For those in Perth always looking for a better, faster, cheaper way

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Big Name Cafes making their move in Perth

Cafes in Perth are a roaring trade and many of the big names around Perth and Australia have come to realise this. Despite the financial crisis, here are a few brave names that have expanded into "Dullsville".

San Churro has landed in Fremantle! Open for only two weeks now, the famous chocolate cafe selling the special spanish donuts has placed itself right on the edge of the Cappuccino Strip in South Tce, Fremantle. You can find it just behind the famous cafe Gino's which has recently increased its coffee prices.

Hudson's Coffee - This coffee chain is the latest to make its move in Perth. The Perth Domestic Airport Hudson's outlet has been there for about five weeks. Celebrating its 10th year in Australia, Hudson's has only just recently ventured into the Wild West with more stores to come.

Exomod Coffee - Is not an eastern states import but has recently expanded its wares to Victoria Park, Mill Point Rd Car park, Claremont and soon to be the City. Meanwhile the original Exomod in Mt lawley is now open 24 hours on Friday and Saturday nights - making it an ideal late night coffee destination apart from Fast Eddy's.

Question everyone is wondering is, yeah but what about Krispy Kremes?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

What's on Freeview in Australia? Can you handle 24hr sports?

HDTV Just revolutionised the TV industry. With Digital channels on their way, each commercial network, Channel 7, 9 and 10 will each have three to four channels to broadcast their usual dribble but with the flexibility of showing other stuff to try out the Australian TV market's receptiveness. For example, Channel 10 will have a dedicated 24 hour sports channel that will certainly rival Foxtel's offering of Fox Sports which is a paid service... here is the "press release" from Channel 10

Network Ten today announced the first all-new commercial free-to-air television channel in almost 50 years, a dedicated sports channel to provide Australians 24-hour sports coverage from home and around the world.

As a free-to-air channel, it will be available to Australians who are widely acknowledged as the world’s greatest sports enthusiasts. The new channel will allow Australians to share their unifying passion for sport: and will be named ONE.

ONE will be broadcast from early in the second quarter of calendar 2009 in High Definition (HD) on Channel 1 and it will also be available in Standard Definition (SD) on the network’s second SD channel (Channel 12).

Network Ten CEO Grant Blackley said ONE’s all-sports programming format will appeal to Australians’ shared passion for sport and, also, ensure that Network Ten as a multi-channel broadcaster continues to build a new and more diverse audience.

“ONE’s appeal to Australia’s natural sports lovers will complement TEN’s seriously different programming
strategy – with each channel offering viewers and clients a unique and appealing programming format,”
Mr Blackley said.

“TEN continues to pursue its targeted strategy – that is, with a primary focus on building its competitive share in the strategically valuable 18-49s, and maintaining the leading position in 16-39s. TEN is also the number one network in day time in all key demos.

“In considering the opportunities for our new multi-channel, it became obvious very quickly that sport would be a highly attractive genre for the Australian viewing public, of both genders and all ages. There is currently no dedicated free-to-air sports channel in this market, and Ten has existing relationships with key sports rights holders and a reputation for delivery of high quality sports broadcasts.

“Importantly, the network’s upgraded broadcast infrastructure means we are exceptionally well placed to provide these three digital channels, supporting our network’s – and the industry’s – move into a multichannel and multi-platform environment.

“We anticipate that ONE will add significant momentum to digital switchover by giving Australian viewers a compelling reason to purchase an HD or SD receiver,” Mr Blackley said The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, said Network Ten’s initiative heralded a new era in Australian free-to-air broadcasting.

“Innovations such as Network Ten’s digital sport channel will play an important part in Australia’s transition from analogue to digital television,” Senator Conroy said.

“The Rudd Government is committed to ensuring Australia completes a smooth transition to digital television and the availability of more diverse and broadly appealing free-to-air multi-channel programming will assist that process.”

Network Ten’s general manager - sport, David White, said sport plays a prominent role in Australian culture and identity, and it is uniquely suited to digital TV – with its emphasis on the best broadcast clarity of picture and sound.

“The programming schedule for ONE will showcase the sports Australians love, in a way they will enjoy viewing them,” Mr White said.

“Live and exclusive will be a hallmark of the channel.”

“Broadcasting in digital means we will be able to most vividly capture the greatest sporting events and achievements, along with the intimate details of the intense human dramas that play out in sport.

“We believe ONE will appeal to a broad audience and very quickly become a regular and enjoyable part of Australians’ sports viewing habit,” he said.

