There are hurricane survival kits! Emergency survival tips! Disaster survival tips! Have you ever heard of a FURLOUGH SURVIVAL KIT? Don’t expect to put canned goods in a box for this particular kit. More like common sense and sacrifices! If you’re one of the many Americans affected by the government shut down and now your job is in furlough, I found a few tips that might help get you through and above water.
Consider what you’ll save.
While you won’t be earning money on your furlough days, you won’t have work-related expenses either. For example, if you drive 30 miles round-trip to work, using roughly one gallon of gas, buy lunch out, and wear a dry-cleaned suit, your typical spending might look like:
- Gas — $3.76
- Lunch — $15.99 with tip.
- Dry cleaning — $10.
If you have one forced day off a week, you’ll save about $30, or about $120 a month. Small comfort, but it’s something.
Wipe out unnecessary expenses.
Cutting out the extras, even temporarily, can help. You probably have a few expenses you could cut out without sacrificing your quality of life. For example:
- Cancel cable — potential savings of $75 a month.
- Keep the cable but ditch the premium channels –average $39 a month.
- Drop your land line — $30 a month.
- Eat out one less night a month — $25 a month.
Cut Food Costs:
In 2011, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the average American family spent $6,458 yearly on food — or $538 a month. Today, those numbers may have increased.
- Shop salvage grocery stores. Buying dented cans and damaged packages can save you 30% to 50%.
- Use ads and coupons. I’ve saved up to 50% by planning my meals around the weekly sales.
- Make a list before you go and only buy what’s on the list. That simple move could save you 10% because you avoid impulse purchases.
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