Saving money is a responsible financial decision. And just because it’s something you should do, doesn’t mean it can’t be fun.
If you approach saving money with the right attitude, it’ll seem like less of a chore and more of a smart long-term strategy to reach a goal, like going on a dream vacation or buying a house. We’ve put together five tips for having fun while you save money. By using these ideas, you’ll make the money-saving process a lot more pleasant.
1. Find Ways to Have Fun for Less
Maybe you usually go out with friends on Friday nights. You might like to grab dinner and then hit a movie or go dancing. But those fun nights out can add up. To help rein in your spending, remember that what makes it a fun evening is spending time with the people you love. It doesn’t matter what you do — you’ll enjoy it.
To cut back on the cost of nights out with friends, suggest a night in. You can still have a good time without spending extra money. Gather a few friends and try these ideas for a fun night in. Just make sure you rotate responsibilities so one person doesn’t always get stuck with more work or higher cost tasks.
- Put one person in charge of making dinner.
- Find a movie or series no one’s seen yet to stream.
- Have another person bring dessert.
You can also enjoy social time by getting active instead of paying to go somewhere to see friends. These ideas won’t cost a thing, and you can also nab some exercise time. You might even cancel that gym membership (another way to save money) if you can schedule enough active get-togethers. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Find a local park and go for a hike.
- Complete an exercise or yoga video together.
- Bike on local paths and trails.
You can also save money on date nights. Have a friendly competition with your partner to see who can spend the least amount of money while having the most fun. Take turns planning cheap date nights that cost no more than a few bucks. Here are a few options:
- Visit a free tourist destination you’ve never gone to before.
- Walk around a street festival and people watch.
- Play board games and watch a romantic movie.
2. Read Financial Blogs and Listen to Financial Podcasts
The more you know, the more you’ll understand why saving for the long term is so critical. By learning about things like budgeting, organizing your finances, and investing, you’ll increase your financial IQ. You can gain a better appreciation for what saving strategies work with your lifestyle.
You can also keep informed about trends that could influence your savings, such as market downturns, and get new ideas on how to protect your money. To fit these resources into your schedule, read financial blogs during your lunch break or listen to financial podcasts while you exercise or drive to work.
3. Have Other People Save With You
Doing things with others can make those things feel more fun. That’s why so many people train for marathons in groups. It’s more enjoyable when you know everyone’s in it together and you have peers to encourage you when you feel like giving up.
Recruit family members or friends who also want to start saving and make a pact. Agree on a few basic ways to save, such as not eating lunch out every day or canceling your cable or food delivery service. Then, help hold each other accountable every month.
Compare strategies for saving and get ideas from the person or group you’re saving with. You can also create friendly competitions, like who can go without buying meals out the longest.
4. Use the PSECU Savings App to Help You Along
Apps offer a smart and simple way to hold yourself accountable when trying something new. Good apps will make saving seem effortless and even turn it into a game where you can reward yourself for establishing solid financial habits.
Our savings app does all this and more. Here are ideas for making saving fun with the app:
- Try our “Scratch” feature, which lets you “scratch” the screen to encourage you to save a specific amount.
- Employ the emoji function to give yourself a visual representation of what you’re saving for, such as an airplane emoji for a big trip.
- Share your savings goals on Facebook and update your family and friends on your progress.
5. Motivate Yourself by Setting Milestones
Having something to work toward will keep you on track with your savings goals. Rewarding yourself as you hit new milestones will keep you motivated. Try these rewards:
- Invite your best friend over for dinner when you hit your latest savings goal.
- Splurge on something small once a month, like a new book or latte at a coffee shop, so you still feel like you’re treating yourself.
- Set an overall savings goal for each quarter, and celebrate by cooking your favorite meal when you hit it.
When you make saving fun, you’re more likely to stick with it and build a cushion for the long term. Learn more about managing your money by visiting our WalletWorks page.