Cut the cost of your social life

One Thing To Do This Week

There are lots of ways you can save the pennies without foregoing the thrill of a good movie or pleasure of a meal out.

Follow our top tips on making the most of your free time at a price that's kind to your wallet.

A movie night in

Renting DVDs can add up. An alternative - and cheaper - way to spend a night in is to borrow DVDs from your local library. Loans last up to two weeks and fees are far lower than rental stores.

For the latest releases, might be a better bet. Rental plans start at £3.91 a month for two DVDs.

Cinema savings

Take advantage of matinees and offers such as Orange Wednesdays.

Taking munchies with you can also make a big difference: make your own popcorn and bring it along in a paper bag to keep it crisp.

Restaurant deals

Eating out can make a big dent in your budget.

Look out for 'bring your own bottle' restaurants as drink is often the most expensive element of a meal.

Also take advantage of special offers, like mid-week discounts or 2-4-1 deals.

Other ways you can eat out on the cheap

Ditch dinner-party debts

Does the expense involved in catering for your friends turn you to jelly? Host a pot-luck party to share the burden and the cost of cooking.

Or be creative with what you serve; one-pot dishes, for example, are easy to bulk up with vegetables and pulses, which are a much cheaper alternative to meat.

Read our guide to cutting the cost of dinner parties

Stage savings

The thrill of the theatre can be dampened by the price of tickets. could be the answer to your stage fright - if you're flexible about what you see, and where. also features deals for the latest releases in its newsletter.