We would all like to have more luxuries in life. However, your bank account usually gets in the last word.
Or does it?
Living on a budget does not mean you have to be stingy or struggle along without any luxuries. There are many niceties within reach of people who can manage a modest budget. Don’t allow your income ‒ or its limitations ‒ to stand in your way and prevent you from enjoying life to the fullest.
The old saying goes: where there is a will, there is a way.
Learn to look for luxury from a different angle ‒ you will find it in some very irregular places.
It is very possible to enjoy some nicer things in life without breaking the bank:
- When you go shopping for the new season, buy higher quality clothing. More expensive? Maybe, and although you will have to buy less garments to remain within your budget, that is quite OK. Rather buy two quality shirts that fit you well and that you look and feel great in than say five inexpensive and lower quality shirts that might not last that long. Better quality means it will last longer, so in the end you will have an extended wardrobe anyway.
- Big store sales are a magnificent way of finding upmarket clothing at bargain prices.
- Take full advantage of discount and loyalty offers. Not even the most extravagant restaurants are fully packed all hours of day and night. Early in the evening most gourmet restaurants are not that busy ‒ some even nearly empty. As long as you don’t mind sitting down for dinner before their busiest hours, you might save a lot of money
- Treat yourself to a massage or manicure, or even a facial or pedicure. There will always be salons where you can get a great, but much less expensive massage or other beauty treatments. Look for beauty salons that offer all of these services and go for a package deal.
- Don’t be afraid to move around a little. Why do you live where you do ‒ because of your job or because of the cost of living? Most people hang around their hometown.
- You can earn ‒ and save ‒ more by looking for a more lucrative job and at the same time a less expensive location which can easily improve your lifestyle without coughing up for it.
- Plan early and pick your holiday destinations with care. Apart from your own country, there are many parts of the world where you will be able to stretch your vacation budget much further. Do regular searches ‒ it’s actually quite easy to find an exotic, comfortable, safe, and less expensive destination to go relax and put your feet up. Planning it properly you can save a lot of money and still vacation like the rich and famous.
- Don’t buy an expensive car out the box ‒ go for a good quality, but luxurious executive second-hand car. A new budget model can even be more expensive than some lower-end luxury cars that are only two or three years old.
- Look for vehicles that still have a warranty and service or maintenance plan ‒ they won’t be any more expensive than a regular vehicle.
- Become a day visitor ‒ pay for the amenities, but don’t put your hand in your pocket to put your head down for the night. Many top-class hotels allow access to some of their amenities at a price ‒ the pool, towels, spa and fitness centre without the expense of a fancy hotel room where you are just going to sleep anyway…
- Set priorities. The more you buy, the less you have to spend on each item. Rather cut unnecessary spending and focus on better quality items and services.
- Think of cancelling things like your home phone (we all have mobile phones anyway) and spend the money on something to improve your life.
- Add a touch of luxury to your home by keeping fresh flowers. A small weekly spend on flowers can add a real touch of class to your home. Do you have space for a flower garden? Growing a mixture of wild flowers is easy, and because they are endemic to your area, they grow easily and don’t need a lot of attention.
- If you really want to live like the rich and famous, have some outfits tailored. Unless you have a perfect body for a particular outfit, more often than not it doesn’t fit as well as it could. A simple fix, which won’t cost an arm and a leg, will make your clothing fit you that much better. And if you look better, you’ll feel like a million dollars.
- Go out for a fancy cup of coffee every now and then, but do so sparingly. It might be silly to spend that much on just a cup of coffee, but it has the feel of luxury to it. Make some time every now and then and meet a friend for a quality cup of coffee and use the time to sit together, relax and have a real conversation.
If you are on a limited budget, enjoying some of the luxuries life offers doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Focus your financial resources on slightly higher quality items and services that offer you the most luxury for your buck. Flaunt it every now and then ‒ put your hand in your pocket and enjoy some of the little things life has to offer. It is quite easy to find luxury on a modest budget ‒ just look for it.
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