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Friends on a Budget: is it Possible?

Frugal Potluck

Friends, on a budget: Is it possible?

Building Passive Income: 2 Main Factors

1. Living frugally so that you have more money to invest in things like dividend paying stocks.

2. Putting the time in to develop the passive income streams through building websites, books, Iherb, Amazon, etc.

Going Out in South Korea Usually Involves Drinking

Living in South Korea as an expat (I’m originally from Canada), one of the things that frustrates me is that “going out” usually involves hitting up an expensive, sub-par Western restaurant and then going out for a night of expensive drinking at one of the expat bars, ending the night with a taxi ride home because the subway is closed for the night, which obviously goes against all good things “frugal living.”  It’s very easy to drop over $100 on a night like this, which kind of distresses me. Friends on a budget: is it possible to have them when you don’t want to spend lots of money going out? Yes!

Friends, Minus Dropping Huge Hits of Money

Beach Days

I live in an amazing city with 5 beautiful beaches.  Playing some frisbee, drinking some cheap beers from the convenience store, floating around on a tube, having a bonfire and camping, grilling some food with a group of friends….there’s no better way to spend a day.


If you want to see a friend, it’s usually cheaper to just cook a good meal for them and invite them over to your house then to go out to a restaurant.  It’s friendlier too….we can relax on the couch, listen to some good music, cuddle and play with the cats, and not be rushed out anywhere.  As a bonus, guests will often bring a bottle of wine.  Of course, you have to be a good cook so people will want to come! Even better, have a potluck and people will cook you delicious things!

Board Games

If you have people over for board games, they’ll usually bring their own drinks and I make up a big pot of stove-top popcorn (kernels/oil/salt) for everyone to enjoy.  Of course, I’ve invested a bit of money into buying a few games, but I’ve used them a lot so am not too worried about that. It’s all about cost per use, right?


Go for a hike or a bike-ride, or play some tennis or basketball.  It’s basically free.  Bring some snacks and just enjoy your day together.

The Take-Away:

It really is possible to have friends and live frugally!  Just avoid the expat restaurant and bar scene, which sucks away money like nothing else I’ve ever seen.

For more on frugal living, particularly if you’re an ESL teacher living abroad, this is the book you need: The Wealthy English Teacher: Teach, Travel, and Secure Your Financial Future. It also tells you everything you need to know to get started with investing in the stock market as an expat, after you’ve paid off your debts of course.


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