Summer is the perfect time of year to get out and explore, enjoy your favorite foods, and spend time with friends and family. While fun to do, these activities can also be a huge burden on your budget. You can find lots of tips on creating a realistic monthly budget but generally, it’s advised that only 5% of your monthly income should be spent on entertainment (movies, dining out, or hobbies). So whether you’re trying to save money, be more money-conscious, or struggling with debt, here is a list of activities you can do this summer that will help you stay on track.
1. Check out Local Events
Whether you live in a city or town, there’ll definitely be local events that you can visit for free or cheap over the summer. In the city, you can expect events like a Food Truck Festival, Jazz Festival, BuskerFest, art fairs, concerts, and more. In smaller towns, there’ll often be farmers’ markets, street fairs, and music events.
Make sure you’re keeping an eye out in the local paper or doing a search online to get a full list of events near you. A number of them are free or inexpensive, so you can attend them guilt-free – just make sure you don’t overindulge by spending too much on food or other goodies.
2. Go on a Picnic
If you have any beautiful parks in your area, why not take advantage of them by bringing a picnic along and finding a comfortable spot to eat? An outing like this is a fun, affordable way to spend time with family, friends, or a partner. If you’re meeting with large group friends, make it a potluck and ask everyone to bring their own contribution to food or drinks. After eating you can take a stroll and enjoy the views, fly a kite, or toss a Frisbee around. The best part about this activity is that it can cost you virtually nothing if everything you bring is something you already had at home.
3. Host a Board Game Night
How many people have board games sitting around at home, just waiting to be used? Instead of spending a night out with friends, why not invite them over to hang out and play? You can save yourself a ton of money by staying in – you’ll spend less on food and drinks and zero on transportation. It’s a win for everyone involved. You can even ask your friends to BYOB in case you’re trying to cut back on alcohol spending (which can really add up). And if anyone needs to, they can always crash at your place and not have to worry about transiting or cabbing home.
Have a Life Even with Debt
It’s not uncommon for people to struggle with debt, but that doesn’t mean that your life needs to be put on hold until you’re debt-free. There are a number of ways to have fun without over-spending, and it’s even more doable when you set a budget for yourself. If you’re not sure where to start, then contact a certified Credit Counsellor so that they can guide you through the process and come up with a monthly budget that works for you.