How to Maximize Your Summer on a Minimal Budget - Quicken Loans Zing Blog

If you’re anything like me, your calendar almost instantaneously fills up with various day trips and outings once the warmer weather hits. “It all looks so exciting,” you say. “This is going to be the best summer ever!”

Just as you’re about to book your pricey Appalachian white-water rafting trip, you take a quick glance at your bank statement. After paying bills and other various expenses, you watch your summer funds plummet.

If this situation is at all familiar to you, don’t cry too hard. It’s entirely possible to have an amazing summer without an enormous bank account. Here are some cheap, fun ways to enjoy all summer has to offer.

Host an Outdoor Movie Party

All you need to cross this one off your summer bucket list is a beautiful night, a big white sheet, a projector and some popcorn. You can either buy a projector for cheap (under $50) or get an app that projects directly from your phone. Next, choose one of your favorite flicks and invite your friends.

Cost: Less than $50

Take Advantage of Local Festivals

Summer is festival season, and I bet there are some happening in your area. From beer festivals to folk music showcases, the festival-sphere offers a multitude of options to choose from. Not only do these events provide you with low-cost entertainment, but you might get a funnel cake out of the deal, too.

Cost: Less than $20

Host a Lawn Sports Tournament

Pretty much everybody knows a guy with a badminton, croquet or bocce ball set. Dig up that friend’s phone number and give ‘em a call! You can even make your own games if DIY is more your style. Set up the gear, make some snacks and invite your friends – all they need to bring are their argyle sweaters and their competitive spirit.

Cost: Less than $20

Check Out Local Flea Markets and Yard Sales

During the summer months, outdoor flea markets and yard sales are a common sight in most areas. Often times, they’re posted online or in your local newspaper. Before you head out, prepare accordingly. If you go with your friends or family, you can even have a contest to see who scores the most awesome item. Who knows what priceless treasures you’ll find? The DIY potential is endless.

Cost: Less than $50


It looks like some meteor showers will be occurring this summer! Meteor showers are a great way to enjoy a clear, summer night with your friends. If you have a DSLR camera and tripod, meteor showers also present an awesome photographic opportunity. If you have access to a roof – even better.

Cost: $0

Discover a New Skill

With all of the free time you’ve accumulated while not white-water rafting in Appalachia, the world has become your oyster. Try something new! Take advantage of those basketball hoops in the park by your house and hone your hooping skills. Peruse Pinterest, find some crafts and get your Martha Stewart on. You know that thing you’ve always wanted to try, but never got around to? Now’s your time to get around to it. Who knows – maybe if you get good enough, you’ll be able to afford that white-water rafting trip after all.

Cost: $0

What low-cost summer activity are you most looking forward to? Share your ideas with other Zing readers in the comment section below!



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