This Kitty Has More Money
Okay, you have a monthly paycheck, but on top of that consider that the cost of living is rising worldwide, the price of food, and the exchange rate of won to the dollar! It’s a headache enough to wish you were the kitten.
How many of you are finding it harder each day to pay the student loans, save a little, and feel good about your financial security?
1) Eat a can of beans once a week.
I’ve tried the tuna fish diet for quite some time since college, but even tuna fish is getting pretty expensive at around $1.50 or W1500 per can. I’ve noticed that there are cans of beans (baked beans) which go well with crackers and cheese. Stay away from the Cambell’s Soup as these tend to be pricey in South Korea.
2) Create an emergency fund.
I take the 2-Liter water bottles and cut a small coin slot into the top. I made one for the large W500 coins and one for everything else. Over a year and a half, I was able to collect, along with stray W1000 bills which I impulsively threw in whenever I found them, I was able to collect a grand total of W400,000 ($400US) to put towards my vacation in Spain. This is the most money I have ever saved by “not saving.” I also used to have a separate bank book into which, when I made money, I would transfer W500,000 ($500) randomly and try to forget about. Make sure to label this bank book “Emergency fund” and date it so that you actually don’t forget about it. You will find it one day when you need it, trust me on this.
3) Ride a bike, an electric bike.
Double benefit for this one. Slim down riding a bike. Some naysayers will balk at the idea of riding in Seoul’s “dangerous” city streets. But in reality, any city street is dangerous, especially if, drumroll, if you ride dangerously! The second benefit is actually not about saving gas. I never drove in Seoul, so there really isn’t much of a benefit for me. However, at one time I didn’t know my neighborhood well, and with a bike I quickly found that I could cover great distances without ever getting tired. I learned that there were actually three supermarkets with the fruits and foods I liked, and plenty of cafes which were previously unknown to me on foot.
–MoneyMan will continue the discussion again next week.