With the New Year, come new resolutions, and often the resolution to spend less. Which breaks after a week because you feel deprived, like you would on a strict diet after a week of eating carrots only. But being on a budget does not have to be restrictive, there are tons of fun hobbies you can do without breaking the bank. Here are a few examples.
Buying a used bike on Craig’s List will set you back $25 and provide you with countless hours of exercise and entertainment. I used to have a bike in the UK and would go to work with it every day, even when it rained or was really cold. This is to say there is no reason not to enjoy cycling all year. Cycling is the perfect way to explore your neighborhood and surrounding towns, go to the local market, a new exhibition, a concert on campus…
Just make sure you buy proper gear (like rain pants or a strap for your pants so they don’t get all greasy with the chain) and you are good to go!
Football can be played almost anywhere, as long as you have a ball. We used to play in a public garden, using our backpacks as goals. You can play all year round, and go anywhere on Earth, there will always be someone to play with you. Football is excellent cardio and you get to work on your speed and aim. As a team game it is really social, you can make a lot of new friends if you go to a nearby field and look for other players.
What I like about football is it can also become a cheap hobby to watch the games. When I was a teen, I was living in Marseille, in the South of France, and it was the year of the French World Cup. They had put giant screens on the beach and you could go with your chairs and drinks watch the game with hundreds of other people, which is almost as good as being in the stadium, and as close to free as it gets.
Sometimes we would bet small amounts too, to make it more interesting, checking the odds on sites like bwin, and supporting even more our team. They did make it to World champions!
Anyway, whether you play yourself or watch a game, this is a very social situation that will not break the bank.
The big cook
I like this one because it allows you to have fun while at the same time helps you keep in control of your grocery budget. The big cook’s principle is simple: you get together with a few friends, make a big shop to enjoy bulk discount at the supermarket (you could even buy a whole cow from the local butcher for example) and spend the day cooking at a friend’s who has a big kitchen. At the end of the day, every cook goes back home with small containers full of ready meals for the family.
Big cooks are much more fun than each person cooking alone, and the scale of it will not only save you money but also time. If you make a lasagna for 20 people, you’ll go back with 20 individually packed portions, ready to unfreeze any day you are too tired to cook. And at a fraction of the cost.
Any other ideas for easy to take on cheap hobbies?