10 Life Hacks You Should Master by Age 30


Are you a 20-something trying your best to transition fully into adulthood? We've all been there. It's time to start developing those go-to skills that will make adult life much easier. Get started on these 10 life hacks you should master by age 30.

1. Changing a Flat Tire

As with most unexpected emergency situations, you should be prepared for the worst. Sure, AAA is great, but what if you're in the middle of nowhere, or in the middle of rush hour? A flat tire is relatively easy to fix, so learn how to change a tire, now. (You can practice in your driveway.)

2. Repairing Your Pipes

Leaky pipes and clogged drains are the kinds of nuisances that we live with until something worse happens — and that shouldn't be the case. Look like a boss with your wrench or drain snake and fix leaky pipes without a plumber. Your roommates or your significant other will thank you.

3. Assembling an Emergency Kit

Everyone should have an emergency kit for their home, car, and even for their work desk. Buy three nylon duffel bags, then head to the hardware store and fill them with the essentials. In addition, have a "top five" of close people you'd call for help in an emergency.

4. Mixing a Signature Cocktail

Having a go-to cocktail that you can make for yourself is a classy life hack that will make you a better host. In the process, you'll likely want to learn more drinks. For bonus points, learn to make your signature drink in large cocktail batches for parties.

5. Cooking at Least One Dish

Learn how to cook something from scratch! It's about time. It's always impressive to others and delicious for everyone. Pick a dish that requires a mix of multiple ingredients at different times. Spaghetti doesn't count, but spaghetti carbonara does. Start here with some great restaurant dishes you can make at home.

6. Wrapping a Present

How often have you struggled to wrap a gift last minute only to reuse an old gift bag instead? Learn how to wrap presents creatively with all kinds of materials. You may find that your recipients will enjoy your gifts even more because they love how beautiful they look before even opening them.

7. Calculating Tips

It's not difficult to calculate a tip in your head. Find it hard to solve for 20% right away? Simply take 10% of the total (move the decimal once to the left), and double that. At group meals in which the restaurant doesn't add gratuity, do the same thing, then divide that by the number of people at dinner — and make sure they don't add the tip until after they are charged for their share of the total. In the worst case scenario, Google has you covered with a tip calculator.

8. Creating a Monthly Budget

Saving for the future is one of the most important things you can start doing in your 20s. These days, we have tons of programs to help track your spending and expenses. Pick one and start budgeting month-by-month. Once you get the hang of it, start a year-long savings plan.

9. Effectively Packing Luggage

No, we don't mean cramming your belongings into a carry-on! Consider your mode of travel, destination, and duration of the trip. Bring exactly the amount of undergarments, shirts, and pants you'll need, and only essential toiletries. Tip: try rolling your clothes together instead of folding for more space.

10. Mending Clothing

Wardrobe malfunctions can happen to anyone at anytime, so basic clothes mending should be in your repertoire. One should know how to sew a button, quickly re-stitch a hem, patch a small hole, and other basic clothing fixes. Study a few mending tutorials and start practicing on old garments.

What other basic life skills have you found essential to know by 30?

Disclaimer: The links and mentions on this site may be affiliate links. But they do not affect the actual opinions and recommendations of the authors.

Wise Bread is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

Guest's picture

These are not life hacks. These are just normal basic skills everyone should know how to do. Life hacks are when you approach a situation and use an alternative and easier method to accomplish a task in an easier way. You should rethink your title. If this was a list of how to do each of these tasks in an easier way, then it would be a life hack.

Guest's picture

Ten percent would be found by moving the decimal point to the left once. Moving the decimal point twice would result in one percent.

Guest's picture


The author should double check math on #7. Perhaps she isn't 30 yet? :)

Chrissa Hardy's picture

Thank you for catching that error! We've fixed this.

Guest's picture

The method of figuring a tip will result in only a 2% tip. To get 20% one should move the decimal point ONE place to the left and then double it.

Chrissa Hardy's picture

Thank you for pointing out that error! We've made the correction.

Guest's picture

7. Figuring Out the Tip

Find it hard to get that 20 percent? Simply take 10 percent of the total (move the decimal twice to the left), and double that. At group meals in which the restaurant doesn't add gratuity, do the same thing, then divide that by the number of people at dinner -- and make sure they don't add the tip until after they are charged for their share of the total.

Actually you only move the decimal 1 place to the left then double. Guess that new fangled math ain't working out for ya so much.

Chrissa Hardy's picture

You're so right! Thanks for pointing this out. All fixed. :)

Guest's picture
Stephanie Long

Great list!