Saturday, September 16, 2006

Frugal or Stingy?

Our goal is to be frugal. An excellent article in provides great perspective on this question.

In the article, Mary Hunt provides a great definition of frugal and stingy. "Frugality is the activity required for me to live below my means," said Hunt, whose latest book is Live Your Life for Half the Price. "Stinginess is the activity of requiring others to participate in my frugality."

Here are some examples from the article that bring the difference to life:

If you use 2-for-1 coupons at a restaurant, you might be frugal. If you base your server's tip on the discounted bill, you're probably stingy.

If you decide in advance how much to spend each year on charitable contributions, and then try to stay within that budget, you might be frugal. If the last thing you gave to charity was an ancient can of lima beans you wouldn't eat yourself, then you're probably stingy.

If you use a tea bag for more than one cup of tea, you might be frugal. If you offer a guest the cup made from the used bag, you're probably stingy.

We pass the frugal test on the examples above. However, I think I can always do better to be more clearly frugal :-)

This is not financial advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

Copyright © 2006 Achievement Catalyst, LLC

1 comment:

GolbGuru said...

Nice post. Indeed the line between being frugal and being stingy (cheap) is thin. Everyone has their own yardsticks for defining what is "stingy"...but yeah if we are spoiling our personal and social lives for a few extra bucks..then we are stretching frugality to the stingy side.