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20 low-cost hobbies – 1 to 10

Posted 14 May 2016

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You don’t need loads of spare cash to have a fun and interesting hobby. Here are 20 of the best low-cost ideas.

There are so many benefits to having a hobby – after all, life shouldn’t be all work and no play. We all need to do something simply for the fun of it every now and again, and hobbies can provide a welcome break from your normal routine. 

If you’re worried that you can’t start a hobby or do loads of fun stuff because money is tight - think again! Hobbies don’t have to cost the earth, and in this blog we’re going to prove it. We’ll even throw in a couple of ideas that could make you some extra money. 

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Let’s get stuck into some money-saving hobby ideas. 

1. Learn a language for free 

Visit Duolingo or download the app to your phone and you’ll have a world of languages at your fingertips completely free of charge – how great is that!

It’s even easier to learn a language if you have someone to practice with, so see whether you could use Duolingo with your other half or a friend. You could even take it one step further and join a meet-up group for your chosen language on Facebook. There’s nothing like testing your language skills in an authentic social setting, and you could end up making some great friends as well. 

Learning a language is the type of hobby that might even help your job prospects further down the line.

2. Join a book club 

You’ll be surprised how much fun reading can be when you get to discuss your opinions with others who are just as enthusiastic as you. 

Look online to see if there’s a book club you can join in your area, or whether there’s one at your local library. If there isn’t, why not start one yourself? 

3. Join a walking group


With this hobby, you’ll get some fresh air, take in some lovely scenery and tick exercise off your to-do list.

Of course, you may find you prefer walking alone, but there are loads of rambling clubs out there if you want to make it sociable. Why not see what’s happening in your area?


4. Gardening

If you have a back or front yard in need of some tender loving care, why not make a hobby out of it and transform it into a lovely, relaxing space?

Research has shown that being around nature can combat feelings of depression, so a transformed greenspace could even positively impact your mood. 

Watching something grow that you’ve planted yourself is a great feeling. If you find you’re naturally green-fingered you could even branch out (see what we did there?!) and do a bit of gardening for your friends and family to earn some extra cash. 

5. Go to free community events

Carnivals, meditation, poetry readings - you’ll be surprised at how much you can learn and experience for free just by getting out there and seeing what’s on. 

If you live in or around Manchester, you can check out the events the city has coming up here – some of which are free. Wherever you live, just Google your city, or have a look on the notice boards of your local community centres, to find out what’s on. 

6. Knitting/sewing

Creative hobbies are just great. You keep yourself occupied and you end up with something to show for it. 

It’s not hard to learn how to sew, knit or crochet - all you need to do is find an instructional video on YouTube, buy some needles, thread or wool, which won’t be very expensive, and you’re away. 

7. Learn how to cook

Learning to cook fresh food for yourself is always a good shout and can seriously impact your health for the better. We’re willing to bet it’ll make you even more popular with friends and family as well!

With this hobby, you could get healthier food, a fun pastime, and save money – killing three birds with one stone isn’t bad.

For simple, delicious budget-friendly recipes, have a look at Cooking on a Bootstrap. 

8. Drawing/adult colouring

Another one here for the creatively inclined out there. All you need to do is get yourself a sketchbook and pencil and the possibilities are endless.

Another idea is to see whether an adult colouring book can provide you with a therapeutic and fun hobby – this bestseller is only £3.85. 

9. Volunteer 

There are always community projects or charities that could use your help, so why not reach out and see how you could contribute?

Volunteering provides loads of opportunities to build new skills, not to mention giving you the sense of fulfilment that comes from helping others. 

10. Exercise

You could take up an exercise – it’ll give you something to work on as well as make you healthier. Going for a run costs nothing at all, and if you want to do something a little more specialised, like dancing or yoga, it’s YouTube to the rescue again!


That’s given you plenty of inspiration for now. Check back tomorrow for ten more great – and affordable – hobby ideas.

by Christine Walsh

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