Online Cash Stuffing Envelope Alternatives: No Cash Needed!

Cash-stuffing envelopes helps a budget stick, but cash is becoming outdated. Learn about the digital cash stuffing envelopes alternatives with HyperJar.
Mathew Megens
November 29, 2023
min read

Cash stuffing envelopes is one of the oldest budgeting methods in the book. In the past, it’s been an effective way to help budgeters avoid spending money earmarked for other purposes so they don’t overspend.

With the rise of digital personal finance tools, it’s quicker, easier, and more effective than ever to practice the cash stuffing envelopes budgeting method digitally and gain better control of your 

In this blog, we’ll discuss:

What is cash stuffing?

How does cash stuffing envelopes work?

Digital cash stuffing using HyperJar

The different cash-stuffing envelope categories

What is cash stuffing?

So, what is cash stuffing? Cash stuffing is a budgeting method where you put money into envelopes corresponding to different spending categories. If you spend a certain amount on utilities monthly, put this amount in an envelope labelled ‘utilities’ until all your spending categories are accounted for.

You can simply look inside the envelope to check how much you have left to spend in a category.

How do cash-stuffing envelopes work?

Using cash-stuffing envelopes is a budgeting method that helps you avoid overspending in any single spending category and stick to your budget.

Cash stuffing envelopes with the correct amount to cover every expense, like utilities, rent, groceries, discretionary spending, etc., ensures that a set amount is earmarked for every spending category.

This means that you can check inside the envelope at any point in the month to see how much you have left to spend in a category. For example, eating out.

This way, you don’t need to worry about how much you have left to pay for certain things. At the beginning of the month, you’ll allocate funds to your various cash-stuffing envelopes and only use the money inside for the purpose labelled on each envelope.

Here’s how you can start using the cash-stuffing envelopes method.

  1. Set a budget

For the cash stuffing envelopes budgeting method, you’ll need to work out a budget to know how much to put into the envelopes each month.

Work out how much you typically spend each month and how much you want to spend so that you can work out a total budget for yourself. 

You’ll probably have to account for essentials such as rent, utilities, groceries, transport, a savings fund, and an allowance for discretionary spending, among others, and note how much you spend on these categories. Check out some budgeting basics to help you get started.

  1. Define your cash-stuffing envelope categories

Once you’ve written down what you plan to spend in a month, you can finalise your cash stuffing envelope categories, a.k.a. your spending categories, and label each of your envelopes.

Use your budget to decide how much you need to put in each envelope (e.g., for example, you might choose you need £120 per month for travel) and record this so you can refer to it each month. You may have to adjust this as time goes on and your expenses change.

  1. Fill the envelopes with cash

Now that you’ve defined your cash stuffing envelope categories and how much should go in the envelopes each week/month, you can fill these envelopes with the amount of cash you’ve pre-determined with your budget.

  1. Stick to the envelope budget

For the cash-stuffing envelope method to work, you need to practice discipline. 

Make sure you fill the envelopes at the beginning of the month with the funds you’ve pre-determined for each spending category and use the money only for the purpose indicated by the envelope.

How to start digital cash stuffing using HyperJar

Though the traditional cash-stuffing envelope budgeting method was helpful in years gone by, digital transformation has made budgeting and managing your finances more accessible than ever.

With a cash-stuffing app like HyperJar, you can apply the cash-stuffing envelope budgeting method digitally – quickly and conveniently.

Create savings jars instantly with a cash-stuffing app.

With the HyperJar cash stuffing app, you can create jam jars or savings pots for each spending category, exactly like labelling envelopes as part of the cash stuffing envelope method. 

You can then allocate money from your account to each of these jars according to how much you dedicate to each spending category within your budget. This can be for short-term financial purposes (like monthly bills, subscriptions/memberships, rent, groceries) or long-term financial priorities, like building a savings fund. 

Limit your spending from savings jars.

A cash-stuffing app like HyperJar has additional controls you can apply to limit your spending from different jars. In other words, the cash-stuffing app helps you avoid spending money already earmarked for other purposes. 

For example, you might apply a payment control to your ‘utilities’ savings jar that prevents you from spending that money with retailers. You can also choose which retailers you can spend money with from different jars. 

You might also choose to apply controls to make withdrawing from your savings fund difficult, making you think twice about using your savings to make unnecessary purchases.

This makes using a cash-stuffing app more effective than traditional cash-stuffing envelopes since there are more tools to stop you from spending money where you shouldn’t.

Digital cash stuffing is more convenient.

One of the major advantages of using a cash-stuffing app – rather than traditional cash-stuffing envelopes – is that it’s more convenient and takes less time to budget.

With the HyperJar cash stuffing app, you can instantly link the app to your bank account, create jars that represent your spending categories and digitally transfer money from your bank account instantly.

This way, you can keep your money digital and arrange to pay bills, automatically or manually, directly from your savings jars, rather than getting cash from the bank to fill envelopes and pay your bills manually.

Different cash-stuffing envelope categories

When employing the cash-stuffing envelope budgeting method, it can be tricky to think of every spending category you’ll need to account for in your budget.

For this reason, we’ve compiled a list of some of the common personal budget categories you might need to create jam jars for in your cash-stuffing app:

  • Rent/mortgage payments
  • Utility bills
  • Insurance
  • Childcare
  • Transport
  • Groceries
  • Eating out
  • Memberships/subscriptions
  • Debt payments
  • Gift fund (for birthdays and Christmas)
  • Personal care
  • Health costs
  • Leisure/hobbies
  • Discretionary fund

Of course, you don’t have to include all these categories if they’re irrelevant to you – or you may have a spending category specific to your life that isn’t listed here. Make sure to include cash-stuffing envelope categories that will be most helpful to your budgeting efforts rather than adding categories thoughtlessly.

You may not regularly spend money on personal care or clothing. If so, you don’t need to create a dedicated envelope for these costs. Instead, any small and/or irregular expenses can be accounted for by your discretionary fund envelope/savings jam jar.

Get cash stuffing with HyperJar today

To start budgeting using the cash-stuffing envelope method, download the HyperJar cash-stuffing app to begin your digital budgeting journey today and take control of your finances.

To learn more about how to stick to a budget, the 50-30-20 budgeting rule, and the top money-saving hacks, check out the  HyperJar blog.

Mathew Megens

Co-Founder of HyperJar

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