Often I see bloggers posting about 5 frugal things they did that week – which is mostly the type of content I write on Instagram everyday (@The.FrugalFox) so I didn’t want to double down on my content. However, I felt a yearly round up of some of the most impactful ways I saved money in 2018 would be something everyone would find useful when looking for tips on how to save money every month.
2018 was a very ebb and flow kind of year when it came to saving money however to learn how to save money every month was super important as it was the final stretch before we purchased our house therefore we had no choice but to cut back, knuckle down and get on with it.
Below are the areas we previously saw our money disappear into. We’ve since learned a lot so I’ve broken down how to save money every month and in each area so you can take these tips and apply them in your life.
Obviously the first tip would be stop shopping but we there are ways to cut back and still treat yourself. For instance we love charity shopping now. For what I used to spend on a pair of trousers, I could get a bagful in a charity shop.
We also do visits to outlets around every 6months or so. It’s a really good chance to stock up on staple items such as coats or shoes for less than on the high street. My most recent bargain was a pair of jeans for just £2.49 from Cheshire Oaks.
We also used up nearly all of our gift cards. Whenever we receive one, we pop it in this red envelope in the kitchen drawer and on big shopping trips, the envelope comes with so if we do happen to see something we like, we can see if we have a gift voucher for it.
We don’t tend to dine out much anymore but there was ways to eat out without upsetting your budget. I recently got a Gourmet Society card which coupled with my Tastecard means I get money off at almost any chain in the UK. Unfortunately I got it a little late into 2018 but I’ll be using it throughout 2019.
Those vouchers I mentioned in the red envelope can also come in handy for dining out. Make sure you see if you have an voucher for a place before you book.
We often skip the drinks and stick to tap water. Sometimes we share a starter or a pudding. Little changes can scrape lots of money off the end bill. If you eat out a lot then save where you can.
Food and Cooking
I find that shopping online has tremendously helped with saving money every month. I can check my budget as I go, compare prices without having to change isles and meal plan at the same time.
My partner is a huge meat eater so unfortunately meatless-mondays are not an options however I often only cook enough meat for him and leave it out my meal. I’m not that fussed, I could do without the extra calories and it saves us money.
Meal planning combined with meal prep can make for food stretch much further than you think.
We recently took a trip to Berlin and it was our first holiday in 12 months. As previously semi-frequent travellers this was quite out the norm for us. But cutting back to 1 holiday meant we could save, save save.
Have you got yourself a railcard yet? I’m super excited about the new 26-30 railcard but for now our Two-Together gets us 1/3rd off all UK train travel.
Always check SkyScanner if your dates are flexible. We did when we went to Berlin and it meant we could save more to put towards the house.
Previously we spent a nauseous amount on takeaways but this year we’ve cut it right back. Having 1 every now and then also means you look forward to them more.
A 12″ margareta pizza from Dominos is a whopping £13.99 and the same from a local pizza takeaway is just £6.09. Ditch the big brands and go local if you want to save.
There’s also the ‘fakeaway’ option. Often lighter on your wallet and your waist, fakeaways are when you cook something at home a little naughtier but a lot cheaper and a lot healthier. We find this to be a good compromise and always have a few pizza’s or frozen ready meals in the freezer for when you don’t feel like cooking but don’t want to spend £30 on a takeway.
Those are my top tips on how to save money every month. Let me know in the comments how you saved in 2018!