We’re bombarded with advertisements and commercials trying to get us to open our wallets in exchange for entertainment so often that we sometimes forget it’s possible to have a good time without spending any of our hard-earned cash. But it can be done. Not only can it be done, but the weekend activities you can do for free in your home or around town can end up being much more enjoyable, and definitely more memorable, than the ones that costs you an arm and a leg.
1. Take a walk
When was the last time you took a nice leisurely stroll around your neighborhood or through your local park? Luckily, there’s not a price tag on the great outdoors (yet). Getting some fresh air allows you to get some exercise while taking advantage of the surroundings you’ve taken for granted throughout the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Bring your kids out and remind them they don’t need an iPad to be entertained for their weekend activities.
2. Window shop
Just because you can’t buy anything doesn’t mean you can’t plan to buy something in the future! Take a trip to your local mall or village and take a look around. Pretend you’re rich and famous and can afford that expensive watch or piece of jewelry that always catches your eye, knowing you won’t even be spending a single penny. Better yet, use this time to look for gifts for friends and family, and make a mental note of places to check out when someone’s birthday is coming up. Of course, you can also make a mental note of anything that you want, as well!
3. Go for a drive
Don’t try to get me on the technicality that it costs gas to get anywhere! As long as you have a full tank, you have a few free hours to spend driving aimlessly with the windows down and the stereo blaring. Turn your GPS off and just go without worrying how to get back (then you can turn your GPS back on!). Explore the areas you never got a chance to. And stay off the highway; there’s so much more to see when you take the back roads.
4. Go to the library
I know, I know: you probably haven’t been to a library since your sophomore year of college. Spend a couple hours browsing through the books you always said you’d read if you had the time. Check out some do-it-yourself texts and pick up a new hobby, read up on some interesting non-fiction, or spend the afternoon lost in a fantasy world. And do it without once having to reach in your pocket!
Instead of giving your money away, give away your time. It’s much more valuable, and will help those in need instead of the businesses looking to fatten their own wallets. Visit a local church and see if any soup kitchens or shelters need an extra hand for the day. Not only will you be doing something worthwhile, but you’ll feel better than you would if you went to the mall and spent the day thinking of only yourself.
6. Play games with your family
The words “family game night” are usually met with groans. That is, until everyone gets involved in a heated game of Trivial Pursuit or Pictionary. All it takes is a few kid-friendly “fighting words,” and pretty soon you’ll all be vying for the title of board game champion. Heck, you could even meet your kids halfway: load up the Wii and get some Mario Party going. You’ll end up having an unforgettable night with the people you cherish the most, and it won’t cost you a single dollar. Sounds absolutely priceless to me!
Featured photo credit: Family Game Night / West Islip Public Library via farm7.staticflickr.com