Author: Singapore's Budget Babe

Fly to London for $400+ (all inclusive) on Norwegian Air!

Saw this on the news today and I was thinking to myself that this is too good a deal to miss, and it’ll be a crime not to share!   A return trip to London typically costs about $1000, so this sounded a little too good to be true and I decided to check it out for myself.   Since the flights by Norwegian would only commence in September, I tried looking at the November – December fare calendar as that would be a comfortable period for me to travel. I browsed all the way until March 2018 as...

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DIY Budget Trip to Cinque Terre

Seeing how the local tours (in Florence, which was my anchor city for this trip) were charging over 100 euros per person for a tour to Cinque Terre, we decided to DIY our own in order to cut down on costs! In doing so, we managed to spend only 1/3 of what we would have originally spent if we went with the tour group! Here’s how we did it: – Purchase a train ticket to La Spezia (we used trenitalia). If you’re unable to get the express train, you may need to do a stopover transit like we did...

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Resources for a Budget Wedding

Riddle: What’s the most expensive one-day affair in Singapore? If you guessed weddings, you got that right. With the costs of the average Singaporean wedding ranging from $40,000 – $70,000, it is no surprise that more and more couples are looking for ways to reduce this figure. After all, wouldn’t it make more sense to spend it on your new home instead (which you’ll be living in for years to come), rather than splurging everything on a one-day event that hardly lasts 15 hours? If you’re here because you’re thinking of DIY-ing your own wedding, or just hoping to...

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Tips on getting your wedding gown from Taobao

For brides on a budget, there are a few ways you can save on your wedding gown while still getting a pretty awesome gown to wear or to keep. Option A: Buy a gown from Taobao (S$40 – $400 will get you pretty awesome ones)Option B: Buy a used gown off Carousell (S$80 – $1000 for designer gowns. Only use this method if you / your family isn’t superstitious about used gowns, plus you can request to try it on at the seller’s place before you purchase too).Option C: Rent from a budget studio like TheWarehouseBridal My absolutely gorgeous wedding...

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How I Taobao-ed my wedding gown (and why it may make more sense to rent locally)

Getting your wedding gown(s) – Should you Taobao or rent locally? Being a Taobao bride can really help you to save a lot of money on your wedding outfits, accessories, decor, and more! There are even vendors offering video editing services, invitation card designs and prints on Taobao, and other related services. You’ll just have to be good at using keywords to find all these hidden gems. However, what looks good on the models may not always look good on you. On the other hand, there’s a reason why most brides still prefer to rent. When you rent locally,...

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Should I get a bridal package or go ala-carte?

Between convenience and quality, which do you value more? Bridal Packages If you answered convenience, then bridal packages may be easier for you as they can offer a great deal of convenience to brides who are too busy to take care of the nitty gritty details. This can include your pre-wedding shoot, printed albums, makeup and hairstyling, corsages and bridal bouquet, your gowns and suits, actual day photographer and videographer, etc. They can all come included as a single package for your convenience without you having to source from multiple vendors. Of course, the trade-off is that the price...

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Giveaway: The Future is Female Conference Tickets

Do women make better investors than men? What “special” feminine traits or instincts might we have that could potentially give us an advantage over our male counterparts? While investing success doesn’t necessarily boil down to gender differences – whether biological or psychological – there’s no denying that it has been mostly the men who have been receiving recognition for their investing prowess so far. Warren Buffett. Charlie Munger. Bill Ackman. Benjamin Graham. Carl Icahn. Peter Lynch. George Soros. Sir John Templeton. Where are the women? Now, before we jump the gun, perhaps it might be worth understanding why the...

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DIY Your Pre-Wedding Shoot (for all budgets!)

Should couples spend on the pre-wedding shoot? Or is this an unwarranted expense? In the Western world, most brides wouldn’t dream of letting their groom see them in their wedding dress before the big day. On the other hand, pre-wedding shoots are hugely popular in Asia, with some couples shelling out a bomb for these photos. Before we went for ours, I deliberated going to Korea to shoot ours as it has always been a dream to do so! However, that would bust our budget, so we consulted a few happily-married couples whom we knew personally to ask them...

