In 2018, we are going back to frugality. This means getting a little more strict on our budget and tracking expenses each month. I’m trying to get our savings rate back above 75%!
It’s safe to say that the first four months of the year have been successfully frugal. At the same time, we’ve been having lots of fun!
These days, there are numerous cheap entertainment options available. If anything you should worry about wasting too much time on cheap entertainment, it’s your time that is most valuable!
To keep our expenses low we have purchased MoviePass and paid our gym memberships a year in advance. So if we are ever bored we can simply go to the movies or go to the gym.
Of course we also have Netflix because let’s be honest, everyone has Netflix. But getting out of the house on occasion is good for you! I used to watch about three movies at the theater per year but now I watch one or two per week. Not only is MoviePass dirt cheap, it’s also improved the relationship between my wife and I. We treat going to the movies as date nights. So we’re looking to quadruple the amount of date nights this year compared to last!
This is what makes us different than most Americans who purchase memberships but never use them. If I’m going to buy a membership or subscription, I make sure to take full advantage.
My newest inexpensive subscription is Scribd. They are a digital library with tons of e-books and audiobooks. They are a competitor to Audible but they operate like Netflix; unlimited streaming for a low price.
I love listening to audiobooks when I drive, bike, or workout. Sometimes I listen to audiobooks at my desk while working on basic spreadsheets.
However, there are probably free audiobook options from your local library already. Some of my favorites include Hoopla Digital and Overdrive. You should definitely look at these free options first before subscribing to Scribd.
I’ve used Hoopla Digital for the past couple of years and really enjoy them, however I find Scribd to be superior for a few reasons. Scribd has significantly more new titles and allows you to listen on 2x (Hoopla only allows up to 1.5x despite my multiple email and tweet requests).
Three of the four new books I had purchased or planned to buy were shockingly already on Scribd including Principles by Ray Dalio, Skin in the Game by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, and Meet the Frugalwoods by Elizabeth Willard Thames.
I recently finished my Scribd free month trial and plan to pay the monthly membership for unlimited audiobooks. This is far less expensive than Audible as I can reasonably listen to two to four audiobooks per month for $8.99 versus buying one audiobook per month for $14.95.
Other frugal activies I’ve been trying to increase include studying Korean, hiking, and biking.
What do you do for cheap entertainment?