Personal Finance

It's still 5 days after your last paycheck and you realize that you won't have enough money to get you through the next two weeks! Are you experiencing "petsa de peligro" already? While you may not have spent a large sum on the new iPhone 7 yet, you still find it hard to survive on what's left in your wallet. If you want to save money, perhaps you might consider cutting back on these everyday splurges.

Daily addictions that are NOT helping you save money

Spend less on: Coffee

Your daily cup of Joe may be the one responsible for draining the funds in your wallet. We get it. You need your caffeine fix very Monday (we do as well), but do you really need to splurge on a “venti caramel macchiato” daily? Save money by cutting back on this high sugar drink.

How much do you usually spend for your daily caffeine addiction? Okay, so you might have rolled your eyes a bit. I mean, who buys a venti caramel macchiato daily? That's crazy! Apparently, not as crazy as it seems as people buy signature coffee 4 to 5 times a week whether it's from Starbucks, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, or their suki homegrown coffee shop. Coffee remains the staple drink of Filipinos and it keeps growing year by year. Granted we spend an average of 150 for a single cup at our favorite coffee shop (a venti caramel macchiato costs about 175, by the way), the costs really do add up. If you are a habitual coffee drinker, you probably spend 3,000 per month just for your caffeine fix.

Save money for: Opening a bank account

With ₱3000, you can already open and maintain an ATM savings account at BPI and PNB. If you still want to use some of your money for the occasional trips to the coffee shop, the BDO ATM Savings Account and Metrobank ATM Savings Account can be opened at ₱2000. Meanwhile, you can also open an ATM account at Chinabank, Landbank and RCBC for only ₱500. There are accounts that help you in budgeting your money when the account can be viewed online. Ask your teller about it. 

You don't have to fully give up your coffee shop experience, and we are not asking you to! We of all people know how hard it is to survive the daily grind without our fave cup of coffee, but we do recommend that you save money for the rainy days.

There are many ways to save money without giving up on coffee entirely. You can brew your own steaming mug at home or bring your own to-go cup to the office. Try to eliminate your signature coffee to one to two times a week and put the remaining money on opening a bank account and maintaining it. The first step to saving is budgeting your money, cutting back on spending, and then actually opening a bank account. Once you opened a bank account, you can put regular monthly savings for emergencies or for buying big ticket items. Don't you feel a little better already? The long term benefits of saving are better than a strong cup of coffee, mind you.

Spend less on: Eating out

Don't have time to prepare your baon? Perhaps you'll find time once you find out how much eating out costs you. Filipinos regularly spend around 100 to 200 daily for meals, and possibly more if you eat two meals outside the house. This does not even include the occasional merienda during breaks. If we tally the cost, this is around 6000 or more a month. 

Food trips are good, but if they leave your wallet anorexic at the end of the month, then it's time for some change. Learn to save money by cooking basic meals and freezing some to be heated the next day. Plan your meals so that you can have something exciting to eat every day. Try to wake up a little earlier to cook and prepare your baon for the day. It's not dyahe to bring your baon to the office. What's more dyahe is not budgeting money and going broke at the end of the month because of constantly eating out at restos.

Save money for: Opening a stock market investing account

Want to learn how to save money and make your moolah grow? Take your savings to the next level and open a stock trading account. It only costs 5,000 to open an account from an online broker. When you buy stocks, you can own shares from major companies in the Philippines. Sounds cool, right? 

Stock trading can even be fun like playing your fave video game. However instead of trading stocks for short term, we recommend investing for long-term by constantly buying stocks from reputable companies from the money you save each month. Bring your baon now, save money, and retire a millionaire. What could be more sosyal than that? You can also count on honest to goodness bloggers out there like The Frustrated Billionaire on stocks trading for your reference

Spend less on: Beer and cigarette

Giving up on your smoking and drinking habit can have positive effects not only to your health but also to your wallet. A pack of yosi approximately costs 65, while a bottle of SMB Light is priced at 30. You might not know it but cigarette and beer takes you back around 2,000 a month - and adds a toll to your health.

Save money for: Life insurance

Protect yourself not only by reducing smoking and drinking, but also saving up for a life insurance coverage. You can save your money and use it to buy a life insurance policy that covers you for 1 Million. You can even be covered for health and critical illness or even disability, depending on your lifestyle. The younger you are, the cheaper your insurance premium will be so it's best to start budgeting money now and buy your insurance policy early. Remember that your sweldo stops the moment something happens to you. Protect yourself now because you are your best investment. 

Budgeting your money can be challenging but once you have your savings, investment and insurance in place, you will realize that it is worth the effort. Look at places where you usually spend your sweldo and find ways to save money.

Finally decided to stop splurging? Check out GoBear Philippines for more tips on how to save money on credit cards and other expenses.