Yesterday I was wondering where all my money went and how I could possibly spend around $2000/month since I generally try to live quite frugally. I’ve thought more carefully about it and been looking at some of my spending via online banking and have figured out the following areas where I actually spend quite a bit of money:
1. Transportation. My car: I paid cash for it (of course), but gas in Korea is very expensive. And if I’m going to be drinking, I will often take taxis instead of public transportation. Paying for a car and using taxis often is kind of a double whammy of money-spending. I’ve decided to just drive more, and not drink. Or, go out but be extremely committed to leaving early enough to take public transport.
2. Eating and drinking. I spend a significant amount of time at the expat bars and the microbreweries here in Busan, which are expensive. Although I don’t consider myself a frequent bar goer, it seems that I go there more often than I think for things like trivia and board games and other activities that don’t revolve around drinking, but nonetheless involve it. I’m going to make a much stronger effort to plan activities with friends that are more free-ish like potlucks or hikes or board games or book clubs.
3. Travel. I kind of tend to forget that I spent 10 weeks in January/February in Thailand and 3 weeks in Malaysia in July. 13 weeks of vacation in a single year adds up and it wasn’t only the cost of the actual vacation, it was also the fact that I wasn’t doing overtime during that time. So my earnings were definitely less than they could have been (by maybe $8000). But, it was worth it and I don’t plan on cutting back in this area.