No matter how hard you try, there are times when you can find yourself short on money. An unexpected bill, redundancy, or another emergency can also leave us with liquidity problems.
Thankfully, there are plenty of things we can do to save money so that we don’t end up with days or weeks of the month left when we run out.
Check Your Cupboards
While it may not always seem like it, the cost of food shopping can quickly add up. You’ll know this if you’ve ever been to the supermarket and bought “just a couple of things” but then had to pay significantly more than you expected.
If you search through your kitchen cupboards, you’ll likely find plenty of food you can use. Remember that tinned goods can usually be used years after they were purchased, provided there is no evidence of damage or bulging. Dried goods like flour, rice and pasta also last a long time, so you’ll be able to eat these safely.
The United States Food and Drug Administration has said that food stored in a freezer at (or below ) 0° F (-18° C) will remain safe indefinitely, provided that it is cooked properly.
So instead of heading to the supermarket, check what you already have at home first.
Look for Cheap and Free Entertainment
Whether you’re heading to the cinema, playing a game at home, or visiting a theme park, most entertainment costs money. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways that you can save money while still having fun.
If you enjoy watching movies, check out the free trials offered by many streaming services. Companies like Disney let users try out their platforms for free before committing to spending money on a subscription. This lets you see if you enjoy the content and platform first.
For lovers of video games, there are now hundreds of great quality free-to-play games available on most platforms and in most genres. The classic mobile games like Fruit Ninja, Angry Birds and Candy Crush Saga are, of course, popular options.
However, there are now plenty of free-to-play versions of paid-for games like PokerStars, Call of Duty, and Forza. This means you have an almost unlimited choice of games that you can enjoy without having to spend a single penny.
For activities like theme parks and movie theaters that do cost money, it’s unlikely you can get them for free, but you’ll often be able to find a discount. For example, certain cinemas offer reduced rates for screenings out of peak time, while theme parks may offer you a discount for booking online.
Find Coupons, Discounts, and Items on Sale
Sometimes there’s no getting away from the fact that we need to spend money. You still need to eat, wash your hair, clean your house, and wear clothes. So for the things that you do have to buy, look for coupons, discounts, and sales to help bring the cost down.
Most supermarkets run promotions all the time, so keep your eyes peeled for any reductions on the products you need to buy.
Additionally, coupons issued by manufacturers are another great way you can save money. These companies publish coupons in magazines, local newspapers and on their website in the hopes that it will encourage you to try the product and then buy it more in the future.
Often, this means you can legally walk out of a supermarket with several products you haven’t paid for (though, you still need to take them to the checkout).
Don’t worry if you can’t find any coupons or price reductions. There’s another way you can save money on just about everything.
Several credit card companies issue cards that offer cashback on your spending, meaning you receive a rebate on your bill. Depending on where you live, the rate could be anywhere between 0.1% and 5%, but whatever you’re offered, it’s free money that you wouldn’t have otherwise saved.
Even if you only make a small saving on each of the items on this list, when adding together you’ll soon see your bank account draining at a much slower rate.