There is a huge difference when it comes to being frugal and, well, just being cheap. A frugal lifestyle means that you are cutting back on expenses in order to free up extra money, while being cheap just means you simply avoid spending money at all costs. I can see cancelling cable and opting for streaming services as being frugal, as well as growing your own vegetables, and even having a rain barrel on the side of your house to collect rain water for free watering, and while that may also be a hipster lifestyle, it’s definitely not being a cheapskate. If you find yourself crossing over to the dark side, remind yourself that you don’t want to be one of those cheap people that can be embarrassing to be around.
Always Looking to Scam
There is nothing wrong with trying to save a few bucks here or there, but when you start drawing the line between taking free items and stealing is when it could be a problem. Sure, it’s nice to stay in a hotel, but do you really need to always take every bottle of soap and shampoo in there, or even trying to lift towels? Or at events, do you always have a bag full of free stuff that should just end up in a garbage, then maybe you have a problem that needs to be addressed.
Even worse, and one of my pet peeves, is the lack of tipping. I’ve even seen a friend of mine pull a tip back after being served at a bar. Working in the service industry at one point waiting tables in college, it’s tough work, you make no money hourly, so your primary way to make money is through tips. If you provide good service then a standard 20% tip is appreciated. If you have a carryout staff member putting together your order, throw in a few dollars. I’m not saying you need to tip the Subway person that makes your sub or even a Starbucks employee since they’re paid hourly.
Won’t Pay Your Share
Speaking of being with friends out at a bar, do you ever trade off ordering rounds of drinks, and then whenever it’s the one friend’s turn they are shockingly in the bathroom, or not ready for a drink. Or as the night goes on, they fade into the background and someone else steps up and orders another round. For group dinners, you can always tell that someone shorted when you have put in more than enough with tip and you still have to come up with a few extra dollars to make up for those that didn’t.
Complain About Prices All the Time
For someone that really never spends money, do you ever notice that cheapskates like to complain about prices all the time? Like complaining to a waitress about why their sandwich is $12 instead of $8 is really going to go a long way. How about complaining about gas prices so they don’t fill up, or drive for that matter, so someone else has to step in and drive. There is a common courtesy that is expected among civilization is that purchases come from someone, they just don’t magically appear, so by not pitching in, think about the others that do have to pay all the time.
Avoid the Necessities
A whole new low when it comes to being cheap is avoiding the necessities like going to the doctor because they’re afraid of the bill that will come out of it. I suppose that could be an insurance issue, but since we all seem to have some form of insurance, taking care of yourself far outweighs the costs of maintenance. I know someone who refuses to get a new phone because of the price, having to divide the full retail cost across a set number of months like most phone carriers do now. The problem is, they’re on their phone all the time, so saying a new expensive phone is unnecessary doesn’t make a lot of sense. Since we’re on our phones a majority of the day, every day, why not at least spend money on what you use the most, like a phone, or a bed.
Will Never Take Uber
One thing I don’t understand is why we have Uber and Lyft so readily available for a few dollars a ride (depending on the number of people and distance) that they would rather drive themselves, even risking a DUI that would far exceed a whole lifetime of Uber rides, but yet when they want to go somewhere they’re perfectly fine with me paying for the ride…