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What We Can Learn from Starhub (Dividend Darling Turned Nightmare?)

Starhub used to be a darling stock for most dividend investors. With a generous track record over a decade of paying out a relatively high dividend yield, its business is also fairly defensive and recession-proof. There have been a few good articles about Starhub’s recent slash in dividends, which you can read here, here and here. In this post, I’ll be looking at the red flags that signalled this impending dividend cut as well as whether this drop could present a buying opportunity for Starhub right now. Here’s Starhub’s historical dividend payouts: Year Dividends Paid (SGD) Yield 2016 0.20...

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Are hackers outsmarting our banks in their security measures?

A year ago, news first emerged that hackers may have found a new way to outsmart our banks in their security measures, even after they introduced their 2-FA authentication protocol where consumers would have to key in a One-Time Password (OTP) sent to their mobile phone whenever they make an online transaction using their credit card(s). Their method? Just hack into the victims’ mobile phone, where the hackers can then access both credit card details and OTPs at one go. Apps or websites where the consumer have previously keyed in their credit card information can reveal the card details,...

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Will Trump’s Policies Result in a Stock Market Crash?

Last week, the Business Times published a great article – Markets are underestimating the risks of accelerating inflation written by Neil Behrmann – which I thought was worth a second look. In the nutshell, the author believes that there will be rapid inflation coming our way, especially with Trump’s policies, and that this could be a sign of an impending market crash. I quote some parts of the article which I thought was worth sharing here (in dark grey). For those of you familiar with macro economics, you might find some of these familiar: RISKS of accelerating global inflation have been...

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Housing Finances – How Much Will Your First BTO Cost You?

Although we’ve yet to apply for our BTO, I’ve been asked to share my plans and financial calculations, so here goes! Hopefully this will help those of you who need a guide on how to plan your finances for your housing needs. I previously wrote about waiting for the February 2017 BTO launch, but unfortunately neither Bukit Batok nor Sengkang appealed to my fiancé and I as we prefer to stay within 20 minutes of our parents. Nonetheless, HDB conducts a BTO exercise every quarter with projects in different towns, so we’re now waiting for the May 2017 launch instead! ...

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How to get FREE money for ang baos you’ll have to give out during CNY

Aside from the food, blackjack and family reunions, my favourite part of Chinese New Year includes receiving my annual ang baos (red packets filled with money – a Chinese New Year tradition in Singapore). After all, who doesn’t like free money?! With the wedding just around the corner, this year’s CNY visitations were particularly significant as it marked the last time I can get my ang baos. After we’re married, we’ll need to start giving out ang baos instead – so that means every CNY henceforth will be an immediate deficit in our wallets. Seeing all the children get...

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Women In Investing – Interviewing Lauren Templeton

Warren Buffett. Benjamin Graham. Peter Lynch. Philip Fisher. George Soros. John Templeton. Where are the females among the world’s most recognised investment legends? A look at Investopedia’s list of the world’s greatest investors shows that there’s none. Among the money managers, only 2% of hedge funds are run by women, although a large percentage of them are in the top performers of the last 10 years. One of them is Lauren Templeton. As the great-niece of respected investor Sir John Mark Templeton, Lauren grew up learning about investing as a young girl, and benefited personally from her Uncle John,...

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2017 (Monthly) Money Saving Challenge

Now that a brand new year has started, this is the time where many people typically decide to improve their personal finances as part of their New Year’s resolutions. One popular savings challenge that has been attempted for many years is the classic 52 week money challenge: Week 1: Save $1 Week 2: Save $2 Week 10: Save $10 Week 30: Save $30 Week 52: Save $52 By the end of the year, you would have saved an extra $1,378. While I think this is a great way to get started on your savings, I’m not the biggest fan...

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