People love some good ideas for things to do. I love saving money. So there probably isn’t anything too much better than finding things to do for free.
A couple years ago I wrote a post about our one-month saving challenge. We were saving money for a house, and decided to hold off on any spending other than necessities. It sounded good in theory – but was a lot harder than I thought! How long has it been since you’ve even gone ONE DAY without spending money? Maybe it’s just me…but it’s been a while…
But the coolest thing about not spending on extras for a month was realizing just how much there was available for us to do or get for free. It turned into a neat challenge to see what we could actually do. And we got to save a lot on the way.
Here are some great things to do for free (expanding on my list from 2013). It’s only thirty things – but I bet you can get pretty creative with it!
1. Use YouTube workout videos instead of the gym. Who needs a gym membership? Plus no one looking at you, no locker room, and your own shower. My favorite channel is Yoga with Adriene.
2. Use Pinterest for recipes. When we got married, I ordered magazines. But there’s really no point! You can get great recipes for free online. That goes for fashion and beauty as well.
3. Menchie’s. One of our favorite places to go for frozen yogurt was Menchie’s. (It closed here! So sad!) The best part is when you get a free membership card, you get $5 worth of frozen yogurt and toppings for free! With bonuses on your birthday.
4. Local festivals. Working for a festival company has made me take notice of all the free festivals locally. Lots of them also give out freebies.
5. Go to the library for books, movies, and TV shows, plus more. Oh, Redbox. Sure, it’s convenient, but those rental fees add up! Go to the library instead. Rent books, movies and even TV series for free. Lots of libraries also have free community events.
6. CVS ExtraCare rewards. I love CVS rewards. You can get your basics there, and then let the ExtraBucks stack up. Then, use like cash on those extra treats you’re not spending money on right now 😉
7. Keep an eye on your mailbox. You’d be surprised at the amount of awesome deals that come through there. I’m currently taking advantage of free iced coffee Mondays from Dunkin Donuts!
8. Enjoy local parks and hiking! There’s lots to do outside – take picnics, take a walk or hike, and bike.
9. Have a clothing swap with friends! Free clothes – and purge your closets. Everyone wins.
10. Check out community venues for free activities. Our local historic theatre shows free films; some community centers offer free classes (or trial classes).
11. Have you checked your wallet in a while? I know I have some unused gift cards to take advantage of! Usually they get forgotten.
12. Lend and borrow with friends. We’ve seen great movies and read new books this way.
13. Lots of museums have free days or hours for the public. Take advantage!
14. Volunteer as an usher at local civic centers and theaters. They usually let you get to see the show for free! Or try volunteering for festivals – they come with free admission and usually other perks, too.
15. Start a club with friends where you take turns helping or hosting. Got kids? Have one couple babysit while the others get a date or errand night. Or have one person host an event per week or month – like brunches or book clubs.
16. Sign up for coupons or free trials.
17. Makeover something you already have at home – use sharpies to decorate a plain mug, for example.
18. Utilize freecycle.org, or the free section on Craig’s List. I’m also part of a free stuff group on Facebook for my area. You never know what you’ll come across!
19. Go to a local vineyard or brewery for a tour. Lots of places have free tastings (but check online before you go). We have a local wine/beer store that does free tastings on Saturdays as well.
20. Host a game night (you provide housing, decor, and games), and have guests bring snacks.
21. Costco (or other wholesale stores) free samples. No shame in my game. (Also, did you know you don’t have to be a member to buy alcohol, or if you have a Costco Cash Card?)
22. Shop your closet and house. What things are not currently in rotation that you could put to use? You might be surprised at what you pull out.
23. Use everyday food items to make a DIY spa at home. POPSUGAR has a great DIY Beauty page on their website.
24. My local bookstore does trade-ins for new books! Try swapping old ones for new ones. We have a clothing store that works the same way, for credit to the store or cash.
25. Going somewhere? Make it an adventure! Plan your stops and sightsee along the way. Here’s a great road trip website.
26. I love Spotify. If I need a mix for a party or want to listen to certain music, that’s where I go.
27. Learn a new skill. YouTube or borrow a book to teach yourself something new! Think dancing, knitting, changing your oil – all kinds of options.
28. Have a yard sale! Free, easy way to make some extra cash.
29. Redecorate! Rearrange. Or just clean up 😉
30. Unwind. Take a long bath, meditate, light some candles. Relaxation is free! 🙂
So how about you? Are you ready to take the challenge?
Check out the rest of the Things to Do Series!