Having fun on a tight budget can be tough especially if you live in a big city or anywhere where a lot of traveling is required. However, we found 12 ways anyone – families, friends, couples, or singles – can have a great time while still meeting their strict budget guidelines.
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1. Find local events
Cities and local organizations frequently produce lists of upcoming events for the public. These range from movie nights and art festivals to community celebrations. Cost of entry is typically low or free – particularly for children – and the fun can last for hours.
2. Search for special restaurant deals
Find restaurants that offer discounts for birthdays or kids, or search for special restaurant celebrations that include meal discounts and promotions. Websites like KidsMealDeals.com can help locate particular deals, letting you have that night out without it killing your budget for the rest of the month.
3. Split costs with friends
Gather a group of like-minded, financially savvy friends and split the costs to have your fun and keep your money, too. Group discounts, split hotel room fees, and shared meals are great ways to travel and party with friends while saving money (not to mention cutting down on calories).
4. Seek out no-admission nature
Look for nearby nature scenery that requires no parking fees to enjoy. Just a few ideas include stargazing, playing at the park, stopping by the beach, finding a secluded hike in a national forest or logging trail, and setting up a picnic on your lawn.
5. Watch movies the cheap way
In addition to those community movie nights, look for other ways to catch movies without paying those rising ticket prices. Many local pubs or social organizations hold movie nights with low admission costs. Matinee options in the afternoon are also always less expensive than paying for an evening ticket.
6. Get some culture
Open the paper or conduct online searching to look for museums, conservatories, and art centers. These organizations frequent hold free days for kids or community members.
7. Join an online community
Instead of spending all your time on the common social networks, join an online community centered on a hobby, interest, or particular activity that you can practice and discuss with others. Crafter’s Community is an excellent, Pinterest-like example of the sort of thriving, healthy communities waiting in the Web.
8. Cut cable bills
Who needs cable? Watch shows/sports online and borrow DVDs from friends instead!
9. Create a home event
Make a game night, a scavenger challenge, or a beer pong table – any activity with no admission fee but plenty of fun times with family or friends.
10. Create anything
Practice your gardening skills or start a new crafting activity with easy material requirements. Make new décor, practice cooking skills – consider even setting up a store on eBay or Etsy.
11. Call for a backyard activity
Announce a weekly football game in your yard or a nearby park. Take the kids out for a family camping trip by the fence. Create homemade versions of horseshoes or cornhole games…the list is as long as warm days and your imagination.
12. Give back
Volunteering is a great way to find satisfaction, fulfillment, and fun activities all at once. Look up local opportunities like tutoring, cleaning, organizing, and construction work.
Tips for Saving Money
- Looking for more meaningful ways to save money over the long term? In addition to cutting back on the small costs, it’s also important to create a financial plan. A financial advisor can help you draft a financial plan to ensure you’re reaching your goals and getting ready for retirement. The SmartAdvisor matching tool can help you find a person to work with to meet your needs. First you’ll answer a series of questions about your situation and your goals. Then the program will narrow down your options to three fiduciaries who suit your needs. You can then read their profiles to learn more about them, interview them on the phone or in person and choose who to work with in the future. This allows you to find a good fit while the program does much of the hard work for you.
- Make sure you’ve chosen a good savings account so you’re not losing too much money to monthly fees and you’re getting a good return on your investment. Here’s SmartAsset’s ranking of the best savings accounts in 2018.