Hari Raya Aidilfitri is just around the corner, and it is the favourite time of the year in Brunei. This is the time when people tend to splurge on buying things they need and want. However, knowing the difference between ‘Needs’ and ‘Wants’ can play a crucial role in managing financial stress.
Hari Raya surely has not been the same since the pandemic and as the nation is in the early endemic phase – surely, we would hope for a more festive celebration this year. So, while we are being mindful of the situation and following the SOPs, here are a few steps to also protect yourself from financial damage.
Monitor Your Spending
One of the best ways to monitor what you spend during the festive season is to keep a strict budget. Be more aware of what you spend during the festive season, one must make a list and stick to it.
Do Not Spend to Impress
It is too easy to get caught up in the latest trends – especially when it comes to Hari Raya clothing. We all want to look our best, but we can all agree that no look is worth going into debt. The same goes for unnecessarily spending on new furniture to impress guests or new cars to drive when visiting family and friends. We need to remind ourselves that the financial impact will last longer than the actual festivities.
Do Not Impulse Buy
It is easy to stray from the initial budgeting list and end up buying more than what you need – A few Tapak Kuda rolls, a few Kuih Mor tubs and before you know it you’ve bought a year’s supply of cakes and kueh. Impulse shopping is not good.
Use Cash or Debit cards
Remember that using a credit card means you’ll have to pay the card back. You’re not actually spending money you necessarily have. It’s nice to be able to just swipe the card in every purchase. The safest way to avoid credit card debt is simply to use cash or a debit card.
Less Spending on Open Houses
With Brunei being in the early endemic phase, people still have to be more cautious with their surroundings and consider whether it’s worth it to host Raya open houses. It is often during these times that Bruneian households tend to splurge on having an array of Raya dishes for guests. The safer option may be to omit hosting one, or if you do – have a smaller one for only close friends and family.
This article was first published on 09 April 2022 in our Weekly Epaper issue 188 | More stories here
THE BRUNEIAN | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN