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10 Really Stupid Ways To Save Money.

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Because, sometimes, stupid decisions and warped logic are the essence of thriftiness:

1) Go commando. Is giving up underwear going to save you on laundry bills? No. But if you have a dangerous shopping habit, here’s one way to get rid of it: “Ooo look at those jeans… maybe I should try them on? Oh, no, wait. I can’t. Because that would be gross. And uncomfortable.” Voila. Problem solved.



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2) Enter your pin number wrong. You don’t need will power to avoid Starbucks when your debit card is blocked. (Yeah, I’m still waiting for my replacement pin…)

3) Get a cat. I spent the other day at my friend’s flat looking after her cat. And ruffling his fluffy little cheeks, I found myself thinking: You know what? I don’t need friends. I just need unconditional affection from an animate object. Forget the dinners and drinks and nights out. I’m going to get a cat. I suggested this idea to my friend when she returned. “What are you going to do when you go traveling?” she said. “Sell it on craigslist?” I replied. Apparently, I am not pet-ready.


4) Write a novel. You will never make any money, ever. But think of all those hours you’ll fill, and it won’t cost you a penny!

5) Move to Queens.* Who knew two blocks north of the L line was outside of Brooklyn? Goodbye, hipsters. Hello, cheap rent…


Shit that happens in Queens, apparently.

6) Hookup with a bartender. If it goes well, you get free drinks. If it goes poorly… well, there’s a bar you’re not tempted to visit.

7) Start drinking whiskey. Drink Popov on the rocks and people will know you’re broke. (Also, your mouth will feel like death.)


But order whiskey, and even if it’s Old Crow, no one will question you drinking it neat. They’ll just think you’re badass.

8) Develop an allergy. I’m allergic to aspartame. I think. Anyway, saves me a bunch of money I might be tempted to spend on diet coke and chewing gum and frozen yoghurt.

9) Go to restaurants known for poor service.


At least you didn’t have to pay?

Like Momo Sushi Shack. Great food, but after they forgot to put our order through, we waited for 45 minutes, they patronized us instead of apologizing, and generally treated us like we weren’t worthy of their table space, we didn’t feel too bad about knocking the tip down a percent or two.

10) Date someone with a Netflix account. And get them to login on your laptop. “Honey… why is my Netflix suggesting I watch more episodes of Say Yes To The Dress?” Oops.


*This one isn’t really stupid. In fact, it’s a pretty smart idea, if you ask me. But then again, maybe I’m just trying to make myself feel better about the fact that I’m moving to Queens.


images: keepcalmandposters, redbubble, ohnewyorkcity, ShittyBartender, 10dailythings

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Daisy Rawcliffe - Vafrous Vagabond

Daisy Rawcliffe - Vafrous Vagabond

Daisy grew up in the English countryside, where money grew on apple trees and blackberry bushes. But for her 13th birthday, she got a backpack, which she instantly dragged across the Sinai Desert, and has been hauling around ever since. It has now explored four continents, and collected her the information she uses to convince people to go on holiday, which pays her the pittance she lives off. After too much time in a tent, she's currently trying to adjust to the norms of civilised society, which, fortunately, seem fairly lax in Brooklyn.


  1. October 30, 2013 at 9:41 am

    Not go to the doctor or not get a cavity fixed. I did this and wound up having to pay big bucks for an extraction and a dental implant. Awful.

  2. Basil Jiang
    November 2, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    Mine are a bit “smarter”, but here goes:

    1) drop the smart phone and get a “dumb” one. Save about $50 per month. Get a low-priced tablet (e.g., Kindle Fire) or use your old iPhone as a wi-fi only device. Wi-fi is available everywhere; you really don’t need to pay for cell-based data plans

    2) call your car and home insurance company and tell them you want to go through all your coverage because you found another carrier that is cheaper. They’ll probably help you “find” 10% off or more.

    3) speaking of car insurance – An expensive policy from GEICO, Progressive, etc. is not needed. You can find one usually for less than $25/month from 4AutoInsuranceQuote. If you spend too much on car insurance from one of those big companies, chances are you are simply funding their expensive TV ads with cute animals.

    4) compare what your house is really worth to your assessment. Many assessments have never been properly adjusted down to reflect the market over the last 4 years. We cut our property taxes by about 20%.

    5) re-fi your 30-year mortgage to a 15. The interest rate will drop by at least 50-75 bps, more depending on your current rate. The payment may go up slightly, but it is because you are paying off your loan faster. If it’s possible, get the mortgage paid off before the kids go to college. At a minimum, have it paid off before you retire.

    6) review your credit card bills for all the things you are paying $10-20 per month for that you no longer need. I bet everybody has at least a couple

    7) drop all magazine (paper and on-line) subscriptions. If you look around, you can find comparable content for free.

    8) review your investment portfolio for ways to replace higher fee mutual funds or ETFs with lower fee ones. S&P500 funds/ETFs shouldn’t charge more than 0.10% in fees. Fees may be higher for specialty funds, but they are all coming down fast. If your company 401K uses high-fee funds, talk to the folks in charge. A difference of 25 bps in fees will mean a difference of about 5% in your portfolio value after 25 or 30 years.

    9) and of course the most impactful — never carry a balance on a credit card. If you can’t resist, cut up the cards.