Money Saving Handbag Essentials

Money saving handbag essentials

It is easy to be a money saving whizz in the home. You have the support of excel spread sheets, your cupboards and wardrobe, internet blogs, savings sites and reviews however when you’re out and about and *gasp* potentially without access to the internet you have to fend for yourself financially and may need a few things to help you on your way. Ooh dramatic. In other words, have a few things with you at all times which can stop you spening on expensive things or going over budget.

– Cash not cards
I very rarely, unless I’m travelling a long way from home or on business, carry my debit or credit cards with me. I prefer to withdraw my cash on a Sunday night and physically divide it up for the week. As soon as I got into the habit of doing this I saved a small fortune because it meant I was unable to indulge in impulse purchases which were always my downfall.

– Mini notebook and pen
Note down everything you spend. Seriously, everything. Bought a packet of chewing gum? Note it down. Bought a stupidly expensive bus ticket (I’m looking at you Stagecoach)? Note it down. It is easy to get carried away with spending when you are out and about so holding yourself accountable really helps. We’ve all found ourselves breaking into a £20 note only to get home and have 50p and some lint in our purses only to wonder where it is all gone. Note it down and take the wondering away.

– Calculator
When I go shopping I add everything up with either a teeny tiny calculator, you can get them from eBay for almost nothing or with the calculator on my phone. Keeping a running total as I walk around a shop makes me rethink unneccessary purchases and allows me to know exactly what the total will be at the till.

– Reusable water bottle
The is no way I’m paying £1+ for a bottle of water. It just isn’t happening. I carry this foldable water bottle with me which I can happily fold up into almost nothing once I’m finished.

– Ziplock bags
I feel like I shouldn’t tell you what I use these for but I end up using them at least twice a week for something or other. Pop a couple in your bag and you’ll soon find a really useful and money saving use for them soon or later.

– Umbrella
Having lived in the north west of England for a decade the very idea of carrying an umbrella every where I go seems totally ailen however I often see people making a mad dash to the chaps on the side of the road who sell over priced umbrellas whilst pelted with water from the skies. Carry an umbrella with you at all times – don’t end up spending a small fortune for a piece of crap on the side of the road. In actual fact I think all umbrellas both cheap and expensive are of roughly the same qualitiy when faced with the elements, so don’t invest too much.

– Tissues, lipbalm,  painkillers, mints etc.
I always ‘shop my home’ to find things like tissues, mints etc., rather than buying them when out and about. Sure I have to buy them in the first place to have them at home however I’m able to take the time and buy them in bulk or reduced prices. A packet of Polo mints at the train station has a huge premium placed on it compared to buying from the supermarket.

P.S. Is there anything in particular you carry in your handbag which saves you money?

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  1. I have the same foldable water pouch, it’s great because when your done you just fold it up and stick it back in your bag 😀 x

  2. Great post, those foldable water bottles look amazing, i need one of those!

    Sophierosehearts x

  3. I’m a bit like you-cash all the way and only take my reward cards out and this saves a fortune. I have a removable handbag organiser inside my “bag of choice this week” which has lots of handy compartments for all my daily necessities. This also means when I change bags (as I do every few days- nothing important is forgotten) These include the hand cream, lip balm and tissues, nail file and my tic tacs:-) Then you have the stuff you need or as I call them the *mum* essentials like plasters, calpol melts medicine and mini pack of wet wipes. I do love the foldable water bottle idea I’ll have to get one now.

  4. Well, now I absolutely must know what you use ziplock bags for!

    p.s. I just realised I’m always tweeting you but from my locked account @bonjourabientot, so I don’t think you can see them :/

  5. Ive been torced into the cash not carda mindset and definitely staying within my budget… Foldable bottle sounds ace! I often take snacks with me too in case I get home later than planned! I love the calculator idea x

  6. what an amazing post!! xxx

  7. I seriously agree! I always have my umbrella!
    And I agree with the water, it’s ridiculous what some places charge!
    I’m not sure I could do the cash/card thing though! Serious will-power you have there.

