Whether you’re saving up for a new car, gadget, a designer item or just about anything else, money is always in the back of our minds before we decide to make a purchase. It’s the main reason why we don’t hop onto a plane and travel whenever we feel like it, or go on a massive shopping spree out of the blue.

There are many things we can choose to be frugal about, like eating cheap food, making our own coffee and carpooling, but when it comes to socialising and saving money, the dilemma is strong. You want to have a good time with your friends but at the same time, this would incur extra expenses. If you choose to stay home, the #fomo feeling lingers.

Though we highly encourage a saving habit, you should also have a balance between enjoying life and being economical. To avoid being a complete anti-social and severing your friendships, here are five ways you can save money and still have a good time. 😉

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1) Water suffices

Everyone knows that cafe food is overpriced and this is more apparent with drinks. RM16 for a glass of orange juice? How about no? You don’t have to starve yourself but you can certainly choose to skip out on ordering a drink. Just get water as it is usually free and even if it isn’t, it’ll only cost you an extra 50 cents at most.

2) Eat beforehand

Your friends want to dine at an expensive restaurant but you’re feeling the pinch? Grab a cheaper meal beforehand! That way, you can order something smaller (and cheaper) like an appetiser or a dessert. You can still participate in the feast without spending a bomb on a main course.

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3) Split a meal with a friend

This is quite a handy tip for small eaters as you can save half the amount on a meal if you share it with a friend. Some places allow you to choose your portion sizes, which means you can also go for the large portion, split the bill and still have your tummy filled.

4) Strategise your hangouts

If you’re a responsible adult, the reality is that you won’t be hanging out every weekend, especially if you cannot afford it. Just choose wisely which events to attend. Prioritise those that matter more to you, like a close friend’s birthday, but skip out on random party nights that will only leave you with a hangover and an empty wallet the next day.

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5) Location matters

We’re all for exploring new places but let’s not forget that petrol, toll, parking and car maintenance all add up to be quite the sum. If possible, try to hang out at a place closer to home that doesn’t require you to travel far, go through several tolls and where parking doesn’t cost a bomb! Be smart about it.

Tags : Frugality