Hey Fatties (no pun), I’m curious, do you eat out regularly for lunch?
Given my line of work, about 50% of the time, I am at home or nearby during lunch. This is a good thing when it comes to lunches. There are times when I am traveling or out with a client that it would be unreasonable to pack a lunch but that is the exception, not the rule.
I recently returned from an extended business trip to the Middle East (awesome experience) and found that packing a lunch would pose several logistical challenges. After a couple of days, I started adding it up, Freak!! I know I am traveling, off the beaten path no less, but I was reminded of how quickly you can burn through money on meals.
Let me put this into perspective…
Visa did a survey of 2,000 people and found that the respondents spent about $20/week (~$1,000/year) in restaurants for lunch (IMO, I would argue that for many of us, this is a very low estimate). You add this to takeout and meals that they brought from home and it’s a whopping $2,700/year)! You have to eat but if you could cut in half the portion spent in restaurants, think about what that would contribute to your wealth.
Check it out. Instead of spending $20 per week dining out at lunch, try spending $15. Take the $5 you are saving and make a monthly deposit of $20 to an IRA. Let’s assume a conservative 7% return and you do this for 30 years. Bam! $24,000 added to your Stakk! Cut your total lunch budget by 20% using the same assumptions, you have just added $55,000 to your wealth. You get the picture!