I am so thankful for the dramatic decrease in gasoline prices. It still seems almost too good to be true. I used to dread looking at gas stations signs advertising the price of a gallon but now I look at the 30 different ones I pass on my way to work each day with jubilation. With the complete transformation of gas prices from a once outrageous amount to a now laughably affordable amount, price increases elsewhere don’t register with me as much. However, there are three price hikes outside of the gasoline world that I have noticed very clearly. Do let me tell you what they are.
$5 Footlongs at Subway – Much to my horror, my classic Cold Cut Combo sub sandwich I purchase EVERY TIME I go to Subway is no longer $5. In fact, when I went and bought one at my local Wal-Mart Subway yesterday, I had to fork over $6.01 for my cold cut. This one hurts. The $5 price for a fresh meal was fair and it was a deal I had taken advantage of for probably five years. To have this sudden change slipped under my nose didn’t make me jump with joy. Oh well, I rather pay $6.01 for a sandwich as opposed to $4.03 for a gallon of gas.
Redbox Rentals – From reading the paper and seeing online reports I knew this one was coming but it still doesn’t mean I like it. In Montana and Washington I was paying in the ballpark of $1.20 per Redbox rental. When I moved to South Carolina I was paying around $1.30 which was increased I believe because of tax but nonetheless still a really cheap price. Last month renting a movie from a Redbox kiosk went up quite a bit percentage wise. I am now paying $1.61 a movie. Let me make clear that paying $1.61 for a couple hours of entertainment is still a darn good bargain but it is just the psychology of it all that messes with me. I was once paying a price that was closer to $1 than it was to $2. Now I am paying a price that is closer to $2 than $1. As someone who rents a lot of Redbox movies and who sometimes forgets to return the disc the next day, this does cause a minor impact. Good thing I have had some good books to read lately.
Rent Going Up – My one-year lease at my apartment complex expires in late April. Yesterday I received notice of my renewal options. Unfortunately, the “You have been such a good resident so we are going to lower your monthly rent” was not an option. As I know is common practice, my rent per month if I am to sign a new lease will increase. If I don’t want to sign a full year lease at the new price, I can pay month-to-month at a rate that is +$150 the new monthly rate for the year lease. As I am already paying on the high end for my living arrangements, I wasn’t too particularly thrilled with the increase. However, I do understand the economics of “market price.” I just wish there was at least a rent freeze for residents who are responsible and respectful.
The best thing about these three increases? In the long run they are wiped out by the low price I pay to fuel my car. So I need to shut up and stop complaining about paying a buck more for a sandwich and a few cents extra for a movie rental. My transportation is essential, stuffing my face with footlongs and watching trashy movies are not. Don’t Blink.