A Money Coach in Canada

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I’m sure the local video rental store will have all I need, but I couldn’t resist trying out zip.ca – Canada’s answer to netflicks.

It seems a really good deal.   For $6 monthly, I get one free dvd mailed to me, with a return envelope, each month.  I received my first dvd today – the first 3 episodes of The Wire, if you’re interested.

It took me a while to figure out how the ordering process works – you select dvds by “zipping” them on the site, then as they come available, zip sends them to you.  This means it’s not for those who absolutely want a particular movie within a couple days, but that’s fine with me.  When you get the dvd, there is no due date, so I can watch it whenever I want – although to get the next dvd I need to return it.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a movie to watch …

photo credit:  pedrosimoes7

About the Author

Imagine if Canadians were known for being all over their money. Engaged. Proactive. Getting out of debt. Savvy. Saving. Generous. Nancy wants to help. Nancy started her own journey with money over 15 years ago, and formed her company “Your Money by Design” in 2004 to help others along the same path. It’s not the usual financial advising/investment stuff. It’s about taking control of day-to-day finances –managing monthly cashflow effectively, spending appropriately, getting out of debt, saving. If you're ready to take control over your finances, pop by her business site, YourMoneybyDesign.com


  1. Oh my, The Wire is so good. Have you seen it before? Are you starting on season one?

    Alan’s last blog post..The Credit Crisis Explained


    Mar 18, 2009
  2. Traciatim

    For those that have kids that get bored of games and who like movies you can also use canflix.com which has a wide selection of video game console games and movies. It works the same way as zip.ca.


    Mar 19, 2009
  3. As Alan says, you’re in for a treat with “The Wire”!

    The one thing that scared me off of the whole Netflicks / Zip.ca thing was early on after they started up, people posted about getting charged for DVDs that went missing in the mail (and it seemed to be happening A LOT). I wasn’t interested in having to pay replacement fees for the movies on top of the monthly membership.

    I’m glad its working out for you! Post again in a few months and let us know how it’s working out…


    Mar 19, 2009
  4. @Mr. Cheap: My wife and I used zip.ca for 2-3 years and we loved it. We only had a couple of hickups:
    – Once a movie didn’t arrive in the mail after zip.ca said that they had shipped it. We filled out a form on their site saying that we never got it, and that was that.
    – We once got a DVD that was scratched and didn’t work on our players. We returned it with an X in the field on the envelope to indicate that it was damaged, and that was that.

    This is from using the service for 2-3 years with a total of 100+ DVDs of TV series, documentaries, movies.

    Maybe 4 or 5 times we happened to watch a lot of movies in one month (we returned them quickly and got new ones quickly) and we got an email saying that we had now received the maximum number of movies in one month that was in our plan (10 or so, I think). We then got the choice between paying extra to get the next movies from our queue immediately or just waiting until the month was over and a new quota of 10 movies started.

    One funny thing you notice after using a service like this for a while is the difference between “want” and “want to want” — or the difference between desire and ambition: You put some high-brow movies on your list because you think you want to see them. But then you find yourself repeatedly demoting them in the queue so that you get the next Buffy DVD sooner, or “Naked Gun 2 1/2”, or… Even worse: You actually receive “The Piano” in the mail and find that you have it on top of the TV for a month while you’re receiving and returning several other DVDs. 🙂

    Jan Karlsbjerg’s last blog post..Realtor, an untrusted profession


    Mar 21, 2009
  5. Hello, I’m new here.

    We’ve been using zip.ca for about 8 months now. The only time we had a scratched dvd we returned it, and we got bombarded with videos – a complimentary one, plus the one we missed it, plus our regular 4 at the time.

    It’s excellent value for us because blockbuster is very restricting. We’ve become cinemophiles. The main reason we went with zip.ca is because I can only stay up for 20 minutes at the time, which means it takes us a week to see a movie. It would cost a fortune with blockbuster and I’d never see any movie like that with pay per view (only the starts of the movies).

    As for lattes, the last one I drank was 6$ about a month ago. It was excellent value, because it stopped me cold from getting more. When I won’t have to pay for unsponsorized daycare in downtown toronto, I will go back to shmancy drinks.

    ioana’s last blog post..I’m throwing in the towel


    Mar 24, 2009
  6. @Jan I included “Brideshead Revisited”. We’ll see if I actually watch it!
    @Ioana Thanks for dropping by! Good to hear you’ve had a good experience with zip. And yeah, $6 would likely stop me, too!


    Mar 24, 2009
  7. Rose and I are regular users of Zip – for about 3 years now. We’ve had similar experiences as above: once we never received a DVD that was sent; we just filled an online form out – and same experience w/ scratched disk, we reported it and got a complimentary one.

    I love that we can try out a TV series without committing to buying a whole boxed set. And there is something in their algorithm that will keep feeding you the next disk in a series which is pretty cool. We ended up watching the whole season of Veronica Mars in less than a month. But we definitely sometimes have “Piano” syndrome – I’ve had a movie out since Feb that I *should* watch but I find I haven’t been in the mood for it. Sigh. That is the biggest risk of Zip, I think – you really have to commit to watching what you get OR set a time limit and if you don’t watch it, just send it back.


    Mar 29, 2009

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