Since the pandemic, getting out of the house seems harder than it used to be — and since inflation skyrocketed, getting out of the house is often pricier. Some activities, however, are not only worthwhile but cheap or even free. Here are 13 ways to bust up the boredom and be entertained.
Go to a Museum
Most museums offer a free entry day every month, so check out websites or call to find out more.
Visit a Farmer's Market
It’s never a bad idea to compare prices. Even though farmer's markets have produce that usually looks better than what you can find at the grocery store, the prices might be better, too.
Gaze at the Stars
If your telescope has been gathering dust, it might be time to bust it out. Don’t have one? Head to your nearest observatory — check their website to see when you can drop in. Or just camp in your backyard, which requires the least effort of all.
Go Thrift Shopping
Whether it’s Goodwill or a flea market, scouring the shelves for cheap discoveries can be a fun way to spend time (take a friend). If you have a discerning eye, thrifting can also result in some too-good-to-be-true finds.
Trekking around in nature can be easy or strenuous. Visit AllTrails or see what’s listed near you, and you can filter by length, difficulty level, and more.
See Some Animals (or Fish)
Like museums, zoos and can have free days or cheaper entry late in the afternoon. If you just want to take a quick spin around, it can be a fun way to save some dough.
Go to the Movies
Haven’t been to the movies since pre-pandemic? Get cheaper tickets at matinees or join the theater chain’s membership rewards program.
Get your heart racing by picking up a game of basketball at the local rec center, try pickleball (everyone’s doing it), or just go for a walk.
Watch a Student or Local Theater Production
Chances are that your local community college or theater would love to fill the seats for their latest production, so tickets might be cheap or even free.
Run Errands With a Friend
Look, we all have drycleaning to drop off or items we need to pick up, but we don’t have to do it alone. Ask a friend what they’re looking to knock off their to-do list and see if you can do it together.
Go to the Library
Haven’t been to your local library in a while? You might be surprised by what’s in stock. Most libraries these days have movies, audiobooks, and more you can check out. Some even offer free streaming services with a valid library card (check out Hoopla Digital and Kanopy).
Join a Local Meetup
Want to learn to paint? Speak French? Play volleyball? Head to Meetup.com where you’re likely to find a like-minded group near you.
Don’t have a charity in mind? Check out VolunteerMatch to find one that is close by doing work you believe in.