Recent data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed prices climbing by 6.1% in the June quarter, driven primarily by the increasing cost of food and fuel.
Especially for those with kids, financial outgoings such as education, grocery, and days out can set you back.
Nick Drewe, money-saving expert at Australian discounts platform, WeThrift, shares his top tips on how you can cut your everyday costs. From energy bills to travel and grocery shopping, he shares his top tips below.
1. Keep checking your bills regularly: As some energy suppliers have been known to either make changes to tariffs or make mistakes when charging customers, it’s always a good idea to check your regular household bills.
With winter approaching, those who continue to work from home or have flexible conditions may opt to not return to the office Therefore, bills for water, energy and mobile data are likely to increase.
2. Reduce activities and classes: Whilst it is important for a child to have a routine, there seems to be pressure around keeping children busy with activities from a young age.
If you can’t quite afford every single activity, why not keep it simple and cost-free and encourage time to play in the backyard, playgrounds and explore the local creek. Children enjoy picnics, playdates and time at the beach, which will help reduce time spent in the car and spending money on petrol, entry fees, registration, tuition fees, uniforms or costumes.
3. Have a cap on present spending: Once your child starts school, they will begin to get more invitations to birthday parties. While this is lovely, this can also get expensive. Decide on a limit for presents early on and stick to it, unless it is a close friend where you may want to spend more.
Simple gift ideas that can work for both genders could be a pencil case filled with nice new stationery, a piece of sports equipment or a water pistol.
Also, start collecting generic things throughout the year and put them in a gift collection cupboard. You never know, they may come in handy.
4. Choose inexpensive holidays: Once you have children, it is not as easy to travel interstate and overseas. Camping, particularly with young children, is fairly inexpensive to do once you are set up with some gear.
Children love to ride their bikes around, meet other kids and roam the extra space, which is a great way for families to interact without spending too much money.
5. Share school trips with other parents: The cost of petrol adds up when taking the kids to school every day, and being able to do alternative trips with other parents nearby will definitely help cut your costs.
If you can arrange to do alternative days or even alternate between the morning and afternoon drop off, this will cut your journeys in half.
6. Look for discount codes before ordering takeaways: If you’re treating the family to a well-deserved takeaway at the weekend, before clicking ‘checkout’ on sites like Deliveroo or Menulog, it’s always worth a search on voucher sites for any discount codes or free delivery incentives that could knock your basket price down.
Also, always check your emails for any promotional vouchers that may have been sent following your last order. Often delivery couriers will offer customers small incentives ahead of their next purchase, to retain their loyalty and avoid them being tempted to order elsewhere.
Deliveroo customers have the option to ‘Refer a friend, which will secure both of you $10 off your next order.
7. Time your grocery trips wisely: Try to time your grocery trips for when your local stores are likely to have just added yellow ‘reduced’ stickers to stock that needs to be sold that day. Making the most of these heavily discounted deals will help you to fill your freezer up with discounted meat, fish, and freezer meals for cheaper food options in the coming days and weeks.
Normally workers will start discounting products that are about to pass their sell-by-date later on in the afternoon or early evening, so a food shop after work is the perfect time to grab a bargain.
Many supermarkets also have clearance sections where products that cannot be sold at their RRP or may have damaged packaging can be found. Just make sure to check you are happy with the item and that the goods aren’t compromised before heading to the checkout.
8. Cancel any unnecessary direct debits: Now is the perfect time to log on to your online banking and scour your direct debits and standing orders to see if you can cancel anything that’s become an unnecessary spend.
Whether it be a gym membership you aren’t quite getting your money’s worth for, or a streaming service you signed up for during lockdown that you no longer make the most of, cutting these small outgoings will make a difference to your bank balance in the long run.
Also, make sure all of your monthly direct debits look correct, and if there are any questionable outgoings from your account to immediately address it.