Ask the Readers: What Money-Saving Activity Do You Enjoy the Most?

By Ashley Jacobs on 24 January 2017 75 comments

Editor's Note: Congratulations to Linda, Mel, and Daniel for winning this week's contest!

We do a lot of different things to save money, but not all frugal activities are created equal. Some will save you more money than others, and some are definitely more enjoyable than others.

What money-saving activity do you enjoy the most? How much money do you think it saves you per week, month, or year? What money-saving activity do you enjoy the least, but you still do it anyway because the savings is worth it?

Tell us about the money-saving activity that you enjoy the most and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards

We're doing three giveaways — here's how you can win!

Mandatory Entry:

  • Post your answer in the comments below. One commenter will be randomly selected to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

For Extra Entries:

  • You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. Also, our Facebook fans can get an extra entry too! Use our Rafflecopter widget for your chance to win one of the other two Amazon Gift Cards:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on Flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.

Giveaway Rules:

  • Contest ends Monday, January 30 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after January 30 on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.
     
  • You can enter all three drawings — once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.
     
  • This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered, or associated with Facebook.
     
  • You must be 18 and U.S. resident to enter. Void where prohibited.

Good Luck!

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Guest's picture
Julie Wood

I use coupons to save money on everything. It is my favorite way to save money.

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Karen Patterson

I like clipping and using coupons.

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Natalie

I love to clip coupons and see how much I can save at the store. I also combine coupons with sales and savings apps.

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Mami2jcn

I like using coupons the most because it's nice to see the total go down.

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Blondie

I always bring my lunch to work. I love that I know exactly what ingredients goes into my meals and of course it saves me about $80-100 per month.

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Elena

I enjoy making my own coffee at home.

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Stefanie

The one I love the most is borrowing ebooks from the library - free and incredibly easy to access!

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Elle

I enjoy cooking. I save a lot of money making home cooked meals rather than ordering/eating out.

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Monique Hubert

I enjoy drawing up a budget and readjusting it from time to time because it helps me to know where I am financially and where I'm going. It probably saves thousands of dollars a year. I do not like comparing prices because it can be very time consuming, but it is absolutely worth it, so I still do it.

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Jamie DeAngelis

My favorite is brewing my own coffee! I brought my old coffee pot to the office when I was gifted a new one for home and just re-up bags of coffee at Aldi. $4 for almost 2 week's worth of coffee vs. $3.19 at Starbucks everyday? Sold.

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Natasha

I love to visit the library! I go at least once a week and always have something new to read. If I purchased every book I read, I can't even image how I would find money for basic necessities.

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Lisa

I enjoy the money saving apps I use to help save money - Receipt Hog, Swagbucks, Shopkick. It's fun to earn gift cards and/or PayPal for doing simple or easy things like scanning receipts or walking into a store!

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Guest

Cooking at home with unprocessed foods. I truly believe it saves on food bills AND doctor bills. I also really love grocery shopping. It combines my love of cooking and my love of saving money!

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Raina

I like scrolling through the coupons on the Ibotta app. Sometimes it gives me new ideas of things to buy, and other times it's literally just free money on something I was already planning to buy.

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Louise

Meal planning - I hate food shopping so only having to do that once a week and then know I have decent meals all week is a great feeling. Makes me feel organised and in control :)

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Gina

The money saving activity I like the most is bulk cooking breakfast and lunch for the week. The activity I like the least is budgeting, couponing, and shopping for the best prices but the savings is worth it.

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Donna Sako

I enjoy the library. Books, movies, and social activities all for free!

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Guest

I love getting freebies. I have a couple of social deal sites that let me know quickly about freebies and special promotions. It feels great to catch a sweet deal or freebie!

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Ernest S.

I make it a weekly habit to polish my shoes at home every week. It really helps to maintain the life and longevity of my shoes!

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leana

I use coupons, I bring my lunch to work, I make coffee at home, I cook dinner, I try not to spend money on stuff I don't need, etc.

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Lisa

My favorite way to save money is bike commuting. It saves me hundreds of dollars in gas, maintenance, and health club fees every year. Plus it is a lot less stressful than dealing with traffic.

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beverly hirsch

I have learned to shop resale shops for clothes. I look great and don't look like I live on a tight budget. They are the same brands I used to spend tons on and feel so smart when I wear these.

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Hydro Thunder

Keeping a watchful eye on store closings. I have a small spare room and when a local store marked everything down 60-70% I stocked up on almost any essential that never goes bad. Though in the next 6 months I may have to buy toilet paper for the first time in 11 months...

