It is not the car payment or the mortgage that produces our monthly budget imbalance. It is always the petty little spending that adds up: parking, online shopping, lunch, coffee. While parking and shopping can be a bit hard to control, there are simple ways to budget your lunch.
Thinking about tomorrow’s lunch, whether for you or your kids, can be quite hectic. It is easier to just worry about lunch when lunchtime comes. Eating out on a regular basis, however, is very unhealthy for your body and your wallet. But making your own lunch does not necessarily mean the same turkey and cheese on toast every single day.
The most economical and easy way to prepare lunch is to pack the dinner leftovers. There is no cooking or preparation involved — all you need is a Tupperware to go. It’s very quick and easy, not to mention economical! And this way, you can cook fresh for dinner every day too. Try it; it can get addictive.
Buy part of your meal
If you want to change it up, or you don’t have the materials or the time to prepare a whole lunch meal, take as much as you can from home. Grab juice and fruits to go and buy a salad or a sandwich on the side. You will save some money, especially in the long run.
Buy in bulk
Buying cans of pop from the cafeteria adds up to way more than buying a flat or carton from the grocery store. The same rule pretty much applies to everything. If you must eat noodles, chips, and other prepared foods in your packed lunch, buy them in bulk. You will save a lot of money each month.
Yes, it is important to bring lunch from home. But, treating yourself every once in a while is OK and is actually important. You cannot stick to a routine if you do not break it every now and then. (You couldn’t keep working Monday to Friday if it weren’t for the weekend!) And you cannot stick to healthy and budget-friendly lunches, if you don’t treat yourself to a lunch out at least once every two weeks. This will keep you motivated to stick to your plan and you will feel that you are not missing out on much.