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When most people think of saving money, they think of tightening their belts and giving things up. But saving doesn't have to be that way. There are plenty of ways you can save money without having to do without.
One of the big ways you can save money is to use online comparison websites to find the lowest rates on credit cards, insurance, loans and many other things. When you compare credit cards on an online comparison site, you can save money by finding cards that have lower interest rates than your current cards or better rewards programs or no annual fee. When you compare credit cards you also may even find balance transfer deals that allow you to transfer balances from high-rate cards to cards with low introductory interest rates that can save you hundreds of dollars in finance charges over the course of a year.
Comparison websites can also help you save money on a host of other products. You can use comparison sites to find better rates on home, auto and life insurance, mortgages, and phone, TV and Internet. While you can use comparison sites to find the best rates on insurance and TV, cable and phone, you can also save a significant amount of money simply by bundling those products together with one company. There are many other ways to save money without going without. For example, when you take short trips, such as to the store or the local library, walk or ride your bike instead of driving. Not only will this save money on gas, but you'll get exercise and improve your health. You might even get in enough exercise that you won't need that gym membership anymore.
When you buy clothes and shoes, stay away from the high-priced fashion labels. Other than athletic shoes, which often have a logo that indicates brand, most clothing isn't readily identifiable by brand. No one can tell whether you are wearing £75 designer jeans from a high-end store or £25 jeans from the local discount store. If you feel you must have brand name clothing, see if you can find it secondhand at thrift stores or garage sales. Another way to save a big chunk of money without going without is to prepare your own food. Say, for example, you eat out every day at lunch. If you spend an average of £8, that amounts to about £2,000 a year based on 250 working days. If you make your lunch instead, which takes only a few minutes a day, you'll save more than half that amount. You can save even more money if you prepare more evening meals at home and don't go out as much.