Money woes

Submitted via the Personal Wyszdom request:

Money woes

The economy doesn’t seem to be doing so hot, gas prices are rising, and banks are doing poorly.  What are some ways to save money? How can I take a girl out on a date that’s practically free, without looking cheap?

When it comes to general money-saving advice, I keep like to keep it simple: don’t go into debt. How do you avoid debt? Don’t buy stuff that you cannot afford. Here’s an instructional video:

And that “savings” thing they talk about in Chapter 3? Here’s how I handle it. I keep the money that I need in a checking account. This is where I get the money to pay my rent, credit card balance, and other bills. My paycheck gets deposited into this account. When I have more money than I need in my checking account, I move the stuff that I don’t need into the savings account. I never take money out of the savings account, because I’m saving it.

Now, onto relationship advice. First of all, if you’re dating a girl you should try to splurge once in a while. It’ll be fun for both of you, and what better things could you spend your money on? But of course that’s not something you can do all the time, so looking for more affordable activities is certainly reasonable. The specific venue for your date is a matter of personal preference, so I’ll just list a few ideas to show you that not every date has to involve buying a meal or a ticket. In fact, I prefer a movie night on the couch over eating in a restaurant with potentially terrifying food and confusing tipping practices.

Here are some possibilities to get you started, but I encourage you to be creative and build off of these for even better experiences:

  • Rent a movie or pick out an old favorite from your DVD collection and just hang out at your place or hers with some microwave popcorn. It’s simple and nothing new, but who doesn’t like it? Bonus points if you cook her dinner before the movie, if you don’t suck at cooking.
  • Find a nice isolated place with limited or no light pollution and watch the stars. Reid has noted that the Perseid meteor shower peaks in August!
  • Picnic
  • Sneak over to where she’s babysitting and hang out with her after the kids have gone to bed. Just make sure you sneak back out before the parents get back early because they forgot the tickets for the show after dinner. <- DO NOT DO THIS! Haven’t you ever seen a sitcom?

Have more ideas for a cheap date? (Oh, yeah, make sure you avoid the phrase “cheap date.”) Leave a comment below.

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