8 things we bought in 2017 that are completely worth the money

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Looking back on 2017, some purchases stand out as clear winners.

Whether it was a product that streamlined our day, a service that made our lives or easier or a once-in-a-lifetime experience, some things pay for themselves in spades.

Below, check out eight things CNBC Make It staffers bought this year that we would fully recommend paying for again.

Concert tickets

One study by Harris Group found that 72 percent of millennials prefer to spend more money on experiences than on material things, and I (Emmie Martin, Money reporter) can't argue with the majority. Seeing live music brings me joy and creates lasting memories. Especially after losing legends such as David Bowie and Tom Petty over the last few years, I'm treasuring the chance to catch my favorite acts in concert while I can.

GPS wallet tracker

There's nothing more panic-inducing than losing your wallet. Did you leave it on the bus? Or is it safe at home, sitting on your dresser? Leadership reporter Ruth Umoh bought a GPS wallet tracker to help eliminate that worry. Versions like these from Tile can also be used on your keys, phone or countless other items.

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New York City marathon entry

It costs upward of $250 just to register for the New York City marathon. And if you get to race day by participating the "9+1 program," it can cost more than $500 to run the 26.2 miles.

But it's well worth the price. As Kathleen Elkins, Money reporter, wrote of her experience this year: "Running the streets of New York City with 50,000 other people, and surrounded by even more cheering fans lining the streets, is surreal. It's an experience that will leave your cheeks just as sore from smiling as your calves are from running the next day."

Here's a full explanation from Elkins on why the NYC Marathon is something she's willing to shell out for annually.


MoviePass, a subscription service that allows users to go see one movie a day in theaters, made waves in August when it dropped its price from as much as $50 per month to only $10. At the reduced rate, users in New York City, for example, only need to see one movie per month for the pass to more than pay for itself. According to news associate Jonathan Blumberg, if you're into movies, it's an incredible deal.

Blue Apron

Blue Apron takes the guesswork out of cooking. For around $10 per meal, pre-portioned ingredients are delivered straight to your door, with no looking up recipes, grocery shopping, or measuring required. Although the company has had its share of ups and downs, many users, like managing editor Jenna Goudreau, deem it worth the price.

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Keychain phone charger

It's hard to decide what's more annoying: Your phone dying while you're out or having to ask the bartender if they'll plug your charger in. A keychain phone charger, like the one that Money writer Shawn M. Carter has from The inCharge, lets you juice up wherever you are — and keeps you from becoming the person constantly on the lookout for the closest outlet.

Travel yoga mat

A travel yoga mat, like this foldable one from Gaiam that Entrepreneurs senior writer Cat Clifford uses, is both lighter and smaller than a regular one, which means it can fit into a purse or backpack and eliminate the need to lug around a larger bag. It doesn't get as heavy as regular mat either, even after a particularly sweaty class. That not only makes it easier to fit in plans before or after class, but lets you get your flow on anywhere you go.

Direct flights

When planning a vacation, booking a flight with a layover or two might seem like a pain-free way to save a few bucks on airfare. But delays and missed connections can add undue stress and frustration to your trip. For managing editor Goudreau, ponying up the extra fare for a direct flight is worth it — it eliminates so many potential headaches.

Don't miss: 5 ways to save more money in 2018

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