Save Money with a No-Spend Weekend
It’s easy to go off the rails and off your budget on the weekends. From impromptu socializing to late-night online shopping, it seems there are reasons to spend money that don’t come up during the week. When you need to rein in your spending and get your budget back on track, a no-spend weekend is the perfect way to reset. But if the idea of a no-spend weekend makes you think you’ll be stuck at home miserably doing nothing, think again. Here’s how you can plan a no-spend weekend that’s just as much fun as a spending spree.
Set Your Goals
What do you hope to accomplish with your no-spend weekend? Perhaps you need to get serious about paying down debt, saving for a large purchase, or simply want to start building a cushion so you’re not living paycheck-to-paycheck. Whatever your reasons, deciding why you’re going on a spending fast and keeping that goal in mind will help you stick to it when you’re tempted to spend.
Prepare in Advance
Be sure you have everything you need to get through the weekend before your no-spend period begins. Gas up the car or put extra funds on your public transit card. Plan a menu based on what you have in your pantry and freezer, and go shopping for whatever extras you need to fill it out.
Find Alternative Activities
A no-spend weekend is less about deprivation and more about being mindful about where your money is going. For example, if you typically meet friends for drinks after work on Friday or for brunch on Sunday, you still can. But instead of going out to do it, have your friends over and do it pot-luck style. If you love a Saturday morning yoga class, find a YouTube video of a similar class and do that instead. Once you become aware of what you’re spending money on, challenge yourself to find cheap or free alternatives.
Go Shopping … In Your Closet
If shopping is one of your go-to weekend activities, you can still do it. But in your own closet. A no-spend weekend is the perfect time to do that closet purge you’ve been putting off. You’re sure to find items you forgot you had, and you’ll also find things you no longer wear. Instead of just giving them away, sell them on eBay or Poshmark or take them to a local resale shop. You’ll actually be making money during your no-spend weekend and that’s a win-win!
Keep Track of Your Savings
As you go through your no-spend weekend, keep track of how much you’re saving. It will keep you motivated and help you see how a few small changes in your spending habits can add up to making a big difference in your overall financial outlook. You may be inspired to do a no-spend weekend once a month or more, or plan an even longer spending fast to achieve greater savings.