*affilate links may be included*
Have you ever wondered how much eating out for lunch costs you each month?
Back when I was working a traditional job it was common for my husband and I to eat out a couple of times a week for lunch. We had our reasons. Sometimes we forgot our lunch, sometimes we didn’t want what we brought to work and then the common reason was that we didn’t have enough time to fix a lunch at the house. Or, so we thought.
As time progressed, we began to collect debt. We had to step back and examine where the money was going. We were shocked to learn how much eating out was costing us each month, particularly because we hardly ever went anywhere nice together. Instead, we made changes, worked hard and ate in the car going to and from work.
I had to spend a pretty lengthy amount of time doing research to find the answers we needed. I took the liberty upon myself of checking out meal prices at multiple food chains across the country. I then narrowed it down to quick meal options because if we are talking every day lunches then we are talking about something quick and on the go.
What I found is that lunches in the United States typically range from $5.20 to $11.20 in price, depending on where you live. Narrowing it down even further, I will say that the average cost of lunch is $6.29. Of course this number may not be entirely accurate as it was solely based upon my research, but I feel pretty confident in it.
So, for the purpose of this post we are going to say eating out once a week for lunch will cost you $6.29.
No big deal.
Until you look at it this way . . .
Most hard working Americans don’t mind spending $31.45 a week on lunch. Of course, I have no idea how much money you make per hour but I wonder how much longer $31.35 a week would be okay if you did the math to find out how much of your Monday morning work day you spend each week just trying to pay for the fast food habit during the week. Moving on now.
Did you do the math earlier to learn how much of every Monday goes towards eating out that week? Good. If not, now would be a good time to do that.
Using your pay per hour find out how much of your first pay check goes towards eating out for lunch each month. Ouch.
Now, we could say that $125.80 a month x 12 months a year would give a total of $1,509.60 a year but that is probably not as accurate as breaking the year down by week.
Of course, some families have more than one working adult. Chances are if that is your family then you busy and justify both adults eating out every day or at the very least, a few times a week, after all, there is no way you could find the time to pack a lunch. I know that is how my husband and I felt before we did this math. Once we stepped back to look at where the money was going, we were able to find time to bring our own lunches to work each day.
Please understand that the numbers throughout this post will vary just as each family in the United States is varied from one to another. The purpose of this post is to help your family start thinking about how quickly eating out for lunch during the week can add up, financially speaking.
For working moms – or the family budget in general – I would love to know . . .
How often do you eat out each work week?
Is there a reason you don’t bring a lunch?
Feel free to comment below to let me know, and remember just because someone else hasn’t commented yet doesn’t mean that you can’t. They may be waiting on someone like you to leave the first comment.