Dubai is extravagant. For many living on a budget in this amazingly luxurious city seems like a big challenge. However, there are actually some great ways you can enjoy living in this wonderful city without it taking a toll on your bank balance. Here’s how:
1. Be informed about your finances
Okay, so first thing’s first – before you start off saving, you need to keep a log of all that you spend in a day and what the actual cost of day-to-day living is in Dubaifor you. This basically involves two things: the amount which you are spending in a day, and the amount you want to be able to save.
Once you have determined your daily expenses, it is time to analyse. For instance, if you buy a couple of cups of coffee every day, you can save approximately thousands of dirhams every year by saving on buying one cup of coffee a day. It’s that simple, and it works! You can apply this formula to many other daily situations and reap great results. Though this sounds like a simple exercise, the results may surprise you. And it all starts off by keeping a check on your daily spending.
2. Fight temptation
You can be anywhere in the world and you’ll still have to practice self-control to maintain your savings. But this is especially tested when you live in Dubai. You are in the world’s biggest hub of luxury resorts and recreation after all. One question to ask yourself before you decide to buy anything in Dubai is this: would you buy this thing/facility if you were in your home country?
This does not mean that you don’t enjoy what this great city has to offer once in a while. What it means is that you stop yourself from splurging on things that you don’t necessarily need every now and then to stay on a budget.
3. Open a savings account
So you are saving. Great! It is time that you open up a savings bank account to easily transfer money from your pay cheque to your savings account. Another tip which really works is that you open up your savings account in a different bank. Why? Because that way, you can simply keep saving and forget about it. As it goes with savings – the less you know how much you’ve saved the better as that way it stays safe for longer!
4. Save on rental and property costs
Rental and property costs are the biggest expenses for any expat. If you have a car of your own, it would be a lot more cost effective for you to rent an apartment at a new development. Here is a list of some of the most affordable apartments in Dubai. You can also search for property rentals at Bayut.
5. Steer clear of the fines
Dubai has huge traffic fines. For instance, speeding can cost you an average of 600 AED. Being fined more than once a month can take a huge toll on your budget. The takeaway – drive carefully and obey the traffic laws as best as you can. Also, for parking, it is highly advisable that you buy parking cards to avoid having to pay for parking on daily basis. This will also save you money in the long run.
6. Limit your visits to restaurants
Dubai offers some of the world’s greatest foods from all across the world. Yu want to hang out and enjoy fine dining once in a while? That’s cool. But don’t make a habit out of it, especially if you want to live on a budget. The solution – opt for shopping on economical stores like Carrefour and Union Coop where you can get your monthly supply of groceries at considerably lower prices. Home cooked meals are way economical and a lot healthier. Two birds with one stone!
7. Take advantage of bank deals
Banks often offer great deals which can represent significant savings. These can range from simple ‘buy one get one free’ options to recreation packages that can prove to be highly cost effective. Check with your bank from time to time to take advantage of great deals so you can have fun and enjoy while remaining on your budget.
So there you have it! 7 practical and easy-to-follow tips you can use to bring more stability to your financial life. Life is all about balance. Money matters, but just because you have to live smart and save doesn’t mean you have to take a break from enjoying life altogether. Remember, making smart choices today and enjoying life in moderation in the now will prove to be highly beneficial for you in the long run. Till then, live smart!