With summer slowly making itself visible, I find myself trying to plan a bunch of fun activities for me to do with my boyfriend and some to do with my girlfriends. It’s so important when trying to soak up the beautiful weather, but if you’re not careful enough, summer plans can really start to eat away at our bank accounts (and what fun is that?). So I’ve thought of 7 ways to have fun this summer while trying to stay in financial shape!
1. Host a potluck
I typically find that one of my biggest expenses tends to be going out to eat. When we go out to eat, we pay for our meal, a drink, tax and tip – and this can really add up. So instead of going out to dinner with your girlfriends, hosting a potluck instead is a much cheaper alternative and can be a lot more fun. Potlucks allow for everyone to enjoy their friends culinary skills (or culinary fiascos) and to socialize in a comfortable, and a little more intimate setting.
2. Plan a girl’s night out happy hour
Let’s be honest here, women love to get together – it’s one of the things we do best. But, unfortunately when we’re trying to be financially conscious it can be difficult to meet all our girlfriends one on one (the money adds up!). Instead, plan a girls’ night out happy hour every month and invite all your girlfriends, not only is it a money saver, but a time saver too! Try to find a place that has a good happy hour menu, and make sure that everyone pays for their own meal and drinks. Also, don’t worry about your different groups of friends getting along (alcohol makes everyone friendlier).
3. Host a movie night at home
A standard movie date nowadays can cost around $50 (with tickets, drinks and popcorn). So, instead of spending a fortune going out, plan a movie night at home. You can download or rent a movie, and prepare your own tasty and healthy snacks. Not only will this help you save some money, but you’ll probably save on the calories as well (another perk during bikini season).
4. Get artsy
There are a lot of art galleries and museums that have certain days and times when exhibits are free to the public. If you research our local area, and find out the details, you can plan a date to go with your boyfriend or girlfriends to go get your art for free.
5. Go on a staycation
Although I live in Kitchener – where there aren’t many fun new things to try, the idea of a staycation sounds like fun. The idea of planning a weekend-long staycation to enjoy your city, and do as many free tourist-y things as possible. Try to make a list during the year of cool spots to visit and see, and then just go through your list during your staycation, this is a fun way to explore your own neighbourhood.
6. Also, book a room using Airbnb
Airbnb has got to be one of the first websites I visit when I find out I’m going to be travelling. It allows you to book vacation rentals, private rooms or sublets when travelling. I know some people enjoy staying in hotels, but they’re just so expensive. Instead it can be quite comfortable to stay in a room or someone’s apartment instead (especially for a longer stay). Along with comfortability, you can usually get better rates than hotels.
Let us know, how are you planning on spending less this summer?