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Old 08-23-2011, 06:57 AM   #61
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I don't have an entertainment budget per se as I have been working a lot in the last few years. I guess Netflix, cable TV, newspaper delivery, and eating out sometimes represent about $100-$200 a month. If I include trips abroad (either to visit friends or to help patients in poorer parts of the world), then the budget is between $1,000 (one trip) and $20,000 (several trips).
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:04 AM   #62
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About 47% of my budget is 'entertainment' with campground fees consuming about 24% of the total.

I'm a little distraught that I'm spending 53% on things that aren't entertaining. I'll have to see what I can do about that.
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:38 AM   #63
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About 47% of my budget is 'entertainment' with campground fees consuming about 24% of the total.

I'm a little distraught that I'm spending 53% on things that aren't entertaining. I'll have to see what I can do about that.

I'll try that out on DH. He's still mad that I include tools in the "Hobby" category, as he says that if he had his way, none of his hobbies would involve engines, transmissions, brakes, and their ilk.
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:04 PM   #64
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This is the kind of thing I have trouble with. Some things are clear cut entertainment. My World of Warcraft subscription is definitely entertainment. To me Netflix is entertainment. But then it gets grayer.

Internet service? Is that a utility or entertainment? Some years ago, definitely entertainment. Now? It is really a blend. I would have it even if I didn't use it for entertainment.

Computer? Again, sort of a blend. I use it for many, many things that aren't entertainment related. However, I have a computer that allows me to do more entertainment related things that costs more than a basic computer would cost.

Dining out? Sometimes it is entertainment, but other times may be that we were out doing errands and became hungry and didn't want to drive home to eat and then have to leave to do more errands. Even when it is entertainment I would have spent something to eat at home so maybe that should be deducted.

Membership to the Y? Is that entertainment? What if I have a personal trainer? If that it is fitness and not entertainment, what if I decide to sign up for karate lessons? Is that entertainment?
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:36 PM   #65
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About 47% of my budget is 'entertainment' with campground fees consuming about 24% of the total.

I'm a little distraught that I'm spending 53% on things that aren't entertaining. I'll have to see what I can do about that.
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This is the kind of thing I have trouble with. Some things are clear cut entertainment. My World of Warcraft subscription is definitely entertainment. To me Netflix is entertainment. But then it gets grayer.

Internet service? Is that a utility or entertainment? Some years ago, definitely entertainment. Now? It is really a blend. I would have it even if I didn't use it for entertainment.

Computer? Again, sort of a blend. I use it for many, many things that aren't entertainment related. However, I have a computer that allows me to do more entertainment related things that costs more than a basic computer would cost.

Dining out? Sometimes it is entertainment, but other times may be that we were out doing errands and became hungry and didn't want to drive home to eat and then have to leave to do more errands. Even when it is entertainment I would have spent something to eat at home so maybe that should be deducted.

Membership to the Y? Is that entertainment? What if I have a personal trainer? If that it is fitness and not entertainment, what if I decide to sign up for karate lessons? Is that entertainment?
I think that everything above enough food & water to keep us healthy, enough shelter to avoid dying from exposure, medical/dental and taxes can all be called 'entertainment'.

I seriously don't get the point of this thread.


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Old 08-23-2011, 02:45 PM   #66
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I seriously don't get the point of this thread.


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It's FUN...and entertaining!!
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:48 PM   #67
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It's FUN...and entertaining!!
FREE entertainment, too!
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:50 PM   #68
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:33 PM   #69
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I think that everything above enough food & water to keep us healthy, enough shelter to avoid dying from exposure, medical/dental and taxes can all be called 'entertainment'.

I seriously don't get the point of this thread.


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So can "entertainment" be defined as anything that is non-essential?
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Old 08-23-2011, 03:45 PM   #70
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So can "entertainment" be defined as anything that is non-essential?
Anything that's fun is entertainment, unless it's w*rk.
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Old 08-23-2011, 09:50 PM   #71
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So can "entertainment" be defined as anything that is non-essential?
It can. Whether that is useful or not is debatable. But that is what I wonder about this thread. I simply don't get the significance of what someone else spends %-wise on 'entertainment' esp with all the different definitions.

