In order to survive, a human being needs three basic things: food, water, and shelter. Unfortunately, all three of those things cost money, and they will just give you basic survival. If one wishes to live comfortably in today’s society, and most do, he or she needs quality clothing, quality food, a decent house or apartment, entertainment, and many more small amenities. All of these things add up to thousands of dollars in expenses, so, in order to counter today’s high prices, I base many of my purchases on coupons. Coupons influence my purchasing decisions because I, being a low income high school student, look to save money wherever and whenever I can in order to improve my financial situation.

Fast food is steadily growing in popularity, just as it has been for several years, and I, like many other teenagers, eat at fast food restaurants quite frequently. Unfortunately, fast food restaurants have, over the years, been forced to raise their menu prices in order to keep up with the inflation of prices around them. Food items that once cost one dollar now cost two. Dollar menus are now value menus that sometimes contain food priced at over two dollars. Popular combo meals now cost up seven dollars. In order to combat the inflation of fast food prices, I use coupons as frequently as possible. I find all coupons helpful, from “buy one Whopper get one free” to “free small French fries”. Each coupon saves me money, so each, no matter what the total savings it brings, influences my fast food purchases.

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Another area of spending in which coupons influence my purchases is clothing. As an athlete, I constantly require new workout clothes, and the brands that offer the best workout clothing, such as Nike and Adidas, are quite pricy. Having coupons allows me to be able to afford the best athletic clothing available, despite the fact that I have a low income. Using coupons for clothing purchases saves me several dollars at a time, and sometimes coupons even save me ten dollars or more on one article of clothing. Being able to use coupons on clothes helps relieve me of some of my financial burdens.

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I, like every other person on the earth, enjoy being entertained. Entertainment, though not a necessity, helps relieve the stress of everyday life, and it comes in many different forms, such as television, sporting events, concerts, and movies; however, almost every form of entertainment is costly. Buying a television can cost over a thousand dollars. Tickets to sporting events and concerts can range from twenty to five hundred dollars per ticket. One trip to the movies costs about twelve dollars per person, not including drinks and snacks. Entertaining one’s self is very expensive, but luckily, most forms of entertainment can be discounted with coupons. I have personally used coupons to buy tickets to sporting events and movies, but coupons can also be used for concert tickets, televisions, and music. Ironically enough, entertainment is one of the most costly areas of spending in my life, but because of that, it is also the area in which I have saved the most money with coupons.

Now a senior in high school, I will soon be going off to college, which means I will soon be out on my own looking for a house or apartment. Obviously, a house or apartment is a major expense, especially for a full-time college student, but because I use coupons to buy several different things, I will be have a little bit of extra money each week, which will either allow me to make extra payments on my house or allow me to save up money which can be used in a time of financial need. Ultimately, I let coupons influence my purchasing decisions because doing so will give me a financial cushion for a destitute time.

Spending money has become the American way. I choose to spend as little money as possible by letting coupons influence my purchasing decisions. By doing this, I better not only my current financial situation, but my future financial situation as well.