Monday, July 25, 2011

Money Saving Tips for Journalists

Working as a journalist can involve a lot of travel to do interviews for newspapers, television or radio and can rack up many expenses that can occur at the last minute that may not be covered by your job. These expenses can make it difficult to make ends meet and live day-to-day.

Due to the economy and company cutbacks, many journalists have to cover expenses that were previously covered by their employer. In other instances, journalists have to pay for travel or work related expenses upfront and then get reimbursed later. To save money create a budget and look for ways to reduce expenses. Here are 8 ways for journalists to save money:

1. Travel Discounts. Comparison shop for discounts on parking or air, hotel and rental cars or buy as a package. Some companies that provide discount fares LongTermParking, HotDeals or Kayak. Sign up for online alerts with airlines to learn about their weekly specials. Search for fares early in the morning or on weekends. Check to see if they accept discounts for membership to Diner's Clubs, AAA, AARP, etc. This can save you $30 to $175 per transaction. Check social media sites for discounts.

2. Supplies and Expenses. Shop for office supplies at Costco or online sites such as Amazon, eBay or Craigslist. Consider setting up a home office. You can write off a portion of your mortgage and utility bills. If you do not have space for a home office consider using a telecommuting or telework center at companies such as Regus or the World Environmental Organization or search online for additional telecommuting sites. This can save you $50 to $100 per week in supplies, wear and tear on your car and gas. Check social media sites for discounts.

3. Food. Pack you own drinks such as water and juice along with your favorite snacks. Search online for coupons to your favorite restaurants at site such as Groupon, Living Social or Bloomspot. Sign up for free restaurant newsletters to receive coupons or to find out about specials. This can save you $30 to $200 per month.

4. Car Maintenance. Perform regular maintenance on your car by keeping your tires properly inflated and balanced which improves mileage. Save money on gas by using the lowest octane which is usually 87. Fill up your gas tank before going to work or in the evening when it is cool. Drive the speed limit and keep the trunk weight light. Pay for gas with cash. This can save you $.05 to $.30 per gallon.

5. Insurance. Make sure you have health, life and disability insurance. If you need to see a doctor you won't have to worry about paying medical bills. If you become sick for an extended period of time you won't have to worry about paying medical costs. Contact or Aflac for health insurance quotes. Also consider opening a Health Savings Account. If you need disability insurance contact the Assurity company. This can save you $20 to $200 per month.

6. Use coupons. Use coupons to save money when shopping. Search for online coupons at sites such as,, and This can save you $20 to $250 per month on your grocery bills and other household costs. Check social media sites for coupons.

7. Go green. Try eco-friendly ways to save money. Visit sites such as and and search for ways to save money going green. This can save you $20 to $500 a month.

8. Phone calls. Use your cell phone to make free long distance calls. Contact your cell phone provider to determine the code to interrupt a voicemail greeting. When leaving a message skip the voicemail greeting and go right to the beep to leave a message. Also, if you make a call during peak hours ask the person to call you right back so they pay for the call. This will save minutes and save money on your cell phone bill. Send text messages for short conversations instead of making a phone call to save minutes. You can also use Google talk or Skype to make free phone calls.

These tips will reduce many of your work related expenses and your financial stress, allowing you to focus more on your work assignments and become more productive.

No comments: