South Korea in the Perspective of a Filipino Expatriate

Friday, January 10, 2014

52 Weeks Money Challenge for OFWs in South Korea

This 2014, are you up for a challenge?

I would like to introduce to you this 52 Weeks Money Challenge specially designed for OFWs here in South Korea. The reward of this challenge is something that everybody will look forward too. This aims to test our discipline when it comes to money and practice saving. If executed well, I know you will gonna repeat this next year.

We, the OFWs should learn to put value on our hard earned money, and by value I mean using the money wisely in spending for our family's needs without compromising the gratification of our own needs and wants. I once overheard a conversation between two OFWs at a remittance center in Seoul. I didn't intend to eavesdrop but these two women talked like they're in a tambayan in front of Aling Nena's store, so I listened anyway and here's how the conversation goes:

OFW1: Oi mare, nandito ka na pala. Magpapadala ka rin?
OFW2: Oo mare, buti na lang maaga tayo no? Maraming tao dito kapag ganitong araw ng pagpapadala.
OFW1: Oo nga eh. Padala na naman tayo ng pera, malapit na exam eh.
OFW2: Ako nga 2 Million won ipapadala ko pang tuition ng dalawa kong anak at pampaenroll na rin nila for next sem
OFW1: Aba, ang laki naman yata ng 2 million won.
OFW2: Eh yan daw kailangan nila eh, hindi ko nga alam magkano talaga kelangan, baka niloloko lang ako ng mga ito.
OFW1: Mga kapamilya talaga natin kung makahingi wagas eh no? Akala nila namumulot tayo ng pera dito
OFW2: Tama ka, ako nga may gustong bilhin para sa sarili ko pero di ko mabili. Ipapadala ko lahat ng pera sa pinas.

I should have let that conversation pass but I was dumbfounded by the fact that she can afford to send 2 Million won for a tuition fee but she can't buy something for herself. That's not healthy at all. You work your lungs out and you can't even reward yourself? I know that our primary purpose as OFW is to help our family in need, but we should also be wise. We can provide for the needs, but not as far as the wants. We should save up, and we should buy something for ourselves too.

Together with other OFWs here in South Korea, we are discussing this challenge in a Facebook group called PINOY STOCK MARKET INVESTORS IN KOREA. This is a small group with very few members where we discuss financial management advice, investment tips and other information on how to manage our income. We have come up with this 52 weeks money challenge that could make you save up to 3 Million won in 52 weeks. Here are the mechanics:

1. Think of something you want to buy for yourself or something you want to do. You want to buy a car? Gadgets? Go on a Vacation? Think about it and make it your goal for this year. It must be something that would gratify yourself.

2. Get a bank account or a box or a piggy bank where you want to put the money for weekly challenge.

3. Follow the savings plan below. Every week, from the first week of January up to the last week of December, you ought to put in the corresponding money per week into your savings.



If you think the amount of money for saving per week is too high to handle, you can adjust it depending on your income. You can follow the same pattern but with different amount based on how much you can afford.

3. At the end of the year, get all the accumulated amount of money saved and materialize what you have planned on procedure number 1.

This is one way of rewarding yourself for the hardwork you had done for one whole year. Please note that this is not your actual savings per se. This is just for this challenge and on top of any other saving plans you have right now. I think this is a good way to discipline yourself when it comes to saving the money.

Are you going to accept the challenge?

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