Now that you have back to school clothes and supplies shopping done, it’s time to consider the costs of all those activities your children plan on doing throughout the upcoming school year. Here are some tips on how to avoid drowning in debt with after school activity expenses.
Ways to Budget for After School Activities to Avoid Debt
Paying for an after school activity is another periodic expense that needs to be accounted for in the budget. And if it’s a new activity for your child, you may not be familiar with the costs. So how can you prepare your budget to avoid credit card debt?
Long-term Saving for Activities
By setting aside a little money each month throughout the year, you will be ready with cash to fund after school activities.
Let’s assume someone participating on a sports team needs about $200 for the season. Maybe they need cleats and other equipment for around $100, game drinks and snacks for $50 and other related expenses for another $50.
Here is the budgeting schedule for that amount:
$200/3 months of saving= $67/month
$200/5 months of savings= $40/month
$200/8 months of savings= $25/month
The earlier you can start preparing your budget, the easier it is to avoid debt. Using a budget and saving is a great way to manage credit card debt and stay on track.
Teach Your Teen to Budget
If you child is older, you may choose to give them some of the financial responsibility of their activities. Do they receive a steady allowance or work part-time? They can fund their own activities.
Whether it’s completely their responsibility or you arrange to split the costs throughout the year, it can be a great way to help your own budget stay on track and teach your kids about money.
Savings Tips for After School Activity Expenses
Want to lower your expenses even more? Try some of these tips to reduce expenses and avoid consumer debt.
- Carpool with other families to save on gas
- Shop sales or in bulk for sports drinks and game day snacks- especially if you are feeding the whole team
- Buy used equipment for sports or band. Check out the condition first but you can save a lot.
- Sell or trade in old equipment to raise some cash
Not every activity needs a substantial budget- but some involve travel, equipment and other expenses that can’t be easily accommodated in the budget. Not to mention if your child participates in multiple activities!
Talk with your kids and use your best judgement to prepare savings for the upcoming school year’s after school activity expenses to avoid credit card debt.