5 expenses to ditch in 2021 that could boost your savings by thousands

By Tara McCabe ·

Is your takeaway coffee cup always full and your savings account always empty? If you answered a reluctant ‘yes’ to that then it might be time to rethink your expenses.

Albeit a human construct to mark the passing of time, January is as good a month as any to take stock of where your money is going. To help get you started, we’ve come up with a list of expenses to review and ultimately ditch in 2021. By doing this you could save yourself some serious dollars in the new year.

1. Curb the coffee

In 2019 Statista reported that the average price of a latte was around $3.96. This means that buying at least one cup of coffee five out of seven days, could add up to nearly $20 a week. That’s the best part of $80 a month!

What might seem like a harmless treat, could turn into hundreds spent on coffee in one year. If that sounds like you, then why not invest in a coffee machine or even a simple coffee press. Or, if you’re lucky and your workplace has coffee-making facilities, make yourself a cup in the office kitchen. Whatever you do, the savings will be worth it.

2. Have a tupperware party

Buying lunch every working day can really put a dent in your finances. A $10 to $15 meal could add up to $50 to $80 every week. Put into perspective, that could be over $300 per month - a sizable chunk of your pay gone on cafe food. Enter tupperware, the unsung hero of savings.

Not only is meal prep better for your finances, it can also be good for your wellbeing. You can alter recipes to your personal taste and cooking itself is a mindful activity. So, plan a few meals for the week ahead, buy exactly what you need, put on a tune or a podcast and get prepping!

3. Borrow books

At some point after landing our first job and becoming financially independent, many of us tend to forget that there are things we can just borrow. Bookshops with rows of fresh, new books are enticing, but at $20 to $40 each, they’re not cheap. 

Joining the local library is free and the best bit is that once you’re done with a book, you can give it back! No more using precious shelf-space on books you’ll only ever read once. Plus, if there is a piece of literature that really speaks to you, you can still buy yourself a copy.

4. Flick the switch on high energy rates

If the arrival of your energy bill never fails to leave you aghast, think about switching providers. You might not be getting the most competitive rates. Enter your postcode on Mozo’s compare energy providers tool to see what other plans are out there.

Another thing you could do is try and actively cut down on your energy consumption. Try to apply some simple energy saving tips, or have a digital detox and cut down your screen time.

5. Workout for free

If there’s one thing being in various lockdowns has taught us, it’s that exercise can be done on a budget, at home. So, if you really want to save some money this year, think about cancelling your gym membership and taking your workout online. There are oodles of workout videos on YouTube and Instagram to choose from. You could even invest in some simple workout gear, like weights, a matt or a resistance band.

Last but certainly not least, make sure you have a savings account fit for all this money you’ll be offloading into it. Interest rates may not be that competitive right now, but there are a lot of other handy features to look for in a savings account. Think savings buckets, round-ups and spending insights. 

Have a scroll of the options below, or head to Mozo’s compare savings accounts page for a longer list of possibilities.

Compare savings accounts - last updated January 16, 2021

Search promoted savings accounts below or do a full Mozo database search. Advertiser disclosure.

  • mozo-experts-choice-2020

    1.20% p.a. (for $0 to $250,000)

    0.10% p.a.(for $0 and over)

    Yes up to $250,000

    Bonus rate when at least $20 is deposited each month and five Visa Debit transactions are made each month using linked Everyday or Glide transaction accounts.

  • 0.90% p.a. (for $0 to $1,000,000)

    0.05% p.a.(for $0 and over)

    Yes up to $250,000

    No withdrawals in the month. Bonus rate for first 4 months, reverting to 0.05% rate after*

  • 0.80% p.a. (for $0 to $250,001)

    0.01% p.a.(for $0 to $5,000,000)

    Yes up to $250,000

    Minimum deposit of $200 and no withdrawals in the month.

  • 1.10% p.a. (for $0 to $1,000,000)

    0% p.a.(for $0 and over)

    Yes up to $250,000

    Make 5 or more successful card purchases per calendar month using your Up debit card and digital wallets (ATM transactions excluded).

  • 0.85% p.a. (for $0 to $5,000,000)

    0.05% p.a.(for $0 to $5,000,000)

    Yes up to $250,000

    Increase balance by at least $300 in the month


^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Savings Accounts Awards

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Tara McCabe
Money writer

Tara McCabe writes across all areas of personal finance here at Mozo from banking through to insurance. Tara is expert at practical money tips, showing readers ways to live richer and be socially conscious while doing it. She earned a BA (Hons) in English Literature from Canterbury Christ Church University.