Sep 062011
 
Authors: Katie Salvato

Two things led senior construction management major Brian Roling to begin using money saving websites like Groupon and Living Social: having a girlfriend and being in between jobs.

“You can find fun things to do that are inexpensive,” Roling said. “If you’re going to go out and spend $50 why don’t you go online and get a voucher to spend $20 instead?”

Now, CSU students have a chance to shop smart with Moocho, a money saving website that offers online coupons to businesses on campus and Fort Collins.

The company, which started in late August, gives students deals ranging from 50 to 90 percent off at local restaurants, bookstores, cafes, event tickets, shops, classes and more.

“You can do the same thing other people are doing but cheaper,” Roling said. For about half a year he and his girlfriend have been using the Internet to save money mostly on dinners and mountain trips.

Right now the couple is working on getting a seven-day all-inclusive Hawaii trip for $700.
In late August, Kerri Billingsley, a senior business major, was hired by Moocho as the student campus manager.

“I heard about the position through a friend,” said Kerri Billingsley.

The company first launched January 2011 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The pilot program was so successful that Moocho is starting new programs in dozens of college towns across the nation this fall, Billingsley said.

Sarah Fine, a junior majoring in fashion design, works for Billingsley as a Campus Ambassador.
“I do a lot of advertising for the company,” Fine said. “I think we have been getting the word out. We’ve been putting flyers up around campus and in the windshields of cars.”

Fine said she has used coupons from the company on several occasions.

“The first week of school, the deal was buying a coupon for five dollars and getting $20 dollars off at Rams Bookstore,” Fine said.

The current deal is $5 for $10 at Bones, Pitchers, and Pies on Elizabeth Street in Fort Collins.
“I’m on the weekly mailing list to get deals,” Fine said.

Students that subscribe to the Moocho email list are sent a weekly message outlining the deals for the entire week and are entered into a drawing to win an iPad2. Students on the email list and who like the Moocho- Colorado State page on Facebook will be entered into the drawing twice. Entries for the drawings will close on Sept. 30.

“Students that receive emails are given the option to purchase a deal, but they are never obligated to,” Billingsley said.

Moocho is similar to the popular company, Groupon, which launched in November 2008. Groupon is now able to offer deals in 43 countries and have been opening new offices across the U.S.
Fine says that CSU students will benefit the most from Moocho.

“Moocho is designed especially for CSU students and gives out great deals in Fort Collins,” Fine said.

Collegian writer Katie Salvato can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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