We thought it would be fun to do an experiment this week. Whenever the thought of spending crossed our mind we gave some thought to what we were doing and asked if we really needed it.

Each time we saved or didn’t spend we put the money in to an envelope to count at the end of the week.

How we did it:

  1. I worked at home one day instead of going to the office. I saved $6 on coffee (I know, I know, I should only have 1 a day!) and $8 on bus fares. Total saved = $14.
  2. One afternoon I walked from the office to the car (7 km walk) instead of catching a bus. Total saved = $3.50.
  3. I baked. Instead of throwing out the old apples, we made some apple and cinnamon muffins and didn’t buy snacks for school lunches this week. Ditto with the bananas, eating banana bread for breakfast a couple of days. Total saved = $10.
  4. I checked the catalogues. I needed washing powder as well as shampoo and conditioner. Dove was half price and so was Radiant. I never pay full price, but I counted it anyway. Total savings off regular price was approximately $20.
  5. I filled up the car, remembered the petrol voucher and saved $2.
  6. We took takeaway coffees from home to the kid’s sports over the weekend, removing temptation to buy them. Total savings = $14.
  7. I shopped around. Although I did my online shop with Woolworths this week, I went to IGA for meat. With 5 meat eaters in the house, $5 per kg can make difference. This week the pork chops cost $9 less a kg. 2kg purchased = total savings $18.

I was reminded of the following:

  • The little savings add up – $79.50 to be exact!
  • Wasting food costs you money and not wasting food saves you money.
  • In my house the weak spots are coffee and snack food.
  • Even when you think you are budgeting well, you can find additional spots to save.

Set yourself a challenge

There are so many ways to challenge yourself to save that little extra each week. I love the swap theory. Try swapping 10 minutes per day on social media to looking online at shopping catalogues one day, comparison websites for your insurances another day, maybe gas and electricity a third day and see how much you can save.

Do you have any other tips to add to the list? Please share in the comments below.

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  • Gets you thinking even about really small changes, I like the attempt for win win situations, no one is losing out. For me I eat out a lot so making time to meal prep is key and if I think I’m not going to be home much I freeze things, even fruit so I can use as backups when busy.


  • i like how it is phrased as a swap rather than straight up elimination of those little things that we love. it makes it mentally a bit more easier to do and more likely to view this as a challenge


  • I love this, making you not just think about the extra ways to save money, but by physically putting that money aside it really shows you what you are saving. Little things like coffee don’t take long to add up.
    I have also worked hard at using bananas that are getting to the end of life in cooking, things like bananas are great unfreeze if you don’t have time to book that day.


  • Great reminder to always be conscious of what you’re spending.


  • With a bit of planning it’s easy to save money. Don’t buy drinks out- always take your own – even an empty water bottle. And take snacks for the kids too. $1000s saved annually.


  • This is fantastic. I try to save where I can but I think I could definitely try harder


  • Great idea, every time my insurances are due I ring around to find a cheaper one. Last year I saved $500 on my car and $300 on my husbands car insurance! That’s $800 difference!


  • I always use my discount coupons for petrol and check the specials before I go food shopping. Im lucky that I have both a Coles and a Woolworths close buy.


  • It is amazing how much you can save by just not buying coffee when you are out. Take a thermos instead. Packing our lunch also saves us heaps of money.


  • Thank you for the useful article. Cheers.


  • It’s amazing how much money I can save or build when we have something to work towards. It’s usually best for a family holiday. Once I know how much it costs, I work towards that and spending money to make sure we’re all covered. It’s all about having goals.


  • Good tips and tips we try to live by.


  • Yes, I live by this rule. Sometimes I’d really love to buy that dress or whatever, then think I can get by for another year with what I’ve got. When you are on a very limited income all those penny pinching ideas do get you through to the next payday – and lets face it, homemade food is cheaper and tastes nicer and what’s wrong with a good old fashioned thermos for coffee, packet soup [on special of course] rather than buying at the venue. Different if it’s a fund raiser for the club/venue you are attending.


  • Such great tips and love the one about walking that bit futher


  • Very helpful article


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