Play Hard

50 Fun Things to Do at Home on a Frugal Budget

Are you stuck feeling bored at home? Don’t worry, High Life North has got you covered with our ultimate guide of 50 fun things to do at home on a frugal budget.

Written by High Life North
Published 10.11.2020

By Bekki Ramsay

We understand your list of activities is probably looking less than exciting right now. You needn’t keep it that way, though! High Life North is here with an incredible selection of things to do when bored at home, so your days can be filled with giggles and enjoyment over boredom.

Whether you’re needing a night of self-care, need to be productive to pass the time, or simply want to chill (but are sick of the sight of Netflix) – here are 50 of our favourite activity recommendations… Enjoy!

Need a night or day of self-care? Here are 20 activities:

  1. Whip up a lockdown bath. I’m talking bath salts, a scented candle and the bougee bath products you’ve been saving for a special occasion. This is your special occasion.
  2. Organise your beauty and skincare stash, and bring back out some of your forgotten about products, before having a full-on pamper session.
  3. Try your hand at yoga for free with the ’30 Days of Yoga with Adrienne’ crash course. Really commit by carrying it out the same time each day, so that it becomes a part of your everyday routine.
  4. Water your plants. And if you really have the time for it, look up each plant and find out how often it should be watered, and where it’s best placed.
  5. Spread the love by spending 20 minutes leaving compliments on people’s Instagram posts in a genuine, thoughtful way.
  6. Set some positive goals for the future, even if it’s as simple as ‘get properly dressed tomorrow’.
  7. Get active, and Sign up for the #1 rated fitness app, Fiit, for a free 30-day trial. No credit card details required, either.
  8. Unfollow users on social media who don’t bring joy, or if you can’t unfollow – mute them.
  9. Take off the guilt and pick one thing off your to-do list that you need to get done so it’s not on your conscience.
  10. Give yourself a manicure, or a pedicure.
  1. Practice gratitude and write down 25 things that you are currently grateful for in your life. It could even be as small as a good night’s sleep.
  2. Have a wardrobe clear-out, and sell or donate anything that doesn’t make you happy or is deemed a necessity. Make sure to check out my previous ‘step-by-step guide on how to have a successful clear-out’ if you’re a bit stuck.
  3. Call a loved one you care about and have a catch up, or ring them just to tell them that you love them.
  4. Complete a body scan and see which parts of your body need the most attention, whilst relieving stress. If you haven’t performed a body scan before, here’s how.
  5. Find out your love language, and if you have a partner – find out theirs, too so you can show them how much you love them. Here’s a quiz to find out.
  6. Restablish contact with someone you’ve lost touch with but miss. People appreciate connection now more than ever.
  7. Drink more water. Do it right now, before you forget.
  8. Start a journal for self-reflection. Here’s 30 prompts, questions and ideas to get to know yourself better.
  9. Head out for a nice cold, crisp walk along the coast. We’ve already created a guide to five of our favourite coastline walks in fall if you’re lacking inspiration.
  10. Have a power nap, and don’t feel guilty about it. This year has been a tiring one after all.

Want to chill without the Netflix part? Here are 10 fun home activities:

  1. Binge-watch Disney+ and have a duvet day/ night on the sofa. You can sign up for a month for only £5.99, so you’re destined to get your money’s worth with this one.
  2. Host a virtual cocktail party, although it may be best to save this one for the weekend with a sore head definitely on the cards the day after.
  3. Listen to a podcast series, such as Serial, S Town, or local podcast, Sh**ged, Married, Annoyed from Chris and Rosie Ramsey. We promise you’ll kill a LOT of hours once you start listening to any of these.
  4. Have a pizza making night. The ingredients are frugal, it’s a fun activity and who isn’t favourable to pizza?
  5. Try your hand at cross stitching. A personal recommendation is Trouvaille, who create cross stitching kits of local wonders – including Spanish City, St Mary’s Island more.
  1. Get back into reading by finally tackling that pile of unread books, or if none of them are taking your fancy, find a good read on Kindle’s 99p daily deals page..
  2. Watch the Northern Lights. Yep, you really did read that right! They’re currently being live streamed online, so why not take this an opportunity to get wrapped up inside with a blanket, and make some homemade hot chocolate and s’mores if you’re feeling extra fancy?
  3. Have a board games night, even if it means rummaging around the loft to find your old Monopoly or Twister beforehand.
  4. Listen an album you loved as a teen and see if you still know the lyrics to all of the songs. You may just surprise yourself.
  5. Have a virtual karaoke party on Zoom. You just need to play Sing King Karaoke on YouTube, some friends and… some alcohol for a bit of confidence.

