Even with a budget, you have to allow money for entertainment. Budgets that don’t are the ones that fail and fail quickly. People make this mistake a lot, thinking a budget is intended to be strict and harsh. Instead, a budget makes sure you have money going where it should.

saving money

Done correctly, it makes sure your bills get paid and you have money left at the end of the month. You should dedicate a part of your expendable income for entertainment.

Frequent Shopper/Membership Cards

If you go to the movies for entertainment or frequent retailers of books, movies or music, you should be taking advantage of frequent shopper programs. Most businesses offer a discount program for customers who spend above a certain amount in their stores.

If you see a lot of movies, joining the theater chain’s membership program can get you free refreshments, discounts and free tickets to movies. You’ll also get information about upcoming movies or special features. And, with retail frequent shopper cards, you can get entered in promotions the store offers.

You may earn free merchandise or significant discounts. You could also be eligible for certain members-only sales or offers. Ask at the places you shop or see movies if they offer such a program and how you can enroll.

Online Discounts

Shop online. You can get substantial savings by comparing prices at different eStores. Many of these discounts are on used or secondhand items. You can find good markdowns on new products, also. Several sites carry new video games, for example, at great prices.

If you keep an eye out for sales and which sites offer better prices for different media, you can save substantially. If you save coupons, you can use those at both brick-and-mortar stores as well as online. Comparison shopping is the key to finding the deals that are out there.

You’ll find many stores that have just what you’re looking for. As a final caveat, make sure you verify that the seller has good ratings and a track record for reliability, a good return policy and reasonable shipping rates.

Buy Used

If getting new CDs, DVDs or games are not all you’re interested in, you should look around second-hand stores. Goodwill, the Salvation Army and private resale shops carry entertainment media at very good prices. Take the time to peruse the shelves at the stores in your area.

While you won’t find the newest releases, you’d be surprised at the range and quality of what’s available. Check the discs for scratches or damage before buying them. If you get home and they don’t play properly, the store should offer credit for future purchases if they don’t refund your money outright.

You can get good entertainment value for much less than many people pay. Make use of all available discounts and cheaper products when you can. Ask for coupons and membership discounts.

There’s no reason to deny yourself entertainment and fun when you can access it in so many reasonably priced ways.