Sometimes it is genuinely difficult to find the ultimate balance between being sociable, and being sensible (saving money). When we think about saving money, and making sacrifices to do so we often assume we have to stay in every single weekend. This isn’t the case. Naturally, staying in for a couple weekends will help you to save money. But expecting to stay in every single weekend will not only be tedious, it’s unrealistic.
Contrary to popular belief, you can have a great social life and save money simultaneously. Here’s my top tips on how to do so;
1. Plan Ahead
It may make me sound terribly sad, but recently I have been planning my months ahead. If I know what I’m doing for the next four weekends, that allows me to budget my monthly wages accordingly. For example, this month I knew on payday weekend I’d be going to a bar with my friend, so I ensured I reserved enough money for that.
2. What to do?
The next obvious thing, is what do you do and where do you go on a tight budget? This question is so easy to answer. We live in London. There is a myriad of things to do that cost absolutely nothing. Museums in central London are free entry, the V&A is a favourite of mine. If you don’t fancy sauntering round a museum, there are always deals going on at restaurants. For example, my mobile tariff is Three and we have an app called Wuntu that offers discounts weekly. Most networks nowadays have similar apps, do some research and I’m sure you will prosper. Alternatively, you could go for a good old Nando’s (I fall back on this all the time!). Despite my biased love for Nando’s, restaurants that have a loyalty card system are great for when you are strapped for cash. You usually can get at least a free starter from it!
3. Be smart
Okay so your plans haven’t worked, and you’ve ended up in a super expensive restaurant / bar with a friend. You are panicking inside at the prospect of how much you might spend, and the guilt you’ll feel the next day. In this scenario, be smart. Do not order an alcoholic drink with your meal, instead have tap water. Have one main course that will fill you up, skip dessert. You are saving both money and calories.
Remember, as much as you are trying to save money, you also can’t put your life on hold. Meet up with friends, do things together. After all, the best things in life are free.