With the holiday season fast approaching, it only means one thing – the arrival of bonuses.
However, with the Philippines’ Christmas culture, the 13th-month pay and other bonuses are almost always spent on parties, shopping sprees, sales, and gift-buying.
But what if you could spend them on other things that will definitely give a positive return in the long run, instead of spending on gifts and depreciating expenses?
So, if you’re unaware of your options, here are six ways that you can spend the holiday bonuses that will reward you in the long run.
1. Paying off your debt and loans.
In connection with the Pinoy debt cycle, having added income is an excellent opportunity to pay off your lingering debt.
It is better to pay off as much debt as possible and have a simple Christmas celebration than to spend them all on one occasion.
By paying off your debt earlier, you are putting yourself in a position of having more discretionary income in the future.
2. Starting an Emergency Fund
An emergency fund is essential for everyone because it is a financial safety net if something unexpected happens.
As a rule of thumb, an emergency fund is three to six months’ worth of expenses. So, using your bonuses to start an emergency fund or replenishing it due to unexpected circumstances is a wiser choice.
Your future self will thank you later for saving it instead of spending it. You may begin working on your starter emergency fund and slowly build on it.
3. Paying for Insurance
Depending on your insurance, you can have the option to pay for the whole year. So you’ll have more disposable income in the next few months.
I usually pay my long-term healthcare annually using my 13th-month pay to have a two-month discount on the monthly premium.
If your insurance has no added benefits for annual payments, you may choose the next one on the list.
4. Starting/Topping up Your Investments
As the year comes to an end, starting to invest is one way to use your bonuses wisely. Especially if you already completed the first four steps of a strong financial foundation.
If you have already started investing in other financial vehicles, adding to it is an excellent option for you.
You may consider one of the many available investment vehicles, like mutual funds, stock market, dividend investments, PAG-IBIG MP2, and more.
5. Invest in Yourself
The bottleneck of the completion of our goals is ourselves. All of us have goals and dreams, which we hope to attain one day. But we will never be ready to achieve our dreams unless we take time for personal growth.
Besides our time, we also need to invest money in our personal development. Buying books and online courses, tickets to talks and conferences, or paying for better equipment used in our jobs or side hustles are ways to spend your bonuses wisely.
Don’t buy things that will depreciate as soon as you pay for them. Knowledge and skills are some of the best investments you can have.
6. Share It With The Less Fortunate
The holiday season is when social inequality is most evident.
So with the season most associated with giving, may we be a channel of blessings to others – just like how we are blessed to have the things we have.
You may donate to a charitable institution or an NGO of your choice, which caters to causes closest to your heart and learn to give back.
It will help if you learn how to use your bonuses during the Christmas season wisely.
Sure, it will be challenging to save during this time, especially when sales, bazaars, and parties are happening everywhere.
But I promise you that if you can use your bonuses properly, it will pay off dividends in the future.
There is nothing wrong with spending, but I hope that where we spend it will significantly impact other people’s lives and not just our own.
Happy holidays and may we not forget the reason for the season – the remembrance of the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
God Bless and Merry CHRISTmas.
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