As most parents would probably agree, children can be very expensive. It is not just birthdays and Christmas which put a strain on the wallet; there are summer holidays to fill, new school uniforms to buy, treats to pick up in the supermarket, and toys to fill playrooms with. According to recent studies, the estimated cost of raising a child to the age of 21 is a staggering £21,000, so it is understandable if you like to hear about money-saving tips where possible.
The good news is that there are plenty of them out there. There are lots of ways to shop thriftily, save pennies, and even have enough money left at the end of the month to treat yourself. Some employers offer rewards to their staff in the form of specialist loyalty cards, but flexible reward schemes like Grouptrader are available to everyone and are a great choice for parents. They offer discounts every time you shop at various high street retailers and eateries.
Below are more handy money-saving tips and tricks to help you save cash, whatever you or your children might need it for.
Take the children on free trips
The UK is a wonderful place to be a parent because almost all of its museums and galleries are free to enter. If you take a look at the Free Museums Guide, you can browse details of more than 180 free attractions and plan a day out for the children which will not cost a thing.
Be savvy with sell-by dates
You can save money by behaving sensibly with food and recognising that supermarket sell-by dates are not there to indicate when produce is no longer safe to eat. The dates mark the point after which the food is no longer at optimal quality, but this does not mean that it needs to be thrown away. Save valuable cash by cooking up leftovers.
Slash your utility bills
With the help of online comparison tools like Money Supermarket, it is easy to check whether you are getting the best deals on your electricity, gas, internet, and insurance bills. You only have to enter your household details and you will be presented with a broad range of quotes and packages from available suppliers; if you find one which is cheaper than your current package, make the switch.
Buy clothing online
You can grab great deals on high street brands online, if you can afford to take the time to browse internet shops. In fact, lots of online platforms offer two-for-one discounts on items, or run big sales which you will not find in the shops. The only potential downside is that you have to be careful when choosing sizes, but the vast majority of online shops will not have a problem with your returning items if they are not right.
Whilst being a parent is always going to be costly, if you are wise with your pennies, save in small amounts, and take smart steps such as those above, you will soon find there are lots of ways to alleviate the financial burden.