Money Saving Ideas – 11 Things We Refuse to Give Up to Save Money

Are there any money saving ideas you refuse to consider?

There are times in all our lives when we are broke or feel it and need to look for money saving ideas we can incorporate into our budgets.

The more broke you feel the more you look to save your money. But where is your cut off point?

Beyond which you refuse to go?

When you have a limited pot of money it’s natural to want to make it go as far as possible. Identifying things that you could give up or do without is one way to save your money.

But what would you give up?

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Saving money is a personal choice

We could have given up more if we had to or if we had chosen to.

But there are times when you say to yourself, nope, that is a money saving idea I refuse to do.

And everyone is different.

I know that the idea of giving up eating out every week is a complete no-no for some people whereas that was an easy way to save for us.

We didn’t give up buying alcohol, yet perhaps you would drop that in a flash.

What saving tips works for you might not work for someone else.

And you may well try dropping things to find out later that actually, no, it’s not something you wish to cut out completely.

It is often trial and error as to what will work for you but to give you a head start here are the money saving ideas that we refused to do.

Money saving ideas we rejected. Best budgeting tips for a frugal lifestyle not a cheapskate one. Get your personal finances in order so you can save money and achieve your money goals without giving up everything. #moneysavingideas #savemoney #savingmoney #frugallifestyle #budgeting #moneygoals #personalfinance

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Money Saving Ideas –11 Things We Refuse To Do

2nd Car

We have 2 vehicles which we both use to get to work each day.

There have been times when I have needed my car because my offices have been miles away in areas where there is no public transport.

But for the past 3 years I have worked 5 miles from home.

It’s only 5 miles so in theory I could cycle there without breaking a sweat.

Except there is a massive hill at the end of the journey.

Which means I’d have to tackle it every evening after a very long day at work.

It’s not a small hill, it’s the hill that takes you down to sea level (I’m near the coast) so think sea cliff size.

Very, very few cyclists get up it.

Still an excuse I know, if I was truly frugal I’d cycle/walk that hill.

There is a bus I could jump on which would get me to work in about 30-40 minutes.

But I drive instead and it takes me 15 minutes.

If we were really broke I could do without that car. But having the car makes my life easier. I can get to and from work whenever I want.

I can go and see DD1 and the grandbabies easily (10 miles away).

I can get out in the evenings (buses stop at 9pm) and get to places that the bus doesn’t visit. Some of these I could cycle to but not all.

Rice and Beans Diet

Your grocery bill could be high or it could be low. It all depends on what you eat and how much you eat.

If you are on a really tight budget you could eat rice and beans every day.

This is one money saving idea that could save you hundreds. But there is no way I could eat the same foods every day, week in week out.

Mr2p doesn’t even like the same type of food two days running so rice and beans more than once, for him, is a complete no-no.

I can and do eat the same packed lunch when at work.

I do this to save time and because I deem myself lazy. Much easier to not have to think about different lunches as well as everything else when I am shopping.

However I can eat the same lunch because I know I’ll be eating something different and scrumptious for dinner.

I look forward to my dinner every day because I keep my lunches simple.

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small house covered in snow

Do Without the Heating

I’m all for lowering your utility bills where possible and I gave up using a tumble dryer a long time ago.

But doing without central heating in the winter is a frugal step too far for me.

Some people keep their houses at a wintry 12c but that is coat and hat temperature for me.

I challenge myself to keep the heating off until the 1st of November every year which is very much dependent on whether October is frosty or not. Once the thermostat shows 16c I give in.

I am not prepared to wear hats, coats and scarves in the house to keep warm.

One of my money saving ideas which I still use today is to have a blanket which I snuggle under most evenings in the winter.

This frugal habit helps keep the heating bill down but doing without altogether is not happening in the Tuppenny household!

Related post: How To Keep Your House Warm and Your energy Bills Low This Winter

Give Up Holidays

When money is tight the annual expense of a family holiday can seem like an easy win if you cut it out.

But often that holiday is your one chance to get away from all the stresses of life, of living on a budget and fully relax.

You won’t be able to relax if you are going into debt to pay for that holiday yet not going on holiday isn’t necessarily relaxing either.

We tried not having a holiday away but only lasted one year.

Problem was we couldn’t afford a holiday abroad.

The flights and accommodation for 4 people during school holidays are super expensive.

We saved money by camping in the UK on the cheaper camp-sites which didn’t have a huge range of facilities.

We cooked for ourselves most nights rather than eating out whilst on holiday and looked for free things to do.

Related post: 5 frugal tips to save money on long car journeys

Beige/Processed Food As Our Staple Diet

Your grocery budget is one area that you can make some big savings. We keep our grocery bill down by buying carefully.

