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How Much Do You Spend on Lunch and Coffee? [POLL]

Lunch break
Flickr User rick

A new survey from Accounting Principals found the average American worker spends nearly $3,000 a year on coffee and lunch.Fifty percent of workers said they purchase coffee on a regular basis, and 66-percent said they buy their lunch at a deli or restaurant instead of packing lunch at home.

“It’s a large amount of money, but I’m not surprised,” said Michael Kay, President of Financial Focus in Livingston. “In general, our money consciousness, especially younger people, is just not there.”

The survey showed young professionals spend more than the older generation, on both coffee and midday food.

Kay explained, “Their focus might be on their jobs, or their social life, or getting themselves established, and they’re not thinking of the relatively small amounts of money are basically dripping out of their hands each day.”

As advice to the overall workforce, Kay said it’s fine to indulge in one’s habit once a week, but be smarter on the other days; put the would-be-spent money towards bills or savings.

An emergency fund was also suggested. If one loses a job, capital should be on hand somewhere so there’s no need to dip into much-needed savings.

Kay said society needs to talk more about money, values and what’s really important.

“What things do we need to do to allow us to put our heads on the pillow at night, and know that we are living according to our values?” Kay added. He said moving towards a more balanced, more appropriate and more conscious way of living is not about the glitz; it’s about one’s values.

The study also showed most workers would choose to be reimbursed for their commuting costs, rather than lunch. However, the average American worker spends just $1,500 annually on commuting – half the total spent on lunch and coffee.

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