When I was younger, I was earning way below minimum wage.

My favorite way to save money was to skip riding the tricycle.

Just so you have some context, here’s what my commute looks like:

I would ride a tricycle to the jeepney station.

I would ride a jeep to a bus station.

I would ride a bus to the city where I work.

I would ride another jeepney or shuttle to where I’m working.

I would repeat the process in reverse to get home.

The tricycle out of our village costs ten pesos.

The tricycle going home costs twenty pesos.

I figured I would save thirty pesos by not riding the tricycle.

Thirty pesos multiplied by twenty workdays is 600 pesos a month.

I thought it’s a smart move.

Now that I’m older, I’m reviewing the strategies that I used to save money.

Somehow I feel, those strategies didn’t help me that much.

Here are my thoughts.

If I take the tricycle, the travel time is two to three minutes.

It’s consistently five minutes both ways.

I live in a small subdivision, and there are no long lines at the tricycle station.

I’d spend an extra 30 minutes walking instead of riding the tricycle.

Here’s the thing.

If you’re earning minimum wage, you’re earning approximately ₱70 per hour.

That’s ₱35 for the thirty minutes.

I thought I was saving ₱30 a day.

I’m still spending ₱35 a day.

What hurts more is every four to six months, I would need to buy new shoes.

That’s because I’d ruin my work shoes walking an extra 2KM a day.

That’s an extra ₱2,100.

That’s a shoe penalty of ₱175 a month.

Yes, I can only afford 700 peso shoes at that time.

Let’s get back to the point.

Remember when I thought that I was saving 600 a month?

I was only saving ₱425 a month or ₱100 a week because of the shoe penalty.

I’m writing this at 34.

I’m thinking how stupid I was for skipping two or four jeep rides to save an extra 40 pesos a few times a week.

I thought I was saving money.

I’m usually tired when I get home.

I’ve arrived to work late.

I’ve been fired once for an attendance issue.

I’ve performed poorly at work because I’m exhausted.

It didn’t occur to me that I probably should have just done the math and paid ₱30 for my tricycle rides.

I’d also probably reach my personal and career goals faster.


Here is some additional information that I’m moving to this section.

If I walk, the travel time is 10-20 minutes one way.

My walk time in the morning is ten minutes because I’m often running or walking as fast as I can to avoid being late.

I spend twenty minutes walking home because I’m often too exhausted, so I move slowly.

If you’re earning 16k a month:

You’re earning ₱100per hour.

Thirty minutes cost ₱50.

Twenty days eat up ₱1,000.

One year of that is ₱12,000.

If you’re earning 25k a month.:

You’re earning ₱157 per hour.

Thirty minutes cost ₱80.

Twenty days eat up ₱1,600.

One year of that is ₱19,200.

If you’re earning 40k a month:

You’re earning ₱250 per hour.

Thirty minutes cost ₱125.

Twenty days of that eats up ₱2,500.

One year of that is ₱30,000.

Thank you for reading.

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