8 Ways Daylight Saving Time Can Save You Money

By Andrea Woroch on 6 March 2015 0 comments

When Benjamin Franklin unwittingly introduced the concept of daylight saving time back in 1784, he said the change would save "a considerable number of candles." Forget about the wax. These days, setting your clock forward will help you save in many more ways.

Find out how having more daylight helps you spend less money with these savvy consumer tips.

1. Reduce Electricity Use

You can finally turn down the heat by letting the sun warm your home throughout the day. Just make sure to leave shades and curtains open while you're at work. You can also use fewer lights. Plus, you and your kids can do things outdoors, instead of relying on TV shows and the Internet for entertainment after work or school; further reducing your electricity bill.

2. Freeze That Gym Membership

With extra daylight hours, especially in the evening after work, you have more time to exercise outdoors. This is a great time to cancel the gym membership you rarely use or freeze it for a minimal monthly fee while running, walking, or bike riding outside. If it's still chilly in your area, stock up on end-of-season athletic wear for less. For example, you can find a coupon for Sports Authority for $20 off your purchase of $100 at sites like CouponSherpa.

3. Consume Less Fuel

Gas prices are on the rise again and recently jumped seven cents per gallon. Reduce your gas expense by relying less on your vehicle to get from Point A to Point B. Instead, wake up a little earlier and walk or ride your bike. If your office or school is too far to make this feasible, you can literally "run" errands by walking to the grocery store or post office after work instead of driving. Use this driving calculator to see how much you'd save.

4. Beat Shopping Blues

The dreary and dark winter days can have a negative impact on your overall disposition. While shopping may momentarily boost your mood, buying a new blouse or gadget provides a false sense of happiness and is a quick way to blow your budget. With the extra daylight, you can stay busy outdoors and avoid the mall. The extra dose of sunshine will increase serotonin levels in your brain, so you feel good naturally, dodging the urge to shop.

5. Grill at Home for Happy Hour

Instead of heading to the local pub with friends or coworkers after a long day at the office, host your own afterwork happy hour by grilling in your backyard. Apartment dwellers can find a nearby park offering a community grill, or pack a picnic. You can serve bar-type foods like burgers and nachos along with cocktails or beers for much less than a typical restaurant tab. Make it BYOB (bring-your-own-booze) to manage hosting costs.

6. Get a Side Hustle

From walking your neighbors' dogs to trimming trees or home repairs, longer days give you the opportunity to take on extra gigs after work you couldn't have done in the dark. You can find such gigs on Craiglist or TaskRabbit. The extra income can go toward a specific savings goal like a family vacation, or even help boost your emergency fund!

7. Plan a Sunset Date

There's nothing more romantic than watching the sunset, but short winter days make it nearly impossible to meet up after work for a date. Once the clock gets pushed forward, you can plan a simple picnic and go for a stroll to watch the sun go down with that special someone instead of racking up restaurant bills. Find the current time of sunset at Time and Date.

8. Turn Off Netflix

Evenings spent streaming Netflix, or whatever video service or extra movie channels you pay for, can come to an end thanks to more daylight in the afternoons. Beat boredom by taking up a hobby you can enjoy outdoors like photography, painting landscapes, or gardening. In addition to reducing your cable, Internet, and mobile data bill, you can use the time to collect items you no longer want to sell for extra cash.

Do you notice money savings during daylight saving time?

Andrea Woroch is a nationally-recognized consumer and money-saving expert who shares easy ways to live on less. She is a regularly-featured guest contributor at FOX News & FOX Business channels and has appeared on popular TV shows like Good Morning America, Today, CNN, and many others. She also writes for New York Daily News. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

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Guest's picture

I don't see the connection with daylight saving time. You can do all this in the spring/summer anyway. DST is bad for our health and messes up our inner clock.