Welcome to another post in my series; this blog post is a little more practical than the previous one and gives you some useful tips for saving money, which is something I know that most teenagers want to do in order to buy clothes, music, art supplies… whatever you’re into. I know myself that I often find myself sat on my bedroom floor, money jar in hand, honestly wondering why I can’t seem to stop spending! Being a teenager is expensive, what with frequent meetups and social events, plus the need for clothes, skincare, makeup, food, almost anything you know you really need.
Saving money is a necessity if you’re saving up for something or regularly go out – everyone wants to do it! Here are some easy tips that teenagers can follow to save their money.
- When shopping, loyalty cards really are worth it! I currently have a Costa card on my phone, as well as a Boots Advantage card and a Superdrug beauty card, as I do spend most of my money in a combination of these three shops. You’ll save money as whenever you buy something, you automatically get points back (Costa’s scheme is actually amazing, I’ve accumulated a free drink within around 4 trips) that then count towards money spent in that shop.
- When going out, limit your spending! I can do this easily as I don’t have a card, and I’ll limit how much I spend by only bringing a certain amount of cash. If you do have a card, set yourself a limit and try not to go over this. It allows you to budget and also to have an idea of where you spend the most money and how to stop it, and if you spend even £5 less than you usually would, that’s only ten trips and you would have saved £50.
- If you go out to eat, shop around. There are probably many cheaper alternatives to where you like to go, as higher quality is always a higher price. For example, rather than picking up a sandwich and a smoothie in Costa (however tempting) smoothies are almost £2 cheaper in mainstream shops like Wilko. Drinks are something that I find really save your pennies, as even £1.50 can save you a tenner in just over 6 trips. Other places that sell cheaper bottled drinks and snacks include large supermarkets and places such as Subway or small cafes.
- Beauty products shouldn’t be bought due to packaging or branding. Makeup, skincare and hair products are often overpriced due to packaging; one study showed 93% of the price of a mascara was for the packaging. So, do your research and have a look at a range of products before splashing out on a £15 mascara because there weren’t any good ones for less!
- Don’t carry money around when you know it isn’t a necessity. I am known for doing this and sometimes not being able to resist a snack; so saving money is much easier when you keep your purse at home when you don’t need it.
- Public transport is expensive! If you can, try to share lifts with friends; buses may take longer than trains, but they are often less expensive and can probably get you closer to where you want to go. However, even a relatively short journey can be up to £5 for a child, so figure out your journey before you go – and if you are taking a train, you can book tickets in advance and save quite a lot.
- You can easily save money when going to the cinema by either taking food from home or buying a snack from somewhere that isn’t the cinema; prices are almost double there, so by doing this you can often save up to £5. However, be careful as some cinemas don’t allow you to do this.
- When you earn money, save a portion of it. If you get allowance or pocket money, save a certain amount. For example, save half of your allowance and watch this amount build up over a few months.
- Plan ahead for your leisure time. Making plans that don’t include eating out or shopping can very quickly save you some money and it will also mean that you have something to look forward to.