  8. If I know I’ll be out for the day I will bring a bottle of water with me, as well as a cereal bar so that I’ve got something to snack on when I get hungry. I like the reusable water bottle though so I may have to invest in one! Are they sturdy? I’d be a bit worried that it would explode in my bag :(

  9. I always have to have a lipbalm and tissues on me as I suffer from chronically dry lips and my nose always starts to run if I get cold!x

  10. I made for christmas a couple of years ago “handbag essentials kits” for my girlfriends, and recently made myself one too. Its a cute bag with things like tissues, glasses wipes, sewing kit, handcream etc in. But I must admit I get out of the habit of filling it up, and I need to “shop from home” a bit more often!

  11. Completely agree! I always get comments on how much stuff I lug about in my handbag but I never need to buy anything when I’m out, apart from water. Thank you for linking the bottle, just bought one :) xox

  12. Oooh! I’ve never seen one of those foldable drinks bottles before! What a good idea, i really should take a page out of your book because my handbag is a complete mess and i spend wayyyy to much money on silly little things! xx

  13. The ziplock bag thing is going to drive me crazy! Will pop a couple in my bag and see what I use them for

  14. I’ve just ordered myself one of those foldable water bottles as I hate having to lug around a heavy bottle of water all day! Now I can fill it up at water coolers and from drinking water taps and fountains, yay!

  15. Some ibuprofen and allergy pills in a little box. I had to get allergy pills from a ‘real’ shop the other week at over £3. They’re 69p in Aldi!

  16. i have to tell you this so you will know :)) i love your blog so much , i check every day if you post sth new thank you

  17. thank you , love your blog and imagine: everyday i check if you upload any new stuff

  18. I am the opposite, if I have cash I spend it but if its on my card I dont! x

  19. AHHHHH whats in those ziplock bags!?! I MUST know!! Is it tampons & sanitary towels?? That’s what I’d use them for. You never know when your going to receive the gift of a random period! x

  20. I’m surprised that I already do a few of these already haha. I must agree with Megan if I have cash on me it will just disappear x

  21. I’m surprised that I already do a few of these already haha. I must agree with Megan if I have cash on me it will just disappear x

  22. Anything else? I live in the country and so always carry an extra plastic bag or two for what I might find. Fruit off the hedgerows, left-behind onions and sweetcorn at the edge of cropped fields, people selling produce or flowers outside their gates..

  23. I always have a stash of cereal bars/bags of nuts/dried fruit in my bag. I need to snack regularly and find I was spending a small fortune buying those wee grab bags from the shops on the go. I buy everything in bulk and just divide into smaller bags.

    I totally agree with the umbrella thing too…Nothing worse than being caught in torrential downpour!!

    I also carry a wee coin bag of change (the shrapnel collected from the week before) for bus fares, small purchases and donations to charity. Means I’m less likely to go to the cash point and withdraw money that I don’t need to spend!!!

    I also have a small waterproof wash bag with clean socks/tights, knickers, mini deodorant, toothbrush/paste and baby wipes. Might seem excessive but I like to be prepared if I get stuck anywhere or decide to stop at my friends/mums after a night out. I also send my hubby to work with the above items as he works 2 hours away from home and has had to sleep at the office before now!!

  24. I’m completely the opposite with money, I hate carrying cash and never take any out- card all the way. This stops me forgetting where my money goes, or losing it!

    I do keep a really close record of what I buy and keep it all stored on my iphone, end of the month I print it off and analiyse where I am wasting money

    lets drive far away

  25. Great tips!

    P.S I am currently looking at loads of new blogs to read just comment on my post “What blog is next? + blog changes” I will have a look & most likely follow!xoxo

  26. that reusable water bottle is such a good idea! i always buy water when im out and it costs alot!


  27. Thanks for another great post Thrifty! I am going to take your Sunday night money withdrawal idea. I’m forever putting stuff on my debit card and not realising I’ve spent £14 and only went in for cotton buds! This idea of having actual having cash we hopefully stop me from purchasing stuff I don’t really need!

    Also love the water bottles xxxx

  28. Very good post :)
    I’m gonna have to start writing down everything I spend!
    I hate having to buy water out and always regret not bringing some with me!

