When we talk about living frugally, we usually tell people that luxury purchases should be considered a thing of the past. No new clothes that you don’t need, no holidays, no movie tickets. Just stick to the essentials, we say!
But what if your financial situation doesn’t quite call for such a strict regime? Or what if you’ve been stressed out recently and need a little pick me up? I’m not talking about retail therapy here. I’m talking about those smaller luxury purchases we make every now and again. Items that make us a little happier, independent of the act of actually buying them. (One should never buy something just because the act of buying makes them happy – this is what we refer to as retail therapy!)
A very common luxury purchase is coffee. Many people will balk at the idea of this being considered a luxury purchase. “But I need my morning coffee to function!” I hear you holler. Fair enough. But do you need to be buying your coffee from Starbucks or Costa? Not really. People go to these places because coffee from those places is considered a treat. But the coffee in those places isn’t actually that great. They use low-quality coffee beans and charge you insane amounts for it.
People see the coffee as better than the stuff they have at home. This is because so many people are using freeze-dried instant coffee. So why not upgrade the coffee you’re using? For about £3-5 a bag, you can get high-quality coffee beans for your home. This will make about twenty cups, saving you tons of money on good quality coffee.
When we want to update our wardrobe or our smartphones, we usually end up paying huge sums. People will generally tell you that these purchases just aren’t compatible with the frugal lifestyle. But what about birthdays? What about Christmas? Buying presents for these occasions is still technically a luxury. But what can we do? We need to get gifts!
Usually, the best deals for general items like these can be found in department stores. But if you do your research you can make great savings even in such stores. Things like this discount code will help keep these purchases in line with your frugal lifestyle.
Travel is another luxury that people trying to save money will miss. But spending some time away from home (and from work!) sometimes feels like a necessity. Sometimes it’s not even about the exact location. It’s about just getting on a train or a plane and seeing a new place. Wandering around an unfamiliar location is the best way to escape from your everyday thinking.
Holidays are usually purported to cost the Earth. But it’s possible to save loads of money even on these. The trick is to find a time in which you feel like going and then to research cheap holidays around the time. Midweek or last-minute bookings are the best way to go about it. And if you don’t mind going by train, trips to Europe and back can cost you in the £30-60 region.
Living the cheap lifestyle doesn’t always mean you can’t have fun. You just need to be strategic about it!