Cheap nights out?

It’s difficult to have a marvellous social life when you have no money.  I can’t afford lots of trips to the pub, theatre or cinema, and meals in fancy restaurants are a no-no. I certainly can’t afford to spend lots of money on ‘going out’ clothes that sit in my wardrobe unworn most of the time. So, how to counter this? I don’t feel the need to go out often; most of the time I am tired after work anyway and happy to have cheap days out and walks at the weekend. Sometimes, though, it feels as if there is a whole world of fun and entertainment passing me by.

I go through phases of inviting people round and doing a frugal dinner party. These are fun, although you can only be so cheap when you are doing this. A better option is a pot luck supper, getting everyone to bring a contribution. This is great if you know some like minded and impoverished souls but doesn’t work so well when your friends are mostly middle class high flyers, as mine are.

Tesco vouchers are very good for converting to cinema tickets and we have done this. However, I only use Tesco for my phone so it takes a while to build up the points! We have also had some good deals from – I really like Pizza Express and offers frequently pop up. Toby restaurants are really good value too if you like a roast (£6.99 per person): Our local theatre has a brilliant youth theatre group. They are doing a production of Grease this month. Tickets cost £14.50 for a pretty decent seat. Ok, it’s not the West End, but it is up the road, excellent entertainment and there are no West End prices or train fares to London involved. If you are Essex or Suffolk based, check it out:

I’m not a massive drinker; if we go to the pub it is usually just for one drink. It is likely to cost the week’s shopping budget if I stay in a pub all evening!! I would prefer a night in with a cheap bottle of wine and Downton Abbey, to be honest.

What do you do for a cheap evening out? All suggestions from you clever frugal folk gratefully received…


5 thoughts on “Cheap nights out?

  1. Amanda A

    Like you I dont have many nights out but its nice to have one now and again. When I do I always wear what I already have and I will watch a youtube tutorial if I want to do something with my hair – its never let me down yet! As I’m not a big drinker, I will often offer to drive and as payment my friends will take turns to buy my cokes and lemonades as well as pay my entry into places so it works out costing next to nothing 🙂 and I’m the one who wakes up fresh as a daisy the next morning too 😉

  2. silversewer09

    We very rarely go out at night preferring to stay at home with the occasional glass of wine. OH likes certain programmes on TV and I either sit and read or knit. We have got one night out coming up, the presentation evening at OH’s bowls club, we are having a meal. OH is treating me. I will be wearing clothes from my wardrobe, possible trousers and a sparkly top.

  3. Liz Adams

    I live on a very small income in a rather affluent region, so I’m familiar with cheap entertainment! my library book club is free of charge and they lend the books to us, my annual dues to the Recorder Music Society give me nine evenings of conducted music with great conductors, my embroiderers’ guild annual subscription entitles me to nine general meetings, with a program and refreshments, and weekly stitch ins with friends. I play music with friends, too, costs none of us anything since we’ve owned the instruments since the dinosaurs roamed the earth. The local art museum is wonderful, free of charge, and has great nationally acclaimed exhibits. Other art museums in the area are equally good, just a few miles driving. So I’ve developed a lot of interests that fit into my budget, in addition to walking and hiking locally, where I don’t get in my car at all.

    Next week I’m joining a library bookclub about cookbooks, too, which should be fun! borrow the book, try a recipe, discuss it in the next meeting. And since I can’t afford a tv service, but do have a set with a DVD function, the library keeps me supplied with movies for evenings I’m at home.

  4. Julia

    Living in London there’s always something free going on. Of course there are all the museums and galleries, but every Wednesday/Friday there are free 1 hour lunch time guided walks in Holborn (I’m off to one about Sweeney Todd today, and 2 next week about Jack Sheppard!). Walk London also do 2 weekends a year where their guided walks are free (last weekend in Sept is the next one), so for less than £10 on the Oyster it’s a good day out.
    Ohterwise we try to make use of our National Trust membership to visit places further afield, (especially if combined with cheap rail deals) or walk sections of the London Loop etc.

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