This isn’t your typical ‘shop in the sales’ savings blog. These five creative ways will save you money in places you might not have thought to look before.
We all want to save as much money as we can, as often as we can. After all, where’s the fun in throwing your hard-earned money down the drain? But saving money doesn’t always have to be about shopping in the reduced section at 11pm and sitting at home with the lights turned out (although both could do the trick!).
So, we’ve come up with five creative ways to help you save some pennies and pounds, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to miss out on the good life.
1. Drive with due diligence
If you drive a vehicle, fuel (along with car insurance and tax) is one of those unavoidable costs that you have to fork out for – no matter how much you might resent it. But, there are a few ways you can reduce the number of times you’re forced to top up though:
The harder you accelerate, the more fuel you burn through, so refrain from slamming the pedal down to the metal. For optimum fuel efficiency, they say it should take you around 15 seconds to get from standstill to 15mph.
Constantly fluctuating your speed can increase fuel usage by up to 50%, so try to maintain a steady speed.
Unless it’s needed for an emergency stop, try not to slam on your breaks – instead, gradually coming to a halt could help to conserve fuel.
Slow down. When you get into the realms of 50mph+, the quicker you drive, the more fuel you burn.
Yes, these all may be small changes, but even if it saves you just £3 in fuel a week, that’s £156 over the course of a year!
2. Ditch the plastic
When you get paid, withdraw an amount you’re happy to spend in cash each week, leave the rest in your account, and park the plastic at home. It’s easy to get carried away when you spend on your plastic as you don’t see the money physically dwindling down – and thanks to the convenience of contactless payments, with the flick of your wrist, the cash is out of your account.
You might be wondering how this one will save you money, but you’ll surprise yourself. Seeing your notes and coins diminish in front of you will soon get you questioning whether that spontaneous Costa coffee is really needed, or if that new bag is worth the price tag.
3. Have food handy
Whether it’s on your lunch break at work or while you’re out and about at the weekend, unexpected food purchases can play havoc with your savings. You might not bat an eyelid at the time, but that £3.50 meal deal, 60p chocolate bar and £2 tub of mango will soon start to add up, and they can all be easily avoided.
When you’re doing your weekly food shop, buy a bag of something that isn’t perishable and can be easily stored in your bag, car or work drawers. Then you can dive right in whenever you get peckish, and save spending money on one-off ‘hangry’ purchases.
4. Bank awkwardly
Advancements in modern day banking are great and come with a long list of benefits, but the convenience of it makes it all too easy to spend, spend, spend. So, you could bank with someone less convenient – unconventional, we know.
A less mainstream bank may not have branches near to where you live or awkward opening hours – either way, it’ll make your cash, not inaccessible, but harder to get to. This might make you question each withdrawal that little bit more, and in turn reduce the amount you decide deduct.
5. Don’t be too keen
You’ve been thinking about buying an electric toothbrush for some time. You finally decide to take the plunge. You’re at your local shopping mall and you see one you like on the shelves. You buy it.
You then tell your friend about your purchase and they say “you know you can get it from here for £10 less.” Heartbreaking.
Whether it’s a toothbrush, flight, watch or top, never ever buy the first thing you see – you’ll almost certainly find it cheaper elsewhere if you have a proper look. Admittedly, this’ll take up a bit more of your time while you shop around to bag the best deal, but it’s worth it if you save a few quid, right?
So, there are our five alternative ways to save some money. What are your most lucrative hacks? We’d love to hear them! Just head over to our Facebook or Twitter pages and get sharing the money-saving love.
Disclaimer: All information and links are correct at the time of publishing.