Christmas is coming. Where will your bonus go?

Christmas is coming

One more week to go, December na! It’s Christmas time once again. And for most employees, you know what that means. :)

I know some companies already released the 13th month pay of their employees and some are just about to. I hope this blog makes it to employees on time (before they receive their bonus) to prevent them from overspending.

Where will your bonus go

Whether we admit or not, we Filipinos tend to overspend during this season. Everyone in the business and finance sector know this – did you happen to notice? Here’s what I mean.

It’s the Season of Holiday Sale

Pass by a mall starting BER months, diba sunod-sunod ang mall-wide SALE ngayon? Even before you get the chance to buy a gift for your loved ones, baka sa’yo palang magkulang na dahil sa “buy 1, take 1”. Again, like I always remind everyone, there’s nothing wrong to buy something you really want/need. But before doing so, always ask yourself “Do I REALLY need this?” – do this twice, or even thrice! I hope this will prevent you from buying something ONLY because it’s on sale.

Buy Now, Pay Later

If you’re a credit card holder, I’m sure you can relate to this. Nakatanggap ka din ba ng email or brochure regarding the “perks” of using your credit card this season? How about a call from their agent about their “Christmas Loan” offer?

Remember that credit card companies are running a business. They don’t suddenly become “giving” just because it’s Christmas.  Alam kasi nila ang mindset ng Pilipino tuwing Pasko: “BUY NOW, PAY LATER WITH MY BONUS”. This is also why you can see this almost everywhere when you pass by the mall (especially in the gadgets section) “Installment with 0% Interest!” At minsan dahil sa excitement, ang nakikita nalang na presyo ay yung dapat bayaran per month, at yung actual price, nakakalimutan na.

For example: Your dream gadget worth P36,000  is now available at P1,500 installment per month, 0% interest. Before buying this gadget, make sure that you are willing to pay for it in the span of 2 years. Siguardo ka bang gusto mo pa yan sa loob ng dalawang taon? Baka naman sawa ka na sa gadget mo, nagbabayad ka parin.

I recently learned from a former executive of a telecom company that during this season, the top buyers of high-end phones are from the middle and lower income class. People from the upper income class just wait for the free phones from their plan.

It’s funny how the rich seem to not want to spend their money. Maybe that’s why they are rich? :)

Before buying a new phone, make sure that you check its actual cost. (Read: Is What You’re Buying Worth It?) Baka naman yang bagong phone mo, katumbas ng 100+ working days mo. Is it still worth it? Only you can answer that.

Season of Giving

Christmas is always a time to enjoy. Just make sure that you are still spending within your means because it’s definitely NOT a season of borrowing money. Let us not forget that Christmas is a season of giving.

I’m not trying to make you feel guilty when you spend. But if there’s one thing I learned over the years, there’s always a joy in giving to those in need.

It has always been said that Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year and I couldn’t agree more. Just make sure that you don’t suffer paying off debt next year because of overspending in December.

Have you received your Christmas bonus already? Meron pa bang natira or wala na?

If you haven’t received it yet, how are you planning to spend it? Comment below

Aya Laraya

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  1. Flora says

    I just started working last July, I have received a proportionate amount of Christmas Gift, well, actually very minimal amount lang siya. Nonetheless, it remain intact and unspent. Hihi. I really wanted to save kasi, establish an emergency fund, then mag-ipon ng pang-invest sa stock market. :)

    Thanks for your blogs. Very encouraging and motivating!
    Let’s spend our bonuses wisely! Happy holidays everyone! Cheers! :)

  2. Maria says

    I’m working at a state university and hence we got our bonus early. It was very timely because I used the money to help my relatives from Tacloban. I could say that it was the most well spent bonus ever.

  3. says

    Thanks for the reminder Sir Aya. Businesses are really targetting consumers to spend by giving these very tempting offers. Kaya I stay away from them during this time of the year. Hehe. Isa pa, madami din kasing tao sa mga malls. Ayaw ko makipagsiksikan. This way, I can hold onto my bonus that can be used in either emergency fund or investments.

  4. Cherry Joy Acub says

    I learned my lessons from last years Christmas. I spent more than I should be, making me penniless for the following year. And so for this year, I am more careful on spending my Christmas bonus, since this is also the time where I had plenty of money, I prefer saving it for investment later on.

  5. ycel mendoza says

    thank you Aya for this eye opening blog, love it! l’ll make it sure that i will not gonna overspend my bonus this december, instead i will start to save for my future.

  6. Rad says

    I’ve budgeted mine by:
    – donation to Yolanda victims
    – 2-months worth of payment for car loan
    – a portion goes to “inaanaks” (yes, with the ‘s’), and relatives
    – i’ve opened a new savings account
    – saved for payment to insurance + investment plan
    Luckily meron pang natira for adhoc gastos, tulad ng mga taong biglang nagpaparamdam at bumibisita during Christmas season para mamasko. ;-)

    I’ve avoided Christmas parties and exchange gifts. Okaaay, KJ kung KJ but doing it saves me a few bucks to spend para sa mas mahalagang bagay. ;-)

  7. Raine says

    I started working in July and decided to spend my 13th month and Christmas bonus to clear my debts before the year ended. Although it was not that huge but I am proud I ended up my year peacefully and now I am very determined to stay away from debts, avoid overspending and start saving my hard earned money. :)
    Happy living!

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