Some of the sports highlights that viewers can expect to enjoy on ONE include:
AFL – the 2009 NAB Cup, home and away season, and finals including the Grand Final returning to the network in 2009
Netball – ANZ Championship Competition and all Test matches featuring the Australian Netball Diamonds, exclusively for the next five years
Commonwealth Games – 2010 Delhi Commonwealth Games
Cricket – Indian Premier League Cricket, the world’s premier annual Twenty20 cricket competition
Formula 1 – every round of the F1 World Championship
Moto GP – extensive coverage of every round of the World Championship
NASCAR – live coverage of the Daytona 500 and other major Sprint Cup races, live coverage of the Nationwide Series, as well as Sprint Cup qualifying
Australian Rally Championship – exclusive coverage of every round
National Football League (NFL) – three games per week live, including the flagship Sunday and Monday night games, as well as live coverage of play-offs and the Super Bowl
Major League Baseball (MLB) – five games per week live, including prime time coverage of play-offs
and World Series National Basketball Association (NBA) – three games per week live
Golf – US Masters, US Open, World Golf Championships including the Accenture MatchPlay
Championship, the CA Championship, the Bridgestone Invitational and the World Cup, Australian PGA,Ladies Masters, 2010 Ryder Cup, and 15 additional international and domestic events including the
Johnnie Walker Classic, and the Asian tour’s flagship event the Singapore Open and the tour’s seasonending Volvo Masters of Asia.
U.S. College sports – American football and basketball
Tennis – ATP and WTA tennis, details to be confirmed, approximately 11 tournaments during 2009.
Swimming – Network Ten is delighted to announce that, from 2009, it is the exclusive broadcaster for mSwimming Australia. This includes coverage of the Australian Swimming Championships, Pan Pacific Championships, Australian Short Course Championships, FINA World Short Course, Swimmer of the Year – a minimum 109 hours per year for the next eight years.

According to rights agreements and current Federal Government anti-siphoning regulations, some of these sports and events will also be shown first or simultaneously on TEN.

To preview and review the week’s events and to continue the conversations about sport that Australians enjoy, there will also be a series of new programs dedicated to the sports Australians love. These will include a new live AFL show on Monday nights, weekly wrap shows for NFL, NBA, MLB, NASCAR Sprint Cup series and Nationwide series, Formula 1, Moto GP and US PGA Tour.

Every week night, ONE will also broadcast two expanded editions of Sports Tonight, bringing viewers further in-depth news from both domestic and international sources.

From time to time, ONE will feature extreme sports, emerging sports and a range of sports-related programming including documentaries.

BACKGROUND
The ONE SD channel will be separately badged and marketed, and used to promote the premium ONE HD service to SD viewers.

ONE – Branding
The name ONE expresses the channel’s mission to share the greatness of sport with all Australians – capturing the passion that unites us as one. It was inspired by the irrepressible response of the crowd toa classic goal and the sense of bonding we experience in that dramatic moment, an inspiring effect only great sport can deliver.

Breaking from sporting channel clich├ęs, the logo communicates the fresher, more accessible approach that is the essence of ONE. It shows that our goal is to capture the unique and much loved place that sport has in everyday Australian life, beyond just the generic highlights and generic feeds of today’s
offerings.

Digital TV – Australian market penetration
Digital take-up in Australia is accelerating, and is following global trends. Currently, 42 per cent of Australian households have a digital receiver and, at the time of the launch of ONE in 2009, this is expected to be around 50 per cent.

Digital TV – multi-channelling policy and digital rollout
Under government legislation (Broadcasting Services Act) free-to-air commercial broadcasters will be permitted to provide an additional SD digital multichannel each from January 2009 in addition to the HD digital multichannel currently provided.

The Australian Government has announced that all free-to-air television broadcasters in Australia will complete the switch from analogue transmission to digital-only transmission by the end of 2013.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Best rewards on Perth Credit cards

Also recently Citibank has been pushing an Emirates MasterCard which entitles you to
- 1.5 reward points per $1 spend
- 1 chaeuffer driven airport transfer a year if flying Emirates
- 1 entry into an Emirates airport lounge per year if flying Emirates
but the cost is $199 for the card...

If you are able to apply for American Express's platinum card, then this will entitle you to 5% off everything in the first three months and 1% off everything after that.

A similar Amex offering is the platinum or ultimate card which gives you 1.25 FF points for every dollar spend after 1 April 2009 and until then it looks like 2 Frequent flyer points for every $1 spent. The card also offers free travel insurance as well as a free return flight to anywhere in Australia. Normally $398,the card can be bought for $297 with any professional institute such as the Engineers Institute, Chartered Accountants Australia, Certified Practicing Accountants in Australia etc. That means you can fly to Melbourne from Perth using the free flight, for only $297 return ... on Qantas! Booking is easy and numerous flights are generally very available!

