How to Do the 50 Envelope Challenge (Printable Envelope Savings Challenge Tracker!)

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Last Updated on October 22, 2022 by Rebecca Lake

Interested in saving an extra $1,275?

The 50 envelope savings challenge is a money challenge that involves saving cash in numbered envelopes. For each envelope you draw, you add an amount of money that corresponds to the number written on it until all the envelopes are filed.

You might try the 50 envelope challenge if you’re looking for an alternative to the 100 envelope challenge or the 200 envelope challenge. Saving cash in 50 envelopes can be a little less daunting–and it may be easier on your budget, too. 

Ready to give the 50 envelope savings challenge a try? Here’s a closer look at how it works.

Related post: 200 Envelope Challenge (Save $5,100 in 200 Days!)

What Is the 50 Envelope Challenge?

The 50 envelope money challenge is a savings challenge that’s designed to help you save $1,275. Each envelope is numbered and you add an amount of money to the envelope that matches its number. 

The 50 envelope savings challenge is a variation on the 100 envelope challenge that’s been trending on TikTok

Here’s how to do the 100 envelope challenge

  • Collect 100 blank envelopes
  • Number your envelopes from 1 to 100
  • Shuffle your envelopes up and stash them in a box or basket (a cash envelope wallet could also work!)
  • Draw one envelope each day
  • Add an amount of money to the envelope based on the number that’s written on it

The 100 envelope challenge can help you save $5,050 in 100 days. But if that’s too much for your budget, you could try the 50 envelope challenge instead. 

Related post: 100 Envelope Challenge Explained (Free Printable Chart!)

What Do You Need to Do the 50 Envelope Savings Challenge? 

The envelope savings challenge isn’t complicated. Here’s what you’ll need to do the challenge:

You can also get some stamps or stickers to seal your envelopes so you’re not tempted to dip back into them once they’re filled. 

It’s also helpful to have a printable 50 envelope challenge tracker to follow your progress. At the end of this post, you’ll be able to download a free printable envelope savings challenge tracker!

How to Do the 50 Envelope Challenge

If you’ve got your supplies together, the next steps are simple. Here’s how to complete a 50 envelope money challenge. 

1. Number your envelopes

The first thing you’ll need to do is number all your envelopes. You’ll want to number them from 1 to 50. 

Again, it doesn’t matter if you use plain white envelopes or colored ones. But they do need to be large enough to hold cash.

2. Shuffle your envelopes

This next step is really important. 

Mixing up your envelopes so they’re out of number order is what makes this a money challenge. Since you never know what envelope you’ll pull, there’s always some excitement and mystery involved. 

Otherwise, pulling envelopes each day could get predictable and you might lose your motivation to keep going. 

3. Put all your envelopes in a safe place

After you’ve shuffled your envelopes, you’ll want to put them somewhere that’s safe but easily accessible. 

As mentioned, you can use a basket, box or a plastic container to hold your envelopes. Even a coupon organizer would work if you’d prefer something more compact. 

4. Draw one envelope each day (or each week)

The 50 envelope savings challenge really begins once you draw your first envelope. 

There are two ways you can draw envelopes:

  • One envelope each day
  • One envelope each week

Either way, you’ll still end up with the same amount of savings. But you can decide whether saving daily or weekly works better for your budget. 

5. Add cash to each envelope you draw

Once you draw your envelope for the day or the week, you’ll add cash to it. The amount of cash you put in should match the number on the envelope. 

So if pull envelope #3, you’d add $3. But if you pull envelope #50 you’d save $50 for that day. 

The 50 envelope challenge math is really simple. You just match your savings to the envelope’s number. 

At the end of the challenge, if you fill all the envelopes, you’ll have $1,275 saved!

6. Set filled envelopes aside

To make sure you’re not doubling back and pulling the same numbers, you’d want to set envelopes aside as you fill them. 

That way, you don’t trip up and miss a day or lose track of where you are in the challenge. 

If you’re looking for a free printable envelope savings tracker to complete the challenge, be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom. I’ve got a free 50 envelope savings challenge tracker you can snag!

50 Envelope Challenge Chart

Curious about how the 50 envelope savings challenge math breaks down? This chart illustrates how much you’ll save as you fill each envelope. 

Envelope 1$1Envelope 11$11Envelope 21$21Envelope 31$31Envelope 41$41
Envelope 2$2Envelope 12$12Envelope 22$22Envelope 32$32Envelope 42$42
Envelope 3$2Envelope 13$13Envelope 23$23Envelope 33$33Envelope 43$43
Envelope 4$4Envelope 14$14Envelope 24$24Envelope 34$34Envelope 44$44
Envelope 5$5Envelope 15$15Envelope 25$25Envelope 35$35Envelope 45$45
Envelope 6$6Envelope 16$16Envelope 26$26Envelope 36$36Envelope 46$46
Envelope 7$7Envelope 17$17Envelope 27$27Envelope 37$37Envelope 47$47
Envelope 8$8Envelope 18$18Envelope 28$28Envelope 38$38Envelope 48$48
Envelope 9$9Envelope 19$19Envelope 29$29Envelope 39$39Envelope 49$49
Envelope 10$10Envelope 20$20Envelope 30$30Envelope 40$40Envelope 50$50
Total Saved$55$155$255$355$455
50 Envelope Challenge Chart

If you add up all of the envelope totals you’ll get $1,275!

