All saving and no play makes life a bit dull


Image by JohnSeb

When you have debts to pay and more bills coming in every day, you have to do what you can to trim the household budget and keep spending on those ‘extras’ in life to a bare minimum. But it’s hard work being frugal all the time, especially as those extras are usually the fun things in life.

If you can think your way round the way you spend money, you can still factor in some fun. Granted, it might be at a lower level than you’d like, but until you’re on the right side of the credit line, it’s how it has to be. Think about whether you have any income at all that you can spend on leisure and apportion it differently. For instance, don’t meet friends for a night out at a restaurant or bar – get them over to your place instead and work on your home cooking skills. Take turns and you still get to see each other regularly, but it’s more or less guaranteed you’ll all spend less doing it this way than when you eat out.

With the money that you save on what you would have spent on one ‘entertainment’ activity, you can redistribute some of it on other diversions. One example is online slots. There are thousands of slot games available online and although you can pay to play them, there are lots of sites where you can just play the games in demo mode. If you’re in and bored with watching TV, playing slots can be a great alternative, especially when you’re not putting real money down to play and there’s no financial risk. Of course, the only downside is that when you have a big win with your virtual pile of coins, the win is only virtual too! But you’ll have enjoyed the entertainment and diversion while playing for free.

If you enjoy playing slots and casino games for real, you can do so as long as you’re self-disciplined about what you spend on them. Most casino sites will offer a welcome bonus where they match or double what you put in when you first start an account. So you’ve doubled your money – or more – before you’ve started placed a bet. And you never know, you may even be able to build on that base and turn a profit, though given general casino odds this is unlikely. But if you can commit to only paying in money once, you could get plenty of play time out of that small investment. And when it runs out, you can always then just revert to playing in demo mode.

Of course, there are plenty of other online gaming options, but slots are hard to beat for variety and ease of play. And with so many sites to choose from, it’s always an option for when you want to do something fun and frivolous rather than watching the box!

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