Between social media and all the travel blogs out there, I’m always finding new places I want to see.
Okay, so I should probably save up a little cash first. I don’t exactly have a massive bank account just sitting around! I have to figure out how to pay for all those dream vacations, first! And without picking up another job or two, I’m looking at my own spending for ways to save up for that next trip.
So if you’re also looking for ways to save up for your next trip, here are some easy ways to cut back.
Utilize Public Transportation
This depends on where you live, but if you live in a city with decent public transportation options, it could save you some cash in the long run. Compare the cost of driving and parking to the cost of taking the subway or a bus.
Driving everywhere can start to really add up, and it’s not just about the cost of gas, either. Parking is the largest single expense for vehicle owners. This is exceptionally true if you accidentally get the occasional parking ticket!
Eat Out Less
Going out to eat or ordering takeout adds up really quickly. That $30 meal you just had for dinner would likely have been made at home for $10. If you tend to dine out a lot, you could save a ton of money by doing it less often.
If time is an issue, there are plenty of recipes out there that can be made in less than half an hour. Even better, find a recipe that you can just throw in a slow cooker, and it’ll be done by the time you get home!
Saving Money on Your Grocery Bill
While we’re talking about cooking food at home, we’ve got to talk about that grocery bill. The cost of groceries has definitely gone up. Although it’s a necessary bill, we can at least save a few dollars here and there with careful planning.
Don’t go to the grocery store before you know what you need. Make a plan for your meals for the week, and then make yourself a list. Here’s the most important part: you have to stick to the list. No impulse buys.
While making that list, pay attention to what is on sale and try planning meals around those items. And if you’re lucky enough to live near a store that has free or cheap online ordering, take advantage of it. This way, you’ll be even less tempted by those impulse purchases.
Lower Those Utility Bills, Too
Utility bills probably take up a good bit of your budget. Things like electricity and water are necessary, so this isn’t an expense you can completely cut out. But, you can do a few things to lower them, at least.
Taking shorter showers, turning the water off when you brush your teeth, and installing water-saving showerheads are some of the easiest ways to save on a water bill. Don’t run the dishwasher until it is full, and collect rainwater to use in the garden.
To save money on energy costs, lower the thermostat when no one is home, or switch to a smart thermostat that can run on a schedule. Replace the air filter on your HVAC so it can run more efficiently, and add weatherstripping to doors and windows. And when you’re not using things, unplug them! Devices are like vampires. They’re still using electricity when plugged in, even when not in use.
Cancel Subscriptions You Don’t Need
Alright, this one’s a doozy. How many subscriptions do you have right now? When you sign up for one, it probably doesn’t seem like a lot of money. Unfortunately, that’s how they get you! The more subscriptions you have, the more you’re shelling out. That money just automatically leaves your bank account every month, whether you used the service or not.
This could mean subscription boxes filled with makeup, magazines, meal delivery subscriptions, and even “subscribe and save” items on Amazon. These items might be cool, but we all know they aren’t necessities. It can also mean subscriptions for apps, cloud storage, music streaming, and online gaming services. You have likely even forgotten about some of them… but they aren’t forgetting, and they’re still getting their money each month.
Streaming service subscriptions might be the most common of all. These days, many people have so many streaming services that they’re back to paying as much as they were for cable… or more. Ask yourself if you really need all of them and if you actually use all of them all on a regular basis. Cancel the ones you aren’t using. You can always sign back up again later.
If you need help tracking down forgotten subscriptions, there are plenty of free apps that can help. Check out these helpful options.