Ten ways to save at least $10 a week

Ten ways to save at least $10 a week
Eileen St. Pierre, The Everyday Financial Planner

The bills from the holidays are starting to arrive. Did you really spend that much? Now you have the dreaded task of paying these bills off. To help you out, here are ten ways to save at least $10 a week:

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  1. We’ll start off with the one that is always on these types of lists – Pack your lunch a few days a week for work. But here’s the kicker – you need to bring your drinks too. Spending $3 a day on drinks is $15 a week, folks.
  2. Make a shopping list and stick to it. I’ve now reached the point that I can’t go shopping without one. I no longer laugh at men wandering through the grocery store looking for the 3 items on their list.
  3. Spend an hour a week looking for coupons in your Sunday paper or online. Check out my column Holiday Food Shopping Tips for some good websites and other shopping tips. I really hate paying sales tax on groceries. So I try to save enough money in coupons to cover my sales tax. For a $100 grocery bill and 9% sales tax, that’s a $9 savings.
  4. Stop smoking. It’s a really expensive habit. According to GumAuctions.com, an Oklahoman who smokes just 5 cigarettes a day will pay on average $39 per month and $463 a year.
  5. The next time you want to splurge on a latte or any other indulgence, place the same amount of money in a jar. If you cannot afford to match it, you cannot afford it!
  6. Watch those ATM fees! Instead of withdrawing money once a week, make one withdrawal a month. Put the money in an envelope and give yourself an allowance each week.
  7. Stop playing the lottery. The odds of you falling behind on paying off your holiday bills and hurting your credit rating are a whole lot better than the odds of winning the lottery.
  8. Combine errand trips to save money on gas. Even though gas prices are at their lowest point in years, resist the urge to drive more. Pocket the savings instead of returning them to Phillips 66 or Conoco. You need your money a lot more than they do.
  9. Look for simple ways to save energy at home. My pet peeve is leaving lights on in a room when you are not in there. Turn them off! We will hear our neighbors’ air conditioners going when the temperature outside is in the 60’s. Open a window!
  10. Try Meatless Mondays. Hamburger can cost close to $5/lb, depending on the grade. A can of pinto beans costs less than a dollar and makes just as delicious burritos.

Try a few of these and see how fast you can save up enough money to get rid of last year’s bills. Who knows, you may just save enough money to start thinking about a Spring Break trip.

Visit my Basic Financial Management page for more information.