Some call it frugality, others call it budget minded, but most call it being a stingy bastard. There are many different ways to be economic, some are dignified, others aren’t so much. Here is a little list to help you pinch those pennies as hard as a socially awkward teenager pinches his/her cheeks together when talking to the opposite sex. Come on, don’t be coy, you know which cheeks I’m talking about.
Ah! The commute to work! What starts the day off better than weaving through troves of under-caffeinated soccer-parents hurrying to dump…I mean drop off, their kids, aggravated office-workers which hate their job but are always perplexingly rushing to get to it and half-blind octogenarians that are doing 25 MPH in the passing lane. Well, not only is your morning commute frustrating and in often cases life-threatening, it’s costing you bucket-loads of money. How much you ask? Sit down and get your heart medication ready because according to Citi’s ThankYou Premier Commuter Index, the average American commuter spends almost three FREAKIN’ thousand dollars a year on commuting and across the bond the Queen’s subjects spend OVER 3,000 sterling to get to and from work which equates to about $4285 dollars a year. That’s not even considering the lost time spent commuting. And yep, that’s enough money to take a trip to the Bahamas, or keep in your bank account to make you smile when you look at your statement. So, how can you cut the cost?
Buy a car with better gas mileage, walk part of your commute or even cycle to work.
Less Normal Way:
Try getting rides from co-workers until they are fed up with you and then when they are, try sneaking into buses and subway trains without paying.
Least Normal Way:
A New York subway ticket cost $2.25 a ride, if you manage to ride 100 times before you’re caught (and fined $100) you’ve doubled your money! Good luck with that though, New York Subway platforms are full of cameras and police that watch them all the time.
We all eat; it’s one of those annoying biologically necessary for survival expenditures. Let’s do the math children: 2015 had 250 regular working days. If you spent five dollars on a meal (which you would basically be on a diet of 7-11 microwave burritos because you can’t buy jack with five dollars) your yearly expense would be 1250 dollars…yes, you read that right. Now if you were thinking of eating like a normal human being and not sourcing your food from convenience store turnstiles, it could potentially cost you 2500 dollars to 3000 a year. Hey, I warned you to keep your heart medication close. That’s on top of your annual household food budget (as in the food you put in your refrigerator, cabinets and behind your radiator…you know you’re not supposed to keep food there right? No, lukewarm chicken isn’t safer than frozen chicken…I don’t care if you think it’s a refrigerator industrial machine perpetuated myth, you can die man.) So, what’s the solution to food related expenditures?
Take in your lunch from home. Not only can you control what goes into your body you can control what goes out of your pocket- remember about 2500 dollars’ worth of control.
Less Normal Way:
Supplement your calorie count with free samples at supermarkets over your lunch break. Some supermarkets not only offer food samples but also wine and dessert/baked goods.
3. Dumpster Diving (Extreme Solution)
Dumpster diving. Yes, as in routing through refuse to find something that might be edible. The food is actually edible in most cases just dangerously close to their expiration dates. On the upside, sometime you can score some pretty valuable items like electronics, paintings and ancient Mayan artifacts. Yes, Mayan artifacts.
Do you have any other tips for the monetarily challenged amongst us? Let us know in the comment section below.