April 26, 2024

15 Best Money-Saving Challenges to Try in 2024

If you’re looking for creative ways to save money, there are practical and fun challenges you can try to achieve your financial goals. These money-saving challenges include approaches like saving a little bit every day, putting a part of your paycheck into a special savings account, and more. By trying these challenges, you’ll pick up strategies to help you manage and maintain your finances. Here’s everything you need to know to start putting the “fun” in your funds.

What is a money-saving challenge?

Money-saving challenges involve creative strategies that help people build their savings. They often use games, competitions, or step-based plans to motivate people to save better. Not all challenges are the same, so you can choose ones that fit your lifestyle and savings goals. For example, you can try to save a little bit of money every day or participate in a penny-saving challenge where you store any pennies you collect during a certain amount of time.

Purpose and benefits

The main goal of a money-saving challenge is to change how you approach your personal finances. These challenges encourage habits that can grow your savings account quite a lot. They’re especially helpful for anyone looking to save money fast, cut back on unnecessary expenses, or build an emergency fund without feeling overwhelmed.

Getting started

Beginning a money-saving challenge requires no special tools, just a plan and a commitment to your financial well-being. Start by selecting a challenge that aligns with your money goals and personal preferences.

For example, if savings is your priority, a challenge centered around incrementally adding money to a high-yield savings account might fit your needs. Or, if you’re looking to cut back on groceries, you might try one where you have a meal-plan using a set budget each week. The right challenge can eventually make saving a habitual part of your daily routine.

15 Money-Saving Challenges to Supercharge Your Savings

Weekly money savings challenges

1. “No-Spend Day” challenge: Pick a day each week when you commit to not spending any money. This challenge encourages you to use what you have, plan your expenses better, and determine areas where you can minimize impulse purchases.

2. “No Eating Out” challenge: Dedicate a week to skipping restaurants and takeout options. Cooking at home can significantly reduce your weekly food expenses, helping you save money (and possibly discover a passion for cooking).

3. “Spare Change” challenge: Every day, set aside any spare change or extra cash you get in your pockets, purse, or backpack. Over time, these coins can build up, offering a simple and effective way to grow your savings.

4. “Weekly Budgeting” challenge: Give yourself a specific budget for the week and stick to it. This budget challenge helps you sharpen your planning skills and conscious decision-making by focusing on how you spend your paycheck and manage your expenses.

Monthly savings challenges

1. “Cash for a Month” challenge: For one month, use cash for all your transactions. This method forces you to physically see and feel your money leaving your hands, which can reduce overspending and impulse purchases.

2. “Free Entertainment Month” challenge: Skip paid entertainment options and explore free activities instead. This challenge saves money and pushes you to be creative about how you spend your leisure time.

3. "Pack Your Lunch" challenge: Instead of buying lunch, bring your own meals from home for a month. At the end of the month, calculate the money you would’ve spent on purchasing lunch daily and transfer the saved amount into your savings account.

4. “Digital Detox” challenge: For an entire month, cut back on digital subscriptions and in-app purchases. This saves you money and reduces screen time, improving your mental health and productivity.

Yearly savings challenges

1. “52 Weeks of Saving” challenge: With this 52-week money challenge, you start by saving a small amount your first week of the challenge and increasing your savings by the same increment each week for a year. This gradual increase makes the challenge more manageable and can lead to a significant sum by year-end.

2. “Trim 1% of Your Salary” challenge: Aim to save an additional 1% of your annual income. Gradually increase your savings rate, and look at how you can adjust your lifestyle throughout the challenge to accommodate your savings goal.

3. “No New Clothes” challenge: Commit to not purchasing new clothing for the whole year (or go month by month if that feels more attainable). While this challenge helps you put more into your savings than your style, it also promotes sustainable living practices and encourages you to make the most of your existing wardrobe.

4. “Round-Up” challenge: Whenever you make a purchase, round up what you spent to the nearest dollar and transfer the difference into your savings account. Over the course of a year, these small amounts can add up to a lot, making it an easy way to save without feeling the pinch on your daily finances.

Other creative money-saving challenges

1. “Money Mistake” challenge: Every time you catch yourself making a non-essential purchase, transfer an equivalent amount into your savings account. This curbs impulse buying and turns mistakes into savings opportunities.

2. “Money Throw-Down” challenge: Partner with a friend or family member to see who can save the most each week or month. A little friendly competition promotes accountability and motivation, making saving a collaborative goal.

3. “Savings Fever” challenge: Set a high-intensity savings period, like saving half of every paycheck you receive for a month. This can be a powerful way to fast-track your savings for a specific goal, such as an emergency fund or holiday shopping.