Do what makes you happy, if you can afford it. If you can't, you got some thinking (or working) to do.

Example - one person might have planed their ER budget around very frequent and expensive shows, concerts, nights out, vacations, etc. If that is what they love, they should plan accordingly.

Another person might be perfectly happy with local activities that cost little - maybe they are in their church choir, and have a bunch of low cost hobbies that keep them fulfilled and challenged. If that is what they love, they should plan accordingly.

I don't see where either should change based on the others spending habits. Or, as I've said more generally - don't retire on someone else's budget.

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Old 08-23-2011, 10:11 PM   #72
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It can. Whether that is useful or not is debatable. But that is what I wonder about this thread. I simply don't get the significance of what someone else spends %-wise on 'entertainment' esp with all the different definitions.



-ERD50
I get that everybody will not get it . Frankly I don't get some of the semi political topics or the endless annuity discussions but we are on page 4 of this thread so some people found it relevant or just were amused by it and that's enough . As they say " Don't rain on my parade ".
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:18 PM   #73
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I get that everybody will not get it . Frankly I don't get some of the semi political topics or the endless annuity discussions but we are on page 4 of this thread so some people found it relevant or just were amused by it and that's enough . As they say " Don't rain on my parade ".
Sorry - not trying to "rain on any parade", I'm just honestly curious about what it is the question is trying to accomplish. Or what the responses are intended to convey.

I often find that someone asks a question, but it turns out it's really something else they are looking for.

So maybe you can help me out here - can you respond to my observations? Why should the two people in my scenario care what the other spends? Maybe your view of that would enlighten me (or others).

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Old 08-23-2011, 11:54 PM   #74
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Sorry - not trying to "rain on any parade", I'm just honestly curious about what it is the question is trying to accomplish. Or what the responses are intended to convey.

I often find that someone asks a question, but it turns out it's really something else they are looking for.

So maybe you can help me out here - can you respond to my observations? Why should the two people in my scenario care what the other spends? Maybe your view of that would enlighten me (or others).

-ERD50
I'm not Moemg, but maybe I can try to answer your question.

Someone on this thread said they would use the responses to evaluate whether or not they were spending too much or too little. It sounds like this is something you don't get or agree with. I don't get it or agree with it either, but such stubborn obnoxious individualistic thinkers as ourselves are rare gems of this universe.

There are other uses for the data, however.

1. Personally, I really enjoy these budgeting threads and reading about how much people spend on what, how they pay their bills, etc. So it is free entertainment for me to read and reply to these threads.

2. Occasionally I will gain a new insight into financial stuff by reading about how other people do things. (This doesn't happen as much any more, but it still does happen on occasion.) Either I will read about a new tool (like Mint), or a new bank (like PenFed) or a new way or method to do something (like how I handle my passwords, or how I pay my bills) or new concepts (4% rule, buckets of money, investment allocations, Bogleheads, etc.). These insights either lead to better (more efficient time-wise, or cheaper, or more fully-featured) ways to do things, or they lead me to a better understanding and acceptance of myself and my financial situation.

3. I figure if someone else is asking me for the data, and I enjoy sharing some of my data, it may help them out...so I share. I like thinking I help people out here sometimes just a little.

HTH,

2Cor521
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Old 08-24-2011, 08:55 AM   #75
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I'm not Moemg, but maybe I can try to answer your question.

Someone on this thread said they would use the responses to evaluate whether or not they were spending too much or too little. It sounds like this is something you don't get or agree with. I don't get it or agree with it either, but such stubborn obnoxious individualistic thinkers as ourselves are rare gems of this universe.

There are other uses for the data, however.

1. Personally, I really enjoy these budgeting threads and reading about how much people spend on what, how they pay their bills, etc. So it is free entertainment for me to read and reply to these threads.

2. Occasionally I will gain a new insight into financial stuff by reading about how other people do things. (This doesn't happen as much any more, but it still does happen on occasion.) Either I will read about a new tool (like Mint), or a new bank (like PenFed) or a new way or method to do something (like how I handle my passwords, or how I pay my bills) or new concepts (4% rule, buckets of money, investment allocations, Bogleheads, etc.). These insights either lead to better (more efficient time-wise, or cheaper, or more fully-featured) ways to do things, or they lead me to a better understanding and acceptance of myself and my financial situation.

