My partner and I moved into our first solo place together this summer. Before, we’d lived with roommates, but it was time for us to get our own place. Which in turn meant we were the only ones paying the bills. We knew water and electricity and rent were necessities. And then there were daily expenses like groceries and gas. I’m a full-time student and work part-time while the dude works full-time. Clearly, money is tight for everyone these days, AND we’re saving up for our wedding AND for our big move to Chicago after we get married… so there isn’t a lot of extra money to spend.
Phones? Need them. Car? We’re a one-car family so it’s all good. Cable? There’s no way we’re home enough to justify having it. But the internet? Certainly that is necessary for a student and a couple planning a wedding.
Well I’m here to tell you it isn’t, my friends! Dude and I have been living peacefully without the internet for months. Now, there have been challenges when it comes to not having the internet at home, but there are tons of positives!
The unexpected ups
- We save money every month. Clearly, that’s a given. But every little bit helps when you’re young and engaged and living in these hard economic times.
- We spend more quality time together. I know if we had the internet, I would be completely wrapped up in wedding planning and Pinterest and other blogs that I wouldn’t spend as much time with my partner as I do now. Every night we’re free, we come home and relax. We talk and watch movies and cook and play video games.
- We hang out with our friends when they come over. When we had the Internet at our old apartment, I had a bad habit of playing around on the computer instead of enjoying the company of our friends. That was probably me just being rude and having no self-control, but it was so easy to just pick up my computer in a lull in the conversation and spend the next three hours in my own world instead of with the people I was actually with.
- There’s free time to read and be crafty! I feel like we’re doing a lot more stuff now that we don’t have the internet.
There are obvious disadvantages to not having the internet at home. Homework can get tricky when there is no internet access. And there’s no possibility of having streaming Netflix. And God forbid I forget to print out a recipe before coming home. But here are some ways to make your transition to internet-free living a little easier.
How to get along without the web
- Find places in your community with WiFi. I take my computer to campus to do homework. Public libraries usually have WiFi — and even computers. Coffee shops and restaurants are getting big into the free WiFi game too.
- Find something to do with your free time. It’s all too easy to get real bored real quick at home without plans. I heard (and used) the “There’s nothing to do!” phrase too many times when we first started our internet-free home.
- Having a smartphone definitely helps for those scary “I didn’t know that I have to write a research paper by tomorrow” moments. My iPhone isn’t enough to be a functional internet replacement, but it’s enough to figure out when the last tornado in Savannah was when I get curious.
- Scout out your video rental store. We got a membership a couple months ago and I love it. There’s a crazy awesome variety and you can see old and new movies for very reasonable prices.
- Get social! We have friends over almost all the time so the company keeps us busy and laughing instead of trying to figure out what to do.
If you’ve been thinking about ditching your internet service, I’m here to tell you that it’s a possible life choice! Feel free to ask any questions about living without internet. I do have access at work and school, you know.