# Money-saving challenges: How a bottle of Coke can help you save \$1500

EFFIE ZAHOS
Editor-at-Large · 12 January 2020
Looking for ways to save more money in 2020? Here are a few options to consider.

Saving money is not all about sacrificing everything you love. There are some pain-free – and dare I say fun – challenges to give you a kick-start.

## 1. Money savings chart

This bingo-style “game” from the Medium Sized Family website has to be my favourite. Just Google “money saving chart”. Basically, it’s a chart with a whole lot of numbers in boxes. Each week you pick the dollar amount from the chart that you can afford to save. As you use a number, cross it off so you don’t repeat it. By the end of the year you’ll have saved \$1000! Not enough? If you add a zero to the end of each number you’ll have a whopping \$10,000.

## 2. 52-week challenge

This is one I use with my kids. It’s a popular one to start at the beginning of the year but you can start any time. The idea is you save \$1 in week one and increase it by \$1 each week – so \$5 in week five, \$20 in week 20 and so on. At the end of week 52, you’ll have stashed away \$1,378. You can also put a spin on this and do it in reverse – that is, put away \$52 in week one and reduce it by \$1 as the weeks go by.

## 3. Coke bottle challenge

Each time you get a \$2 coin, you pop it in a Coke (or any soft drink) bottle. Apparently a 600ml bottle will hold about \$880 when full. A 250ml bottle is meant to hold about \$350 while you’ll probably get about \$1500 in a 1.25-litre bottle. I don’t drink Coke, though, and apparently this doesn’t work with a wine bottle!

## 4. \$5 note challenge

With this challenge, you stash away each \$5 note that comes your way. If you get \$5 in change, it needs to go straight into savings. If you get \$15 in change and the cashier has given you three \$5 notes, they all need to be put into your savings. Of course, if you don’t often use cash then this one won’t be ideal.

## 5. Rounding

Each week you check your account balance and round down an amount and put it into your savings. You may round to the nearest \$1, \$5 or even \$10. Let’s say you have \$123.75; you would then transfer 75c or \$3.75 or even \$13.75 into your savings. You may even opt to do this daily.

This is an edited extract from A Real Girl’s Guide to Money: From Converse to Louboutins (Bauer Books, RRP \$24.99) by Effie Zahos.