Essential tips for saving money as the UK starts to open back up post-lockdown

Finally, the UK is opening the doors of our beloved hospitality and leisure industry, and our favourite beauty salons, hairdressers and high street stores are ready to clothe, preen and treat us.

After months of not being able to go out to see friends and family, go on shopping sprees or get groomed from top to bottom the temptation is there to get a bit spendy.

In fact, it’s expected that Brits will spend £50 billion, post-lockdown.

As much we all deserve to enjoy the excitement and socialise after all this time, it may be that lockdown actually did you and your budget a huge favour.

It’s vital, then, that we don’t rush back into poor spending habits, and try to be reasonably sensible.

You may have been financially secure over the past year or you may have suffered, like many, with the negative fiscal impact of the pandemic – in which case it’s even more important to be cautious about where your money goes with this new-found freedom.

Even if you’ve remained in work, it’s a great idea to be savvy with any of the money behaviours you’ve learned over the past 15 months.

So, here are five ways to keep your spending in check and save money now that things are opening back up.

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Take time to reflect

Now is a great time to reassess your pre-lockdown spending. Daily trips to a coffee shop, popping out for drinks after work or quick dashes into Primark have been on hold for many months, so now is a great time to think back on what you have really missed and what you might be happy to not start back up again.

You might find that you’ve really enjoyed brewing your own coffee or buying less stuff, resulting in less clutter in your home, so it’s nice to reflect on what you actually value.

Reset your budget

New circumstances mean it’s time for a new budget.

It might be time to reset your budget now that you might need to factor in childcare costs or transportation again.

Get yourself a free budgeting tracker and sit down and plan out how your finances will look now that we have some sort of normality returning, so that you don’t have any nasty surprises that you forgot to factor into your monthly outgoings.

Skip the wardrobe overhaul

It’s tempting to go out and totally overhaul your wardrobe now that you’re able to go out, but this could end up costing a fortune.

Think about thrifting for new outfits, or shop on places such as Vinted for new clothes at a fraction of the cost.

If you want to be extra savvy, simply shop your wardrobe and style new looks with your old clothes.

It’s amazing how much you can find in your wardrobe that already own when you’re styling new outfits.

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Pay on time

Many of us have had to take up payment breaks on things such as mortgage payments or credit cards. Make sure you know exactly when these will be starting back up again, what amounts and which dates so that you don’t get caught out.

Payments may have increased so be sure to check in with your lender. If you took a break from paying into your pension, make sure you start this back up again.

Factor in fun

Make sure you factor in ‘fun money’, so you have things to look forward to and don’t feel guilty when you do spend on going for dinner or drinks with your friends.

We’ve all been through so much, so you want to have things to look forward to and you don’t want to feel guilty for doing so.

Make sure you add this to your budget and even better, aim to earn the money to do this from a side hustle or a separate income stream to your day job.

An app such as Plum can be a great way of saving up for non-essential things by rounding up your spending or taking out a few pounds here and there without you noticing. Before you know it, there’s enough there for a dinner or night out.

Further tips can be found on my YouTube channel and Instagram for daily money saving advice, tips and hacks for living your best life on a budget, and don’t forget to head over to my blog for your free budgeting trackers.

For more money-saving advice as well as chat about cash and alerts on deals and discounts, join Metro.co.uk’s Facebook group, Money Pot.

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