Retirement can be a scary phase for many people. Imagine your monthly paycheck stops coming in but the expenses remain where they are! That is a terrifying feeling for everyone.
However, if you have planned your retirement funds, then the situation will not be that bad. If you think you haven’t saved enough in your younger days or are generally planning to cut down on some expenses, here are a few handy tips that will make the transition smoother.
Food: Find ways to cut down on costly drinks and food
Eating out is an expensive affair in Singapore. Especially if you love to indulge in your favourite Scotch Whiskey with each meal when you eat out. Cutting down on alcohol will ensure the happiness of both – your wallet and your liver!
You can also buy your groceries online to use offers, ditch your fancy restaurant for a food court, or grab amazing dining deals on credit cards. Alternatively, why not use all the new free time to learn a new dish online and cook at home!
Travel: With more time on hand, take the bus and train more often
Yes, while you were working, you always had been rushing for client meetings, events, and to reach office on time. So taking the cab was quite often a necessity. And after all, when you’re younger, it’s okay to be a little indulgent every now and then.
However, now that you have a much relaxed lifestyle, why not consider travelling by a bus or MRT. What’s more? You will get a concession too on these due to your senior citizen status.
Deals: Don’t forget Senior Citizen discounts
With your newly acquired senior citizen status, you can get discounts at stores, restaurants, public services, and even attraction spots. For example, you enjoy a 50% discount on your River Safari ticket and 50% off selected meals at Swensen’s! The government has also introduced support schemes for resident senior citizens as part of its Financial Budget 2016. So, don’t be embarrassed of being called a senior citizen; instead, flaunt it. That you don’t look like one is a compliment!
Stay: Move to a more cost effective apartment
If you are living in a huge HDB flat close to your workplace (now ex), it’s time to rethink it. Moving places is a repulsive idea due to the general comfort you have where you have been living for years.
However, now that you don’t have any major commitments, it’s time to consider moving into a smaller, less luxurious HDB apartment — if that is an option. Also, since it is most likely that the children have all moved out, it only makes sense to let go your four or five-bedroom apartment and buy a two-room flexi unit or a three-room apartment.
This will make sure you don’t face any major cash crunch going ahead. It will also give you a chance to make new friends, explore a different area in Singapore, live in a newer estate or be closer to your children or grandchildren. If you are feeling adventurous enough, you can choose to move to another country and along with saving costs, soak in a new culture!
Airfare: Book off-peak flight tickets
Now that you have retired, you don’t have to spend extra and travel on weekends to save those precious leaves. You can pick weekdays to fly, which are a lot cheaper. This means you can spend more on your holiday. Also, most airlines, including Singapore Airlines, have exclusive promotions for senior citizens; so check them out before you book your flights.
Continue earning: Put your hobby to good use
If you have always had a hobby, why not take it up a bit more seriously and start coaching others. Remember how much you love playing the guitar? Imagine how much fun it will be to teach it to others. If you have extensive experience in a particular field like marketing or accounting, you can also become a guest lecturer in colleges.
Related: 5 Things You Gain as You Turn Mentor
Other expenses: Stop paying for things you don’t really need
You can carefully evaluate which other everyday expenses can be curtailed. Your mobile phone talk plan, that gym membership which you rarely use, and that extra car which you might not use frequently now – you can save money on them all. Sometimes, we don’t realise that the little expenses can add up to a substantial amount and cutting down on them can make a big difference.
Start planning your expenses right now and have a happy, healthy retirement without compromising too much on your lifestyle!
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