Over the past couple of years, I’ve been accumulating coins, just as we all do. There are still a few scattered throughout my apartment, but I collected many of them in a plastic bag that just sat in a drawer. I planned on converting them into a more useful form of currency later. At home, my bank had one of those coin-counting machines, so I could just deposit there, but I didn’t see one in my bank out here. And I knew of Coinstar from seeing them in the stores, but I didn’t ever try that because I knew they must charge something for the service.
Nelson, the guy who knows all sorts of random things about various services, recently let us know that he’s a big fan of Coinstar, and he doesn’t get charged for it. At first, I accused him of using the infamous “pull the plug” hack to prevent the machine from connecting to the Internet. But Nelson’s a nice guy, even if he does steal bikes, so I was of course wrong to do that. What Nelson does is convert his coins into an Amazon gift certificate, which has no counting fee. Coinstar presumably gets a commission from Amazon for these transactions. Since Amazon credit is as good as cash, it sounded like a great idea to me.
Tonight, I finally carried my bag of change into the store. Here’s what I had:
Dollars: 17 (probably change from buying stamps) Quarters: 154 Dimes: 100 Nickels: 63 Pennies: 133
This brought me to a total of $69.98! I’ve already applied it to my account, and it will sit there until it comes as a nice surprise next time I place an order. Thanks, Nelson.