Have you ever heard that popular saying, “The best things in life are free?” Well, when you are low on cash and looking for something to do, you will find that this quote is nothing but true.
When on a shoestring budget–or no budget at all–your only option is to be creative when you want to have a good time. Do not be fooled into thinking you HAVE to blow nearly a hundred bucks on dinner and a movie in order to enjoy a night out. Here are some alternative, wallet-friendly ideas.
Browse your community calendar
The city or town you live in surely has a website that is chock full of detailed information. Search the city’s online calendar and you will be at no loss of free events taking place near you. Informational seminars, children’s activities, financial literacy classes, gardening lessons–the list goes on. To expand your list of possibilities, check events taking place in other towns surrounding yours. If you just so happen to stop by a City Hall or local library, you will likely find flyers and pamphlets detailing local events, too. You might even be able to speak with the person in charge of scheduling and planning those events.
Free museum days
Did you know that many museums, zoos and science centers have specific days when general admission is free? Some have even introduced a “pay-what-you-can” model. Sometimes, you may not be able to get free admission to tour an entire museum, but a specific exhibit or attraction may be all you are entitled to–and that’s still pretty darn cool. Visit your local museum’s website, or call to find out when you might be able to visit at no cost. Another place to score free museum passes is your local library.
Pick up a community newspaper
Yes, it is true that the quickest and easiest way to find out what’s going on locally is probably via social media–or just the internet in general. But chances are, you may come across some gems in your locally published paper that you will not see online. Although they are not as prevalent as they used to be, local newspapers might be near the entry/exit area of various grocery stores, libraries and small business establishments.
Sample a fitness class
It’s quite rare to be able to sign up for a completely free yoga or pilates class, but you can usually try a session for free just to see if it meets your expectations before forking over any money. Do some research. Are there any gyms or fitness centers in you area that offer free introductory or drop-in classes? The one catch with this tip is that you will likely be pressured to sign up for a paid membership. But if you know that the free class is all you want, kindly turn down the offer and leave. No harm done.
Indulge in a free snack or two
Hungry? Supermarkets and farmers markets are notorious for giving away free samples. From deli meat and cheese to prepared foods like chicken salad, it’s quite common to sample these items before deciding if you like it enough to purchase. Although all stores vary with the times they hand out free samples, you may first want to check in the early evening during rush hour–the same time that store shoppers are in search of dinner ingredients.