Sometimes when you’re really dedicated to being financially responsible (also known as ‘a real person’ or an ‘adult’), it seems like you have to choose between your finances and your friends. Going out in it’s traditional sense, like dinner or brunch, drinks or a movie, gets expensive really quickly. And so the choice seems to be between hanging out with your friends and spending money, or saving money but being a hermit.
Not The Case!
That doesn’t have to be the case! You can combine your frugality and your friends into a beautiful mash-up of savings and fun!
One of the first things I did when I committed to becoming debt free in 2015 was tell my friends. Sharing with them that I had to adjust my lifestyle to make debt payoff a priority for me was really easy and my friends jumped on board. Clarity is important. As long as your friends know why you don’t want to drop $50 on a Friday night out, they’ll be happy to help you achieve your goals.
So don’t be afraid to simply ask your friends to change venues if they pick the priciest place in town. Or to suggest a movie night in instead of a movie night out. Pick an activity from below and get to know your friends, frugal-style.
I love to go hiking with my friends. Not only is it free but it’s good to get outside. I like being active and having an activity to do with friends is rewarding. If you’re snow-bound, go sledding! Find a park or split a tank of gas and head out of town for a day to take in some nature!
Oh hell yes. I love me some game nights. Card games to board games to video games, game nights are a throwback to childhood. Add a few beers and break out the Cards Against Humanity or whatever video game you love right now and you’ve got hours of fun.
Once a week three friends and I get together and watch an episode of ‘Peaky Blinders’ on Netflix. We spend about 45 minutes having our minds blown (it’s so good!), we sometimes have snacks or drinks and we always debrief after it ends. It’s really fun to spend the time together and even more fun to have a running topic with friends. We’ve also learned a whole bunch about 1910’s and 20’s England and the IRA- learning is fun with friends!
Go out with a coupon or post up somewhere offering a deal! Finding deals on Groupon for paddle boarding or a dinner out is a great way to save yourself some cash and have a great experience with friends. You can usually save between 25%-60% on things with a Groupon (and you can save even more when you shop with us – get up to 12% cash back with Groupon purchases!).
Additionally, only going out to happy hours saves big bucks and doesn’t sacrifice friend time. Drinks at half price mean half the money stays in your pocket! (No, it doesn’t mean double the drinks.)
You can also accompany your friends to the bars they want and just pass on the $12 cocktail. Order a seltzer instead. If they want to check out the newest restaurant in town, stick with an appetizer or a meatless dish because they’ll be cheaper. There are a million ways to see your friends and save your money!
How do you save money while hanging out with friends? Share your tips in the comments!