Can You Survive a No Spending Week?

Updated: February 8, 2024

“I want to save more money,” a friend asked. “Any suggestions?”

“Stop spending,” was my casual reply.

“And by that, I mean consciously choosing not to spend on anything but necessities,” I continued.

“But won’t life be boring if I just spend on necessities?” he asked.

“Not really. In fact, that will force you to be creative in most cases,” I answered.

My friend went silent, and then I suggested to him that he start and try with just one day of no spending, at least once a week, and see how it goes.

After a month, he told me that my advice worked great. It was simple but effective.

Then I told him something that made him go silent and think once again…

“Now try a ‘No Spending Week’ and see if you can survive.”

Before, I wrote an article here on How To Survive a No Spending Day.

So if you’re not familiar with the concept, then go ahead and read that first.

Towards the end of that post, I mentioned that after doing several “No Spending Days”, the next natural step is to escalate it to a “No Spending Week”.

If you think that not spending for a week is impossible, then I’d like to introduce you to another friend – fellow cat lover Kate, who shares below her thoughts on how she and her husband survive “No Spending Weeks”.

I hope you enjoy reading this short Q&A interview.

Why did your household go on a “No Spending Week”? Who decided to do this? Is this something your household regularly does?

This year, I made a pledge to myself (as a New Year’s Resolution) that I will be more mindful of the food we buy.

I realized that I have been throwing a lot of food away – dried up calamansi, herbs (after only using 3-5 pcs from the pack), neglected fruits and veggies that have gone bad, etc. After changing some of my grocery shopping habits, I realized that I was also saving money since we were buying and consuming only what we needed.

The concept of our “No Spending Week” began when we came across the show “Extreme Cheapskates“. They featured a couple that does a yearly “fiscal fast,” meaning no spending for a week.

Although theirs is a bit extreme – looking for coins in public places, buying weird cuts of meat (that time, the guy was able to afford a goat’s head with all the money he found), and watering down wine.

We decided that we wanted to try something similar but nothing out of the extreme.

How did the members of your household react when the idea was first proposed? Were all okay with it? If not, what were their reasons for going against it?

It was very easy to talk about and implement the idea since it was just my husband and I in our household. We both wanted to see if we could follow our challenge for one whole week.

What are your household’s rules on the “No Spending Week”? Who decided on those rules?

Before starting, we decided on the following rules: utility bills, gas, and groceries are exempted.

It seems easy, considering that you can buy so many things in the grocery store, but we made it a point to buy only what we needed and nothing extra, like chips, chocolates, and other snacks. I also LOVE buying things online – of course, that was banned too.

What were the challenges that everyone had to face to “survive” the week? How were you able to overcome those? What are the things that your household had to sacrifice during the week?

The “No Spending Week” made me realize that we spend so much on food delivery and takeout. That also includes coffee, desserts, and snacks that we buy needlessly. Nice to have a treat once in a while but not 3 to 4 times a week.

It was also a bit challenging to resist having food delivered when I felt too lazy to cook.

How did your household benefit from doing the “No Spending Week”? Please include not just financial benefits but also emotional benefits as well, if there are any.

The whole experiment got us thinking about a lot of things, especially health and nutrition.

We now make sure that we eat what we have at home and not waste anything. We also limit eating out/food delivery to just once a week. Hope we can keep it up because we’ve both lost 5 pounds so far.

Final Thoughts

Isn’t that great? Not only was she able to save money, but doing the challenge also helped her and her husband lose weight because they’re now eating healthy, home-cooked meals more often.

I hope this post has inspired you to do your own “No Spending Week.” Again, start with just one day, then two, then three – until you are able to do it for one week… then how about doing it for one month?

Regardless of whether you did the “no spending” challenge for a day, a week, or a month, I’d also like to hear about your story. So please share them below in the comments section.

Lastly, I’d like to again thank Kate for taking the time to share her story.

What to do next: Click here to start your financial journey with IMG Wealth Academy


  1. My husband and I are currently practicing this “no spending week” thingy. And even on days that we eat out, we don’t order drinks. Drinks costs too much, same price as a meal from fastfood restaurants, sometimes even more. Restaurants are required to serve filtered water anyways, so I always ask the waiter to give me their service/house water :)

  2. We always do this every payday up to a week. Instead of spending for groceries and all the day after receiving the salary, we just make do of what we have from the previous payday.

    It’s all about making it as a HABIT to save and do a lot of good things aside from spending right away. hehe.

  3. WitHi fitz. I have read most of your blogs and found out it very useful and informative to the point that I am no longer ignorant about ancial terms and living religiously according to set plans. My question btw is a clarification whether there is a need to save for emergency fund when I have been saving 10% of my gross income since the regularization was awarded to me back in 2006, or keep it for my retirement? m thinking also of using a portion of my savings to stock market with the objective of using it for r wedding and purchase of car. Pls advise

  4. Hi Enjei.

    Know how much is your regular monthly expenses and keep 6 months worth of that as your emergency fund in your savings account / time deposit account.

    Everything you have after that is your investment fund. Put it in an instrument which can help you achieve your objectives.

  5. OMG, I try soooo hard to do this. I am the absolute worst with my money. I should do this once a month.

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