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Julie Lundstrom

I like to clip coupons to help and with the kids I like to go to the beach for some low cost fun.

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Jen D

Using my local library to check out novels and DIY books, movies, magazines, newspapers, and adult-size jigsaw puzzles.

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Keith Schoose

My favorite way to save money is by being a smart shopper. I buy things on sale. I know which stores have the best prices for my regular purchases and I shop there.

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Susan Smith

I like clipping and using coupons to save money.

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Linda

I like to use coupons and shop sales for great deals.

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Emily S.

I love cooking from-scratch dinners!

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Danielle

I love to bake my own bread.

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MELISSA HANSSON

I love to clip coupons and shop online for the best prices.

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Kay

I like adding deals to my credit cardscro... It is very satisfying to see that money back on my account.

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Betty

I make a game out of keeping my grocery bill as low as possible. I pair my coupons with sales.

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Donna D

Brewing loose leaf tea and taking it to work.

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Katie

My favorite is making all of my meals at home. I easily save $100-200 a month by choosing to cook instead of spending at restaurants. Plus I love trying new recipes!

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Kelli

I like using sites like Ebates. Super easy and helps put more money back in my pocket!

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Mary W

I like finding discount codes for shopping on line. Sometimes it's free shipping or others it's a free product sample added to the order. The best is when you can stack codes to get two or even three discounts on the same order.

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Susan P.

I enjoy going to thrift stores when it is time to replace clothing items. It's a thrill to find a top or jeans you love for $1.99!

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Liz

I like to resell things on eBay

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Amanda

I am torn between two - I eat healthier and save money by packing a lunch for work, AND I get to enjoy nature while saving by exercising outside instead of having a gym membership.

We also rent out several rooms in our home to family and friends, and I have found having people I love around contributes immensely (most of the time) to my happiness, contrary to what most would assume.

Thanks!!

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MelodyJ

I clip coupons and saving my change.

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Karen

I cook and prepare every meal. Simple savings every day. I do not spend money eating out, I shop my freezer and pantry to mix it up. I save hundreds of dollars and enjoy the food planning. Karen

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Chris

Since I switched to a whole-food plant-based diet, I HAVE to make my own food and bring it for lunch. Turns out, I love doing that even if it is extra work. Has probably saved me at least half of the cost of lunch, if not more.

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CYNTHIA

I usually ask myself if I really need what I'm going to buy or if it's just an impulse buy. Sometimes that can save me ALOT of money!

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Camille

My favorite way to save it to put my "helpers" to work. I use a slow cooker, a bread maker and prepare a meal that I can just set and forget. Slow cooked soup, stew or a roast with some fresh baked bread is an inexpensive meal that warms the soul on a cold day with not much hands on time. I also use coupons every chance I get and have joined multiple reward programs like CVS that generate money saving coupons and freebies or cash back. Driving a small car helps save on gas and tires. Living in a small house saves housing and heating expenses.

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Sarah Mitchell

My favorite money saving activity is saving on haircuts. I don't feel the need to spend a bunch of money at salons. I have a couple of friends who are hairdressers. I was sick a while back and they would cut my hair for free to help out as my body and my hair started getting healthier. That meant the world to me, because it was such a demonstration of love and kindness. More recently, I will ask my friend to trim my hair every couple of months, and, in exchange, I babysit her kids for a few hours while she and her husband enjoy a date night. As a backup, I rely on the $5 haircuts offered at Great Clips once in a while. Even with a tip, it's the least expensive haircut money can buy! The average haircut for women is $43 and at four haircuts a year, this comes to about $170 that I save using the bartering system. My least favorite money saving activity is cutting out coffee from coffee shops. I brew coffee at home and take it in a tumbler and forego Starbucks unless I have a gift card. With as much coffee as I consume, this saves me approximately $500 a year-- well worth it!

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Christie

Making a grocery list based on what is on sale and trying to get the most groceries for the least amount of money is my favorite. I know what I try to spend every week, sometimes I can get it to within pennies. Win!

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CF

My favorite free activity is reading books from my iPad from the library.

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Rebecca Ross

I enjoy making things to save money--gifts, laundry detergent, etc.

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amanda sakovitz

I like using online coupon codes.

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Sarah Johnson

I cannot beat any of the responders in my response. I just love the library and I joined Library Friends for $10.00 a month because this is such a precious place. So, am I saving money? I hope I am giving back for what the library has given me. Yes, I get a lot more back than $10.00 a month that I give.

