I found this list over at Dinks Finance, who got it from MSN Money, and they’re always so fun for me cuz they pretty much DO hit everything I spend money on, even though I know I probably shouldn’t ;) Like one of those “we all do it, so it’s okay!” kinda things, haha…
But honestly, as long as you have the budget for them and do it all consciously, I really don’t have a problem spending in some of these areas. Just goes back to prioritizing your goals, and how you use your money to get there. And sometimes you need a little release to keep you on track too – you can’t go “all out” 100% of the time.
But maybe you disagree? Here’s the full list from MSN Money below – along with my own personal habits. Run through them and see how many apply to you!
- Theater Popcorn – While I do get tempted every now and then, this one I usually never have a problem with. I always sneak in my snacks from the outside anyways, and all that dang popcorn just gets stuck in my teeth and drives me crazy the entire movie :)
- Event parking – Hmm… I used to refuse to pay for any of this, and just drive around in circles until I found something that was free, but lately I’ve been more up to paying for the convenience. My time is starting to become more important to me, than a little extra cash.
- Printer ink – I HATE THIS ONE!!! And there’s hardly anything you can do about it :( I def. blow through money via all this ink, it sucks. And the ink usually costs more than the damn printers! Haha… so crazy….
- Restaurant drinks – Haha, yeah – I always fall for these ;) But it’s all cuz of the awesome atmosphere! And what other choice do you have really, unless you sneak in a flask? The $5 or $10 I pay for a drink is def. worth it after a hard day’s work when all you wanna do is relax with your friends and have some fun. I don’t do it every weekend, but when I do, I try to not worry about it and just enjoy the time out with friends and family. The same goes with sodas and other non-alcohol drinks too (why does my first thought of “drink” always equate to alcohol?? Haha…). It all goes under the “entertainment” budget. Or “food” one, depending on the occasion.
- Bottled water – I think you know the answer to this one ;) Though I HAVE been better about it lately, and been drinking more out of our Brita filter. Especially since I’ve been working from home all year long so far (and it’s been too cold to go on walks, where I usually always need them for). But yeah, overall this takes a lot more money out of your pocket and just adds more mess to the environment out there.
- “Gourmet” coffee – I rarely drink anything outside of my home coffee pot much – though only out of convenience – but when I am out and about I have no problem hitting up Starbucks or Caribou coffee when I need one. I’m not gonna wait ’till I get home to brew a cup, you always want it right then and there, right? All just goes under the “miscellaneous” budget category…
- Restaurant holiday specials – Oh I never do these. But I’m also not a big restaurant kinda guy much either, only every now and then. Although oddly enough we literally JUST did one of these now that I think about it for Mother’s Day! Haha… but not on purpose, it just happened to be a “special” but we were going there anyways ;)
- Movie tickets – I looooooove me some movies!!! Even though I don’t get out as much as I’d like to, I’m a-okay with splurging on those $100 or so tickets these days ;) Yeah you can watch them at home, or stream ’em through your laptop, but it doesn’t beat that awesome theater experience! That’s what you’re really paying for – and I’ll do it time and time again, even as the prices rise every year… and if I were flat broke, I’d just go there less instead of cutting out altogether – it’s one of the cheapest forms of entertainment in my opinion all considering, so I’m a bit fan of them. And then going on a (free) walk afterwards to soak in what I just saw – love it! :)
- Oil changes – I’m not gonna lie, I ALWAYS pay someone to do this for me. A) out of saving time, and B) cuz I’d probably do something stupid and then cause even more problems down the line. I remember as a kid my dad showing me how to do it, and us always doing all our cars growing up, but even he has stopped and now pays someone to do it… I don’t think it’s the worst thing in the world if you can afford it.
- Airport food – Haha… this is probably the only area I splurge in which I DO want to change :) But only in the snacks department. One of my favorite things in the world to do is to have breakfast or a nice dinner in one of their fanciest restaurants, all by myself. There’s something so exciting and rewarding about doing that. Feeling like “you’ve made it” or something, especially when you’re flying somewhere cool.
- Ticketmaster fees – Oh man, I haven’t been to a concert in yearrrrrrs, so def. don’t know anything about these guys… I think you can pretty easily get tickets from Craigslist and other sites now, yeah?
- ATM fees – Same here! Haven’t paid an ATM fee for 10+ years – Yeah, USAA! (They pay them for you up to like $15 a month or something like that, awesome perk!)
- Fund management fees – Hmm… I’ve only recently been paying for this since my IRA Test, but so far I don’t mind them as long as the managers are doing their jobs. If my managed funds keep losing to my un-managed ones though (I put in $60k into each to see which one does better in the long run!), I’m totally gonna just switch routes and put ’em all back into un-managed funds. Prove it in “real life,” ya know?
- Airline baggage fees – I go back and forth on this one. On one hand I LOVE being able to check in bags and just roam the airports hands free without lugging stuff around, but on the other hand it DOES suck having to spend like $50 total just to have that freedom. So I guess the answer to this one, for me, is that yes – I do pay for it most times, but no – I don’t think that’s smart. And going forward it is something I’m trying to curtail more.
- Hot dogs at sporting events – YUM!!! Those are the best kinds ;) And just like with beers and drinks/etc, I have no problem spending more for these either as long as you don’t overdo it and buy like 5 dogs every single weekend. Every now and then is fine in my books, though.
Lots of stuff you can probably relate to, eh? It looks like I do about 11 of these 15, with a couple of them needing to be changed. Probably not the best answer for a finance blogger, but it’s the truth ;) And as I said, as long as your money is going where YOU WANT IT TO GO, then I don’t see where the problem is. There’s a lot to be said for convenience and soaking in “the experience,” and as long as it won’t disrupt your ultimate goals at the end, I think it’s perfectly fine to splurge on every now and then. That’s what money’s for! You can’t *always* be Mr. or Mrs. perfect with it – you’ll burn out.
Those are my thoughts anyways, how about you? How many of those do YOU spend money on out of the 15? And which are the most annoying of them all? Haha… for me it’s ink cartridges all the way. I hate those things!
(Photo by razvan.orendovici)