Frugal living

Treats for under 50p (60 cents) that make me happy

After a few serious posts, I thought I’d mix it up with something as close to my heart as the other recent topics… A good bargain!

Who doesn’t love a good bargain? Apparently, quite a lot of people! But that’s not you and me, right?! Bargains are great value for the price. And for the pleasure-per-pound [or insert your local currency], not much can beat purchases on the very low end of the range.

Banana oat biscuits – the cost of 2 bananas and porridge you may have lying around.

Of course, bargain availability depends very much on where you live, though if you look hard and long enough, there are usually some kind of bargains to be had! If not, then I’d argue you’re not living in an area that lends itself to early financial independence! 😉 Also, these well priced items tend to be slow to rise with inflation too.

These are the kinds of things I/we occasionally or sometimes buy for that just hit the spot:

  • Mug Shot Snack Stop – 5-min dry pasta that you stick in a mug/cup. Around 33p, or 4 for £1 at B&M. Tip: Great for taking on holiday if you occasionally yearn for a warm snack in your room!
  • ZX sugar-free cola – 2 litres. The Aldi version of a ‘Max’ or ‘Zero’ type drink! 33p. Tastes great alone or with your poison of choice. 😉
  • Bourbon cream biscuits – Aldi. 22p a pack. A great occasional buy for when you want to tip the house upside down to find something to satisfy those chocolate pangs! Will last longer than chocolate. (To be honest, we also like the Aldi rich teas, 29p!)
  • Vegetarian sausage roll – 2 for £1 @ Pound Bakery. Okay, a tiny bit of cheating here, but share with your preferred partner or randomer-in-the-queue (if you’re uber hardcore!!) et voila, 50p! Ideal hot food pit stop. “Ethics” aside for a second, is a Greggs vegan sausage roll (£1) worth twice the satisfaction of the Pound Bakery veggie one? I doubt it. If you don’t live near a Pound Bakery, then treat yourself to a day out in a town that does as a form of bargainous sociological experiment. The town in question will likely have many bargain shops (and possibly people of questionable health, but that’s not you).
  • A trip on a miniature steam train – 50p each. There’s one quite near us run by train enthusiasts (but check online for your nearest). Ours has gone up from 30p last year – the horror! Maybe something to do with a very limited yet heavily poluting finite resource?? Show extended enthusiasm over the train and the engineer might just give you a lump of coal (free)!
Image result for miniature steam train rides
Choo choo cheap as chips!
  • Koka or other instant noodles. 45p or cheaper, often 3 or 4 for £1. Another dried noodle-type treat. I get these in our local ‘ethnic’ grocers usually, or B&M. I think the cheaper ones are not as nice tasting. Of course, none are good for you, so occasional treats.
  • Banana oat cookies – more a fun activity (for young toddlers upwards, or even just for yourself) AND a treat! Really easy to do. Two bananas and some oats, plus raisins/dried fruit, choc chips or nuts you have lying around the house. Must be under 50p, right?!
  • Raisin & cinnamon bagel @ Sainsbury. 35p. Freshly baked. A steal for Little Firelite when we’re out and about, like at major train stations when everything else is $$$!
  • Coffee in my flask. Sounds like a swizz, but in cold/windy/wet weather, it’s such a nice treat to get out my little vacuum flask of coffee. That’s what I call a treat – past Firelite (me) is treating the present one. 🙂 I think I might even take this away with me on our long weekend break abroad. I’ll grab a few soya milks next time I’m in Wetherspoons then… 😉 What’s your non-cost treat?
A little stash of coffee whatever the weather…
  • Babyccino with chocolate sprinkles @ Sainsbury Cafe. Another kiddie one, sorry to the non-parents. Well, the fruit may have gone up above the 50p threshold now, but its frothy goodness for little ones is still free! True, you’d feel an idiot for not buying a cuppa, but they do do good chips!
  • Everyday Essentials milk chocolate @ Aldi, 100mg. 30p. Mr Firelite’s treat, though I’ve been known to take a bit, and also I thought the list was missing chocolate. 😀
  • Umm, at our local independent bakery, cake of the week is 50p!
  • And of course, the bargains toward the end of the day in the supermarket food discount aisle, though treat options are probably mainly pastries and baked goods.

Well, this list was harder to put together than I thought! My brain struggles to keep up with inflation. My list of possibilities for £1 bargains is infinitely greater….(too easy! :P)

And when I see the list altogether, I cringe slightly at the amount of processed flour products! But I did say we have these as occasional treats! Well, I guess the cola has become more regular of late. Also, we do sometimes pay more for treat foods, because we try not to keep many ‘baddies’ at home, so they’re more a part of a day out.

I’m truly a believer in paying more money to be richer in health. Yet, we’ve only so much willpower before feeling denied. And like being on a diet, being too frugal sometimes means you end up spending on something silly. Or God forbid, we are drawn to the novelty of an expensive treat which market themselves so well pandering to the ego!!

So, I see a small occasional cost as negligible for our sense of freedom in enjoying a fleeting sensory pleasure! Anything 50p or under and occasional must be the ultimate bargain.

What are your favourite cheap treats?

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