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Why Do You Need To Eat Out Every Day?

Jul 5, 2008
Eating out with friends and workmates can be truly enjoyable, but is it really necessary? How is it affecting your budget? Is it because of peer pressure? This should be taken seriously, since eating out can become a large monthly expense.

No one wants to be left out. Eating lunch together is a way to bond away from the office. Besides it's only six dollars, right?

This attitude is very prevalent in our culture, where eating out together is considered a great way to bond. Dining with friends is a classic way of having a great time for most people.

A good budget always has a section for groceries. Eating out when there are plenty of groceries at home is an extra, unnecessary expense that doesn't help you stick to your budget.

Ask co-workers to try bringing in their own lunch at least three times a week. Make a plan to eat in the break room together or outside at a picnic table for lunch. They will save money also.

When you eat out, you probably choose the same one or two places. Make some of your favorite dishes at home and take them for lunch. The grocery trips are not just for breakfast and dinner items. Buy foods that are good in a packed lunch. Most workplaces have a microwave and/or a toaster oven. You can prepare your food and eat it piping hot.

You could set up a lunch club with a group of co-workers, too. If you tend to eat lunch together anyway, assign each person a day to prepare lunch for the whole group. That way each person only has to make one lunch every week and everyone gets to eat an exciting variety of meals.

Since such a lunch club arrangement will mean spending more on groceries, you'll need to adjust your budget slightly. As other people at work notice all the benefits of your lunch club, more people will no doubt join in. The more the merrier, since it will make things easier on everyone else in the club. Lunches don't have to be a big deal. Even simple and inexpensive dishes can be delicious.

All these plans don't mean that you can never go out to eat. Make dining out part of your budget and pay with cash so that you won't be able to spend too much. If you eat lunch out, don't allow yourself to again for dinner. Balancing your expenses this way will help you develop great financial habits.

If, despite your best efforts, your lunch time group wants to go out to eat more than you can with your current budget, don't give into the peer pressure. If you explain the reason why in a nice way, they'll respect your decision and remain your friends, not to mention that you will have gotten some great experience saving your money despite the influence of the crowd.
About the Author
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