To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the £1 coin, moneysupermarket.com are asking bloggers to give their ways of saving £1 or more, which I think is a really fun way of sharing your money saving tips. As someone that doesn't have a large income I'm constantly trying to save a little money, so here's my 30 ways!
(image source here)
Do you really need that daily take away coffee? One £2.50 coffee a day for 5 days of the week costs £12.50, which adds up to a whopping £650 a year, but if you really can't live without it, try skipping one day a week, or ordering a smaller size. A larger sized coffee may only cost 30p extra, but in a week that's an extra £1.50, and I don't know about you but a large can often be way too much!
Two. Try A Cheaper Alternative.
If your feeling a little strapped, and a staple has run out, why not try something a little more purse friendly? For example, I always swore by Aussie Miracle Shampoo & Conditioner, but at just shy of £5 a bottle it's not cheap, so I decided to try a couple of others, and after a little trial and error I found that the V05 Shampoo & Conditioner is just as good, if not better, and this is readily available in Poundland, saving £8 every time I run out. Sometimes it might be rubbish, but it's a case of trial and error.
Ok, so this one can be a bit tricky, so let me explain. Offers are designed to entice you in to a purchase, and this can be a false economy, for example a 3 for 2 offer where you buy 3 lipsticks when you'll only use, or like, one. BUT, for somethings, things you need, offers are fantastic. I always stock up on cat food when it's on offer, as it's often on 2 boxes for £6, or a single box is around the £4 mark. Another few quid saved!
Oh, this is so very un-British of me, but for the love of god, haggle! This applies most importantly to any contract you might be taking out, your phone, TV, Internet, so on. The power of no is one of the most important things you can learn! Don't like what they are offering, want more money off? Say "No, I am only interested in this *phone/TV/Internet* package, it's too much money" and the second you say your going to put the phone down / walk away, oh you'd be surprised how much money they will start slashing off, as any sale is better than no sale!
Five. Download A Voucher App.
If you have a smart phone that supports apps, download yourself a voucher app. I personally use the VoucherCloud app, as has a GPS setting that shows your vouchers near you. If I'm off shopping for the day I'll have a little browse of what shops and restaurants have offers, as if there is one price I hate, it's full!
I know I've said this before, need some money? Sell some old bits on eBay! But more than selling, buying on eBay can be a way to save some real money. If I can't afford something at full RRP, I'll check for it on eBay. I picked up the Kiehl's Facial Lotion on eBay, which at full RRP is about £23, but I paid just £13 posted for a brand new bottle, saving £10 on the same thing I would of bought from the shop!
Seven. Keep Those Tags On!
Lets face it, shop lighting is awful. Sometimes you might try something on that looked good under the harsh glow, or you thought it would go really well with a skirt you already have, but you get it home and it doesn't or it doesn't look quite right any more, but oh god, you've ripped the store tags off. Keep them on & it makes it much easier to return for a full refund. And on that note...
Eight. Return Those Online Purchases.
I know it's a pain, but that ASOS order that doesn't fit, doesn't look good, colour is different etc? Well if you don't return it soon, you can't. Most places give between 21 and 31 days to send items back for a full refund, and after that, your no longer entitled to one. Make sure you send them back quickly, or you'll end up being lucky to make half of what it cost on eBay.
Nine. Ask For Samples.
Another one that people hate to do, ask fancy stores for samples. But lets face it, how money have you wasted on a product that people were raving about, but turns out it breaks you out? They might say no, or not have any, but as the old saying goes, you don't ask you don't get. But if they say yes, you can try the product out before spending a penny, hurrah!
Ten. Spend A Little Extra.
Ok, this seems a bit of a weird one for a saving post, but let me explain. You want something, something slightly more expensive than you'd usually go for, for me that was the NARS Orgasm Blusher, but you hear of dupes, dupes costing a smidgen of the original, for me, Rose Gold by Sleek, so you buy the dupe, get it home, and realise it's nothing like the original, and you still want the same one you originally did, and eventually end up buying it any way. So basically, I spent an unnecessary £5, and Orgasm is my most reached for blusher. Sometimes it's worth saving up for the more expensive option, if you know you really want it, as sometimes you'll save money in the long run.
Eleven. Add Up Your Food Shopping.
Have you ever been at the till at the supermarket, and practically snatched the receipt out of the cashiers hand, and almost marched round to customer service to demand money back, as there is no way that you spent nearly that much money, just to realise that, in fact, you did. Food, has gotten really expensive, so to make sure that I stay on budget I add up on my phone as I go around, and it really makes me double think about putting in any last minute extra items.
If your insuring something, a car, a pet, your home, try a comparison website, not only does it save time, but it's almost much easier to see what you'll be paying & what it covers. When I took out insurance for Tuna I made sure to compare & check out every option before taking out insurance policy, as the cheapest option might not give you the coverage you need, but also a more expensive policy may not offer anything extra.
Thirteen. Bookmark For Later.
