Money makes the world go round, sure, but let’s face it…Singaporeans would rather skimp than splurge, no matter what the occasion. Our city-state has one of the highest concentration of millionaires in the world, yet we know ourselves to be especially ngeow or stingy with our money. This oft-satired trait of ours is unlikely to go out of style anytime soon, and definitely not by Christmas so in the spirit of giving, here are some ways you can save more cash this holiday season:
1. Re-Gift Freebies
You are doing sweeping clean out of your storeroom-like bedroom and you discover a boxed iPhone flip casing that has been sitting on your desk for the longest time. That’s right, you got that from some forgettable roadshow giveaway last year, didn’t you? It’s time to get rid of it. By wrapping it up neatly and chucking it under the Christmas tree.
2. Shop At Daiso
Technically, not everything on display at Daiso is priced at $2. But you go for the $2 shelves anyway. You make yourself feel better with the age-old consolation that it is not the price tag but the thought which truly matters. Your pals could definitely do with that two-bucks tupperware set right?
3. Shop on Groupon
If there are people who can bring printed Groupon slips to a dinner date (a first date, at that!), make no mistake about it: there will surely be people who would trowl Groupon for last-minute Christmas steals. You know what, we’ll give that to you. In the grander scheme of things, the $20 reflexology + foot soak package (U.P $188) is a lesser evil compared to Daiso.
4. Host A Christmas Potluck
Due to social protocols, upkeep and whatnots, the guests to your kickass Christmas potluck will be bringing their specialty dishes in a bid to impress. You just sit back, relax, and provide the booze, because you have intelligently and effectively outsourced the toughest part of the party.
5. Eat At A Budget Michelin-Starred Restaurant
Christmas is the excuse of excuses to overindulge the tummy, and no one says no to Michelin-star eateries. Ready your year-end bonus and take your family out early, to one of these hawker stalls that were bestowed with the prestigious Bib Gourmand Award earlier this year.
6. Make The Most Of Christmas Birthdays
Do any one of your friends’ birthdays fall near or around Christmas Day? Then they are probably already resigned to the fact that they’ll only be getting one combined birthday/Christmas present from you right? Make the most of Christmas birthday’s and save some precious cash while you’re at it. They’ll understand. They’d do the same!
7. Skimp On Christmas Decor
When your friends and neighbours visit, don’t be fazed when they find that everything seems exactly the same. No Christmas trees, no glittery stars, no jingly bells. The only thing Christmas-y about your humble abode is the Christmas pop playlist streaming from your Spotify free trial. Christmas decor is expensive so skimp on these if you want. We’re not judging.
8. Complimentary Gift Wrapping
During your Christmas shopping, you find yourself straying into shops that promise complimentary gift wrapping, go for it. It is not because you don’t trust yourself to do a good job which doesn’t end up looking like a scrunched up dumpling, but you don’t want to spend a lot of money on an enormous roll of wrapping paper and you’re only using a small square corner of it.
9. DIY Gifts
For FOC gifts that really count for something, making your recipients something from scratch is the only move we approve. Doing up photo frames might cut too close to half-baked territory. So we’d say knit them a scarf…or maybe a neat little, customised stocking for them to fill all their other gifts.
10. Grab All The Deals
On the first day of Starbucks’ 1-for-1 Christmas drinks promo or any promo for that matter, announce it to your Whatsapp chat groups. Maybe even attached a screenshot. At the end of the day, those deals are there to be taken advantage of and to provide you with more value during the holidays so why not take it?
11. Go Abroad
Everyone may be tad surprised by your sudden, out-of-character extravagance but after an extended period of miserly tendencies, it’s about time you treated yourself to a winter wonderland experience out of town. Secretly though, the idea was to buy yourself a Christmas present so you can escape buying others presents.
(This article first appeared on GoBear, a comparison platform that shows you the best deals from key players in the financial market so there’s no need to shop around. GoBear makes it super simple for users to compare credit cards, insurance and financial products to find the one that’s right for you.)