As a recent college grad, you probably aren’t rolling in it. Maybe you’re still looking for a job. Maybe you just moved out and after first and last month’s rent, a security deposit, a non-refundable administration fee and a pet deposit, you suspect it will be months before you have the money to spend on something other than the basic necessities. Your first summer as a college graduate can be a rough one financially, so check out these inexpensive ways you can still have fun!
Easy Ways to Save:
Deals, Contests and Coupons
Instead of paying full price for amusement park and concert tickets, look for ways you can get them cheaper. If your local radio station is giving them away, try calling in. If the water park is half-off when you come after 5:00 p.m., take advantage. If your little brother volunteers at the baseball field, ask if there’s a way he can score you some free tickets. Look online for coupons. You can still do the summer activities you love, except now you’re finding ways to do them cheaper.
Make Your Meals
Instead of grabbing a few drinks at the beach’s bar, or spending $11.00 on a basket of fries at the fair, pack your own food and drinks. You can find recipes for fun summer foods online. If you’re not up to making anything, grocery stores often have prepared sandwiches and platters that still run cheaper than anything you would buy elsewhere.
Picnics and BBQs
Plan an afternoon for everyone to get together at someone’s backyard or at a park. Have everyone bring a dish to share so nobody is spending all of their paycheck on hot dogs, hamburgers, and paper plates. With all of your friends, lots of food, and music, you can still throw a great party without spending much money at all!
Some beaches are free, while others pay by the vehicle. Pack a couple of coolers with a day’s worth of snacks and carpool to the sand!
What games you play will depend on your group of friends. For those who want to take advantage of the sun and warm weather, you may want to start a game of kickball, volleyball, or baseball at a nearby field. For those less-outdoorsy types, grab a couple of board games and a few snacks and spend an afternoon in a circle with your friends on the porch.
Most communities have all kinds of inexpensive or free events throughout the summer including carnivals, fairs, farmers markets, theater performances, parades, and festivals. You can find out what your town as well as other towns near you are doing by looking at local papers, town web sites, flyers, advertisements at restaurants and coffee shops, or jut by asking around.
If you have access to a couple of tents or a trailer, camping can be an inexpensive way to take a vacation. Grab your gear, a few packages of hot dogs and marshmallows, and some bug spray and head to the woods for a few days of relaxation with your best friends.
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