Tokyo (東京) is the fourth-most expensive city to live in around the world. The rents are high and the fruits are expensive. It may sound impossible, but there are certain ways to save money if you plan on living and working in the capital city of Japan. There’s no need to cut off the fun and enjoyment nor starve yourself to death. Here are three tips for you to spend your money wisely!
1. Have a monthly and yearly budget
With all the pick-me-up things available everywhere in the city, it can be hard to resist temptation. Everything has been made convenient through vending machines where you can get extra sneaky in buying quick treats. It may just be a small amount at the beginning, but it can add up in the end. To prevent this from happening, you have to track your spending habits.
It could be helpful to have an app which will allow you to organize your monthly and yearly expenditures. You may divide the budget into categories such as food expense, utility expense, rental expense, etc. It is very important to be realistic in setting your goals. Making this a habit will prevent you from spending unnecessarily.
2. Use your point cards
Japan is a country synonymous to point cards. Most stores offer membership reward systems. These are actually worth signing up for as some cards can be used for other stores. Aside from the accrued points, the card will also enable you to have free goodies and seasonal discounts. This is very convenient if you’ll be living in Japan for some time, which means you’ll be visiting the stores more often.
An example of this is WAON (ワオン), a Japanese electronic money system. It accumulates points every time you use it, but it has an expiration date so you have to renew to continue using it.
3. Be smart in choosing entertainment
Before heading to a particular entertainment area, it is best to check out their websites first. This can give you firsthand information on the different prices and discounts you can avail. If you’re planning on visiting Tokyo Disneyland or DisneySea, it is best to do so after 3 PM as entrance fees are cheaper.
Furthermore, cinemas in Tokyo are expensive as ticket prices start at 1,800 yen. If you’re into movies, take note of “Cinema Day” which occurs on the first day of every month. During this time, you can purchase a movie ticket for only 1,100 yen! Some of the cinemas that have this special offer are TOHO Cinemas, AEON Cinemas, and United Cinemas. Additional benefits are also provided to women in TOHO Cinemas as they can avail of a 1,100-yen cinema ticket on Wednesdays, which is called Ladies’ Day.
These three tips are surely going to be helpful if you want to make the most of life in the big city of Tokyo. Be more mindful where your money is going and cut off unnecessary spending.