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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Fifty Ways To Save Money For The Holidays

By: Notes From The Frugal Trenches


















With the holidays looming, many people fear that the extras aren't possible within their income level or budget so the additional "needs" get dumped on the credit card! There are so many teeny tiny greener changes we can make over the next 8 weeks which will save you hundreds of dollars and maybe pay for the turkey, trimmings and presents :)

1. Stop buying books and magazines and start using the library instead!
2. Don't buy cleaning products and instead invest in vinegar and baking soda [see the Down To Earth blog for tips]
3. Only wash clothes that are dirty, don't wash simply because you've used them
4. Hang your clothes to dry
5. Shower instead of bath and put a timer on
6. Swap childcare with friends
7. Eat vegetarian meals 3 nights a week - eating less meat is certainly greener!
8. Set yourself no spending days begin with 2 a week for the first month then add in another!
9. Use low energy light bulbs
10. Turn off the water while brushing your teeth
11. Turn off all lights in empty rooms
12. Put a sweater and socks on so you can keep the heat lower.
13. Turn down the water temperature.
14. Pack snacks
15. Practice freezer cooking once a month so you have frugal meals handy!
16. Don't use things that are disposable like water bottles
17. Stop buying paper towels
18. Plan a weekly menu
19. Have breakfast for dinner once a week
20. Only shop once a week maximum
21. Try to buy direct from local farms and co-ops
22. Limit or ditch the cell phone
23. Schedule a long walk each weekend (great frugal family activity)
24. Pick your own - in some areas apples are still available!
25. Use what is available free - does your gym have showers and shampoo you can use instead of showering at home?
26. Wash your clothes at lower temperatures
27. Establish a change jar
28. Set yourself no driving days - if you need your car for work, nominate one day at the weekend where you aren't allowed to use it.
29. Set yourself the goal that if you could walk somewhere within 30 minutes you shouldn't take your car.
30. Write down everything you eat.
31. Write down everything you buy
32. Cancel the newspaper subscription
33. Don't eat out. Maybe challenge yourself and see if you can not eat out at all between now and the holidays!
34. Nominate one night a week to be soup night
35. Commit to cutting your grocery bill by at least 10% [I cut mine by 75%]
36. Stop buying soda, juice and alcohol
37. Ditch the cigarettes
38. Have a movie night at home.
39. Rent movies from the library - in most countries that means they are free.
40. See if you can get what you need for free by making use of local adds and enquiring if friends or family are looking to get rid of what you need.
41. Join a book group - usually a free way to have a night out.
42. Turn off all electrical equipment
43. Get back to nature [photographing squirrels is free, green & fun!]
44. Make your own shampoo
45. If you want to purchase something, make yourself wait 48 hours and examine whether you need it or want it.
46. See if what you need you can purchase second hand
47. Wait to do dishes until there is a full load [by hand or machine!]
48. Watch your portion sizes
49. Be your own beauty therapist
50. Ask for the necessities for holiday gifts

Taking a minute to reflect on this list, it is obvious that many of these money saving measures are actually green choices too! I've always found being greener doesn't need to be expensive despite what media reports often say! There are hundreds of every day little steps you can take to green your life, reduce your carbon footprint, enjoy a simpler life and live within a budget!

Have you got any green tips which help save money? Do you find being green expensive or frugal?

11 comments:

Wendy said...

Choosing not to spend money ON the holidays would eliminate a lot of the stress. There are many ways to have meaningful celebrations without spending a lot of money.

Kimberly said...

I think that it is less expensive to live this way overall. Somethings-meat comes to mind-are a lot more expensive. But since I no longer buy cleaning products, or beauty products as I make my own, and I am more focused on creating versus consuming, I spend less overall.

Kimberly said...

I think that it is less expensive to live this way overall. Somethings-meat comes to mind-are a lot more expensive. But since I no longer buy cleaning products, or beauty products as I make my own, and I am more focused on creating versus consuming, I spend less overall.

Notes From The Frugal Trenches said...

So true Wendy, I barely spend a penny on the holidays! I should add that tip on at the end of the post!

Jessica said...

Wonderful post! Ditto what Wendy said. I'm making everyone's gifts this year (I knit) and so far I have spent NOTHING on four people! Well, I've spent no money. I've spend many hours working and thinking about the recipient of each gift. :) I am using leftover yarn from other projects to make cowls or hats for everyone. Each one is unique and inspired by the personality of the person it's for.

Tree Huggin Momma said...

Maybe a follow up post could be cost free and wonderful gifts. I already live this way by necessity (that isn't to say there isn't some budget to trim, but certainly not a huge amount) and it would be nice to see a post about inexpensive, freecycled, and recycled gifts that people would love.

sawn61 said...

I'd say I am already doing 75% of the things you've listed. I'll work on the other 25%. Thanks for the great tips.

The Apple Pie Gal said...

Great list! We do alot of them around here but we could get much better too!

ladyhawthorne said...

I already do most of the things on your list and it is definitely greener and frugal. I first started on this road when not having much money made it the only course, but even though now I do have enough that I could spend a lot, I still don't. I would rather buy my goods in charity shops than Walmart or other big box stores. I am blessed to have several charity shops very near and I even find items I can resell on ebay or etsy for a profit.

KC said...

Food is a big part of our budget, so I try not to waste any. I try to buy what's in season and also preserve some for later use. Today I stewed my jack'o lanterns to make pumpkin pies. I find that green and frugal often overlap.

Amoya said...

I am so happy I stumbled across this blog. This is such great information and I will definitely start following these rules:)

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