At a time when our finances are increasingly stretched, what with bills going up and pay rises a thing of the past, something has to be cut down. That is generally our social life and other non-essentials. However, that doesn’t mean an end to cultural activities and getting out of the house. Here are some suggestions for free activities to enjoy.
Many museums, galleries and universities offer talks open to the public, often related to current exhibitions. Take a look at their programme, and go along – you may discover a new interest. Sometimes there are also free films and DVD screenings.
Most guided walks are not free, but there are some that don’t charge, so look around and see what you can find. Alternatively, check out the free leaflets offered by tourist offices and local councils, which details routes of historical interest.
Have a look at your local community centre and see if they’re offering any free workshops – there may be taster sessions so that you can try out a class before committing yourself. Museums may also do workshops, especially for families.
Cinema tickets can be pretty expensive these days (never mind the popcorn). If you live somewhere reasonably big, community centres, museums and galleries sometimes offer film screenings. There may be a cycle of films, so if you can’t make one showing you can find another to suit.
There are plenty of museums and galleries, large and small, that offer free entry. If they charge, look out for free entry days (maybe the first Sunday of the month, or on special occasions).
Music students often play free concerts, and these can be of high quality. See what your local music school or university department has to offer. Local festivals offer more free music.
7. Window Shop
It isn’t just buying that is fun! If you love shopping, wander round the shops just enjoying browsing and admiring the window displays. Have a ‘fantasy spree’ and imagine what you would buy if money was no object.
Keep an eye out for any free demonstrations of beauty products and makeup in local stores – you can often get free samples, and don’t have to buy. Also, see if hairdressing and beauty academies are offering any free sessions for their students to practise on you.
This is especially good for the green-minded or when you’re broke. Sort out any clothes or other items you no longer want, and take them to a swap meet. If there isn’t one coming up, then why not organise one yourself? Change old for new (to you), and without spending a cent.
Libraries are no longer those boring places where you get told to be quiet every time you breathe. Instead, they are a valuable community resource, with plenty of free material available, plus talks, films and exhibitions.
So you see, being broke needn’t mean being bored! There are plenty of free cultural activities out there, if you look in the right place. What’s your favourite no-cost activity?
Top Photo Credit: beckylalala