When to start a money-saving challenge

The best time to start a money-saving challenge is now. Delaying your start date means missing opportunities for savings and further financial growth. Don’t feel like you have to wait for the beginning of the year or the month to start — every moment presents a chance to kickstart your journey toward achieving your financial goals. Here’s what to consider:

- Immediate action. The sooner you begin, the quicker you’ll see results. Starting right away allows you to capitalize on your current motivation.

- Align with financial goals. Choose a start date that matches your financial objectives. If you’re saving for an emergency fund, reducing debt, or pinching pennies for a significant purchase, timing your challenge with these goals can improve your focus and determination.

- Adapt to life changes. Significant life events such as a new job, a new house, or changes in your family situation can offer natural starting points for savings challenge ideas. These milestones often push you to reevaluate your finances, making it an ideal time to build in new saving habits.

Make 2024 your best financial year with EarnIn

What these challenges all have in common is the flexibility to start them on your terms. Building your savings is a great way to support your own financial stability throughout the year — but when life throws curveballs, tools like EarnIn can help you stay flexible while navigating those challenges.

The EarnIn app offers powerful tools to give you control over your earnings and a clear perspective on your credit. Our Cash Out tool lets you access your pay as you work — up to $100 per day or up to $750 per pay period with no credit checks, no interest, and no mandatory fees. If you’re looking to manage your debt and improve your credit score, our Credit Monitoring tool allows you to keep a close eye on your credit score for free.

Download EarnIn today, and make this year your best financial year yet.

You may enjoy

Shared Focus on Community Brought Kelvin Beachum to EarnIn
Shared Focus on Community Brought Kelvin Beachum to EarnIn
We recently spoke with Kelvin Beachum about how his upbringing and emphasis on community drives his outlook and led to his discovery and support of EarnIn.
How Does Interest Work? Interest Rates for Beginners
How Does Interest Work? Interest Rates for Beginners
If you’re planning your financial future, you may be wondering, “How does interest work?” Learn what interest is, how it’s calculated, and how it adds up.
How to Calmly Deal With Financial Stress
How to Calmly Deal With Financial Stress
To deal with financial stress, it’s important to identify the source of your problems, talk to a professional, and practice healthy coping mechanisms.
Budgeting Made Fun: Using the 50/30/20 Rule
Budgeting Made Fun: Using the 50/30/20 Rule
Discover the 50/30/20 rule for effective income management. Tailor this adaptable strategy to fit your financial needs and goals for a secure future.
Your Paycheck After Taxes: 7 Ways to Stretch It
Your Paycheck After Taxes: 7 Ways to Stretch It
Ways to stretch your paycheck after taxes include sharing costs with others, adjusting your withholdings, and claiming unique deductions.
How to Get Cash from a Credit Card Without a Cash Advance
How to Get Cash from a Credit Card Without a Cash Advance
Learn how to get cash from a credit card without a cash advance, and discover alternatives that protect your financial health and avoid hefty fees.
Driving Away From Debt: Paying Off a Car Loan Early
Driving Away From Debt: Paying Off a Car Loan Early
Explore the benefits and drawbacks of paying off your car loan early. Dive into strategies for quick repayment and how tools like Earnin can guide your financial journey.
Earnin Makes an Impact on Overdraft Fees
Earnin Makes an Impact on Overdraft Fees
Overdraft fees can be a major burden on people's finances. EarnIn is working to make a positive impact on this issue. Learn more on our blog.
Keep Calm and Prep for Tax Season Early On
Keep Calm and Prep for Tax Season Early On
Tax season has officially arrived. Though it can be stressful, there is a light at the end of the tunnel: a sweet refund. Learn how you can prep for tax season here.
People of EarnIn: Kim Crook
People of EarnIn: Kim Crook
Kim Crook shared her financial journey with the rest of the community. Read more about the People of EarnIn here.
How to Stop Overspending and Start Saving: A Practical Guide
How to Stop Overspending and Start Saving: A Practical Guide
Learn how to stop overspending and start saving so you can build wealth and position yourself for financial independence.
How Do Credit Card Balance Transfers Work?
How Do Credit Card Balance Transfers Work?
How do credit card balance transfers work? Learn their benefits and how they compare to other financial tools for optimal debt management.

EarnIn is a financial technology company not a bank. Subject to your available earnings, Daily Max and Pay Period Max. EarnIn does not charge interest on Cash Outs. EarnIn does not charge hidden fees for use of its services. Restrictions and/or third party fees may apply. EarnIn services may not be available in all states. For more info visit earnin.com/TOS.

Download on the App Store
4.7 +189K ratings
Download on Google Play
4.6 +200K ratings