3. I figure if someone else is asking me for the data, and I enjoy sharing some of my data, it may help them out...so I share. I like thinking I help people out here sometimes just a little.

HTH,

2Cor521
Perfect answer ! Thank you !
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:23 AM   #76
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I tracked my expenses for many years but in the last two years I have been lax so I want to get back on track . What does everyone have for an entertainment budget ? That includes eating out , movies , shows, etc. not including travel as I have this categorized in a separate expense. Thanks ! I just want to make sure that I am not being too thrifty or too extravagant .
I never got into the details. For years I was happy to live on one paycheck. Now we save 47% of our gross and that is with a second home I am even happier.
On what we need to live on we do put aside $350 mo. for vacation.
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:20 AM   #77
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Moemg,


I think this is a great thread, but a serious answer to your query would be, start keeping a budget of your monthly expenses, that way after a few months you will see what your spending on that line item. THAT should be your budget. Whatever it takes to keep you entertained. Budget keeping is a good idea for everyone. Since I started keeping a budget, I am spending even less on what I call frivolous items. You know, all those things (crap) you never knew you needed? It is not that I need to keep a budget, as I already LBYM, but it does keeps me in check with accumulating all the crap stuff that I worked so hard to get rid of when I downsized. No more crap dust collectors for me and more $$ to invest!


I don’t' know if your FIREd or not, but if you are, then most of your budget should be “entertainment”. I consider all kinds of things as entertainment that I would not have pre-FIREd. If you are not FIREd and are still struggling to LBYM then that is a whole 'nother issue. In that case you really need to budget, figure where the money is going and where you can cut back.


To answer your question on how much I spend on Entertainment? I'd say almost everything... since retiring I find pleasure in just about everything I do and spend on, so am entertained from the moment I wake up. Each day can be an adventure and I am bless with good health, a loving family and the ability to do pretty much as I wish.


Queenie
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:22 AM   #78
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I'm not Moemg, but maybe I can try to answer your question. ...

I certainly understand the idea of just being curious, or that maybe the answers would trigger some new ideas for entertainment, or just sharing views on entertainment (which can be entertaining in itself). The only part I was questioning was the idea that one would change their amount of spending based on what others spend.

I asked Moemg this earlier, I guess she doesn't care to entertain me with an answer . OK.

So maybe you can help me out here - can you respond to my observations? Why should the two people in my scenario care what the other spends? Maybe your view of that would enlighten me (or others).

-ERD50
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Old 08-24-2011, 11:18 AM   #79
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I certainly understand the idea of just being curious, or that maybe the answers would trigger some new ideas for entertainment, or just sharing views on entertainment (which can be entertaining in itself). The only part I was questioning was the idea that one would change their amount of spending based on what others spend.

I asked Moemg this earlier, I guess she doesn't care to entertain me with an answer . OK.

So maybe you can help me out here - can you respond to my observations? Why should the two people in my scenario care what the other spends? Maybe your view of that would enlighten me (or others).

-ERD50
I can understand someone looking at other's expenditures to get ideas for things to perhaps cut back on and feedback on what is typical. That doesn't mean you have to do typical but it can give information. To give some examples.

I used to pay AT&T quite a lot of money a month for a landline phone with all sorts of features. On various forums I saw what others paid for phone and asked around and became aware of other options that were much cheaper. I first evolved to paying Vonage for VOIP for a couple of years and then ultimately to Skype with the ability to make calls to landlines. Had I not seen what others were paying for phone service I wouldn't have had those ideas.

On another forum people posted about their average grocery bill per month. Mine was much higher. I really looked at that to see why mine was so much higher and really examined whether I was spending more than I needed to spend. I ended up keeping most of my expenditures but switched to a less expensive grocery store.

On the other hand, I've can see being frugal on entertainment but realizing that people typically spend more and perhaps thinking I would loosen up a bit (assuming one wants to loosen up a bit).
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Old 08-24-2011, 11:45 AM   #80
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Arguing with each other on this forum = entertainment

In fact some have turned this into an art form
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