50 Envelope Money Challenge Variations

The standard 50 envelope challenge has you saving money in 50 envelopes over a period of 50 days or 50 weeks.

But if you’re looking for some other ways to do the challenge, you could try these variations instead:

  • Double the number of envelopes to 100 (and save $5,050 instead!)
  • Number your envelopes from 51 to 100 and challenge yourself to save $3,775
  • Number your 50 envelopes using only even numbers

These envelope savings challenge variations could help you save more than $1,275. And they’re all fun ways to trick yourself into saving more money!

Related post: How to Do a No Spend Challenge (3 Pro Tips to Help You Save Money)

Why Do the 50 Envelope Challenge? 

woman holding a blue piggy bank and smiling

Doing a money saving challenge can be a great way to set aside money for different financial goals. 

For example, you might be working on saving an emergency fund, planning a vacation or setting aside money to buy a house. Or you may want to save up extra money to pay off a debt

Using an envelope challenge turns saving into a fun game since you never know which envelope you’ll draw next. 

The 50 envelope challenge is a great option for people who want to save in smaller amounts. With the 100 envelope challenge or 200 envelope challenge, you’re having to save larger amounts of cash. 

The most you’ll ever put into an envelope on any given day with the 50 envelope challenge is $50. 

And if you’re spreading the challenge out over 50 weeks instead of 50 days, the amounts you need to save are less likely to put stress on your budget. 

Related post: 52 Week Money Challenge (How to Easily Grow Your Savings)

50 Envelope Challenge Printable Tracker

As mentioned, I’ve got a printable tracker you can download to keep tabs on your progress when doing an envelope challenge.

Just scroll down to enter your email address below and your savings challenge tracker will be on its way to you!

50 envelope challenge printable tracker

How to Get Money to Save for an Envelope Challenge

Taking an envelope savings challenge assumes that you have extra cash to save. But if you could use a little income boost for the duration of the challenge, here are some of the best ways to get free money to save!

Those are some of the easiest ways to get money to save for an envelope challenge. 

If you’re looking for ideas on how to make extra money regularly, there are plenty of side hustle ideas you can try. 

For more inspiration on ways to make money, check out these posts:

50 envelope challenge pinterest image

50 Envelope Savings Challenge FAQs

Still have questions about how the 50 envelope saving challenge works? Here’s a recap of the most important things to know before you get started. 

How much do you save doing the 50 envelope challenge?

If you fill all the envelopes then you’ll save $1,275. That’s enough to start a baby emergency fund, pay off a chunk or credit card debt or fund another financial goal. 

How long does it take to do the 50 envelope challenge?

Depending on how you approach the challenge, it may take 50 days or 50 weeks to fill all your envelopes. The duration of the challenge really hinges on whether you’re more comfortable saving money daily or weekly. 

Should I do the 50 envelope money challenge?

The 50 envelope savings challenge could be right for you if you want to save money in smaller increments. The challenge is flexible enough to allow you to save daily or weekly and still end up with the same amount of money at the end. 

Can you do a digital envelope savings challenge?

If you’d rather not have to deal with multiple envelopes or piles of cash, you can do a digital version of the 50 envelope challenge. 

First, you’d need to open a savings account. For this, I recommend saving with an online bank to get the best rates.

Looking for the best high yield savings option? Compare savings account rates online at top banks and credit unions now!

Once you open a savings account, you’d do the envelope challenge as usual. Only when you draw your envelope each day or week, you’d deposit money to your savings account instead of stuffing an envelope with cash. 

Doing a digital envelope savings challenge means you’re not having to head to the ATM to withdraw cash all the time. And with the right savings account, you can grow your money even faster by earning a great rate. 

Final thoughts on the 50 envelope savings challenge

Doing a money savings challenge can be a great way to fund your goals and improve your finances. 

Whether you do the 50 envelope challenge (or try a 100 or 200 envelope challenge) it’s important to be consistent. Making sure you fill every envelope can help you save the most money (and get the most satisfaction) from your efforts. 

Need more money-saving ideas? Read these posts next:

50 Envelope Challenge Explained

About Rebecca Lake

Rebecca Lake is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance, freelance writer and homeschooling single mom of two. Since 2014, she's paid off nearly $100,000 in debt and grown her net worth to seven figures. Her work has appeared online at top personal finance websites, including Forbes Advisor, Bankrate, Investopedia, The Balance, and U.S. News & World Report. Find out more.

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