July 14, 2022

How to have fun this summer – for free

Written by kevin-c

Saving Money

It’s summer! Normally in July, the only inflation you'd be thinking about are beach balls and party balloons. Not this year though. Sadly, inflation is worse now than it's been in decades, and it's totally understandable that you're likely feeling the pinch.

The cost of everything is up – gas, food, and a lot of the fun stuff we'd like to do. But it shouldn’t stop you from having a fun-packed summer, because there’s so much you can do for free or almost free. Here are a few ideas to kickstart your free fun:

Find music festivals near you.

If you didn’t go to at least one music festival, can you even say you had a summer at all? I say no. Music festivals are a key pillar of any epic summer, and there are plenty of free festivals around the US in every conceivable musical genre. From San Francisco’s Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival to the Chicago Blues Festival to New Orleans’ French Quarter Festival, you too can bask in the sounds of music this summer. A city near you almost definitely has one, and it's a great way to hear new music without spending anything.

Visit a local water park or splash pad.

Water parks are so great, but that doesn't only mean the big expensive ones. More areas even have splash pads these days, which are usually small water features at local parks. When it’s blazing hot out, what’s better than literally splashing around a pad? If you poke around your city or county, you can usually find public water parks and splash pads that are totally free. Check your city’s website for times and accessibility and go cool off. Especially if you have young ones, you can let ‘em beat the heat and get some exercise for free. Pretty sweet deal.

Start a vegetable garden.

If you’ve got the space for it, vegetable gardens are deeply rewarding. Rewarding in the sense that you get away from indoor screens and get your nature on, but also rewarding in the sense that you can eat your work. (Perks of the job.) You might think July is too late for a garden, but I have great news – it's not too late! Spinach, carrots, cauliflower, and more are perfect to plant this time of year. Start small with just a few plants, be comfortable learning as you go, and by next spring you’ll be a gardening pro.

Explore national parks.

Speaking of nature, you can connect with a whole lot of nature at America’s national parks. Sometimes referred to as “America’s best idea,” national parks are breathtaking areas to spend a summer day exploring. You can get a National Parks pass for around $80/yr which can get you into over two thousand parks in the US. But even better, many national parks will have a free admission day, which the Parks Service has helpfully provided at nps.gov.

Talk to family and friends.

We all know what really makes for a great summer. It’s your family and your friends. But with inflation hitting us from every side, keeping in touch with them can be pricey. Or rather it would be without TextNow. Download TextNow and you can talk and text as much as you want, always for free. And when you combine our app with the TextNow SIM Card for only 99¢, you get access to the nation's largest 5G/4G network, also for free. (We cover the cost of phone service by displaying unobtrusive ads.)

That's right, with TextNow you'll have phone service always starting from $0/month, with flexible add-ons available like high-speed data, so when you do need a little extra, you can add it affordably. You can get rid of your phone bill not just for the summer, but for good. (No more phone bills is sort of like having an endless summer, right?!)

Share this with your friend who needs ideas for fun this summer, and don't forget our tips to keep your phone safe when you're out in the sun and water!