I live in Michigan, where snow is not out-of-the-question for six months of the year. Schools were closed for a snow day on April 18th this year. That is a true story.
With this type of climate, summer is a sacred time, and Michiganders do not mess around with this precious little three-month window of warm weather and long days. It’s generally accepted that productivity decreases, workplace PTO calendars are full, and everyone is a little more relaxed. This can make it easy to throw your budget out the window when you’re invited to get ice cream or sit on a restaurant’s patio for drinks. It’s also tempting to hit the road or sky for a few vacations or stock up on some new summer-worthy wardrobe essentials.
Summer can be the absolute hardest time to stick to your budget…but it can also be the easiest time to find free/cheap things to do. Try these swaps to save a few bucks this month!
- Instead of going out for ice cream...try buying a pint for your freezer at home.
- Instead of sipping cocktails on a restaurant’s outdoor patio..try sharing a bottle of wine with friends in the backyard.
- Instead of paying for an expensive vacation during peak travel season...try roughing it for a week by tent-camping in the great outdoors.
- Instead of paying hundreds of dollars for tickets to a music festival...try finding free outdoor live music at a park, bar, or local event nearby.
- Instead of an expensive outdoor outing to the zoo, a baseball game, an amusement park, etc....try spending a day at the beach or a park.
- Instead of filling your entire closet with new warm-weather clothes for the season…try stocking up on a few good basics that you can mix and match to maximize your outfits!
- Instead of going out to dinner to celebrate a special event…try hosting a backyard barbeque.
Remember that sunshine and good company are always free! Be sure to live it up this summer, but challenge yourself to make some swaps to slash from your spending. What other ideas do you have for saving money during these toasty summer months?