7 Ways to Be Cultured on a Shoestring Budget ...

You can take advantage of various ways to be cultured on a shoestring budget. You don’t need to hold on to the belief that being cultured means being loaded. In fact, there are some ways to be cultured without emptying your wallet. Check out how!

1. Museums

If you’re planning on going to a museum, be on the look out for any periods of time where entry is free. When I was in Barcelona, I learned that the Picasso museum was free for three hours on Sunday. My friend and I scheduled our weekend around those days so that we could take advantage of that opportunity. You can also find out if there are discounts for certain times of the day or student rates. Visiting museums is one way to be cultured.

2. Food

Whether you’re grabbing lunch at the office or getting together with friends for dinner, you need to eat. Why not try different types of food? My roommate and I took advantage of the lunch special at a nearby Thai restaurant and were pleasantly surprised with both the food and the price. Most Oriental restaurants that I’ve been to offer lunch items that are cheap but still filling. And you’re bound to have left-overs you can take home and eat the next day.

3. Movies

Watch movies! One of the best way to be cultured is to get familiar with classic films like “Casablanca” and “His Girl Friday.” If you have Netflix, you can watch an unlimited amount of films and TV shows for a reasonable monthly fee. Or you can visit your local library like I do! I also like casually making references and seeing who picks up on them. You may just find that even some of your favorite TV shows have jokes you never caught before. “Gilmore Girls” is a perfect example.

4. Read

Libraries are there for a reason. Use them! Reading can open your awareness to various different topics, ways of thinking and character types. You can even trade books with friends if you want to read that series they’ve been raving about. Joining a book club is a great way to discuss your recent reads.

5. The News

Watch the news...from various countries. If you want to learn about what’s happening in the Ukraine right now, search online for articles published by news outlets in America, Britain, Australia, Canada and any other country you can think of. News provides us with some of the facts but it’s important, in my opinion, to see the various perspectives on the same issue. Being up to date on the goings-on in the world presents the notion that you are cultured in current events. Try to have conversations about recent things you’ve read and draw connections to things you’ve learned from school.

6. The City

If you’re touring a new city, stop to chat with local artists about their work and their hometown. Starting conversations like these helps you learn about people’s stories and how they ended up where they are. If you’re a native to the city, walk around and explore an area you aren’t too familiar with. Going out of your way for an afternoon walk may provide you with the inspiration to stop in that coffee shop or check out that art exhibit this Friday.

7. Free Wine Tastings

Be on the lookout for free wine tastings. If you go to a vineyard, you will be more than likely able to find one. I visited the Château d’Estoublon in the south of France and was pleasantly greeted with a free wine tasting. Talk about the place to be for my first wine tasting! If you go with friends, you can make an afternoon of it.

You don’t need to be loaded to live a cultured life. In fact, some things are cheaper than you may think. What are some other ways to be cultured on a shoestring budget?