5th October, 2017 | 4 minutes
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Seven ways to save money this weekend (besides just watching Netflix on the couch)

by Jacinda Valeontis
Life Admin Geek

Still waiting for the next season of Orange Is The New Black? Already finished Stranger Things? Maybe channel surfing on the couch, in an effort to save money, is just getting old.

Saving doesn’t have to be a burden and it definitely doesn’t mean you have to limit your leisure to Netflix binges – although we completely understand the occasional temptation!

By making a few small changes to your spending habits, you might discover there’s more left over for saving than you thought. Smart purchasing decisions often mean you are able to do more, for less.

Here are seven quick and easy ways to start saving money – this weekend!

1. Audit your spending

Simpler than it sounds, an important first move is to review your current spending habits. Be sure to include everything from the essentials – rent, electricity and water – to those incidental luxuries.

A basic Excel spread sheet is your friend here. Categorise your monthly spend across areas such as utilities, healthcare, insurance, food, clothing, household expenses and social activities. Once you have a clearer picture of where and how you’re spending your money, saving it becomes a little easier.

Don’t be surprised if your audit reveals that a lot of your hard-earned cash is being gobbled up by utilities (think power and gas) and insurance. You can make an instant saving on these expenses by comparing current energy or insurance providers with iSelect. We can help you see costs and benefits side-by-side, compare prices and select the provider that offers everything you need at the best possible price. Compare now and discover the savings potential.

Cost of living can be expensive! See if you can save on your energy bills.

Compare electricity and gas

2. Spring clean!

Clear out all the clutter taking up space in your home – the golf clubs, tennis racket or funky pairs of shoes that never suited you in the first place, and make some extra cash in the process.

Hire a stall at the local second hand market or hold a garage sale at your own home and spend a nice day out with family and friends while you’re at it.

For those a little more digitally inclined, the online world is awash with options to sell second-hand goods. Consider the classics including eBay and Gumtree as well as the latest phone apps like Poshmark, Rebagg and Depop.

Seven ways to save money this weekend (that don’t involve just sitting on the couch watching Netflix)

3. Take a closer look at your credit card bill

If you’ve ever been caught out by the unexpectedly high cost of using a credit card – you’re not alone. Although hugely handy, credit cards are complex products – their minefield of rules and regulations around interest rates, fees and promotional periods means many of us are spending more than we’d like to on our credit cards.

An iSelect comparison will quickly reveal how your credit card stacks up against its competitors. Compare now – you may be surprised at how much you could be saving each month simply by switching provider.

Tell us what you’re looking for and we’ll make it easy to compare cards

Compare credit cards

4. Trim your entertainment costs

With a little forward planning, the weekend doesn’t have to be a spending spree. Whether you’re single, a couple or bringing up a young family, many weekend entertainment options are still virtually free.

Save your hip pocket by having friends over for brunch or dinner instead of going out. Inventing your own take on smashed avocado could save you nearly $30!

Take advantage of good weather with a day spent outdoors, enjoying a hike, the beach, a picnic or a barbecue with friends. Keep an eye out for festivals and free activities in your home city or town. Hint: the annual Melbourne or Sydney festivals are great places to start.

Seven ways to save money this weekend (that don’t involve just sitting on the couch watching Netflix)

5. Ditch Uber

If you can, take a walk. Instead of spending big on Uber, taxis or even public transport, try walking or cycling to the local shops, your cafe or the gym – and put away the money you would have spent shelling out for transport. Cutting out a single $25 Uber or cab fare per week could save you around $1,300 per year.

Every little trip counts and while getting home safely after a big night out might still cost you, riding or walking to the beach or to catch up with friends can save you plenty – and deliver health benefits at the same time!

6. Be your own barista

This is a tough one for the best of us. Sadly, the fact remains that coffee prices are steadily increasing. By simply cutting back (no one’s asking you to go cold turkey) you’ll be shocked at how much you can save.

Having your weekend coffee at home could save you more than $400 a year if you’re single – double that figure if you’re a couple. Ditch coffee purchases from your working week as well and you could save more than $1,400 in just one year. Invest in some good quality grounds at home and you may not even notice the difference!

Seven ways to save money this weekend (that don’t involve just sitting on the couch watching Netflix)

7. Get a free health cover check-up and see where you could save

When was the last time you checked if you could get a better deal on your health insurance? Could you be paying for things on your policy that you really don’t need?

It’s worth looking into this to see how much you could save, every policy needs a check-up from time-to-time to make sure it’s still in good health. Our iSelect health insurance advisors can give you a free health cover check-up over the phone, see how much you could save!

It’s your turn to save Australia. See how much you could save on your health insurance.

Compare health insurance

iSelect does not compare all products in the market. Not all products are available at all times. Any advice provided in this content is of a general nature and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You need to consider the appropriateness of any information or general advice we give you, having regard to your personal situation, before acting on our advice or purchasing any product.

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