Top 10 group buying websites
Ten yoga classes for half the price, a hair cut and colour for £22 instead of £72, and a two-day holiday with 60% discount. These are among the deals on offer from group buying websites.
These websites offer daily deals in your local area, giving on average between 25% and 75% off the normal asking price.
How to start
There are numerous sites in the UK and across the world. All you do is sign up for a free daily email alert and put in your payment details, and you'll start receiving discounted offers from local businesses.
Each offer will have a time limit; if enough people sign up within this period the offer goes 'live' and you'll be sent a voucher. It's a simple idea that helps sellers promote their services and buyers get a bargain - and it works. Groupon, the biggest site, has over 50 million people subscribed to its deals.
The items on offer vary greatly, from restaurant and pampering deals to week-long holidays and laser teeth whitening.
Businesses that partner with these sites obviously take price cuts, but any losses are balanced out by instant access to a whole new group of potential customers.
There aren't many catches besides the fact that each deal is only valid for a certain time, so you have to make sure you know when it will expire.
Instant access to such large discounts can also pressurise people into paying for a voucher they don't actually need; however, as most vouchers are available to buy for at least 12 hours, you do have time to consider whether the deal is something you really want.
Read about Rebecca Rutt's group buying experiences: My obsession with group buying
The top 10 group buying websites