B and I just realized today how much money we spend on eating out. It’s embarassing. We never really thought anything of it. In Minot, we got into the habit of eating out for one meal on any day that he had off. With his job’s propensity for going 7 days straight, this really wasn’t that much. It also served as our time to see the friends that also worked swing shifts for the military. When we moved to Germany, we spent the first month living in a hotel – so escaping to eat a meal not nuked in the tiny microwave was a relief. And then habit set in. We didn’t have a car so buying groceries was a bigger challenge than biking to a nearby restaurant. Before I even realized what had happened, we were eating out every day without even thinking about it.
Now, I’m going to be a bit crude and say that B and I make good money. I’ll leave it at that, but, the truth is that we aren’t hurting for spending. Enough so that we never even noticed that we were eating out once a day. Until I brought it up today. B was wondering what we should do for lunch and mentioned going out to get food. Then he commented that he wasn’t really interested in eating anything out. I felt the same, so we ate in. Fast forward to tonight and I don’t really want the chicken ceaser salad that is currently being prepped in my kitchen (by my amazing husband) and again B offered for us to go out. That’s when I pounced.
I asked if he was aware of how much we eat out. He acknowledged that it’s an everyday kind of affair. I asked if he was aware of how much that costs. We estimated 15 a day for weekdays and 25 a day for weekends. People, that’s 125 bucks a week. Or 6500 a year. I actually think it runs a bit higher than that – because on weekends we can be guilty of eating out twice a day. It just isn’t an every weekend kind of thing. We realized that if we just cut the week day eating to not eating out and limited the weekend eating to one meal out that we could save 3900 a year. Hello cruise, I’m eating in happily. (Oh yeah, we’re going to use the money we save on not eating out to finance our honeymoon)
If you’re in the habit of spending money on something regularly – multiply it out across the year and see if it still seems worth it.