6 (Easy) Ways to Save Money in 2020
Think these cold winter temperatures will last forever? That’s a hard “no.” Your warm-weather vacation will get here faster than you know it. Good thing, then, there are some simple things you can do now to help you save money. That way, you can be the one sharing those beachy pics on Instagram and not envying everyone else.
Look for Sales
When you need new clothes, don’t go for the cheapest options you can find. Instead, choose quality over quantity, so the pieces you buy will last more than one season. Additionally, make it a point to look for sales at your favorite stores. Case in point: Plan ahead for your fall or winter vacation with a high-quality parka or as an unexpected gift for that friend who always seems to be cold.
Meal Prep for the Week Ahead
Everyone knows eating your meals at home saves a ton of money. Want to save even more? Then consider meal planning. Don’t leave deciding what to eat for each meal up to chance. Rather, jot down the meals you plan to make during the week, as well as the groceries you’ll need for each dish before you hit the grocery store.
By planning ahead, you’ll avoid ordering last-minute takeout and/or taking multiple trips to the store for that one item you didn’t know you needed, saving you time, energy and money in the process.
Track Your Spending
Wondering why your checking account balance is low? Well, all those impulse purchases add up over time. Whether you save money for that big vacation, for holidays or just because, be mindful of where your money goes. To get started, use a free budgeting app like Mint or You Need a Budget (YNAB), so you can see how you spend your money as well as learn ways to curb your bad financial habits. Ultimately, it’s all about figuring out how much money you can spend based on what you earn and to adjust accordingly.
Explore Your Own Backyard
Visiting exotic destinations always makes for a fun time. But if you need to save money, try sticking closer to home and instead take a weekend trip up north. Indeed, the proof is in the pudding, as experts say taking short getaways tends to make people happier compared to a long-planned vacation.
With that in mind, choose cities and towns a few hours from home so you can spend more time exploring and less time trapped in the car. Make sure to visit any number of unique and quaint mom-and-pop shops, diners and locally-owned coffee shops to get a real feel for the area. Bonus: These types of trips often end up costing less, too.
Pare Down Your Subscriptions
Between Hulu, Spotify, Disney+, Netflix, HBO Go and Amazon Prime, you may be paying for far more subscription services than you need. What don’t you use? What do you no longer need? For instance, if you aren’t an avid TV watcher in the summer, then make it a priority to cut out the extras.
Plus, when you have subscriptions to several different services that are similar in nature, do you really need them all? Be cognizant of your spending and you’ll watch those savings add up fast.
Bring Your Lunch to Work
It’s easy to justify eating lunch out since you’ll inevitably pay lower prices compared to at dinner time. Still, even if all your colleagues routinely head out for their lunch break, make it a habit to bring something to eat from home. To add to your savings, take what you would’ve spent on your lunch bill, including tip, and transfer it to your savings account, so you can see your money grow.
Save Money All Year Long
No one says you have to stop doing the things you love to save money this year. But if you make a habit out of meal prepping, cutting out unwanted or superfluous subscription services and taking advantage of seasonal sales, you’re bound to spend far less money and see your savings add up.