Many people begin to worry about what living frugally might look like. People picture all sorts of crazy things: rooms with no furniture, ramen cups for dinner, or nights spend clipping out coupons from magazines.
The truth is, buttoning up on your spending habits a bit doesn’t have to change your entire life. It just involves being honest about what you do or don’t need in your life.
It can be very easy to live an exciting life on a frugal budget, and in fact, it can be healthy to separate money from happiness in your lifestyle.
Ready to save money and live frugally, but don’t know how? It’s a problem many heavy-spenders face. Read on, and we’ll walk you through some amazing tips that can help curtail your spending and get you on the proper path to frugal living.
Look for Deals and Free Events
There are so many different things happening out there in the world. At any given time, there are likely hundreds of free or discounted events happening in your city. And these more frugal-minded activities can be just as much of a blast, or even more, than some of your more expensive nights out.
Many people just aren’t in the habit of looking for less expensive alternatives to their social plans. Some people don’t know where to look. Check online or in local papers for events listings.
You’ll be surprised to find that many publications take the time to organize easy to check listings of free and affordable events in your area.
You can have a great time at a free concert in the park, for example. But before you can take advantage of such opportunities, you need to make yourself aware that they’re happening.
Similarly, restaurants that you like and already go to may offer certain deals or discounts at certain times. Don’t be afraid to ask about cost-saving offers, most establishments will be happy to share their deals with you. This means you can enjoy your favorite spots while keeping some extra money to yourself.
Be Smart About Your Vacations
You may feel like the first thing that might get cut out of a frugal-minded budget is vacations.
But this isn’t true in the slightest. Let’s face the facts, after all: everyone needs to take some time away. Neglecting to give yourself any downtime is not going to help you in the long run. The more important change you need to make is not whether you do vacation, but how you go about it.
For example, don’t finance your whole vacation out of pocket. There are a number of different credit cards that offer travel rewards. Spend enough on your normal expenses and your new vacation could end up almost totally covered.
There are ways to cut corners on your other travel expenses as well. If you’re visiting a town where you have friends, consider asking if you can crash in their spare room and spend some time together.
If you are going to get a hotel, there are a few strategies you can employ as well. Some couples and families pony up a little money up front to get a hotel in the downtown area. More expensive? Yes. But that cost is well worth all the money you might save on transportation depending on the length of your stay.
If you’re down for a little bit of adventure, you can also hotel hop. Most hotels will offer significantly discounted prices the day of booking if they have available rooms. These hotels would rather make some money then have a room stay vacant.
If you don’t mind booking a new place each night the day of, you can save big bucks by taking advantage of this reality.
Shop During the Right Seasons
Sometimes all it takes to live frugally is a little bit of forward thinking. If you’ve been around on this planet for long enough, you’ve probably noticed that stores seem to roll out items (and higher prices!) right around the time that most consumers need them.
Summer clothing is rolled out at the end of winter, and winter clothes are rolled out at the end of summer. This is true for essentially any seasonal or time-based purchase. You can actually save a huge amount of money by simply planning ahead and buying during the less-busy season.
Check Out – 9 Savvy Family Financial Planning Tips
For example, the days after Christmas is an amazing time to go shopping for gifts or other things you may need, as most stores have excess stock severely discounted. If you know how to make money online fast, this can be the perfect time to spend that extra income on some excellent playthings.
It’s not all about clothing and gifts either. If there is a product that you’re interested in purchasing, do a little research. You may discover that whatever you’re in the market for is a little bit cheaper during a certain part of the year.
You can use this information to help plan your purchases and keep your budget clear and in the green.
Living a Smart and Frugal Lifestyle
Many people associate a frugal lifestyle with the absence of enjoyment and activity.
But a truly frugal lifestyle does not involve cutting out things you enjoy but simply suggests approaching them in a more cost-minded way.
The above tips can be a great way to help cut down costs while still making the same purchases you normally would.
Need more financial advice? Check out our blog for more helpful tips and tricks.