The Best Time Save Money is When It’s Most Difficult To

How to Overcome the Difficulty of Saving Money

I remember walking to our house carrying one kilo and half of rice, 2 cans of sardines and a few packs of noodles with a wide smile that could almost reach my ears. The smile came from the feeling that I was able to finally buy food for me and my mom. Just like every Filipino wanting to help their family, there’s this feeling of priceless joy whenever you bring something to the table – literally.

I was paid a little over 20 pesos per hour then and made barely 3000 per month. Yet, I was so happy and hopeful. Too hopeful that I even decided to open to a savings account in a local bank. Every time I get my salary, I look forward to putting a portion of my meager salary to the bank. It was very difficult to make both ends meet as I needed to pay my tuition (it helped that I was a half scholar), buy our necessities and still manage to save money.

Looking back, I’m thankful for that decision to try and save money.  I’ve learned to overcome the hurdles and most importantly, I’ve learned the principles of saving money – especially when it was most difficult to.
1.       Find a bank that allows you to open a savings account with low opening balance

Most banks require such a high opening balance that’s why most people are often discouraged to save at all. 

1. Find a bank that’s near your workplace so you won’t be tempted to go to the mall first and splurge your hard earned money there. 

The goal is to have a budget plan and ensure that a portion of your money goes to your savings account.

I started by opening an account (with now defunct LBC Bank) and I would save at least Php200 every salary. Remember I was only earning Php3000 then so Php200 was already quite a challenge for me though it may seem too small for some. The key is to not be discouraged with how little money you start with, as long as you keep doing it.

2.  Focus on your needs, eliminate the wants
I was lucky to have an Ilocano mom who was (still is) thrifty and taught me the value of hard work and the need to save money. At that stage of my life, I knew I couldn’t afford to have expensive wants, so I focused on our needs instead. Simple things like buying vegetables for lunch instead of meat (not only because it’s cheaper but definitely healthier) helped me develop a discipline in myself to actually stick to the budget no matter how tempting it is to buy something else. It’s those little things we sacrifice for the sake of our long term plans that will eventually pay off.

3. Have more goals and fewer likes
Focus on the things that you wish to achieve rather than the things you wish to have. Stay away from activities or even friends who don’t help you achieve your goal to save money. Yes, stay away from parties and all sort of unnecessary expenditures. I don’t suggest you be a loner, but trust me, there’s plenty of time for celebration once you’re to have enough savings already.

Don’t be afraid to start small, develop a habit of prioritizing your goals over fleeting pleasure and keep that discipline in yourself. Once you’re able to save, think of ways on how you can make that money grow whether it be opening a new business, investing or keep saving till you’re sure you’ve learned enough about where you’ll spend your money.

The best time to save your money is when you think it’s most difficult to because you’ll try and find ways to actually achieve your goal and develop discipline you couldn’t establish in any other ways.

The History of England’s Spring Bank Holiday – Origins and Meaning

Origins of Bank Holidays

Bank holidays have been recognized as official days off in England since 1871. The name of this holiday stems from the fact that in the past, banks were shut down during these holidays and no trade could take place.

An act was passed in 1871. It listed four official bank holidays in England, Wales and Ireland. Scotland got five bank holidays. In England, the bank holidays were to take place as follows: 

- The Monday of Easter
- A day off between May 11 and June 14, called Whit Monday
- The first Monday of the month of August
- December 26th or Boxing Day

In 1903, a bank holiday was added to the four already designated days for Ireland. St. Patrick’s Day was added to the bank holidays, as well. 

In 1971, Whit Monday was replaced by a fixed bank holiday. The last Monday of May officially became the spring bank holiday. Additionally, the day off on the first Monday of August was moved to the last Monday of the month.

A bank holiday may also refer to an emergency bank closure due to unusual circumstances. Such a holiday took place in 1968 during the sterling crisis. Prime Minister Harold Wilson suggested a bank holiday to close the London gold market and decrease losses.

Today, there is a law allowing for the dates of the bank holidays to change. New bank holidays can be declared to mark special occasions, as well. After the election of the Coalition Government in 2010, there was a suggested move of the spring bank holiday to the month of October. Pre-consultations were launched in 2011 to investigate the possibilities of alternative holidays and the supposed benefits of such a decision.

Apart from bank holidays in England, there are such days off in other countries like the US, Hong Kong and India. The rules are similar and the banks are closed for operations during those holidays.

Do Shops and Banks Work on Bank Holidays?
Till present day, banks remain closed on the spring bank holiday and the other official holidays. The situation, however, has changes since the past, as many shops and businesses decide to open and service customers during the bank holidays.

Employers are not required by law to give their workers a day off on the bank holidays. Still, many companies declare these official holidays and refrain from performing business operations. Emergency services like healthcare, firefighting and police aid will be provided during the bank holidays.

People who want to do anything connected to their savings accounts, bank transfers, bank investigations or loan provision would have to wait until the next day. Many forensic accountants like forths forensic accountants and many other forensic accountants however, will work during the official bank holidays and provide people with assistance about bank fraud and other money-related issues. 

The Contemporary Spring Bank Holiday: 
Spring bank holiday is one of the most eagerly awaited vacation days today. The entire weekend is used by families to travel and spend quality time together. The nice weather during the spring is one of the main reasons for the popularity of this day off.

