Eating out is my guilty pleasure. When I first moved to London, I was honestly eating out 2, 3, sometimes even 4 times a week. Not to mention after work drinks which happened multiple times a week. And the hot chocolate I bought everyday from the cafe in my office, despite the fact there was a free coffee machine on every floor. Also, everything in London costs money.
There was no way I was going to be able to save dolla to travel if I kept this up.
1. How much are you spending on your morning coffee?
Okay, so I don’t drink coffee because I can’t handle the caffeine lol, but I was buying a hot chocolate every single morning in the office. I was too much of a hot beverage snob to just get the free stuff from the machine upstairs. “It doesn’t taste the same!!!!” I used to moan as I sipped on a perfectly lovely FREE chocomilk. “And the cups are, like, half the size. And where’s the whipped cream?”
Get over it.
That £2.50 (+ an extra 50p for whipped cream?!) I spent on a hot chocolate equated to £15 a week. Over the course of 52 weeks, that’s £780 a year. (I’m gunna be honest, I’ve never actually calculated that before and I’m literally in SHOCK. What the F? That’s an absurd amount of money!?!?!?!)
2. You probably don’t need that t-shirt which looks just like that other t-shirt you have
I’m not saying I never buy clothes ever. But after realising that the majority of my purchases were spur-of-the-moment decisions, I started adopting a 14 day approach where I would leave the item and see if I still wanted it in two weeks. I found that about 90% of the time, by the end of two weeks I no longer wanted whatever it was I so desperately wanted in the first place.
A cheaper way to find cool new clothes is to have a look in charity shops. Most of my favourite clothes are from charity shops! You can get some really cool finds. Don’t knock it before you’ve tried it!
You could even try selling some of the stuff you have at the back of your wardrobe to get some extra cash.
3. Drinking habits
It’s no secret, Brits love to drink. I enjoy going for bevs with my friends after work or at the weekend as much as the next person, but alcoholic beverages are almost always going to be more expensive than their non-alcoholic counterparts. Absolutely still go and socialise but occasionally consider swapping the £8 glass of prosecco for a £2 lemonade.
4. Subscriptions to Spotify, Netflix, Amazon Prime?
How much would you really miss these things if you didn’t have them? I had a Spotify subscription for ages on the basis of I LOVE MUSIC SO MUCH I WOULD LITERALLY FALL APART WITHOUT IT but, come on, the adverts aren’t that bad. Now I’m saving that £9.99 a month to give me an extra £120 at the end of the year.
5. Start a “travel fund”
When you start a travel fund and see it begin to grow, you’ll become addicted. Make a habit out of putting some dolla in once a week/month, whatever. In fact, chuck in what you would have spent on coffee.
6. Spend less on eating out
I’m feeling awkward as I write this because I bloody love to eat out (curse you Wagamama’s chicken katsu curry!!!!!). But when I realised I was eating out more than I was eating in … things were getting bad.
My name is Bobby and I’m addicted to going out for food.
I realised that by just eating lunch and dinner out one day less a week, I could save about £20 a week. That’s over £1000 a year.
7. Get fewer haircuts
I sound like such a killjoy don’t I? But honestly you’ll be thanking me later when you’re on a plane headed somewhere FAB. I get my hair cut a couple of times a year, if I’m lucky. And I often get model cuts (where trainees cut your hair for a fraction of the price) to save the pennies. And I swear no-one actually needs to get their hair colour done every 6-8 weeks like they tell you.
Even if you get a trim every two months instead of every month, that’s still a huge saving when you consider how expensive hair styling can be!
And there you go, my top tips for saving money, whether it’s for travelling or not!