Can't afford an item for the time being? What if it went in the sale? I bookmark items I like for later, and check on them every now and again, and often the item will have gone in the sale, and I can now snap it up for half or less.
Fourteen. Save The Pennies...
& the pounds will look after themselves as the old saying goes. Bung all your 1ps & 2ps in a piggy bank & then cash it in once a year or so, I do it before Christmas and often have over £30!
Fifteen. Take A Drink With You.
If I'm off out, I won't be without a bottle of water, as I really hate having to pay between 60p to £2 for a drink! This goes doubly for any attraction such as theme parks, as I've paid over £3 for a bottle of water before.
Not wearing your favourite dress because the hem is loose? If your confident enough to do it yourself, set aside 10 minutes in an evening to take it from your mend pile to your wear pile. But if your not, find someone that can do it for you. Lots of dry cleaners offer services to take out items, hem items, fix items, and it's usually pretty cheaper, and lets face it, much cheaper than buying something new.
A continuation of the above point, but if you have a really decent pair of shoes, but the soles are a bit ropey or full of holes, rather than buying another pair, take them to Timpsons and have them resoled, which costs around £8, much cheaper than a new pair.
Eighteen. Points Cards.
Any shop, with any points cards, such as Boots or Superdrug, make sure you pick up the loyalty cards and use them! I save up my Boots points & then buy something I want but usually wouldn't be able to afford easily.
Nineteen. Put A Jumper On.
And turn the heating off! It's sort of having a go at spring at the moment, and even though it can be a bit nippey in the evening, try reaching for the jumper before the thermostat, and you'll see a huge difference in your bill.
Twenty. Step Away From The Takeaway Menu.
I know it can be really tempting on a Friday night to reach for a takeaway, but do you reallllly need one? Do you have something you can bung in the oven quickly? Take aways have one of the highest mark ups, coming second to bar / club alcohol, and a chain pizza that you will pay around £15 will of cost under £1 to make, so if you really want a pizza give making one a go, and your pennies will go a lot further!
Twenty One. Give A Home Dye A Go.
Having your hair dyed at a hair dresser can be very, very expensive. For a full head of colour for me, where I usually have my hair cut is a full £50. £50!!! That, ladies and gents, is half of £100! So I dye my hair at home, which for two boxes of dye, can be as little as £7.50 when it's on offer. I'd only recommend this for a full head of colour, as high or low lights take a lot more skill that slopping goop on your head!
Twenty Two. Wait Until Wednesday.
If your going to the cinema, and you know someone that has an Orange phone, wait until Wednesday and you'll get buy one get one free, which will help pay for popcorn (side note, how is popped corn so expensive?!).
Twenty Three. Move That Money.
The temptation to spend money can sometimes be too much, so if you have something you need money for (rent, phone bill, car insurance etc) move it from your main bank account to a savings account, that way you can't accidentally dip in to money you need when your out.
Twenty Four. Cashback.
If you do even a little internet shopping, sign up for either Quidco or TopCashBack, and if you click through the website when shopping online, you'll get some back, which you can save up for PayPal pay-outs, Amazon Vouchers or other rewards.
Twenty Five. Student Discount.
If your a student, make sure you get yourself an NUS Extra card or sign up for Uni Days, to get student discount in loads of shops. It's often 10% but lots of shops periodically hold student lock ins to get some times up to 30% off, either way it's well worth taking advantage of whilst you can!
Twenty Six. Seconds, Bargain Corner or Bargain Bin.
I can't tell you how many things I've found in slight seconds or ikeas bargain corner that are perfectly fine. I purchased a slight seconds Emma Bridgewater teapot for half the price, which as far as I can see, is completely fine bar one smudge. It can be hit or miss but it's worth having a good look!
Twenty Seven. Make Double For Dinner & Take It For Lunch.
If your making something for dinner, double up the size & take it for lunch the next day. Pasta works well as pasta salad is both delicious & filing, but this leads nicely on to my next point...
Twenty Eight. Take Lunch.
Every job I've ever had, I've taken my own lunch. Buying lunch is both expensive and usually, lets be honest, not all that nice! I can make a nice lunch for half the price of something I'd buy, and as a veggie I loathe paying out for cheese sandwiches!
Twenty Nine. Try A Cheapy Holiday.
Whether it be a Sun holiday, or glamping, or youth hostel, or something else, if you can't afford a big holiday why not try something a little cheaper? If it's terrible then you'll have hilarious stories to share & if it's good then you've saved yourself a heap of cash!
This is the big one, work out what you can afford to spend, after rent, food, insurance, travel, and all the other really boring spends, and divide this up to a weekly budget. Not only will it mean that you know what you have coming in & out, but it also helps me to really think about every purchase in percentages of what I have for the week, i.e this blusher is 25% of my weekly budget, and this helps me decide if I can, or usually, cannot afford it. Budgets sound a lot more scary than they are, and they can be a little eye opening, but once you've done one, it really helps!
So that's my 30 tips! If you fancy finding out more about the moneysupermarket bloggers 30 ways to save £1 challenge you can do here.
So how about you? What are your tips?