Perhaps one of your best options to save money is to take advantage of the resources a bank has to offer. Because they have a large amount of capitol, banks can use this capitol to really help you save money, and they can do it in a number of ways.
The simplest option that you should consider is a savings account. Usually a basic savings account does not give you the ability to write checks against its balance, and it often has a decent interest rate. Savings accounts like this are good if you must save money in the short term to make a big purchase, or if you would like to have an emergency fund available. Try linking it up to your checking account, and set up a regular direct deposit that will put a percentage of your income into the savings account.
You can also open what is often called a money market savings account. These accounts give you some flexibility regarding how often you can access the money in the account. For example, usually banks will allow you to write three checks a month from this account. This is a good option to have, especially if think you need to be able to access all of your money and don't like to have some of it tied up. A money market account is usually a high interest account that pays you interest based on the current interest rates in the money markets.
Another common option is to make a time deposit or take out a certificate of deposit. These accounts often have the highest interest rates available because the banks want to encourage their clients to keep the money in the bank for the entirety of the time deposit's existence. When making a time deposit, you agree that you won't take out the money for a set period of time, and the bank rewards you with a much better interest rate. If you're patient and have no problem not being able to access your money for three months, six months, or several years, then a certificate of deposit is a very good option for you to consider.
Finally, though you wouldn't think of it, the checking account, despite its use to often pay bills and handle expenses, can be a source of savings as well. Many banks offer incentives to their clients to make use of their checking account services. For example, some banks will round up all debit card purchase on your checking account, and transfer the remaining cents to your savings account. Every purchase you make, then, goes towards helping bump up your savings.
The point here is that you have several options available to you regarding how to save money with banks. And because the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation insures many banks, you do not have to worry about losing the money you have in savings and checking accounts. Since the FDIC began in 1934, no one has lost any insured funds. In fact, it's safer there than it is in your house, and in saving account, it's actually making you a little more money.
For more information, check out the FDIC's website, which has information for consumers regarding deposit insurance and constantly updated advice about managing your bank accounts.