10 Easy Ways to Save
- 1. Save on minutes
1. Save on minutes
One place to look for savings is your cell phone plan. We're not suggesting that you ditch your phone -- far from it. However, how many minutes do you really use? And is your current monthly package truly meeting your needs? Always shop around before you commit to an agreement. Better yet, don't commit to a contract that will tie you down or slap you in the face with penalties for leaving early. By shopping around you can see what options are available -- not just with the competition but with your current provider. Use this comparison shopping information as your negotiation leverage and ask for a better deal. To learn more, check out Shopping for a Cell Phone Plan? This is as Easy as it Gets.
Your savings: about $180 per year if you get the basic 150 minute voice and data plan.
- 2. Cut the phone cord
2. Cut the phone cord
Do you have landline at home that seems to be collecting dust? Maybe it's time to donate it to Goodwill and free yourself from unnecessary expenses. Nowadays, telecommunications options have multiplied. Not only are there mobile phones, we now have GoogleTalk, Skype, Vonage and other VoIP services that cost out to be a lot cheaper than a standard landline. If you have a penchant for making long-distance calls VoIP is definitely for you because calling out of your calling area and internationally is more affordable than ever. The savings experience extends to mobile phones as well. So, if you want to make free long-distance calls, yes, there's an app for that: Viber. To find more ways to save read
You Can Save $100 a Week. Here's How.
Your savings: at least $25 a month.
- 3. Get rid of your TV bill
3. Get rid of your TV bill
More isn't always better. For some, buying all the bells and whistles that come with specialty channels seems like a great idea -- at first. But after awhile, they discover that they don't actually watch all those extra channels.
If you're looking for places to save forgoing cable TV is a pain-free place to save money. If you're still jonesing to see some of your favourite shows, you can still have it. Read our story How to Get Your Favourite Shows Without Paying for Cable to find out how. You can also rent new and old releases from your local library for free. Or, even better, spend quality time with your loved ones without a TV.
Your savings: This will vary according to your current package, but the savings will be at least $41 a month or $492 a year.
- 4. Doubling your deductible
4. Doubling your deductible
When you need it having good insurance coverage is a lifesaver. On the other hand, paying your monthly premiums over time, unfortunately, can be very expensive. One way to save on insurance is to double your deductibles. See our story Saving on Auto Insurance: A Few Useful Tips.
Your savings: possibly up to 40% off your monthly premiums.
- 5. Go on a staycation
5. Go on a staycation
Are you desperate for a vacation but put one off because you think it will be too expensive? If so, plan a staycation instead. For ideas, read Building a Staycation Package. By relaxing in your surrounding area you could save a lot of cash and still catch some much needed R&R. Check out discount sites like Living Social and Groupon to see what great local deals are available. If you do feel like venturing outside of your zone book a bus or train at least three weeks in advance. Booking earlier will allow you to maximize your savings. It's even possible to get bus trips for as low as $1.
(See our stories Try the Train this Summer and Roam Eastern Canada on the Cheap With Greyhound.)
Your savings: the price of a staycation will be beat any almost all-inclusive resort price by at least $1000.
- 6. Save money on groceries
6. Save money on groceries
A shopper who shops with coupons is a smart shopper. So don't be shy use them. As well, before you even get to the store read those circulars that come in the mail to see what's on special for the week. Plus, this is not exactly a money saving piece of advice, but it will ensure you get the best deals and the products you want: Shop on Wednesdays. For more useful tips, check out our article on Saving Money when Grocery Shopping.
Your savings: $300 or more a year.
- 7. Save money on clothes
7. Save money on clothes
Who doesn't like dressing well? But dressing well doesn't mean that you it should cost you an arm and a leg. For tips on how you can buy designer labels on the cheap, check out Shop Like a Movie Star In fact, clothing is a great area to find savings. Like shopping for groceries buy your clothes on sale. Buying inexpensive basics and investment pieces that will last you for years is a smart way to spend your hard-earned dollars. Taking good care of your clothes will also allow you to spend less and enjoy your favourite garments longer.
Your savings: $300 or more a year.
- 8. Save money on entertainment
8. Save money on entertainment
The best things in life are free -- sort of. Believe it or not, there are a ton of fun and entertaining ideas that you can do, even with the most minuscule budget. Read Summer on a Shoestring for some great ideas. It all depends on how creative and adventurous you are. To get you started try some of these ideas, and they're not necessarily summer specific.
Your savings: depending on how creative you are, you could save at least $300 a year.
- 9. Beauty is in the eye of the saver
9. Beauty is in the eye of the saver
You don't have to suffer financially to look beautiful. Check out Bargain Babe Says You Can Look Good at the Drug Store for some pain-free makeup tips that your wallet will love. Shopping at warehouse sales, for instance Revlon, can prove to be time well spent. And don't forget to make your makeup work double duty. Your lipstick can double up as rouge for your cheeks and some hand creams can also work as lip balm, hair serum, cuticle protector and even help keep your eyebrows in place.
- 10. Gym schwym
10. Gym schwym
Exercise is a very important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but you already knew that. But paying for a gym membership that you don't or barely use is just wasteful. See our story Be Brutally Honest When Making a Resolution. Stop if you commit this personal finance faux pas. Instead, pick up your running shoes and go running. If running isn't your cup of tea pop in a fitness DVD and workout at home, or download a free fitness app like Nike Training Club and take your fitness routine outside, weather permitting. If you miss the camaraderie that group fitness can bring, create your own fitness club by enlisting like-minded friends, neighbours or colleagues.
Your savings: approximately $700 a year.