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Adulting 101: 8 Money Savings Challenges for Adults - Antsy Labs

Adulting 101: 8 Money Savings Challenges for Adults

Are you a recent college graduate struggling to manage your finances? Does the thought of budgeting, paying down debts, or saving for the future seem overwhelming? 

You're not alone! 

Give the Best Adulting Gift of All

Adulting is a challenge. It takes a lot of hard work -- and a lot of time -- to develop a routine for managing adulthood and all its unpleasant tasks, like doing laundry and paying your income tax. Maybe you know a young adult you're proud of and you'd like to show it. Or maybe you know a know-it-all young adult and you'd like prank them a little bit. Keep them motivated with IRLA Adulting challenge medals. Get a series of five medals that mark your milestones for adulting tasks. As you set more goals and make progress in your adulting challenges, your IRLAs give you the motivation to do more and more.

Many young adults face these challenges as they transition into the realm of financial responsibility. In fact, nearly 4 in 10 students say they weren’t taught to handle their finances, and almost half feel stressed about money! 

But fear not, because we have the perfect solution to help you tackle these obstacles head-on: money saving challenges!

Yes, it’s true that saving money is a challenge in itself. With the right lens, though, you can turn that challenge into a bit of fun, along with some extra dollars in your bank account (which is even more fun, if we’re honest!). 

To help you save money and kickstart your journey to adulthood (oh yes, adulting is as fun as it sounds), we’re sharing eight money saving challenges for adults that will help you take control of your finances and achieve your financial goals.

The Goal Of Money Saving Challenges For Adults

Money saving challenges serve as a fantastic way to inspire action and progress on your path to financial stability. As an adult, you’re about to be financially responsible for a laundry list of things, including rent, groceries, taxes, and, yes, laundry.

By gamifying the process of saving money, you can make a dry-seeming process a little fun. Before we get into the actual challenges, we have another way to help make saving money even better.

Though hitting savings milestones is fulfilling enough, it’s also nice to have something IRL to show for it too. The Adulting IRLA (In Real Life Achievement) pack has five challenge medals designed to recognize and celebrate your achievements as you work your way toward becoming a full-blown adult

The medals exist for filing your taxes, cooking all your meals for a week, paying a bill by yourself, setting up a retirement savings account, and signing a lease/mortgage on a home.

By taking on these money savings challenges, you’ll be well on your way to unlocking all of these, so let’s get started.

Money Saving Challenges For Adults

1. The Spare Change Challenge

In this challenge, collect all your spare change and save it in a jar. At the end of three months, count your savings and deposit the total amount into your savings account.

The goal here is to develop the habit of consciously saving money. The fun byproduct? You’ll accumulate a tidy sum over time.

Now, depending on what part of the country you live in, you may be short on opportunities to actually get change from your purchases. In that case, look to see if your bank or savings app offers rounds-ups. If so, use them for the length of this challenge and see how you do!

2. The No-Spend Weekend Challenge

For four consecutive weekends, challenge yourself to spend absolutely no money.

That’s going to require you to embrace creativity and find free or low-cost activities to enjoy. Our favorite tip: picnics.

Now, it can be a bit of a wrinkle in the social sense, especially if your friends love to try new restaurants every week, so make sure to let your people know how they can help you take on this money saving challenge for adults.

3. The 30-Day Spending Freeze Challenge

For an entire month, commit to a spending freeze on non-essential items.

Challenge yourself to only spend money on necessities like groceries and bills. Doing so will also help you find these non-necessary, automatic costs that start to creep up on us all (see challenge number 5!).

By creating awareness around your spending habits and curbing impulsive purchases, you’ll be setting yourself up for a better relationship with money (aka, becoming an adult!).

4. The Meal Prep Challenge

In this challenge, plan and prepare all your meals for two weeks in advance.

This practice not only saves money on dining out but also helps you make healthier choices.

By mastering the art of meal prep, you'll develop valuable cooking skills while watching your savings grow.

5. The Subscription Audit Challenge

Spend a week assessing all your subscriptions and memberships.

Identify those you no longer use or derive value from, and cancel them.

By trimming the subscription fat from your credit cards, you’ll declutter your financial life and ensure that your hard-earned money is spent only on services you genuinely need and enjoy.

One of the best ways to find these hidden subscriptions is by looking over the bills you’re paying automatically. For more financial tips (and other tricks) that’ll make you into an A+ adult, you should try our 31-day adulting challenge.

6. The Cash-Only Challenge

For an entire month, rely solely on cash for your purchases.

Leave your cards at home and challenge yourself to stick to a predetermined budget.

Now, there are some establishments that do say they are cash-free, so just be sure check ahead of time. Overall, though, this is one money savings challenge for adults that will reduce your reliance on credit as you become more mindful of your financial decisions.

7. The DIY Challenge

During this challenge, take up do-it-yourself projects instead of hiring professionals for certain tasks.

Whether it's home repairs, gardening, or crafting gifts, channel your inner creativity and save money by doing things yourself.

This challenge will enhance your skills (let us know when you start your YouTube crafting challenge!) and also help you see the value of not just running to the store to buy something new. Spoken like a true adult, right?

8. The No-Coffee Shop Challenge

For two months, challenge yourself to avoid purchasing coffee from cafes.

Instead, brew your own delicious concoctions at home.

Not only will you save money, but you'll also discover the joy of experimenting with different flavors and brewing techniques.
Plus, if you need more inspiration to help you start cooking at home, we’ve got you covered with 7 home cooking challenges to spice up your week.



No one throws parties for filing their taxes on time, but maybe they should. These IRLAs let you celebrate your grown-up moments as you make the big moves toward becoming a functional adult person. Taxes, cooking, bills. Saving for rainy days. The non-sexy steps to learning how to survive on your own may not be fun, but once you learn to boil your own water, nothing can stop you. 

Ready to sit at the grown-ups table?


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