Early last week, the EPF released an expenditure guide to help Malaysians “attain a reasonable and acceptable standard of living” estimating that an individual only needs RM1,870 to cover their monthly expenses. We ran an online poll to ask you, Taylorians, if you agreed with the guide and also to share tips on how to save more money. Here are some of your suggestions, and some of ours!
Tip #1: Set Budget Goals
“Limit the amount of money you carry with you. You can’t spend what you don’t have.’ - @hanankattala
Every month, set a clear goal for yourself such as clearing off credit card debt, setting a fixed amount of cash withdrawal each week, and sticking to it. Make use of budget tracking apps such as Spendee, Monefy and much more available in both Google Play Store and App Store. Besides that, also check with your own banking apps for budget tracking services. To stay organised, you can also divide your money into categories like “food”, “entertainment” and “activities” to monitor your spending and know when it’s time to stop spending in that section (or swap funds).
Tip #2: Make your Own Meals
“Cook simple breakfast/lunch from home and don’t waste money for unimportant things” - @peiyee.wu
“Cook for yourself. Only RM30 per week.” - @s_linggggg
“Make oats at home, no need to buy breakfast, eat lunch around ¾ so not hungry at dinner” - @rukhii_
Opt for making your own meals for as many days as possible and why not try fun recipes from YouTube that are easy to make like from Buzzfeed Tasty and Pick Up Limes? Not only is it cheaper, it is also healthier as you would know the ingredients that goes into your food. Try adding in snacks and include ingredients that satiates you for longer periods such as greek yoghurt, oatmeal and nuts. Another quick tip: you can also add in chia seeds to your water to keep you full for longer. Most of all, make this a fun activity with friends by organising a simple pot luck to show off your cooking skills!
Tip #3: Enjoy Free Activities
There are many ways to have fun for free. There are great apps out there that offer free trial classes that you can take advantage of such as ClassPass, FutureLearn and Duolingo. Free markets are also a great way to explore and pick up some free goods, or you could just do some window-shopping at bazaars, pasar malams and shopping malls. Be your own tourist around your area by exploring free parks, public galleries and sight-seeing spots around KL. Otherwise, make your own fun right here on campus by playing sports or watching a movie at our very own mini-theatre at the Taylor’s library.
Tip #4: Take Advantage of Promotions
Love shopping? You can still shop while saving money too! Take advantage of promotions and offers from brands via apps like The Entertainer and Fave. While you’re at it, you could also explore earning some money, rewards or cash back via apps such as Manis, Shopback and even from e-Wallets including GrabPay and Boost. Don’t forget your student pass too! Get discount rates at movies, restaurants and more.
Tip #5: Hop on Public Transport to Get Around
“Take the bus and trains. Taylor’s is really interconnected well with public transport.” - @duncanjosh_
If you want to explore outside of campus, there are cheap alternatives to driving out. Hop on to the nearest Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) to get around Subang, or get to a LRT station to go further into KL. We even have a walkway to take you directly to Sunway Pyramid. You can also use ride-sharing services like Grab to get to your destinations (and earn Grab Points!).