Money Games That Can Make Frugality Fun

by April Serock
Playing Money Games Can Make Frugality Fun photo

Tired of penny pinching? You can make saving money and living within your means fun and exciting instead of monotonous and stressful by using these games and challenges.

Sometimes being frugal can be a drag, which can make you lose your motivation. Keep your spirits and your savings high by making frugality a game.

Not sure how to start? Try one of these saving games to get you started.

A How-Much Game

Make it a game to see how much money you can make in a week or a month. Step up your side gig or start one if you don’t have one. Put in a few extra hours taking online surveys, working a part-time job, or selling crafts and watch your savings grow.

See how much you can reduce your set expenses by calling around. Can you trim some money from your insurance premium by changing your deductible or tweaking your coverage? If you live in a state where you can choose electricity providers, are you getting the best rate possible? Check cell phone, cable, and internet plans to see how to get the services you want for the lowest possible price. Sometimes you can get a discounted rate just by calling the company and asking.

How much money can you save in a week? Reread your favorite book instead of buying a new one. Try a recipe for your favorite bakery treat and make it yourself.

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A How-Little Game

How little can you spend on the essentials for a day, a week, a month? See how little you can spend on gas by reducing car travel or bundling errands.

Check sales and coupons for savings on things you must buy like food and toiletries.

Can you substitute another product already on hand for one you may be out of? For example, coconut oil can make a lovely makeup remover. Baking soda can be used in place of toothpaste in a pinch.

Try to follow the old adage: “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”

A How-Long Game

See how long you can make a product last. Can you eke out another two or three days from that tube of toothpaste or another week from your shampoo with judicial use?

How long can you go without a nonessential service? Try to stretch the time between haircuts, for example. Experiment with accessories, braids, hats, or different hairstyles to extend your time between trims.

How long can you go without buying something? Can you make your groceries last another few days? Lots of things make wonderful fillings for omelets. Use up those frozen or canned vegetables in a soup or stew. Casseroles are great for finishing up a half of a box of rice or some leftover entrees.

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A How-Low Game

How low can you get your utility bills? Can you adjust the thermostat lower in the winter or higher in the summer to lower your energy bill? Shut off lights with multiple bulbs and use task-specific lighting to reduce your electric bill? Take shorter showers to cut your water costs?

All of these games can be adapted to your particular situation. None of these games involves complicated methods of saving money. In fact, you may have heard many of these tips before. Each of these games is really less about specific frugal techniques and more about changing your attitude toward saving money.

As Winston S. Churchill once said, “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.” No matter what your reason for being frugal, whether it is by necessity or by choice, you have the ability to control your attitude. By looking at frugal living as a series of games and challenges, you can make saving money and living within your means fun and exciting, instead of monotonous and stressful. The choice is up to you!

Reviewed March 2024

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