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Small sacrifices, big savings: How to save money in simple ways

13 June 2019 | 5 min read

When it comes to saving, sometimes it can feel like future you vs current you. But by making small sacrifices, you can save in ways that you won't even notice in day-to-day life.

Current you wants to save but loves a spending spree, and then future you is ready to escape to Europe for the summer / put down a deposit on your dream first home / buy a Lamborghini.

Well, we’re here to tell current you that with some small sacrifices, future you isn’t too far away.

But what is a small sacrifice?

A small sacrifice is something you give up so you can save that money instead.

It doesn’t mean giving up your whole world or current lifestyle – it’s just one or two minor things that you feel you can go without.


Let’s get the most obvious one out of the way. Us Aussies LOVE our coffee and it shows – we’re addicted to the stuff! The average price of a coffee in Australia is $4.13.

If you bought a coffee for $4.50 (let’s round up because have you ever bought a coffee for $4.13?) each day, each week for an entire year.

That’s $1,170 you could have put towards your car/holiday/house deposit.

Start by reducing it by a day, then two, then three.

Start slow and you’ll get there.


Having a beer or a glass of wine with dinner is easy. In fact, it’s so easy that Australians spent $14.9 billion on alcohol in one year.

Saying no is hard but it might mean that you’re saving a few extra dollars here and there.

If you decide to not purchase that bottle of $20 wine each week, you’ll be saving over $1,000 each year.

And if that sounds too hard then make it once a month rather than weekly and before you know it, those dinners will feel extra special.

The gym

Exercise is fun (for some) but it can be expensive.

In 2018 alone, reported that Aussies are wasting $1.8 billion on unused gym memberships.

Uh oh.

We like to think we’re a fit bunch but if you’re not using your membership, get rid of it!

If you are using your membership, consider if you could workout outside of a gym.

There are a bounty of helpful videos on YouTube, apps to assist you, running groups to join or make it a day trip each weekend to go for a hike somewhere beautiful!

Hand drawing dollar sign in book.

Eating out

Whether it’s out at a hot new restaurant, ordering in so you don’t have to get up off the couch or popping out of the office to get a wrap, eating out can be a costly venture.

Let’s do the maths – you eat out each day at work ($12 x 5), you order in once a week for just you ($40) and head out with the gang for dinner every Friday night ($70).

$3,120 + $2,080 + $3,640 = nearly $10,000.

That’s a decent chunk of a house deposit.

Give some of it up – cook for yourself every Sunday night and make enough to have for lunch at work and make lunch out a treat for later in the week.

Importantly, be aware of what you're spending and try and reduce the number of meals you eat out or order in. 


If we’re going to tell you to give up all of the fun things, we may as well add subscriptions in too.

Netflix, Stan, Spotify – they add up.

Try and choose one over the others so you’re reducing your spending. Replace TV with going for a walk, reading books or watching YouTube.

That new car you were eyeing up

New cars are fun but if you’re saving up for things that aren’t a car, keeping your current car for even just another 12 months could save you a bunch of money – especially if you’ve paid your current car loan off.

Online shopping

There is something about a random online shopping frenzy.

Those sale emails pour in with offers you just can’t say no to.

You love it. We all love it.

But it often means you end up adding something extra in that, frankly, you could do without.

Well, that needs to stop.

Ask yourself: Do you really need what you’re buying? Could you buy just three items instead of four?

Challenge yourself to save and put aside what you were going to spend and put it away for a rainy day.

Festivals, parties, weekends away and events

They’re fun right?

But again, the costs add up.

Giving these up temporarily (think 12 months) could mean you save thousands in tickets, transport, accommodation, food and drinks.

Transfer that money over to your savings account and watch it grow.

Meanwhile, stream the latest festival online and catch up with your favourite artists on Instagram or YouTube.

Is there one or two things you could give up here?

Think of the impact it would have on your savings account and your future plans. We promise it's worth it.

Use the Bendigo Bank app to track your spending and see your progress.

How have you saved for future you? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter. If you're ready to start saving, open one of our savings accounts


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Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited, ABN 11 068 049 178 AFSL / Australian Credit Licence 237879. Any advice provided on this website is of a general nature only and does not take into account your personal needs, objectives and financial circumstances. You should consider whether it is appropriate for your situation. Please read the applicable Disclosure Documents before acquiring any product described on this website. Please also review our Financial Services Guide (FSG) before accessing information on this website. Information on this page can change without notice to you.

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