Aside from actual annual leave, is there anything better than a long weekend? Three glorious days of carefree, work free, alarm-clock-free indulgence.
Except, this June long weekend, there's one small catch.
If you happen to get paid monthly, chances are your payday falls mid-next week, meaning unless you're some kind of freakish super saver, things are looking pretty grim in the funds department. Or at least they will after Friday night.
So how do you get the most out of your long weekend without doing some serious damage to your credit card?
Get your bake on
It's officially winter, so if you're going to bake some kind of delicious treat this year, now's the time to do it.
Not only can baking be a pretty fun thing to do in itself, you are going to love yourself sick once those cookies or scones or muffins or whatever you decide to make come out of the oven. AND it will make your house smell all scrummy and amazing. Win/win.
Need some inspo? Why not try some of these easy dessert recipes recommended by chefs? Alternatively, you could get patriotic and check out these delicious recipes from regional Australia or try your hand at all things peanut-buttery (peanut butter surprise muffins? Yes, please.)
Go old school
Just because it doesn't have a screen, it doesn't mean it's not fun. Dust off those old board games, shuffle that ancient deck of cards, buy some cheap wine from Aldi and get some mates around.
Actually, while you're at it...
Host the cheapest dinner party known to man
Forget smoked salmon canapes and smelly French cheeses. Put on a giant pot of pasta, tell your friends to bring over some cheap grog (in fact, why not send them this article about our favourite wines under $10) and let the good times roll.
Trawl your local second hand book stores
You never know what hidden gems you will find in the shelves of a second hand book store. Not only can the process in itself be fun (like we said, you never know what you are going to find) but you could unearth a literary treasure that will keep you busy for the whole weekend.
In Melbourne? Have a pint while you browse at Two Buck Books.
Check out the free stuff in your city
Believe it or not, there is actually heaps of free (or at least, very very cheap) stuff going on around Australia all the time. The real question is, have you checked?
Check out what's on in your city this weekend below.
Go for a drive
You don't necessarily have to stay overnight somewhere in order to get away. If you're feeling restless at home and you own a car, there's no reason you can't take a day trip somewhere out of the big smoke.
Bonuses include having the time to listen to some cracking podcasts or playlists in the car, as well as potentially going somewhere you've never gone before.
If it's a small country town you've decided to visit, head to the local bakery and order one of their meat pies for lunch. Not only is it a budget friendly meal option, it's bound to be way better than Macca's on the highway.
Desperate to sleep over somewhere? Check out these holiday rentals for under $200 per night.
Netflix and chill
Go on. You know you want to. ;)