Are you a regular driver? You mightn’t realise it, but your style of driving could be affecting your car’s economy. People who tend to accelerate hard, brake sharply and drive too fast will be visiting the fuel pumps a lot more often than those who take a gentler approach. Keep an eye out on the road ahead (you should be doing this anyway), and try to anticipate when you might have to brake or come to a stop. Other things to look for for include carrying as little weight as possible (no sacks of coal in the boot), make sure your tyres are inflated regularly, don’t drive around with a roof box if possible and stick to the speed limits (though we shouldn’t have to labour this point).
Learn to cook – you’d be surprised at how much you could save by not eating out or buying ready meals every evening. Don’t worry about making too much – if you freeze leftover portions then you’ll get another dinner or two out of the meal. And you don’t even have to pay for lessons – if you can’t get a cook book recipe to work, follow the example of top chefs on YouTube.
Compare and shop online
If you’re out shopping and something catches your eye, hold off on the purchase right away. First check the price on eBay or Amazon – you might make some savings simply by waiting a few days for it to arrive.
Clean fridge, heavier wallet
If you’re living on your own or with one other person this probably isn’t going to be a big issue, but for larger families or housemates, make sure you clean and order your fridge on a regular basis. If it’s messy and things are arranged haphazardly, there could be good food going to waste and it could mean you end up buying another pound of butter when there’s already a barely touched packet lying open behind the tomatoes.
Exercise for less
Cutting out your gym membership needn’t be the end of your healthy lifestyle. Walk around more, before or after you leave for work, take the stairs instead of lifts or, if you take the bus, get off one stop earlier than usual. YouTube and your local library are great resources for exercise DVDs, or you could invest in a bike or a pair of good running shoes. Here are some ideas to get your started.