If you are from Perth, they will allow you to fly to either Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane on the free flight redemption.

Best Credit Card rewards and FF points

One of the best offers for credit cards if you are able to pay your bills on time is the BP Citibank Credit Card which offers

- $40 saved if you are a BP employer or friend of BP (who isn't?)
- 5% cash backBP petrol and everything in BP stores after the limited time
- 1% cash back on every other purchase. (no longer offered)

It is a mastercard so it is acceptable in most places around Australia. However as reported recently on this blog there have been problems in the past with the BP Cashback not being paid. This has since been resolved and goes to show that you should complain as soon as you notice something amiss in your credit card statements.

Unlike FF points, this enables you to get the 1% cash back in the next card statement, without having to wait till you have something like 100,000 points before you can receive anything of value.

See later posts for more credit card reward reviews..

Tips for Qantas Frequent Flyers Credit cards

Here are a few tips for those that have Qantas Frequent Flyers membership

1. Find the best reward card available and take advantage of signing up bonuses. A recent deal from American Express Premium Card offered
- No annual fee for the first year ($195 saved)
- 10,000 bonus points after your first purchase if you are approved before a certain date
- 5,000 bonus points on top of points earned on your first purchase
- 2,500 bonus points if you purchase some selected things from Qantas (such as QF flights)
- Two invites every year into Qantas Club lounge
- 1.25 points per $$ spend compared to another similar card offering 1 for 1.
- Automatic transfer point to Qantas Frequent Flyers every month.

2. Compare the benefits of UPGRADING your seat with getting CHEAP flights.

3. Work out how much each point is worth in dollar terms by comparing the points required to redeem the prize and the value of the prize in real life. For example, upgrading seat from Economy to Business for a domestic flight was 16,000 points.. how much is that in real life?

4. Find out which destinations are easier to use points to fly to, by checking this site here

5. Join early in your life - the membership is not annual fee, its for a lifetime so sign up now.

6. Got your own tips?

Saturday, November 1, 2008

American Express Platinum not offering Qantas Frequent Flyers

The letter I received recently advised that the AMEX Platinum card will change -they will no longer offer 2 points for every $1 spent after 1 April 2009. They have given a choice which I would like to know what other users like you think:

1. Earn 1.25 points for QANTAS frequent flyers for every $1 spent from 1 April 2009.

2. Continue with Ascent and earn 1.5 points for every $1 spent. These can be converted to other frequent flyer programs for other airlines but not QANTAS.

What do you think? My tendency is to continue with Frequent Flyers since I paid $82.50 for lifetime membership..

Thursday, October 30, 2008

What do you do when you are out of pre-paid mobile credit?

If you are an optus customer, you can just text IOU to the number 468 and they will lend you an emergency $3 credit that expires in three days. This is a new feature that they have only just launched today. More about this here or here

Melbourne Cup Krispy Kremes 4/11/08 only

For the weary traveller coming back from Melbourne for the Melbourne cup, here's a special that you may want to consider.

Purchase any one dozen doughnuts between 10am and 12pm in your nearest store on Melbourne Cup Day (Tuesday 4th November) and receive One dozen Original Glazed™ FREE.

Enjoy a box of Krispy Kremes with friends and family whilst you cheer on your good thing!

As for Perth getting a KK store... don't think its on the horizon just yet..

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Catch a Perth Bus via Google Maps

Its become so easy to find out when the bus is coming to your bus stop using Google Maps. As announced by Google, it is now possible to find your bus stop on Google Maps and click on the bus stop to find out what buses are coming now.

The whole of Perth's transport system has been mapped out on Google Maps - the first city to be mapped in Australia! Make the most of it Perthians.. for once we are ahead of the east!

Try it out at Google Transit: www.google.com/transit

15% off storewide @ Target

From Thursday 30 October (tomorrow) to Saturday 1 November, Target is taking 15% off their profit margin on everything in store. Good time to check your sock drawer J

Bus lane police nab time-poor commuters

I don’t always travel down roads where there is a dedicated bus lane but recently I saw two police booking a car who had obviously ventured into the dedicated bus lane. Its very tempting on a main road to see the lane so empty during peak hour but it seems like all the regulars know what happens to those who want to save 10 seconds in their trip home. For those that are not so familiar with the police trap, they become a daily reminder that police do have the final say.

 

So beware the police hiding in the bush looking for bus lane cheats!

JB Hifi Sale

Check out JB HIfi sale at the moment including 10% off most things.
If you ever wanted to get a discount on anything in JB Hifi just feel free to negotiate with them. They are willing to give you a discount on the spot. That's what makes JB the most popular and successful electronics store in Perth or even Australia. Come back for more bargains and hacks for Perth residents (and oftentimes other Australians).

