Stressing about money sucks. But saving cash doesn’t have to mean giving something up. For all you ballers on a budget, we’ve lined up some money-saving alternatives for the things you buy every day. Switch this for that and start saving. It’s that easy.
Always choose reusable over disposable. In addition to being good for the environment, reusable options are better for your bottom line. Instead of spending $24 on a month’s supply of plastic water bottles, grab a stainless steel bottle for $15 and use it over and over for years to come.
Annual savings: ~$300
Individually packaged foods come with a huge markup for convenience. A single snack pack of baby carrots with ranch dressing costs $1.89 for a 2-ounce serving, while a full pound of baby carrots goes for $1.59 and a bottle of ranch dressing for $3. If you take snack packs to work or school 5 days a week, it’ll cost you $300 per year. Think of how much you could save by switching all of your small buys to bulk buys…
Annual savings: ~$280
Why pay full price for department store clothes when you could find the same brand-name styles at resale stores like Plato’s Closet for less than half the price? Resale shops refresh their inventories each season, so you know they’re always on trend.
Annual savings: up to 70% off your clothing budget
More people than ever are making the switch from cable to streaming services. While cable TV packages can run up to $100 a month, subscriptions to Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime each cost less than $10 a month.
Annual savings: up to $1,080
A dinner date for two can run you $50 easy. If you add in drinks and Ubers, that number goes up. Swap that out for a home-cooked meal and a streaming movie and you’re looking at $20 for ingredients, maybe $30 if you grab a reasonable bottle of wine. Make the switch once a week and watch the savings add up.
Annual savings: ~$1,000-$1,500
The average American woman spends $44 per haircut, although that number could more than double depending on the salon. One easy way to slash spending is to ditch the swanky salon and find a beauty school offering free haircuts. If you get your hair cut four times per year or more, you could save hundreds.
Annual savings: ~$200 or more
One of the easiest ways to save big money with zero effort is to upgrade your cell plan. The average cell phone plan costs $160–$190 per month for a family of four. Switch to Boost Mobile and get four lines, each with Unlimited Gigs, for $25 each, no strings attached. Don’t have kids? Get your friends onboard and save up to $900 per year.
Annual savings: ~$900