For a lot of people, saving money is hard work. Spending comes naturally, but tucking away money for a rainy day is a little bit harder. Rather than making a long-term savings goal, try setting a daily goal to get in the habit of stashing small amounts of cash. Saving just $5 a day over the course of a work week will add up to significant savings by the end of the year.
Read on to discover 5 ways you can save $5 a day.
1. Choose the dollar menu at lunch
When you hit up the drive through, it’s tempting to just ask for your favorite combo meal, but convenience comes with a price. The $8 combo meal is really not a lot different than $3 worth of dollar menu fare.
Instead of your usual meal, pick 3 items off the dollar menu and enjoy a moderately sized lunch at a much reduced price. Pocket the remaining $5 and not only will your wallet thank you, but your waistline will as well.
2. Make your coffee at home
If you’re one of the millions of people that head to the drive-through at your favorite coffee shop on your way to work, you’re just throwing money out the window. Drive-though coffee is no better than what you could make at home, but it’s priced at a premium.
Think about how much time you spend waiting in line at the coffee shop. Instead of waiting in your car for your turn at the window, take an extra 5 minutes at home to prepare your own drink. You’ll save $5 and have a fresher, better tasting coffee for the ride in.
3. Drive conservatively
You can easily save $5 a day on gas by driving conservatively. That means avoiding situations where you idle at lights or on crowded highways. Look for a route that lets you move steadily to save money on gas and minimize your own frustrations.
If you have lights on your route, slow down as you make your approach to avoid coming to a complete stop. Accelerating from a dead stop takes much more gas than simply increasing speed. Likewise, going the speed limit on the highway rather than racing ahead of your fellow commuters will also conserve gas and possible prevent an expensive speeding ticket.
4. Leave the credit cards at home
If you’re not planning on buying anything, leave your credit cards at home. There’s no greater temptation to spend money than having plastic on you. Knowing that you don’t have money handy will stop you from making impulse or frivolous purchases.
5. Adjust the temperature in your home
Turning the AC or heat down just a couple of degrees can easily save you $5 a day. A small change in the temperature will save you up to 10% of your energy bill. In the winter, supplement the lower heat by wearing sweaters. In the summer, opt for lightweight clothing and use your blinds effectively to stay cool.
Saving $5 a day is easy. Look around at your life and find ways that you can cut costs to create a modest nest egg.