There are interesting traditions related to spring bank holiday that people respect till present day. In Staffordshire’s Endon, people dress their well, hold a celebration and crown a Well Dressing Queen. A special competition takes place on Cooper’s Hill in Brockworth. People race down the hill and chase a round cheese. The first racer to cross the finish line wins an eight-pound piece of Double Gloucester cheese.

According to local decisions, stores and businesses may be either open or closed during the spring bank holiday. If you plan to do shopping on the last Monday of May, you should figure out whether the stores of interest are going to be open.

Bank holidays have remained quite popular till present day. The fact that a day off is given on Monday provides people with an opportunity to schedule a long weekend trip or to simply enjoy the company of friends and relatives. Though banks are still officially shut down, many businesses are working and providing services on the bank holidays. The tradition is still alive, though slightly modernized.

Beware of SCAM Jobs - Dynamite Solutions LTD

Beware of SCAM Jobs Online

Don't you just hate it when you're searching for job online and come across a total time waster such as scammers? You may view more scams here

Today I got this email from Richard Wood (I highly doubt if that's even his real name) with Dynamite Solutions LTD. 


Here is additional information about the vacancy with Dynamite Solutions LTD.

Our main goal, within the company, is to match our clients needs with the best freelancers available, world wide.

Job title is Payment Processing Agent.

Job requirements:
- 18 years of age or older;
- Internet access;
- working telephone number;
- bank account (current/savings) or a Verified Premier or Business PayPal account. New accounts are also welcomed!
- availability of 2-3 hours per day.

Refer to the links below for additional information:

- No investment of money on your part;
- Long-term or Short-term employment is available;
- Base pay along with commission is guaranteed;
- Training is provided during the probationary period.
- This is NOT a sales position;

SIGN ON BONUS! Please follow the link:

Our company registration number is:

For further information or to request an application, please reply to this e-mail.

Thank you for your time and interest with our company.

Best Regards,

Richard Wood
Phone: 0141 356 1846
Fax: 087 2352 7716

Their website is quite shady and confirmed from this thread that such website is indeed a scam. 

Philippines Included in the World's Best Countries in Business English

The Philippines was named the world’s best country in business English proficiency, even beating the United States, according to a recent study by GlobalEnglish Corporation (Source)

GlobalEnglish has released early this month the results of its annual Business English Index (BEI), the only index that measures business English proficiency in the workplace.

For 2012, results showed that from 76 represented countries worldwide, only the Philippines attained a score above 7.0, "a BEI level within range of a high proficiency that indicates an ability to take an active role in business discussions and perform relatively complex tasks."

“This is particularly interesting because the Philippines, a country with one-tenth of the population of India, recently overtook India as a hub for call centers. Over 400,000 Filipinos are now employed in call centers, roughly 50,000 more than in India,” the study said.

The Philippines, which scored 7.11 and the lone country in the intermediate level, were joined by Norway (6.54), Estonia (6.45), Serbia (6.38) and Slovenia (6.19) in the top five.

GlobalEnglish noted that a country’s business English capability is an indicator of its economic growth and business success.

“It is not surprising that both the Philippines and Norway—the only two countries in the top five in both 2011 and 2012—are improving their economies, based on the latest GDP data from the World Bank,” it added.

Meanwhile, struggling economic powers (Japan, Italy and Mexico) and fast-growth emerging markets (Brazil, Columbia and Chile) scored below a 4.0 in business English proficiency, placing them at a disadvantage when competing in a global marketplace, the study said.

It also pointed out that shifts in global talent have put even English-speaking countries at risk.

“Surprisingly the BEI score for global workers in the U.S. declined from 6.9 to 5.09 since the original 2011 BEI benchmark, which is attributed to a majority of test takers being foreign-born engineers and scientists,” the report said.

Rest of the world ranked beginner and basic level

Based on a scale of 1-10, the average 2012 BEI score across 108,000 test takers around the world is 4.15 which is lower than last year’s 4.46.

Nearly four out of 10 (38.2 percent) global workers from 76 countries were ranked as business English beginners, meaning that, on average, they can’t understand or communicate basic information during virtual or in-person meetings, read or write professional emails in English or deal with complexity and rapid change in a global business environment, the study said.

Meanwhile, the majority of global workers (60.5 percent) from the represented countries scored between a 4.0 and 7.0, below an intermediate level, indicating an inability to take an active role in business discussions or perform relatively complex tasks such as presentation development and customer or partner negotiations, it added.

GlobalEnglish stressed that the 2012 BEI which showed a lack of business English proficiency is threatening the productivity of companies, industries and country-specific economies this year.

“Poor Business English skills are bad for global businesses and this year’s Business English Index suggests that many companies will be hard-pressed to achieve their desired performance goals during 2012,” said Tom Kahl, GlobalEnglish President.

“Addressing English skills gaps and ensuring that employees can immediately perform at the necessary proficiency level should be viewed as a strategic imperative for multinational businesses, as Enterprise Fluency, the ability to seamlessly communicate and collaborate within global organizations, can deliver significant financial upside,” Kahl added.

Headquartered in Brisbane, California, GlobalEnglish works with multinational companies – including Cisco, Procter and Gamble, HSBC, Phzer – to support performance in business English across the workforce around the world.

Here's the list of the 10 best and worst countries in the world for business English proficiency based on GlobalEnglish's 2012 BEI:

10 Best Countries:

10 Worst Countries:
Cote d'Ivoire
El Salvador
Saudi Arabia