Skip Restaurants for a Month, Save Over $500

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A blogger and his wife recently took on a seemingly straightforward challenge: No eating out for a month. The experiment may sound simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. No lunches out at work, or even sandwiches from a deli. No fast food. No pizza deliveries. No food or drink from vending machines. Basically everything you consume must originate in the grocery store, or a farm.

Now that the No-Restaurant Month (November) is over, Brad Chaffee at Enemy of Debt offers the results. In the pre-challenge month of October, he and his wife spent $1,052 on food, including some meals out and some prepared at home. In November, they essentially cut their food bill in half, spending a grand total of $527. It was over the $500 limit they’d given themselves, but still—pretty darn impressive.

Along with the dollar figures, Chaffee offered some thoughts:

Going an entire month is somewhat hard because there are times when it is more convenient to eat out. That still doesn’t mean that taking the convenient way is the smartest way, it just means it’s the easiest.

Reality is that eating out shouldn’t be the default option, it should instead be a novelty. When you look at how much money can be saved, invested, or used to pay off debt, the answer is clear.

Read more about other interesting consumer experiments:
100 Days, $100 for Food, and Lots and Lots of Coupons
What I Learned by Not Getting into a Car for a Year
The Year of No Clothing Purchases

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