Tips on reducing your weekly expenditure so that you can save money for holidays
The following are strategies that I have used to reduce my weekly spend. Hopefully some of these might work for you!
Also, you may find my Savings plan for holidays blog post useful. This is how I manage to save an amount each work for holidays. When I first worked out my savings plan, I realised that I was spending WAY too much on take-away food every week. It also forced me to have a long hard look at what I consider ‘necessary’ spending.
Save money by reducing your living expenses
- If you eat take away food, set a goal to stop for a period of time. I personally found this one really hard as I am fairly time poor. It’s a great way to ensure you have$20 spare each week to save for a holiday
- Be realistic about housing affordability. Can you downsize your home? or possibly move to a cheaper suburb? a cheaper city or town? Is a large house worth having no extra money?
- Switch supermarkets. I can honestly say that for our family of four (plus pets), my weekly shopping bill went from $210 to $160 per week just by switching from Woolworths to Aldi.
- If you have a skill, consider swapping services with your friends. Cartons of beer are a standard swap for favours in Australia and it ensures you never have to spend money on alcohol.
- Quit smoking! As well as being incredibly bad for your health, smoking is REALLY expensive. If you can afford to smoke, you can absolutely afford to take a luxury holiday were you to quit for just one year.
- Shop around for insurance quotes. This is easily done online and I saved $280 dollars swapping my house and contents over to a different insurer.
- Christmas and birthdays have not cost me a cent for three years now due to both credit card reward points and frequent flyer points attached to spending. You do of course, need the self control not to overspend on the credit card and stick to your weekly budget.
- Cancel that Gym membership if you are not using it or only going once a fortnight. If you visit the gym to use a treadmill or bike, you can easily do this kind of exercise at home whilst walking the dog.
Save money by changing the way you currently do things
- Set aside money for annual expenses such as rego every week. You won’t have the money for them otherwise and any holiday savings gets eaten up when the bill becomes due.
- Change your mindset so that saving for a holiday is a priority. For e.g. do NOT buy yourself takeaway for lunch unless you have already transferred your weekly savings into your holiday savings account.
- Make too much food for dinner as it forces you to eat leftovers for lunch the next day. This works great for me as I find I’m too tired in the morning to make my lunch and would end up buying takeaway.
- If you have anything smaller than $5 in your purse or wallet, put it in your money box every evening. This also ensures you don’t have a few dollars to buy donuts when you walk past Wendy’s at the shopping centre.
Save money by changing your mindset
- Acknowledge that if you can only afford to put away $20 a week that this quite ok. Remind yourself that this equals $1,040 at the end of the year. Research what you can do with this and keep it in the back of your mind…..ps. this will get you a sale fare to Thailand with some extra spending money.
- Remind yourself you don’t NEED to buy the latest gadgets. You don’t need a wrist band to tell you that you slept crap, or that your heartrate is optimal for weight loss.
- Say ‘Yes’ to overtime and if you have hobbies that can bring in some extra money, make the most of it.
- Avoid instant spending gratification. This means waiting at least a week before buying something expensive. A lot of the time, you will find the novelty wears off and you don’t actually want that item as much as you thought you did. Sometimes you realise you can happily make do with second hand.
- Don’t be fooled by sales. Yes, half price jeans are a great bargain….but do you need another pair of jeans?
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