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Personal thinking

Save but spend wisely

Today, I was out with my brother in the afternoon to take the “free” taxi shuttle to Terminus Panama. The driver was having a conversation with the girl in the front seat about cellphone minutes. The girl was commenting about how 2 000 minutes per month call is too little for her, the driver couldn’t believe what he heard. Here how’s the conversation continues:

“That’s about 30 hours of calling each day… You talk at least an hour a day?” said the driver.

“Yeah, sometimes a little more. I always pay extra on my bill for going over my limit.”  replied the girl.

Amazing…

Let see mine:

  • 100 minutes per month of calls and incoming calls on the weekdays.
  • I have 1000 minutes per on the evening/weekend.
  • Unlimited coming/incoming text messages.
  • caller display and service charges are free.

Total of cellphone bill per month: $30

My social life may not be as fruitful as the girl from the taxi shuttle but I often forgot how much we spend on so the called “needs” of the 21st century.

I remember telling the Roger representative on the phone to lower my bill. I was ready to sacrifice many little “luxuries” that I don’t need because I want to save as much money as I can. When I was hesitating to keep the unlimited text messaging, the girl was convincing me to keep it because she thought it was a “great deal”. For $10 a month, I get unlimited text messaging. I may be considered a cheapskate for some but I don’t see the point of this offer. I can’t even get pass the 100 text messages per month and let alone the 500 text messages for $5 that they offered me two years ago. Since my cellphone bill has been reduced from $55 to $30 per month, I thought why not have this little luxury and annoy people with text messaging. Unfortunately, it gets old and boring after a few days of constant text messaging.

I’m always amazed at how many things we considered essentials on our everyday life. For instance, the multiple functions on our cellphone, unless you work somewhere where you need all that, you can do without it. I may be look at as a  cheapskate but I work for my money and the thought of not spending it wisely is frustrating.  I’m sure many people have made stupid even regretful purchase decisions, I do that often. Many are unintentionally making a lot of unwise spending decisions like the cellphone bill for example, they never ask if they can do without some of the functions or find an alternative way of staying in contact with their friends.

I know people have the right to spend their money how they want, if it truly makes them happy, I’m happy for them. If it was just to fill their self-worth, I am against it. If it just a way for them to give in to the peer pressure, I’m also against it. By any means, I don’t have any rights to judge them but I’m just voicing my opinion in this blog. I’m also guilty on some occasions to do something to fill my self-worth but I try to snap out of it as soon as possible. I just try to be happy with what I have and to spend on something that truly makes me happy like traveling.

Beside, I don’t think I am cheapskate but frugal.

Cheapskate:

1. a person who is stingy and miserly.

Frugal:

1. economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving orsparing; not wasteful: a frugal manager.

Taken from the useful website: dictionary.com

My parents never teach me about financial responsibility but I saw through them how poor money management can do to a person in the long term. I was determined to not fall into this trap in the future by learning more from the frugal world and learn more about investing. Someday, I’ll own a lot of assets and be rich!

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