How difficult is saving money? It’s not easy and there are very few people who understand the art of saving. I often see people giving tips on saving money, but not many of them target youngsters and that’s the intention of this article, to give some ideas to both students and working people.
People talk about refinancing mortgages, but young people don’t have one. Another commonly talked about thing is not to use ATMs because of the fees, but how many college students actually pay ATM fees? Most banks provide free withdrawals.
Here is a compilation of a list of things to do to save at least about $200 per month, and that too – without ever feeling deprived. If you do things right, you will never feel like you’re missing out on something.
Dinner – Going out for dinner with a group of friends can be loads of fun. But after eating your fill without bothering to look at the prices, paying the bill is certainly not fun. If you spend around $50 per meal, you’re down $100 with just two dinners.
You can reduce that by ordering smart. Instead of ordering an entrée for $20 or so, order a dinner salad for $10 or $15. Just limit yourself to one cocktail instead of two. Split a desert with a friend or don’t have one. Saving on eating out can really make a difference and you don’t have to stop eating out.
Coffee Outings – Lattes anyone? I know you love them and you drink at least one per day. At $5 each, it amounts to $35 per week – just for coffee. A simple change can help here. Instead of buying them, make them yourself. Just buy a mug and keep some milk in the refrigerator. Mix 3 parts coffee and 2 parts milk. You can flavor your latte with a Sugar Free Caramel Syrup. You don’t really need espresso, as this itself tastes wonderful. Some days, when you feel desperate to have one, coffee house is certainly open for you.
Bars – Drinks and friends go together and it is no fun drinking alone. But going out for a drink can be really expensive! Especially so when you spend a night out and forget the number of drinks you have. Why not have a couple of drinks at home before hitting the bars. A couple of drinks less in a bar means you save a lot, even if you party just twice a month.
Cell Phones – This is where most people go wrong – paying for plans with too many minutes than is actually required. Get into plans that provide unlimited nights or weekends and talk to your heart’s content during that time, at no cost to you. Remember, going over the minutes provided in the plan can be very expensive.
DVDs – Buying DVDs is something we all do but renting them can work out cheaper. Even if you buy a couple of DVDs every month, renting will be cheaper, as there are many rentals offering them at around $9 or so a month. If you want to go to the movies, try and do that when there are promotions running. Just a little control can take you a long way in getting into the habit of saving, which will help you throughout your life.
If you can put in just a little bit of effort to bring in these lifestyle changes, you will be able to save on dining out, bars, coffee, cell phones and movies/DVDs. Enjoy everything you have always done. Go to the movies, use a cell phone, drink coffee, visit the bars with your friends and have drinks but still manage to save at least $200 per month. Believe me, if you consciously try and implement these subtle changes, you will soon find that you’re not missing out on anything at all and you are not feeling deprived either.
Now, there are lots of things you can do with the savings. Want to buy a new outfit? Saving to buy a ring? Need to pay for something? The options of spending that money you saved are limitless. Go out and enjoy – while you save.