The truth is out. You won’t believe how Singaporeans are spending their money on frivolous things.
According to a survey conducted by YouGov for payments company Visa, Singaporeans waste about $2,600 a year on unplanned spending.
And you might be surprised by what we spend most on unknowingly- snacks, leisure shopping and coffee breaks. Accordingly, an average local individual spends $50.32 a week on non-essential “spending”, with those aged 45 to 54 spending the most at $146.95 a week, while those aged 18 to 24 spend the least at $76.68 a week. To put it simply, it’s about an extra $216 per month. If you have read our previous article, you would know that you can easily save $300 a month just by switching out your daily coffee habit.
So how about mindless snacking and shopping? Here’s some extra strategies to help you save up that “mystery spending”, without having to compromise on your lifestyle too much:
1) Literally Buy Lots Of Snacks… Like In Bulk
One of the top new year resolutions every year is “losing weight” and “living healthier”, and we all know mindless snacking on junk food like potato chips and chocolate bars are not going to get us there.
It doesn’t help that we often see these snacks placed strategically near check-out counters at supermarkets and even pharmacies such as Guardian.
So what can we do to curb this?
Well, a common caveat makes absolute sense here: “fail to plan and plan to fail”.
There are a few ways to plan your spending:
- Set aside a weekly or monthly budget to spend on snacks. Make this part of your food and grocery budget, so that you know you’d need to sacrifice on others in the same category, making it a more “painful” choice.
- Buying in bulk works as well, although what you choose to buy can have an impact on your waistline or pocket. If you snack on dried fruits and nuts, we all know that buying a bigger packet always make more economic sense, if you can portion it out. Instead of buying fancy-looking packs of fruit and nut mix, buy unsalted nuts and dried fruits separately, then mix it up yourself.You’ll find that you can save 20% more money doing it this way.
[image credits: pixabay]
- The easiest way is to switch to fresh fruit and yogurt, cutting out junk directly. After a while, you’ll realize eating a whole orange or 2 is much more filling and satisfying than eating a whole pack of Oreos, not to mention that it’s tremendously healthier.
[image credits: pixabay]
2) Bring A Penny-Pincher To Shop
The second biggest category on money spent is on leisure shopping or shopping for non-essential items. While the Straits Times article failed to mention what these items were, I can imagine it to be an extra piece of clothing or buying toiletries such as hair care products or cosmetics from shops such as Watson’s and Daiso.
You might find it difficult to stick to your shopping list and staying near the fresh food aisle… looking at non-essential food items such as canned food and soft drinks “just in case” we are going to have that impromptu party that never happens.
One way how you can make every shopping trip a planned one is to perhaps bring your partner or a family member along to to make sure you stick to your list.
A stricter way to this – give yourself a set amount of cash each week so that you do not spend more than what you intend to.
On top of this, leave your credit and debit cards at home!
Well, this might be a little extreme, but if looking at your spending history and realizing you have too much money “gone without knowing where it went”, then you should benefit from these strategies!