Many people have the idea that being frugal and saving your money means that you have to lead a boring life of sitting at home making budgets, counting pennies and staring at the wall.
However, this is absolutely not true. If you are saving for a financial goal or to pay off debt it doesn’t mean that you need to cut out your social life completely!
Although going out for drinks, meals and shopping with your friends is very expensive, there are other ways to spend time with the people you love without needing to splurge.
Dinner Parties Instead of Restaurant Meals
Eating out in restaurants is expensive, but you can have the same experience for much less by inviting your friends over to your home for a dinner party.
Cook a meal which is delicious but uses cheap ingredients, such as chili and rice, curry, stew or casserole. You can even have the event be a potluck and invite your friends to bring a few snacks of their own.
Buying wine from the liquor store and drinking it at home is much cheaper than cracking open a bottle in a restaurant.
Have some fun decorating your dining room and lighting candles and you will have all of the fun of dining out without the huge bill at the end of the night.
Movie Nights Instead of Movie Theatre Outing
Going to see a movie with your friends or family is lots of fun, but when you add up the rising price of tickets, popcorn, soda and chocolate bars as well as the price of gas and parking to get there, it can make a huge dent in your budget.
Instead, enjoy an exciting new release or an old classic by inviting your friends and family over for a movie night.
Set up as many comfy pillows, chairs and couches to lounge on as you can find and pop up a huge bowl of microwaveable popcorn.
The few dollars that you will spend on a movie rental and snacks is a fraction of what it would cost to watch the film in the theater!
Other Free Things to Do
Here are a few other free or cheap activities that you can do with your friends when you are saving money:
- Going for picnics in the park.
- Attending free concerts or festivals.
- Walking on local nature trails.
- Doing crafts together.
- Baking desserts.
- Visiting free museums and art galleries in your city.
Be sure to tell your friends about your goal to save money so that they understand why you are cutting back your expenses.
If they are good friends, they will support you in your goals and be happy to enjoy free and cheap activities together.
Cutting back your budget doesn’t mean cutting back your fun!