Feeling productive for the first time in a while? Keep the momentum going with these 20 activities:

  1. Bake something beyond banana bread, and if you’re feeling extra confident – have a Bake Off with your household. The winner doesn’t get to do any washing up.
  2. Clean your make-up brushes, and if you’re feeling extra motivated, clean your actual make-up as concealer fingers can sometimes make it all a bit mucky…
  3. Update your LinkedIn or CV, to help prepare you for future opportunities should you wish to move on from your current role.
  4. Create your bar cart on a budget. Look around your home for decorations you already own, and place all of your fancy glasses on display.
  5. Learn a language for free with Duolingo. From Spanish to Japanese, they really do cater to everyone.
  6. Create a wanderlust guide for the future with the app, Bimble, which allows you to collect, save and share your favourite places. You can even save local areas of interest, if something on that level is of more interest.
  1. Teach your pet a new trick, so you can show it off on social media.
  2. Sign up for a free course – whether it’s an Ivy-League course, such as Yale’s Science of Well-being’ or a one on Future Learn.
  3. Go foraging and create some Christmas decorations. There are tons of inspiration on this guide.
  4. Rearrange your furniture in a way which works better, or as a means of just trying something new. You could even create a dedicated working space if you’re working from home.
  5. Clean all of your skirting boards. Whilst this isn’t the sexiest of tasks, it’s often something that is overlooked when cleaning.
  6. Make homemade soup. Now the colder months are here, why not create your own? We recently pulled together some of our favourite soup recipes, which includes pea, spiced parsnip and cheese & onion.
  1. Clear out your kitchen cupboards, and clean them whilst doing so. You may even stumble across a snack you didn’t realise you had.
  2. Support a local business without spending a penny. If you can’t afford to spend money right now, still show your favourite indies some love by leaving them a positive review on Google or Facebook.
  3. Make some homemade Christmas cards, and personalise them a bit to make them extra special.
  4. Clean your house from top-to-bottom, by getting your Mrs Hinch on. Think about those tasks you’ve been putting off for a while – such as your washing machine, or oven.
  5. Get a head start on your Christmas shopping by using our ultimate British Christmas shopping guide to create a shopping list for loved ones. Or you could even create your own wish-list once your loved ones start to ask you what you want.
  6. Print off some photos for happy memories. Use the FreePrints app to get 45 photographs printed for free (minus p&p).
  7. Repair your clothes. Have you been meaning to sew up that hole in your favourite top? Let’s be honest – there’s really not a better time to pick up a needle and thread than now.
  8. Try your hand at a creative craft, with three of our recommendations, all of which help bring the outside in – making it the perfect lockdown activity.
Other stories by High Life North
Central Oven and Shaker

Our ultimate guide to the best pizza in Newcastle and the North East

High Life North

The 5 favourite menus that we’ll be tucking at Sunderland Restaurant Week

High Life North

7 hidden gems in Gateshead

High Life North

It’s 5 o’clock somewhere. The 3 new bars we’ll be checking out this month

High Life North

3 cosy cottages in the North we’ll be booking this autumn

High Life North

Food, fun and festivals. 11 events to book for August Bank Holiday

High Life North