Summer is coming to the Northern hemisphere so, for most of us, we are going to be feeling the heat very soon. If you live in a climate that is already hot, as I do, the heat will be even more intense. No matter where you live, you will need to drink more, and more often, to avoid dehydration. If, like me, you have an aversion to public drinking fountains which, to be blunt, I find really disgusting, you will need to plan ahead if you want to avoid purchasing beverages when you are out and about.
Have you ever noticed the difference in price between a single serving bottle of a beverage and a much larger bottle is not all that great? Indeed, the other day I was in my local grocery store and I realized that the chilled 16.9 ounce bottles of soda by the cash registers cost $1.49 while the unchilled two liter bottles were on sale for $1.25! Stores know that if a customer wants a cold beverage, they will pay more to get it! I suspect that is why grocery stores usually do not offer chilled two liter bottles.
Anyway, most people already know that buying a single serving bottle of cola is going to be more expensive than planning ahead and bringing something from home. Here are the other things that I do to help ensure that you do not find yourself in need of a quick beverage fix while you are out:
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
Don’t drink caffeinated beverages or alcohol. Caffeine contributes to the dehydration of the body. Avoid it by drinking decaffeinated coffee, tea and soda, or just limit yourself to water and fruit juice when you know you are going to be out of the house for extended periods of time. The same holds true for alcoholic beverages so avoid those as well!
Stock up on Bottled Beverages and Keep Them on Ice
A bottle of soda can cost $2.00. Some iced teas can cost much more than that. So-called energy drinks are even more expensive. Whatever drinks you enjoy, buy them in bulk when they are on sale and keep them on ice so that you can bring a few bottles with you when you leave the house. If you keep a cooler in your car, you can help to keep cold beverages chilled for hours and you will save as much as much 90% as compared to buying one bottle at a time while you are out.
Brew Iced Tea and Coffee at Home
If you enjoy iced coffee and tea, keep a pitcher of brewed coffee or tea in your refrigerator. Fill your travel mug before you leave the house to run your errands or go to work and you can enjoy your favorite beverage for pennies on the dollar as compared to buying one cup at a time. You can even purchase better quality tea and coffee and enjoy a finer brew than you would otherwise get in a store or coffee shop.
Look for Summer Beverage Deals
Race Trac is offering its “Freefill” cup for only $6.99 at any of its 500 gas station and convenience store locations. Purchase the Freefill cup and you can refill it with fountain beverages all summer long. If you live near a Race Trac, that is quite a bargain.
Keep a Bag of Sucking Candies in Your Car or Bag
If you watch survival shows on TV, you know that by sucking on a rock or two, you can stimulate the production of saliva to keep your mouth moist. The same holds true if you suck on a candy. Purchase a bag of sucking candies and pop one in your mouth every so often to keep your mouth from drying out.
How are you going to stay hydrated this summer? What are your tricks for cutting down on beverage costs during the dog days of summer?