But I know we could get it lower if we ate different foods.

White bread, white pasta, white rice are all cheaper than the wholemeal equivalent.

Vegetables are more expensive than processed beige food.

But a wholesome diet is key to good health. Saving money at the expense of our health is not something we are prepared to do.

We are not perfect, our diet is probably 80-90% healthy but it would be much less so if we dropped the veg in favor of a cheaper, carb laden, processed alternative.

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baby in a plastic bath throwing water out of it


Some people swear by the ‘no-poo’ scenario for their hair.

I understand the principle that after so many weeks/months your hair sorts itself out and is shiny and gleaming.

But I cannot go through those weeks/months of waiting.

Until recently I worked in a position of authority with the public every day.

I couldn’t take myself seriously if I was presenting myself with greasy, dirty hair so how would the public have felt?

I applaud those who get through the waiting phase but it is not for me. A daily hair wash for me, with shampoo.


Using soap in my daily shower makes me feel clean. I don’t need a huge lather, just enough to wash quickly, given my showers are always cold.

Yet some people swear by skin brushing and water as all you need to clean your body.

I accept that our skin may very well only need water and a brush/scrub but mentally this doesn’t feel right to me.

Soap bars are pretty darn cheap so this is one money saving idea I have not embraced.

Intentionally Forget to Pay Back Money

I’ve borrowed money from family when I was younger and didn’t have a rainy day fund to help pay for an unexpected emergency.

But I kept a note of what I borrowed and how much I owed and could always recite the latest figure if asked.

To the point where my parents didn’t keep the tally, I did because they knew I would.

I couldn’t put my family in the position of being on the back foot and having to ask for their own money just because they were kind enough to lend it to me when I asked.

There are plenty of money saving ideas but this is not one of them in my book.

presents wrapped under a chrsitmas tree

Gift Giving

Just because I am always looking for ways to save money doesn’t mean I am not going to give wedding gifts or contribute to colleagues leaving presents.

Especially where they have contributed to gifts for me in the past.

This is an area where you can save your money by identifying what your budget will be and sticking with it.

You can reduce your gift giving by agreeing with family who you will buy for and what the budget is in advance.

Related post: How To Save For Christmas? 6 Easy Steps To Debt Free Festivities

Not Returning Favors

I think we probably all have that one friend who never seems to pay their share of the bill.

Who always orders an extra starter and the most expensive main but then wants to split the bill equally.

Or who always has to leave early just as it’s their turn to buy a round of drinks.

This isn’t a money saving idea, it’s being cheap at the expense of others.

It means others end up paying more just so that person can save a few quid. Not something I am prepared to do at all.

Cheapest Toilet Roll

Confession – I did actually buy the cheapest toilet roll when we were looking at money saving ideas to help pay our mortgage off.

And yes it did save money and yes we did do it for a short while.

But no, I couldn’t keep it up. The cheapest toilet paper is just too thin and too rough.

I’m not looking for a full on cushion experience when I go to the loo. But I do want an element of comfort!

So although we did save money by buying the cheapest, we stopped buying it and would never go back.

Come and follow me on Pinterest for more money saving hints and frugal tips!

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Money saving ideas we refused to do. Saving money is important but not at the expense of living our best life. Find your enough point when finding ways to save money and budgeting tips. #savemoney #savingmoney #budget #tuppennysfireplace #budgeting #finances

Last Updated on 4th April 2023 by Emma

About Emma

I'm here to help you become confident in making the best money decisions for you and your family. Frugal living has changed my life, let me help you change yours.

14 thoughts on “Money Saving Ideas – 11 Things We Refuse to Give Up to Save Money”

  1. Nice list! For me, have a family, and specifically kids, really changed things. When I was single I kept the heat to a minimum in the winter to save a few dollars. Now that I’m married and have kids in the house the temperature is always comfortable. Of course, there are a lot of other expenses related to kids. We try to save money when possible, but not to the extreme.

    • Hi Marc! Thanks for stopping by. Kids definitely change how you save and spend money. Our heating bills are definitely lower when DD2 is at university and jumps when she’s home for the holidays. Doesn’t help that the controls are in her bedroom!

  2. Apart from the car (can’t drive), I’m with you on the rest of the list. Life’s too short to give up basic comforts and necessities, even with FI in mind. I can’t imagine not turning on the heating in winter – I’d just stay in bed all day, which would be super counter-productive!

    • You’re right we won’t get much done staying in bed all day, although right now it’s grey and miserable so going back to bed seems quite inviting! I like the frugal challenge of keeping the heating off until a certain point but once it’s on, it’s on for the winter and half of spring too!

