Top 5 things your money is wasted on – 2019 version for Millennials!

We wanted to have fun on this post and poke at useless things that we believe money is spent on. Do you agree with these top 5 in our list?

Money waster #1: Learning how to drive! ($583/y at least!)

I had to put this in! Definitely telling my son, niece, nephew on it... Why?

Because self-driving cars are coming!

Your question is NOT if but definitely WHEN and WHERE!

Our government is keen to build a smart nation so Singapore is definitely going to adopt it early.

Before that, check this out, this is so cool! (This is 2018 Tesla Model X). 

What does it mean to you?

According to this article "when will self-driving cards go mainstream", it is projected that data transfer capacity could be ready by 2025.

Yes as early as year 2025!!

That means when self-driving cars go become mainstream, your driving license could become obsolete.

All the time and effort to get it qualified and it's use could be only for 6 years.

According to Dollarsandsense.sg, you're going to spend possibly $2,000 at least!

From a forums, I've learnt that its closer to $3,500 for most!

That is potentially $333/year gone and no car to drive (unless you go overseas).....

Knowing how to drive will unlikely help your future career so....

If you really really want to drive because it feels cool, don't do the manual driving and pay more. Do at most the "auto-driving" classes ya?

Money waster #2 : Getting Streaming boxes for TV ($39.80/m at least!)

DO you use streaming from Singtel or Starhub?

In a recent survey from straights times, Singaporeans are one of the fastest-growing audiences in the world for online pay-TV platforms.

Subscribers to big telecom companies such as  Singtel are dipping in their number of subscribers over the years. Lets do a recap on how much it cost to be a Singtel subscriber for a streaming box.

​First you have to a channel package for yourself. So lets do the Starter Pack

​Then you have to pick which of the channel package you want to choose.

​Lastly is setting up the streaming boxes and takes up to an hour or so for the Singtel staff to come to your house and set it up.

So the total price for owning a Singtel Streaming box is an average of $39.80 per month plus a mandatory additional charge of $122.10.

Jeez no wonder this kinda of services are dying out. The charge to set up the streaming box could have bought me a year subscription to Netflix. 

​Credit to seedly.com

Singtel and Starhub offer similar range of channels as their streaming boxes plus most of have in common is a trial period which is fantastic for you.

If you have a smart TV at home now, you just need to download these apps and you are ready to go. If you don't, get a streaming device that has basically the same function as a smart TV.

The cheapest one out of the bunch would be the chromecase starting from $28. It operates much faster and can be paired with mobile devices fairly easily. 

With now streaming sites like Netflix, Viu and toggle gaining traction, is no wonder why streaming boxes are fading into obscurity. 

Money waster #3 : Falling for promotional items (depends on what you get hooked on!)

If you ever go to a super market chances are you will definitely see deals like "buy 2 for a the price of ..."

Or maybe eggs now discounted at 30 cents less than the original price.

Chances are you are lured with a "Loss Leader strategy" that almost all retailers uses for pushing items to you without you realising!!!

So whats a Loss Leader you may ask?

It's a proven pricing strategy where a product is sold at a price below its market cost to push other items of more profitable goods or services to you!

The best examples to put this is you're looking for body soap and there's a promotion that says 2 refill's for $6.85.

Sounds like a good deal right? But when you see the shampoos, face wash etc. next to it, you start to think you might want to buy them too.

So you grab all the personal hygiene products that you might "need".

Walking towards the cashier you see toilet paper, toothbrush on sale and the cycle continues until you realized you spend about $50 on items where originally you just needed body soap.

For a Loss Leader to work in stores on YOU, it will fulfill at least one these requirement

  • Perishable Goods or Essential Goods (Like bread, eggs, toothpaste etc,)
  • Place in inconvenient spot (You ever realize why all most essential products either very far away from the supermarket entrance)
  • Limit the max amount of the sales product you can buy

Saving hack: When you go shopping be focus on items you need and nothing else!

Money waster #4 : Paying full price for Grab ($0.30/trip at least!)

If you use Grab often, here's 2 tips to help save an extra bit of cash.

First, use grab pass or buying grab coupon. 

If you use grab more than 10 times a month, this can really save you a lot of money. 

Grab offers 3 different monthly pass to choose from. (Psst you and friends can split the grab bill so if you want to even save more share with your friends the subscription price)

  • If you grab when going​ for special events , maybe late work unoften ​get the lite pass.
  • If you grab ​more than 10 times a month, i highly recommend get the basic pass.
  • If you are a grab-aholic just get the extra pass or just buy the coupons from online retailers like Qoo10 as they are also very flexible with the purchase and normally comes in bulk so you save from $0.30 up to $4. 

Second is to use American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Credit Card to pay for your grab rides.

You earn up to 3.3 KrisFlyer miles per S$1 spent. In addition, receive 500 bonus KrisFlyer miles the very first time you pay for your Grab ride with your Card!

 (Offer is capped at the first S$200 spend in each calendar month.) This card is also on our post "Top 5 credit card to pay for your insurance premium" blog post.

Having said these, if you are struggling to save at least 20% of your income, consider public transport more and cut back on your total Grab expenditure. It could easily be a few hundred dollars.

Money waster #5: Online Shopping without discount coupons (at least $200!)

Do you go online shopping on promotional season like 11.11 , black Friday, electronic Monday etc? 

For these seasons, it is more of survival hunt of who gets the FIRST product!

If you do not already know, there are good coupons to STILL further offset the total bill!

I've saved more than $200 thanks to using coupon finding sites and researching on the best promotional seasons and coupons available.

Tips to recommend when buying during promotional period is to

  • Research your product 101% (If you are looking for a camera, decide the brand and model first after doing sufficient research on YouTube or store visits)
  • Set a reminder to get coupons/products fast and early (Some sites like Lazada have change their exclusivity for their voucher/products to have limited time or to a certain number before it cannot be redeem anymore.)
  • Pick 1 retailer to buy from when promotion happens (By the time you have decided that this site has the best deal, the product is sold out.)

This are the 2 trusted sites that i use to find coupons for online retailers like lazada, nike,etc.

They are cuponation.com.sg and vouchers.todayonline.com which are really great to get you up to speed which are the hottest promos they have available for you.

​As said on falling for promotional items point i made, stay focus on what you want/need and stick to your original budget​ ​and nothing else.

What to do next?

With all the money saved up, start building passive income!

Check out my video on 6 passive income strategies!

The Astute Parent

A parent who has a sharp acumen on sieving through 'alien' financial jargon to dish out bite size financial tips from a parent's perspective.

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