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How to Live Luxuriously On a Budget

-- 2011-04-11 3:00 am --

Just because you’ve decided to live frugally doesn’t mean you have to give up all of the luxuries you enjoy. Daily coffee runs, eating out, beauty salon visits, and watching movies are still within your budget as long as you follow these simple tips:

Change Your Coffee Order
Anyone who is watching what they spend is probably aware of how costly that daily stop at the coffee shop can be. A convenient, tasty, warm and cozy treat; coffee can be a difficult habit to give up. Swapping out what you’re ordering for much cheaper versions will pleasantly surprise your taste buds and your wallet. For instance, if you love Lattes, try a plain cup of coffee but request cream. Better yet, request they leave room for cream and doctor it up yourself to the consistency you like. Many coffee shops also provide flavored creams, sugars, and spices that you can add in to your cup free of charge. For a third of the price you’ll enjoy a hot brew that is equally delicious.

Dine With Discounts
Thanks to the Internet, finding coupons, discounts, and free meals is easier than ever. Many restaurant chains provide coupons or free meals when you sign up for their newsletter or provide your contact information. Simply check your email and you’ll be amazed to discover free entrée, appetizer, dessert, or drink coupons that you can print out and take on your next visit. Online discount sites, such as Groupon or Restaurant.com, are another incredible way to save money. These sites offer deeply discounted products that are similar to gift-certificates with some restrictions. Once purchased online, these can be printed out and taken to the restaurant and redeemed like a gift-certificate.

Pamper Yourself Frugally
Skipping hair appointments and forgoing manicures and pedicures may be easy for some, but for many people it’s a necessity. For those people, it’s reasonable to come up with cheaper alternatives, including going to a local beauty school for salon services. Costing about half the price of a normal salon, beauty schools offer an array of services. Trained students are supervised by educated professionals as they work, providing a safe and relaxing experience. If you still prefer going to a salon, many nail technicians, cosmetologists or hair stylists publish coupons online or in local papers and partake in Groupon deals as well.

Watching Movies the Cheap Way
Major movie theater chains are known for their ridiculously high prices but there are second-run movie theaters that can be found all over. Showing movies that have usually been out for longer or have a smaller crowd following, these theaters are able to charge much less at the box office and the concession stand. Even if your area does not have these cheaper theaters, it’s still possible to save money at the larger chains by going to a matinee showing and simply passing on the concession stand food and snacking before or after the show elsewhere.