So you’re at work and it’s lunch time. Time to go out and grab something to eat right? Well sure, if you can afford it. But for those of us on a budget, we’re usually brown-bagging our lunch. We all know that bringing food from home isn’t always exciting. But there are ways in which you can take lunch from home and still have an enjoyable meal (And keep a full wallet).
How much could you potentially save from ordering out less for lunch? Let’s say you order out for lunch 2 times a week with an average cost of 6.75(That’s even low-balling it). That is $13.50 per week. You multiply $13.50X52(Weeks in a year) = $702.00. If you can cut eating out for lunch in half (Eating out only once a week) you could end up saving $351.00 in the year. That could large dent in a bill! (If you would like to set up your own calculation, you can use this brown bag calculator)
How can you make your lunch interesting? Ok, so you brought your lunch today for work. Oh, look, it’s now 12:00, time for lunch! Ok, so what did I pack, oh wonderful…. soup… and I really don’t feel like soup today. I’m sure you have had a similar situation on your lunch break. Nobody likes to bring lunch because it’s usually not very exciting since you knew what you were having since the night before. There are ways you can make it interesting though. One way is (If you have access to a refrigerator) to bring in all sorts of deli meat from home. This way, when lunch time comes around and you didn’t really want a turkey sandwich, you can make a ham and cheese sandwich instead (Thus helping you avoid eating out). You can also bring in other food so that you have a choice of what you want to eat. For example you can bring different kinds of soups, microwavable dinners, dressings for salad, etc.
What happens if you have finished your lunch but you are still hungry? So you forgot to eat breakfast and you woofed down your sandwich at record speed and your stomach still wants more? This is where having a few snacks to munch on comes in handy. This will satisfy your hunger and help you get through the day without having to grab something quick on the ride home.
What about saving on drinks? Drinks can be really expensive. I should know because I love soda (I know it’s bad) and a bottle can run $1.50 for a 20oz. drink. So a way to save money is to buy a 2 liter bottle of soda (Or whatever 2 liter beverage of your choice) and leave that in the fridge at work. Fill up an empty 20 0z. soda bottle, leave it in the fridge and voila! You have an ice cold beverage and lots of the 2 liter of soda to keep refilling it with. (You will be able to fill your 20 oz soda more than 3 times by doing this which is getting you 3x more for the same price). You can also do this with water. I know a lot of people don’t enjoy tap water or water from a water bubbler. If that is the situation, then you then you may want to bring a Brita water filter/pitcher with you to work. Just like the soda idea, fill up and empty water bottle and stick in the fridge for a soon to be ice cold (non-tap tasting) water.
If you have anymore ideas please share them. I would love to hear new ideas because I am always looking for new ideas to bring to the table (lunch table that is).