Three Words That Guarantee You Pay 4x Too Much

Three Words That Guarantee You Pay 4x Too Much

Words are powerful.  Quoth Edward Bulwer-Lytton, “The pen is mightier than the sword.”  And these three words have more power than you might realize.  When you utter them, chances are you are rushing headlong into an experience guaranteed to launch dollars out of your wallet like a T-Shirt cannon.  You turn to your special someone and utter these magic words of spending commitment …

Three Little Words

Go… Out… For…

Hey, would you like to:

  • Go out for drinks
  • Go out for a bite
  • Go out for a coffee
  • Go out for breakfast
  • Go out for lunch
  • Go out for dinner
  • Go out for a movie

When you “go out for an experience, you’re easily spending four times what you would at home for the products you are consuming.  In some cases, it’s as much as ten times.  How much does a cocktail cost when you mix it at home vs. paying $15 (before tip) to experience it “on the town” (three more magic words), at a smoke-filled bar where you can barely hear one another.  “THIS IS GREAT, ISN’T IT?!”   “NO, I THINK IT’S APPLE!!”

I realize there’s something special about going to certain places one can’t possibly, and shouldn’t try to, simulate oneself.  “Let’s go out for a drag race”, probably shouldn’t ever be in the comfort of one’s own home.  Seeing your favorite band on tour or a Mixed Martial Arts fight… not in my living room!  But, do you really need to do those expensive things every morning/night/weekend?

And I’m not suggesting you never leave the house.  Have a picnic.  Get outside.  Do Stuff!  But the markup on experience services is so ludicrous, it’s a habit that’s worth breaking — even if you just start cutting back a little.  Instead of “going out for a movie”, pop a bag of popcorn, watch some Netflix and chill.  Instead of going out to eat, get the same meal “take out” in the park and save on the expensive appetizer, bottle of wine, dessert, and tip.

A small start by cutting back on just one type of frivolous expense a week can ramp up into sensible habits that stick with you and turn into serious savings over time.  Who knows?  Maybe by cutting back on lattes for while, you’ll be able to pick up a cappuccino in Milan and have a truly memorable experience with your savings.

What’s one “go out” experience you know you can cut back on this month that you’re probably better off doing without forever?










5 Replies to “Three Words That Guarantee You Pay 4x Too Much”

  1. Very insightful. A lot of figuring out this financial game in life is mental. You have to be mentally strong not to be enticed to “Go out…”

    At the same time, two words that seemed to have been misplaced lately that can save you money are “Thank you”. You’d be surprised what that gets you when used sincerely.

    Great post!

    1. It is sad that we’ve become so unappreciative, as a society. I think it’s a big part of the overstimulation we all experience in larger clusters (cities, internet, etc.), that desensitizes people to how each individual is a person with their needs, goals, and emotions.

  2. My dad is on a month long vacation so the house chores are on me. My plan was to go out for every meal but yesterday I brought some frozen lasagna to save a going out. I think it’s the same thing the Italian bistro near me uses any way ha!

    Happy birthday btw!

    1. Back when Princess Muffins and I would shop at Sam’s, we’d notice all sorts of huge bulk purchases that appeared were intended for a restaurant. After that, we’d always joke about ordering something off of the menu, and that we probably could have bought the same thing there. Thanks for the birthday wishes!

  3. Such a good point! This might be one of the biggest money savers for us, making our own meals, drinking at home, hosting potlucks and game nights for social time. There’s so much free things out there to do, why waste my hard earned money for someone to do something for me that I can do myself?!

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