Money Culture

6 Lessons I Learned from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off 😎

Think movies are just for binging? Here are 6 money lessons straight from Ferris Bueller's Day Off that will help you live life to its fullest.

Caroline Gluck • November 23, 2021

“Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?” 

With so many of us being stuck at home this past year, we’ve had plenty of time to binge our favorite TV shows and movies. We all know that you can quickly get sucked into an all-night binge-a-thon watching movies until dawn. Some may see this as a “mind-numbing” activity, but movie-watching has its benefits! Your favorite movie probably has some helpful lessons to teach you about money. Director John Hughes’ iconic film is chock full of lessons to make sure you’re living life to the fullest.

1. Save some money for a rainy day 🌂

“Ferris Bueller, you’re my hero!” 

In the film, Ferris, his girlfriend Sloane, and his best friend Cameron skip school to trapeze around Chicago. I don’t recommend skipping school unexpectedly, but saving money for scenarios such as this is a great idea! Saving as little as 10 to 20 dollars each month can easily add up and fund future antics. Just ask Ferris! 

2. Explore different options in your city 💃🕺

“You’re not dying, you just can’t think of anything good to do”

Ferris Bueller’s Day off takes place in Chicago and the young protagonists definitely take advantage of what the city has to offer. In one day, they visit the Sears Tower, the Chicago Board of Trade, a Cubs game, and the Art Institute of Chicago. While these activities cost money, it’s fairly easy to find free and cheap entertainment options in your city. Save money by visiting local parks, picnicking with friends, going to outdoor markets, or even attending a free concert! 

3. Make sure you have car insurance 🚗

“It’s his fault he didn’t lock the garage”

Now, this may seem out of the blue, but investing in car insurance is something that Ferris’ friend Cameron fully understands. SPOILER ALERT: After “borrowing” his dad’s car, Cameron tries to erase the extra mileage by driving it in reverse. Instead, he sends the car shooting out of the garage and into the woods below. Hopefully, Cameron’s father has car insurance! You never know when you will encounter a freak accident that puts you in the negative. Having car insurance can save your life when push comes to shove! 

4. Spend based on your personal priorities 💰

“What aren’t we going to do?”

In the movie, Ferris and his friends enjoy their favorite activities without regrets. You might have heard that you should stop buying Starbucks or avocado toast in order to achieve financial independence. However, it’s unlikely that these relatively small purchases are having a major impact on your long-term savings goals. Also, it’s up to you if you want to prioritize going out to eat over saving for a down payment! Just think through your goals and make a budget that works for you.

5. Beware of scams 👾 🥸

Ferris tricks almost everyone – his parents, his school – into thinking he’s sick and needs the day off from school. But not his wise sister! Did you know that there are tons of scams out there with people trying to steal your money? You might have gotten calls about extending your car’s warranty, even if you don’t have a car. Other current scams include fake refunds for tech support services, fake student loan forgiveness, and even dating app scams. Be like Ferris’s sister and be extremely skeptical of anyone offering to give you money out of the blue, or requesting personal information. 

6. Enjoy life 🥳

“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

Ferris teaches us that it’s important to stop and smell the roses once in a while – to be in the moment and really live our lives. If you are lucky enough to work at a job with benefits, you likely have vacation days or PTO. Did you know that most Americans don’t use their vacation days, even if they are going to expire? Ferris would NOT approve of this toxic grind culture. We recommend always taking advantage of your vacation days, and making sure you’re living your life to the fullest. 

Bottom line

In summary, Ferris Bueller really knows how to live and inspires us to do so too. This movie teaches us to plan ahead by saving money and getting car insurance, but also to spend money in a way that fits our goals and lifestyle. Don’t forget to avoid the scams and tricksters while you’re at it! 

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