I also choose my charities very carefully. Doctors Without Borders is going to get my gifts this year. I do this because this is a service which does not spend on overhead (though they spend a bit on fund raising). I also spent a weekend in the hospital where I received a bunch of tests with tons of blood tests and more, Xray machines, EKGs, sonograms and an MRI which showed I did not have cancer. I think about these volunteer doctors who serve in crisis places without this equipment. So I will give $50.00 a month to them and be very grateful I can do this.

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Stephanie G

I like bargain hunting and using coupons.

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Lisa Brown

I like using coupons, both online and in store.

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Jodi

I like to use blogs that do store match ups with sales and coupons. I love the hunt for free items to add to my shopping list.

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Louly

I love using my digital coupons when I go grocery shopping! It's fun to see the end of the year savings and be like WOW I saved all that money!

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Jessi Housel

I like shopping clearance and buying second hand & new in package items at garage sales and rummage sales (I save thousands!). This is how I Christmas shop and outfit my kids in expensive brand clothes. I like it because it feels like a treasure hunt.

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Rachel M

The library! I'm a book nerd and read close to 4 books a month. This saves anywhere from $40-60.

Also, bought a French Press off Amazon to make my own coffee at work. After adding up what I spent in a year on coffee (almost $1000!), I realized I need to make a serious change in finances.

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Chris

I like using my library's online borrowing. I am nit so into coupons and matching to sales but I try.

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JudyS

My favorite way to save money is to freeze vegetable material that usually goes in the compost bin in summer and when I have about a gallon of frozen "vegetable garbage" to use the slow cooker to make vegetable broth. I get approximately 3 or 4 quarts of organic vegetable broth, without any added salt or other ingredients. In my grocery store this morning, a quart of organic vegetable broth was $3.20, on sale.

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Elena Rodriguez

My favorite money saving activity is using coupons and store apps. There is usually a coupon online or in the paper for an item I need.

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Tabathia B

Loading online coupons to apps and using apps to save money

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Jeff

making our meals at home together

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Tracy Hirsch

My husband and I pack up the leftovers after dinner for the next day's lunch. We've got a good system and have a good time with it. :)

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J. Pario

Ooh, there are lots of these! Gardening. Using the library. Making my own clothes and gifts. Those would be at the top of the list.

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BRB

Cooking with random left over bits of food to make something delicious!

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Catseye

I enjoy shopping at thrift stores for clothes, books, and household goods. I love buying things for a fraction of what they originally cost.

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Jess

Cooking and making coffee at home are definitely my favorite money saving activities. These days I only enjoy restaurants for the social aspect of sharing a meal.

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Lauren Yi

In addition to everything everyone else has already mentioned above (couponing, cooking, brewing coffee, rebate app, etc) I also try to utilize natural resources as much as I can that's given to us for free. For example, instead of paying for laundry dryer, I line dry my clothes. I try to walk around a lot instead driving. I charge my phone from a solar panel charger. I pick lemons in my neighborhood and make vitamin-c-full of lemon syrup tea. I freeze left over food or ingredients to avoid waste and always try to take the food out ahead of time so I can minimize gas or electricity to reheat. I also unplug all the appliances when not in use so I don't pay for phantom electricity. I try to use less of things and also reuse things if I can (jars, old clothes, plastic bags, etc). As I tried to save money these ways, I learned that it doesn't only save me money but also the environment and health. So I win, win and win.

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Bethany M

I like cooking at home.

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SKB

The public library offers so much - books, videos, magazines, music and often lectures and other live performances- that it has to be the best frugal activity.

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Happy Love

I like "clipping" coupons online because it feels like shopping, but I'm saving money instead.

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Sarah

I like shopping sales and using coupons.

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Miss Kim

I love using coupons!

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JD

Most fun - gardening. Most profitable - planning meals and cooking at home. Most rewarding - DIY home repairs and electronic repairs.

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Melissa Johnson

The money-saving activity I enjoy the most is using my Ibotta app. It gives me a rebate on things like bananas, onions, bread - any brand - so I can buy the stuff I usually buy at the low prices I'm used to and still get a rebate from it. I've saved $166 in 6 months.

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Lynda

reading books from the library

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Michael K

I like using cash back sites to shop, like ebates.

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Thomas Murphy

I like finding coupons.

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Kat

I like going thrift store shopping to save money in cloths.