Money saving tips

By Staff Writer
If the recession and the expenses of the World Cup have you in its clutches, we have a few tips on how you can start saving today while doing your part in saving the environment.
  1. Use public transport: BRT and the Gautrain now a reality; alternatively you can start a lift club. Not only is ridesharing and public transport cheaper and more sociable, you can also get some reading done and arrive at work feeling relaxed.
  2. Couchsurf: CouchSurfing is an international non-profit network that connects travellers with locals in over 230 countries and territories around the world. By "surfing" a host's couch, "surfers" or travellers, are able to participate in the local life of the places they visit, while lowering the financial cost of exploration and accommodation.
  3. Meat Free Mondays: Not only is meat an expensive form of protein, but there are clear links between the livestock industry and greenhouse-gas emissions. MFM is an environmental campaign that aims to raise awareness of the climate-changing impact of meat production. By cutting meat one night a week you can reduce your impact on your pocket and the environment.
  4. Ask for a discount: This applies especially to furniture and large appliances. A lot of shops will give you a discount when you pay cash, so don't be afraid to ask.
  5. Pay the full outstanding amount on your credit card every month: Not only will this ensure that you have a good credit record, you will also not have to pay interest on the outstanding amount.
  6. Bring your own lunch to work: The average office lunch costs R35, while the average home cooked meal costs R25. That's a saving of R10 per day or R250 a month! While you're at it, stop buying that on-the-way-to-work cup of coffee. If you really can't stand the office brew, take your own brand and save a further R200 per month.
  7. Remember your plastic bags: You might not mind paying 10c for a plastic bag at the counter, but most of those bags will eventually end up on a landfill where they take hundreds of years to break down. If you're always forgetting your bags at home, try keeping them in the trunk of your car, or buy a foldable one from Clicks and keep it in your hand bag.
  8. Use Skype for calls: Skype isn't just for computer to computer calls anymore. You can call people on their cell phone or landline from as little as 2.5c per minute (US$).
  9. Don't buy pre-cut vegetables: Pre-cut veggies can cost up to double the price of whole vegetables. By buying whole vegetables, you will reduce the amount of packaging ending up on landfills, and the peels can be used as compost.
  10. Bank your change: This is a service from FNB where you can automatically save your "left over" cents whenever you purchase something in-store using your FNB Visa Cheque or Debit Card. The purchase amount is rounded up to the nearest Rand and deposited in your linked Savings Pocket. You can also choose to "top up" with R2, R5, R10 or R20.

Want more information on free things to do or got more money saving tips?

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