#PlsSaveMe: Michelle’s Saving Story

A huge part of adulting — the wild and tumultuous time when you begin making money in a world full of milk tea, concerts, fast fashion, and more joyous diversions — is forcing yourself to make small, responsible decisions that feel like total buzzkills until they pay off in the long run. For instance, there is no appeal to saving money until you encounter emergencies, or decide to live on your own. What then?

Take it from Michelle Ongsioco, a 30-year-old digital marketing consultant who, after a few money missteps when she was younger, now uses GCash Save Money as one of several tools to prepare for the future.

So, Michelle, tell us about your spending habits. Which items do you heavily spend on? What item would you consider a splurge or luxury?

When I was still single and employed full-time, I spent heavily on dine-in or take-out meals and booking a ride to and from work. But now that I am married and working from home as a digital marketing consultant, I spend heavily on food na lang like groceries so I can just cook meals for me and my husband since I love trying out different recipes. But on the days when I am busy with work, I opt to have food delivered to our place.

Growing up, we were taught to save naman, but not on food. So for me, I really splurge on good food. Aside from this, I now splurge on good skincare products ‘cos I am not getting any younger. [Laughs]

Have you ever obtained a large sum of money, only to spend it all? What did you spend on?

When our mom passed away, we sold our house, and the money was divided among us siblings. When I received my share, I invested a bit of it in stocks, index funds, rent, and a property. Then I spent most of it on staycations and travels abroad.

It took more than a year to spend what I got. After it ran out, I realized that while I enjoyed traveling, I spent more on it than I should have because it felt like I had so much money. My only relief was that I saved a little, and some of them are investments that will mature over time.

When was the moment you realized you have to save money?

5 years ago, when I decided to live independently. I realized that I only have myself to rely on to continue living. This was when I was still single. But now that I am married, I have to save up for my family’s future.

How long have you been using GCash Save Money?

I started GCash Save Money six months ago. I was curious about it. So, I tested it out with the minimum amount. It’s easy to open an account and start saving by linking a bank account to credit funds on your GCash account and transfer it to GCash Save Money. I find it hassle-free since you just do it all on your smartphone.

Do you think anything has changed since you began using it?

When I checked my initial savings, I was surprised to see that I earned interest already. So I added more money. This is definitely a good option in saving and investing money. A great way to not put all your eggs in one basket.

What’s your advice for people who have had the same experience when it comes to saving money?

Don’t be afraid to save your funds in different baskets, like GCash Save Money. It requires very little work to build, and it will also work for you over time.

It’s hard to avoid impulsive money decisions when you’re navigating adulthood, but GCash Save Money gives you something easy to fall back on by making it easier to save. For as low as P1, you can start a small savings account in your smartphone and earn at the highest interest rates. It will not only save you during urgent emergencies, but it can also help you build something new in the long run!

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