Cheapest Chicken Rice in Perth

$4.80 Chicken rice at Karawara shopping centres in a shop called Chilliz. Chilliz can also be found on Hampton Rd in Nedlands. Enjoy the cheap chicken rice here and thank me for it :) Come back for more bargains here at Perth Hacks. Leave a comment if this has benefitted you.

20% off Koorong and Word Thursday - Saturday

Koorong and Word are Nationwide Christian stores in Australia. You can get CDs, DVDs, books etc. They usually go on sale at the same time. Includes free postage for orders online over $125.
 
Word bookstores www.word.com.au
 

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Unlimited Perth Public transport $2.40 for concession

If you are a concession, you can get all day travel after 7:15am on weekdays and 9am on weekends for only $2.40 by using the SmartRiders which give you 25% off the usual $3.20 dayrider fare! If you get a SmartRider which gives 15% off, this will be $2.72.

Check this website to see if you qualify for a concession card and therefore, cheap public transport. Basically, if you are a school student, uni student, war veteran or a senior you get this special rate if you purchase a Concession SmartRider. Just make sure you dont buy the wrong smartrider or you may be charged $8.10!

Cheap Fuel in Perth

Fuel prices are crazy in Perth but you can save money by keeping a keen eye on FuelWatch, a government run website which shows you the cheapest prices for petrol all over Perth.

You can also save 4c or 6c off fuel by buying more than $30 groceries at places like IGA, Woolworths and Coles. One other idea will be discussed is the BP Citibank card which can get up 5% off petrol at any BP Station. Bear in mind though that BP is one of the most expensive places to get petrol and to benefit from this credit card you need to be watching FuelWatch as well.

This tip can save you up to $10 every time you fill up depending on the type of petrol and ur size of car.

Coupon booklet for Perth Restaurants, Attractions and Cafes

If you are traveling to Perth, you should consider ordering yourself an Entertainment Book. This book costs about $30 for the abridged version (gold class restaurants excluded) or $65 for the full book. These books are only available at fundraising organisations or you might want to get a local to try hunt one down for you before you come.

Typical deals include "Buy one get one free" for main courses in expensive restaurants or 25% off the bill up to $60 value. After visiting three restaurants you can save as much money as the book cost you so if you are a foody this is something you should consider.

For people who are already entertainment book members, you can log on to the website to buy a perth guide before you come at a discounted rate of $43 + shipping ($6 or $12 depending on how rushed you are).

Read more about the Entertainment Book at www.entertainmentbook.com.au

Unlimited travel around Perth for just $8.10!

If you are not a student or otherwise concession card holder in Perth and you want to see the whole city, why not take a day to go all over Perth on the public transport system which includes Buses, Trains and Ferries! How much will this cost?

Well I've given that one away already. The beauty of this deal is that if you get a SmartRider (prepaid transport card for all buses, trains and ferries), you don't have to pay $8.10 straight away.The Smartriders are programmed to only charge you a maximum of $8.10 each day. Effectively there is a CAP on your expenditure on public transport in Perth so take a train up to Joondalup, go down to Armadale, go back to the City and then catch a longer train ride to Mandurah all in one day.

OR... for those more adventurous, how about catch one of those buses and see where it takes you, then try find your way back :) Just dont do it on the weekends because times between buses could be up to an hour and you may find yourself in a quiet suburb waiting for a bus utterly bored.

Finding Free WIFI Internet in Perth

If you brought your laptop to Perth, there are quite a few places you can save your $4/hr fee for internet access in Perth. Some free WIFI hotspots include the central Alexander Library near the Perth train station and on St Georges Tce, the main road through the Perth CBD.

You can find a google map of many free wifi locations in Perth and other parts of Australia by following this link

Free buses in Perth - CAT is all you need to remember

The central area transit buses run around the City, East Perth, Northbridge regularly and you can hop on and off whenever you want.

A similar service is available in Fremantle. This is a good way to get around to see the city, plan itineraries and generally get a good feel of Perth or Fremantle.

How to save money in Perth - the most expensive city in Australia

Every visitor to Perth, Western Australia recently has had the same description of Perth. Beautiful? no.. Expensive! Tourists that have come from Hong Kong, USA, Europe, Singapore, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide have all had the same shock when they saw how much things are in the world's most isolated city.

In this blog, with your help, we'll find the tips, hints and tricks to loving and living in Perth on a budget.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Free Perth stuff

Ever wanted to know where all the free stuff is in Perth? This is a very good place to start. Perth Hacks was set up by me cos when I find a good deal in Perth, I can't help but tell everyone about it. Hope you find this blog beneficial.