Research has shown that people tend to spend more when they pay with credit cards. This is likely due to two factors. First, when we use a credit card, we don’t see the money leaving our wallets, which can make it difficult to track our spending. Second, many credit cards offer rewards programs that incentivize us to spend more.
A person who lost his card tried a lifestyle experiment and succeeded. He shared his experience on the forum.
Here’s what happened.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
The original poster (OP) lost his wallet with all his cards. He had some cash, but he used that for gas.
HE DECIDED TO SPEND A WHOLE WEEK WITHOUT SHOPPING
After OP lost his wallet, he could have gone to his bank with his birth certificate to withdraw more cash, but he decided against him. “I decided to see what I could do with what I had,” says OP.
HOW DID HE FARE
The experiment proved to be a success. “I ended up not needing to buy any food, as I had lots of stuff in my freezer and pantry already,” says OP.
WHAT DID OP LEARN?
Overall, this whole lifestyle experiment was more of an exercise on how easy it is to spend when you have cards available and how cash feels like you’re spending an actual amount of money.
“It probably seems obvious to many, but I rarely pay with cash. What are your thoughts,” asks OP.
Here’s how people responded.
FOLLOW THE MOTO – EAT WHAT YOU HAVE
“Since the big uptick in inflation, we follow a motto that I read somewhere:
“Eat what you have, not what you want. ”
It saves us a lot of money.”
WITH HUNGER, EVERYTHING TASTES GOOD
“There’s a Mexican saying:
‘Con hambre todo sabe bueno’
With hunger, everything tastes good
More to your point, it does make you realize that since you have to eat nonstop every day for obvious reasons, not every meal is going to be what satisfies your cravings. Many of them should be taking care of business, so you’re not hungry anymore.”
IT’S A HUGE EYE-OPENER
“Yup, eating out of the pantry instead of going to the store is a HUGE eye-opener. It makes you realize what you need to keep in the pantry to survive without going to the store.
Like, more staples – and less pre-made cookies, snacks, etc. I have enough in my pantry to keep us going for at least a few weeks if necessary.”
I AM THE OPPOSITE
“I keep a lot of long shelf-life staples on hand and always have a ton of rice, beans, lentils, and canned goods. But I only buy fresh veggies and junk food for a week or two. If I can’t go to the store, it’s usually the junk food and “snacking” type veggies (like peas and cherry tomatoes) that I miss first.”
I HAVE NOTED EVERYTHING IN MY FREEZER ON A WHITEBOARD
“I got smart this time! I got a whiteboard and noted EVERYTHING in the freezer, so without opening it, I can at a glance see what I wanted to make for dinner without shuffling through it. So far, we’re marking what we’re taking out!”
I SHOP FOR MEAT FROM MY DAD’S FREEZER
“My dad has gotten into buying half a cow from a local rancher twice a year. I go to his house and “shop” for meat in his freezer.”
I ONLY BOUGHT FRUIT AND MILK DURING STAYCATION
“I took a ten-day “staycation” earlier this month and shopped beforehand. I only bought fresh fruit and milk and worked through my freezer and pantry for everything else. Every four or five months, I do this to ensure things get rotated and used up.”
PAYING WITH CASH IS BECOMING DIFFICULT
“I often pay with cash, and I find it increasingly difficult. Yesterday I was picking up some food from a popular, packed restaurant in the working-class neighborhood.
Anyway, I hand the guy $60 for a $45 order, he opens the register, and it is empty. He didn’t have $15 in change. He told me I was the first to pay cash since dinner started.”
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