe toll booths.
I thought most coin stars (which are available just about anywhere) would give you 100% if you converted the coins to gift cards instead of getting cash.
For people who don’t travel on toll roads enough to need an ipass or ezpass, this is a great tip. Otherwise an ipass or ezpass is the way to go! And think of the gas money saved by not having to slow down to a stop and accelerate again.
I only drive on toll roads occasionally when I visit Chicago. I picked up the habit from my father of keeping a plastic bag of loose change in the car for tolls. I also noticed that Chicago tolls take pennies once when I didn’t have quite enough change and was stuck at a toll booth scrambling around. I was able to find enough pennies on the floor of the car to get through!
Dave Ross says
Indeed, Coinstar machines do give you 100% of the value if you get your money in a gift card. I empty my change jar every few months and get Amazon gift certificates, which I use to buy those tech books I’ve been wanting, but never wanted to spend “real” money on.
Not directly related to toll roads but seeing as we talking about pennies, my local supermarket has a machine which takes all your pennies and returns a voucher for you to spend in store, very handy.
SpiKe, Organize IT
Rick Linsk says
I throw pennies and any other loose change at week’s end into a special box, take them to the bank periodically and then give the proceeds away to charitable organizations. You can enlist your kids to help roll the coins too as a fun way to do good.