Trying to be Thrifty


I’ve always thought of myself as a thrifty person. I look out for 20% off codes before I shop for clothes. I try to stock up on things in the sales. I go to a few different grocery stores, which has reduced our spending loads as we used to mainly shop from Ocado. But recently, I’ve realised that I’m not as thrifty as I had imagined.

At the weekend, we took the kids to the Natural History Museum. Regular readers will know that Dubz is crazy for ‘dinoroars’. We packed a lunch, and off we went. The museum is free, and there is free street parking on a Sunday. Sounds like a fun but thrifty day, right? Wrong. At the end of our visit, we let the kids pick out a few things in the gift shop – £40 later, I realised that I was far from thrifty.

Trying to be Thrifty

So, I’ve decided to be more conscious of what we spend on family outings. I will endeavour to always bring a packed lunch. I will try to avoid gift shops. I will be in charge of the monthly budget for outings (currently this is Husband’s domain, and he is the least thrifty person I’ve ever met). I’ve gone back to being a Mystery Shopper with Market Force. You can find cafes, restaurants, pubs, and enjoy a free cake or meal and get paid for it. There are also opportunities at shops, opticians and bowling alleys. You set how far you are willing to travel, and it shows you the opportunities available. You can then pick which ones you would like to take part in. This week the children and I will be eating pizza, for free, plus getting paid for it.

Also, I have just donated a bag of old clothes to H&M’s Long Live Fashion campaign. They have rewarded me with a £5 off voucher. Normally we give old clothes to the recycling tip or to charity shops. But this way helps with my next shopping trip (I love H&M for clothes and accessories for me and the kids). And as I have until the end of August to use it, I can use it in the sales. I have another bag ready to be traded in for another voucher.

Trying to be Thrifty

Lastly, I have loads of baby/toddler toys that I will be selling. I’ve never sold anything on eBay before, so I may try it out. Or else, I may use a local selling group – perhaps Netmums or NappyValletNet.

Is there anything else I can be doing? How do you stay thrifty and stick to a budget?


Mums' Days

12 thoughts on “Trying to be Thrifty

  1. Some fabulous tips here. I’ve become a lot more thrifty in the last few months and got to a few different grocery shops because certain things are cheaper elsewhere. Also looked into cash back websites for the groceries and although its only a little bit each time it can add up over the course of a year. I may just register to do some mystery shops myself 🙂 #AllAboutYou

  2. One thing that I desperately want for Gwenn is for her to travel and to see the places that I was lucky enough to visit when I was living at home. The only way we can do this is by starting to be thrifty now and putting money to one side, but I have to admit that I am terrible. I’m really good at cutting back on things for me and Andrew isn’t a spender either but the amount of money we spend on food is frightening. We need to shop smarter and probably meal planning would help. Good Luck on becoming a thrift Queen! x


  3. Some great thrifty ideas there. Love the idea of being a mystery shopper, free pizza sounds pretty good!
    We are not as good with out money as I would like us to be, my husband and I would be impulse buyers rather than savers, but it’s something I would like to change x

  4. Eeek, £40 in the gift shop must have been harsh when you were trying to be thrifty!
    I hate gift shops – so many places put the exit to the attraction at the back of the gift shop, forcing you to walk through the damn thing to get out! Maximum pester power and impulse buying power I suppose, but still very annoying!
    On days out, I always make sure we take a water bottle with us, or juice cartons as just a couple of drinks extra to buy can be expensive.
    I also take some sandwiches, crisps and fruit for a little packed lunch too!

  5. Don’t get me wrong I will spend any money I have…….therefore the key is not to carry any money! Yes take the packed lunch, take the bus or tube with an Oyster card….carry no money and then the kids can’t pester you in the gift shop or they can but you just say, mummy doesn’t have any money.

  6. What great tips on being thrifty! I have always been rather thrifty myself. I even saved thousands of dollars on my recent wedding which I was very proud of! Thank you for sharing your thrifty ways with us all!

    Wishing you a lovely evening!

    Much Love,
    Lysa xx

  7. Oooh that is a nifty tip re the H&M thing – I love their clothes too!! I’m hoping to buy a new pair of jeans in a few weeks (as a reward once I’ve lost a few pounds!!). My last pair was from there and I’ve literally worn them until they’ve ripped, so think I might be heading back thataway!

    Thanks for linking up to #AllAboutYou and good luck with the thriftiness!! xx

  8. I am rubbish! We always buy a load of stuff the night before so we can take a picnic or something but then i cant be bothered or forget about it so as well as spending money on picniccy things we then spend money on food whilst we are out THEN theres the gift shop…4 (sometimes 5 if D (stepson) is with us) monsters all wanting something is not cheap especially when they dont want a pencil and a badge!!

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