The Ultimate Guide of Fun Things to Do Online for Free

With many of us in quarantine or isolation to try to halt the spread of the coronavirus, your computer (or smartphone or tablet) is your gateway to the world. Even though we should be productive with work and/or household chores, it’s also important to take some time for fun. Fortunately, many organizations and individuals have been making their online resources free for viewing, which brings us to…the ultimate guide of fun things to do online for free!

To keep you entertained while you're hunkered down at home, here are fun things to do online for free, including classes, performances, and field trips.

The range of activities available online include educational classes, performances, virtual tours/field trips, books, fitness classes, and more. (I didn’t even include your favorite blogs and podcasts.) And many are family-friendly. Some of these activities were always free, others have been made free because of the pandemic. And you know that free is my favorite word!

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Places That Help with Food During the Coronavirus Pandemic

One of the big concerns, among the many other concerns we have during the coronavirus pandemic, is about getting food. Although there is no real food shortage, shoppers are stripping stores of staples and straining the process of restocking. It is very apparent that many people are afraid that if they don’t stock up and even horde food, they may run out over time while we are hunkered down in our homes. Others who have lost their livelihoods due to the restrictions may find it difficult to afford to buy food, while seniors and other vulnerable people may be worried about going out to shop. That’s why it’s more important than ever to know about places that help with food.

Places that help with food have become critical during the coronavirus pandemic. Here is a list of places where you can get help or give help and donate.

The closing of our borders because of the spread of the virus, especially to the south and Mexico, is going to create a shortage of workers who pick and process the fresh fruits and vegetables we will need shortly, but for the moment that is not the problem.

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20+ Ways to Reduce Energy Costs and Relieve Financial Pressure

Are you sick and tired of stressing about money all the time? One of the biggest challenges in personal finance is figuring out new ways to spend less money and one of the best ways to accomplish that is to cut down on your regular monthly expenses, such as reduce energy costs. When you do that, the pressure on your budget is relieved.

It is possible to reduce energy costs and save some money on a regular monthly bill. Here are more than twenty ways to help you save on energy.

Even though some of your regular bills might seem small and insignificant on their own, their cumulative effect can be enormous and become a huge drain on your financial resources. And the weirdest part of it all is that we just don’t try to stop that bleeding because they are regular routine bills we get on a monthly basis and it seems like they are all required and we have no options about them. But I am here to say that some people proactively look for ways to cut these routine expenses.

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The Best Deals and Discount Savings on Gas

All of us car and truck owners spend our money on gasoline every week and it’s especially true if you commute to work by driving as the main way you get there. The price of gas can fluctuate these days almost daily and fortunately in most states it’s been staying under $3.00 a gallon for some time now. But as we all know it can spike suddenly depending on world events. That’s why getting discount gas is so important.

If you're a driver, you're bound to spend a lot of money on gas. But there are plenty of discount gas programs available if you just use a loyalty card.

It’s not that difficult these days as there are over 20 different gasoline discount programs being offered right now nationwide around the U.S. These national chains offer fuel rewards programs. Is there one near you?

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Planning a Summer Vacation in the Dead of Winter

If you are anything like me, you are sitting and staring out your window at a very gray and cold afternoon, daydreaming about relaxing at the pool or beach soon, and the sooner the better! Assuming you don’t already live near a beach or the pool, I think we all can easily relate to taking a nice summer vacation to relax or to see the sights of some far-off exotic or romantic place. Heck, even a family vacation sounds pretty good when the snowflakes are piling up, doesn’t it? So, why not plan for that getaway right now. It makes perfect sense and you can save an awful lot if you do right now!

There are some good reasons to plan your summer vacation in the dead of winter. Here are some of those reasons plus tips on how to afford your vacation.

Why Now?

Let’s get the boring part out of the way: The best way to save for a fabulous summer trip is to start early—like six months early (so…like right now). Starting now lets you grow your vacation fund in small ways over a period of time.

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Stop Buying These 8 Things and Save $6,320 This Year

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There are lots of articles about how you can save money by changing your lifestyle, sometimes even turning it completely upside down. I have even preached about such things as downsizing your home and even giving up your car and of course when you do those things you will save a ton of money. Those are real ways to do it if you are ready to really make big changes in your life like when you are entering into retirement or after the kids are gone and off on their own.

You can save money by making big changes or by cutting every luxury. But if you simply stop buying these 8 things, you can painlessly save more than $6,300.

Yet there are other little ways to save a lot by cutting out just a few of the small guilty pleasures in your life. People also write about some of those obvious money wasters and non-essentials such as Starbucks lattes and the high cost of cable premium channels that can really add up your expenses every month. But, life is too short to give up all of the little perks in life you love, isn’t it?

So what can you really do to save big money right now?

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How Someone with a Disability Can Plan Now to Make Long-Term Care Fit Your Financial Picture

For today’s guest post, please welcome Ed Carter, a retired financial planner who uses his expertise to help people with disabilities plan their futures.

It’s an unfortunate reality that many adults with disabilities are faced with financial challenges. According to a report from the National Disability Institute, adults with disabilities are three times more likely than others to have trouble paying medical bills, and 55% of individuals with disabilities do not have savings to cover a financial emergency. These concerns are troubling at any age, but when you think about paying for care later in life, financial planning takes on a new meaning. This is why it’s so important to make a financial plan now to safeguard your future.

It's important for individuals who have a disability to plan financially for their long-term care. Here are three steps to take in planning for the future.

Make Sure You’re Covered

If you haven’t done so recently, start by reviewing benefits you may be eligible for, including Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and more. You may be surprised by the types of services you can access, such as housing assistance and special savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. Make sure you’re also taking advantage of all tax benefits that you’re eligible for.

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The Best Time to Buy Things This Year

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Every year I am amazed at how many people ask me when is the best time to buy certain items that they need. Unfortunately, my reaching out to a few friends and acquaintances helps only a little bit. Most people buy things on impulse or just when they absolutely may need something and never have a well-made plan when they do it. No matter how many times I see it, I have to shake my head and ask, “Why didn’t you wait or didn’t you know that it was just on sale last week?”

To get the best deals, it helps to know the best time to buy your purchase. Here's a month-by-month guide to finding the hottest bargains.

The prices of most things that are “on sale” are sometimes questionable. By that I mean: sale prices are determined by the retailer and that’s why items at one store’s prices are sometimes very different from another. Competition has an effect and helps keep prices in line and similar, but not always. There are other factors such as seasonality, store location (like a resort gift shop compared to your local Kohl’s store when you need a bathing suit, LOL), and the amount of inventory a store has on hand at any given key time of the year.

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