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People having free fun at a house party
Can't afford to go out? Bring your friends to you. (Image via Unsplash)

Just because you’re broke doesn’t mean you can’t have fun.

Broke? Aren’t we all! But that’s no reason to sit around bored, idly scrolling through TikTok. There is plenty to do to entertain yourself without having to spend a dime, regardless of whether your friends are out at the movies or going for dinner somewhere you can’t afford. 

You need to let off steam when you’re not studying, but when you’re flat broke the easiest thing to do to avoid FOMO is to stay at home and browse the internet or watch Netflix. If these two activities have lost their appeal, then keep reading — help is within reach.

Free Events Near You

While Facebook may not be your social media platform of choice, what it does have is a great Events feature. If you head onto Facebook, you will be able to search upcoming events close to you in a range of different categories. While some may be gig or bar nights that you’re not interested in, you’ll find plenty of other organized events to pique your interest. This might be a weekly free yoga event, a concert in the park, a fair, or a language exchange. Log into Facebook and browse Facebook Events to see what’s happening around you.

Mobile Gaming

Not everyone is passionate about gaming. But to those who do play, they would say that that’s just because you haven’t found your favorite genre yet! The top of the mobile gaming charts are usually made up of casual games — those you can play for a few minutes while you’re bored — but there are plenty more that can really build a world or adventure. These include RPG (role playing games) such as the Final Fantasy series, to casino-type games where you can pick up free offers available in the USA. If you’re playing casino games make sure that you don’t tip over into spending money on the apps — that’s what you’re trying to avoid in the first place!

Head Down to Your Local Sports Arena 

Even if you don’t play sports, heading down to your local sports stadium to watch the game with a group of friends can be a great way to spend a few hours in the evening or on the weekends. Often, higher-up teams have open training sessions that you can watch for free during the week. Otherwise, more secondary leagues have games both during the week as well as on the weekend where you can come and watch without having to pay anything. Even if you’re not super into sports, it’s a good way to catch up with friends with a bit of background entertainment without have to spend money.

Throw a House Party

When your friends keep spending money on socializing, doing things you can’t afford, what can you do? Make them come to you! Time for a house party. Make sure you prep for a house party to ensure that it doesn’t get out of control: There are some rules to follow. Don’t tell your friends to just bring anyone, make sure to hide any valuables, don’t use glassware (as it can break), lock out-of-bounds rooms or put up signs, make sure your toilet paper is well stocked, let your neighbors know beforehand and have a wind-down time in advance when you can kick out most of your friends — or everyone if you prefer.

Head to a MeetUp

Looking for new friends and/or a new hobby? MeetUp is the go-to platform to find groups of people with similar interests. From jogging and rock climbing, to learning how to code, to volunteering, exploring your own city, LARPing, playing or watching sports or board game meetups, there really is something on the platform for everyone. There are opportunities to meet new friends, learn a new skill, be creative or just explore the world around you. Don’t be discouraged if one meet up doesn’t hit home for you — just try a different one. Each group will be different and have different dynamics.

Check Out Volunteering Opportunities

Volunteering? Fun? Isn’t it just something you put on your CV to make you look better when applying for jobs? Hey, that’s not necessarily the case. Can’t afford a festival ticket? There are plenty of festival volunteer positions where you work part of the time then get to see part of the festival. Do you love dogs? You could try out volunteering at an animal shelter. Are your grandparents not around? Old folks’ homes might be a little scary, but they are a great opportunity to learn about what makes old people tick. Super interested in history? See if there are volunteer spots at your local museum. Seek out opportunities near to where you live that might interest you. And yes, bonus points, volunteering does look good on your CV when you’re applying for jobs.

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