Four ways to avoid money wasting this long weekend

By Staff Writer

Long weekends are great, you get to relax, spend time with family and catch up on chores. But it’s also a massive temptation to waste money.  With all this extra time, it’s easy to get bored and distracted and spend money which you should be saving.

With a bumper long weekend looming, we’ve got four things you should avoid - and tips on what you should be doing instead.

Don’t go wandering in the shops

If you’re staying at home this weekend, the temptation might be there to go wander the malls. It might be a good way to pass the time, but beware the temptation of spending money when you see the big for sale signs flash up.

If you simply must go to the shops, leave your wallet along with all your cards at home. Take only enough cash to ensure you can pay for parking. This way, even if temptation grabs you, you won’t be able to surrender.

Don’t eat out

Grabbing a few takeaways might seem like the easy option – after all, who wants to cook on a long weekend when you could be resting and catching up on your favourite series? Forget it. The cost of takeout over a long weekend can add up quickly. If you’re stumped for ideas on what exactly to cook, check out Jamie Oliver’s 30 minute mealspacked full of some great ideas for quick, easy meals. Round up the family and get everybody involved in the cooking process.

If you have to eat out, though, have a look at Nobucks.co.zaNoBucks has all the best restaurant specials in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban all in one place.

Stay entertained for free or at least on a budget

Going to the movies alone easily  add up to over R100 for a single outing – as a family trip, that could be pricey.  Ditch the movies and read a book or, if you absolutely have to watch a movie, how about a visit to the humble video store?

Keep the kids entertained by organizing play dates with other friends, or keep them busy with arts and crafts.  Should the weather permit, pack a picnic basket and make a day of it – head to the park, the beach or the dam.

Avoid last minute getaway plans 

Getaways can be relaxing and a nice break from the real world, but when they are done at the last minute, they often cost way  more than what is reasonable.

It might sound like a great idea at the time, but last minute bookings, especially over really busy weeeknds such as Easter Weekend can often cost double the price than a weekend getaway planned well in advance or over a weekend where not everyone wants to get away.

Check and compare prices before diving head first into an expensive get away.

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