Coinstar, Inc.

August 01, 2006 12:35 ET

Free Coin Counting from Coinstar Gives Students Spending Freedom

BELLEVUE, WASH.--(Collegiate Presswire - August 1, 2006) - Students headed back to school learn quickly how to live on tight budgets. Coinstar (NASDAQ:CSTR), the leader in self-service coin counting, helps them increase their discretionary spending freedom while away at school. The company's Coin to Card™ program counts coins for free when consumers put the value onto a gift card or eCertificate from retailers like iTunes, Starbucks, Amazon.com, Borders, Eddie Bauer and more.

"The depiction of college students as scraping by on a limited income is not a new reality; but like most of the general public, they are surprised at how much expenses add up," said Alex Camara, senior vice president and general manager, worldwide coin, Coinstar, Inc. "Our free coin-counting program allows them to get top quality products from some of the best retail brands using the forgotten money in their coin jar."

Many students struggle with the adjustment of living within the monthly spending allowances pre-determined by their parents. "Necessities" defined by students may be different than those defined by their parents. While many parents might not consider a cell phone, lattes or music critical to surviving the semester, their children may disagree. According to a recent study by Key Education Resources, the financing arm of KeyCorp, 69 percent of students who live away from home and 66 percent of parents are surprised by how much money is eaten up by ancillary expenses like books, utilities, groceries, entertainment, cell phones, computer software, transportation and travel.

Coinstar estimates there is $10.5 billion of spare change lying idle in the United States - approximately $99 in each American household. An estimated 80 percent of Americans accumulate coin, but only 58 percent of those then choose to cash in their coin. The ability to turn this inactive change into a book, latte, DVD rental, or accessories for a dorm room with no coin counting fee, gives students a choice and a motivating reason to cash in change.

College students can choose from a number of national retailers including, Starbucks, Amazon.com, iTunes, Eddie Bauer, Pier 1 Imports, Linens 'n Things, Borders, Virgin Digital and more, making it easier to make it through the school year.

Coinstar, Inc. offers the Coin to Card program at more than 6,700 grocery and drug stores. To find Coinstar locations offering this service and available gift cards and eCertificates, consumers may visit the company's machine locator at www.coinstar.com.

About Coinstar, Inc.

Coinstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSTR) is a multi-national company offering a range of 4th Wall™ solutions for the retailers' front of store consisting of self-service coin counting, electronic payment solutions, entertainment services and self-service DVD rental. The company's products and services can be found at more than 60,000 retail locations including supermarkets, drug stores, mass merchants, financial institutions, convenience stores and restaurants. For more information, visit www.coinstar.com.

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