  3. Am pretty much with you on all those, except I don’t have a 2nd car to contend with.

    My heating does not go on until October – until then, I will wear more clothes in the house if need be and I have a ‘tv blanket’ to snuggle under on the sofa. It’s just me so I don’t have to contend with others complaining about the cold! Occasionally, I’ll do bouts of exercise to keep warm! Generally, heating comes off in March, although this year, it was still on early April due to the late snow.

    Went down the cheap toilet roll route once but never again! I’m so glad that I was able to pick up cheap loo rolls whilst on holiday which are of a similar if not better quality than the top UK brand!

    During my teens, my hair needed washing every day, but these days, I’m fine just washing every other day so my shampoo lasts a lot longer! For those friends with whom I exchange gifts, I will often drop hints that I want toiletries so I always have nice shower gel in stock!

    I don’t like to eat the same evening meal two days in a row, yet like you, I can eat the same thing for lunch (and breakfast) every day. Particularly at work, they’re not meals to savour, they’re just sustenance! At weekends, I always eat something different so it’s something to look forward to.

    • I’m so glad there’s someone like me happy to eat the same lunch and breakfast! My family think I’m weird but I see it as practical. I’m afraid I made my family suffer the cheap toilet paper longer than just the once yet am not sure we saved loads as most of the family used more. I can’t believe you bring toilet roll back from the other side of the world!

  4. haha…i hadn’t even heard some of these…sometimes i read these types of lists and realize these days it’s cool to be frugal but before you were either just poor or cheap…

    hmm.. i actually for the summer stopped using soap on my face… that happened naturally because for some reason my face got really angry…but three months later i have these giant bumps on my face… so maybe it’s seasonally…

    i buy “cheap toilet paper”… i put in quotes only because childhood was spent unclogging a lot of toilets…and 1 ply was recommended…but now it’s caught on and it’s the same price as the good stuff.

    can’t wait to see what you have to say about cold showers… oy!
    i am def in the refuse to heat my house boat… i just think it’s a funny idea… not necessarily to save money…just to see. i fall into some of these categories unintentionally.

    • Cool to be frugal? I’ll take that, probably one of the only times I’m cool, apart from the weekly race with grandbaby1 on the school run. You don’t see many grandparents/parents racing their child trying desperately to beat them 🙂 Unfortunately GB1 has long legs and I get the backpack so it’s a very even race!

  5. I like that expression too – cool to be frugal. Wonder if that will wash with my teenagers!
    My parents came from the “no heating between April and October” school and even in winter it was kept low. It’s taken me this long to stop rebelling against that with a really warm house. I am going to challenge myself this year with not running it as high – I’m going to get myself a onesie for around the house, something I swore I would never do!

    • I’ll be honest – I couldn’t bring myself to invest in a onesie. But I do have fleece lined walking trousers that I wear constantly on cold days and they are amazingly warm, it’s like walking around with a comforter on your legs!

  6. Good post! I tried the no poo when I lived in the mountains for several years. It worked fine, but I went back to an inexpensive shampoo when we returned to ‘civilization’. I won’t give up my occasional alcohol, I just enjoy it as a treat. I do keep the heat pretty low in winter, but that’s just because I feel better when I’m cooler (menopause and hot flashes will do that!). We do eat a variety of foods, but we lean more towards Mexican dishes, since we are in Texas–I think it may be a law here…. I us washable toilet paper, and I have had no problems with smell–saves a ton of money. However, the Redneck (aka the Spousal Unit) prefers his CHARMIN–and he gets it. Like you said in the post, it all depends on what we each feel will work the best for us and our families.

    • Go you with the washable toilet paper – I am impressed! Living in the mountains sounds like a fun thing to do especially if you felt comfortable enough to do the no poo during those years. I know there are things we do that DD1 wouldn’t and vice versa, it’s all about what feels right for you and as you say what works best. Thanks for stopping by Evelyn!

  7. Hi we’re really trying to pay our debt off and finally get current with all our bills a me to actually be successful in finding work and not robbing Peter to pay Paul all the it’just drives me we have only one wage coming in and money is really tight.

    • Hi Diane. I really feel for you. When you’ve only got one wage coming in and have debt it’s really difficult to see the woods for the trees. If you can go extreme on your money saving for a while, just until you get that job then that might help. Also, selling stuff you no longer use can bring in a few pennies, making really cheap, frugal meals to bring down your grocery budget a smidge. Make every penny a prisoner and turn your budgeting into a game. See how far you can go. I really hope things get easier for you soon, Diane. Take care.


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