  29. Great post! This is really silly, but I always carry a fold-up canvas shopping bag in my handbag. I don’t like to use plastic bags from the supermarket, and if you remind them you’re using a reusable bag, you get points (and points mean prizes)! It doesn’t sound like much, but I like to try to be green anyway and I’ve collected about £20 worth of points in the last few months.

  30. I’ve never heard of a fold up drink bottle but I’ll definitely be purchasing one xx

  31. I have a foldable bottle from a charity so also money to animal rescue :)

  32. I always have a mini tape measure in my purse, very handy.


  33. This is a good post – i always try to carry just cash, as it makes me so much more aware of spending! xo

  34. I carry around tea bag…yes this is strange but I can’t always afford to go on lunch with the girls to starbucks so I ask for a cup of hot water (which is free) and pop in a tea bag. Sugar and milk is usual free and this means I can spend my lunch hour out of the rain and with my friend (and most importantly save money.)

  35. Another great post. I always carry a brolly, always I have been caught out too many times! I always keep change in the back of my bag for parking, in the past I have found myself running off the the nearest shop to buy something to get some change.
    Love the idea of that water bottle, I may have to invest. x

  36. Great idea! I’ve got a bobble bottle so I can take my own water with me, but a folable bottle is brilliant! Just bought one on ebay for £1.50!

  37. paracetamol, wipes, mints.

  38. A small tin of Vaseline, a handy all rounder and not just for chapped lips. Use on hot spots where shoes/sandals rub to stop blisters, to keep hands nice and soft, emergency lip gloss, quick shoe shine, to soften up handle of new, very stiff leather handbag, a small blob used sparingly even makes a good hair gel!

  39. I need to get out of the habbit of using my card. It’s been terrible since I came to uni. I really hate spending on my card.

  40. Definitely going to try the cash not card idea, and the calculator and noting down what I spend! I spend so much on ‘small purchases’ like bus fares and coffees. I already carry an umbrella everywhere with me, but you’d be silly not to in Scotland! I also always carry a reused bottle of water, mostly because I don’t like bottled water and I’m not keen on drinking fizzy drinks all the time. This post has been so helpful, thank you! x

  41. I bulk buy tissues from Lidl or pound shops etc as their super cheap for small packets in bulk buys of 12 or 24, also, I have quite long hair so I ALWAYS have hair ties and pins in there somewhere, nothing worse than needing to get my hair out of the way than being without them, and I used to end up purchasing them all the time but never having them when needed. Card holders (ID or business style) are great for storing discount card/student cards etc so you’re never without them, and I attach any relevant coupons to them too.

  42. I need a little Mrs Thrifty for my purse! I’m absolutely awful with money :( I could really do with you sorting out my finances! X

  43. Just caught up on your blog, haven’t read any blogs for over a week and oh my, I adore everything on here! Your tips are amazing and I can’t wait to try more of them myself, already carry loads of the mentioned bits and bobs around with me and note down my expenses. The foldable water bottle is something I didn’t know about and I kept spending a small fortune on water bottles when being out and about so thanks for sharing this! It’s also great to hear you’re feeling better xx

  44. Just wrote a super long comment only for google to ask for my password again and it’s all been gone..sigh.
    It basically said I adore your posts more than ever, thanks for sharing your tips and I already carry around some of the mentioned bits and bobs with me and note down my expenses which really helps. Didn’t know about the foldable water bottles but love the idea! Great to hear you’re feeling better xx

  45. I realised I was spending a fortune on bottled water and bought a small reusable bottle, has saved me a fortune already!

    Tried the cash bit but keep spending it all instead online and the cash! Must try harder!

  46. Great post! I second the calculator thing, especially in the supermarket- really makes you think about what you are spending, before its too late. I always keep a carrier bag (if I havent made it into plarn yet) or a reusable carrier in my bag,saves me having to buy one when I am out (read when Ive seen a bargain in M&S food hall) I know its only 5p but every little helps right!
    The notebook is good for ideas for presents and things too, I have a lot of ideas when I am out and then forget when I get home. I can note down prices and look for better deals, as well as any deals ive seen in store.

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