HOW TO SAVE CASH & STILL HAVE A SOCIAL LIFE
WALK AND TALK
Walking with a friend is a great way to catch up. Not only will pounding the pavement burn some calories but it’s also free and can be done just about anywhere, anytime. If you’ve read Thrive (great read if you haven’t), you’ll know Arianna Huffington also attributes some of her best thinking/ideas to walking and hiking. If you have a business meeting coming up, why not suggest an outdoor space such as a park or grassy knoll. It’s time to check out this city’s best trails on offer. Time to get that blood pumping!
HIT THE KITCHEN
Lucky for me, I LOVE to cook so an afternoon or night spent in the kitchen is a dream. Doing a weekly shop and preparing roast veggies, meats and salad additions for the week ahead is a good time in my book. It’s no secret that spending an evening in cooking at home, can majorly help your personal funds. And who says it has to be boring? Invite the gang around, ask everyone to bring something and you’ve got yourself a cheap, cheerful and delicious dinner party (ahem, let’s pray your friends can cook!). Some of my favourite long lunches have been done this way – BYO vino and a spread fit for the Gods with each person bringing something for the feast. You not only save a tonne BUT you and your rowdy bunch aren’t booted off the table for the next reservation. Kick on’s can also continue well into the night, it’s a win/win!
Trying to avoid the 10+ group dinners at fancy eateries where you never get enough to eat and can’t control the bar spend? Another option is to propose to meet for drinks after dinner and eliminate dropping $100/head on an overindulgent, boozy meal (added bonus is choosing who you want to talk to. God forbid you get stuck at the shitty end, ahem – there goes your buzz!)
DRIVE IF/WHERE YOU CAN OR PRE-GAME
If you aren’t up for a huge night, offer to be the ‘Designated Driver’ or just drive to the event and cut down on transport costs between Ubers and cabs.
On the other end of the spectrum, if you’re up for getting a little f**k-eyed… pregame and pregame hard. These days between the cost of drinks and the lockout laws, the 4 O’Clock G&T has never looked better! So go on, tuck in and reduce the number of visits you have to make to the overcrowded bar and the ‘dickish’ bar staff.
SO MUCH ROOM FOR ACTIVITIES
Similar to walking about town, it’s incredible what you can get done sans hangover. Prioritise. If you have a quiet Saturday night, go for a scrumptious brunch on Sunday morning. You’ll spend a third of what you would have the night before AND not want to hurl yourself over the porcelain bowl after devouring haloumi fritters with a side of (extra crispy) bacon, obvs.
As we farewell beach season and mustering up the courage to meet up for a dip is getting a tad trickier, look to our big city for low cost cold weather alternatives. Art galleries, museums, work out classes and movie afternoons (or TV series marathons) at home, all serve as smart saving AND social decisions.
Remember, this phase won’t last forever. Be smart where you can and splurge when you just want to feel like a bit of a baller. And if worse comes to worst, given that every month these days has its “Dry July” equivalent, pick one of those…”haters gonna hate!”