There are a few people I know who run businesses that are not registered with the Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). Many of these businesses operate on an on-demand/ad-hoc or all-cash basis. The people who run them often don’t register because they don’t consider what they do to be a real business. They also are unaware of the legal requirement to register… or they think that registering is too troublesome, time-intensive, or difficult (luckily, it is none of these). (more…)
I was recently invited to a grand opening of a restaurant in Singapore. As part of the grand opening celebration, the restaurant was providing free food and beer. But the food was mostly “junk food”. Most people were happy with free flow beer, but since I don’t drink anymore and I didn’t consider the “junk food” to be a proper meal, I stayed a bit to revel in the atmosphere, and then left to have dinner. (more…)
There was a time when I cared deeply about what Valentine’s Day gifts I gave and received, and a time when the price mattered. You can say this was a time when advertising agencies, the “media”, and the social community tried to convince me that money, products, and gifts were measurable expressions of love. Having had one relationship which involved the frequent exchanging of great and beautiful gifts but a terrible relationship, I soon realised that luxury gifts do not make a luxury relationship; in contrast, grand gifts are often a way of compensating for a terrible relationship. Here are some ideas on how you can express your love while celebrating an age-old tradition without having to spend all your ang bao money: (more…)
When it comes to investments, everyone wants the same thing – zero risk, high double-digit returns, and full liquidity – which is like saying I’m looking for a magical unicorn. But what if I were to tell you that there is something that comes close to this ideal, yet only a few people know about it. In fact, this investment is so good that you are limited in the amount of money in which you can invest. Sound too good to be true? Well, here are the details and you decide for yourself:
If you need $1000 for an emergency – to pay for health-related expenses, school fees, a funeral, or (heaven forbid) ang bao money – there are only a few ways for you to get that money. You can earn it, save it, find it, ask for it (through donations, grants, crowdfunding, etc.), steal it, win it, trade it (through selling/pawning an item), inherit/receive it as a gift/acquire through marriage, or borrow it. Most people would perceive the last option to require the least amount of effort, risk, and/or luck. But borrowing money in Singapore can be tricky and can require more effort than what you might expect. Unfortunately, the “easiest” loans to borrow are from loan sharks and unlicensed moneylenders who charge outrageous rates and have the reputation of engaging in nefarious, unlawful practices. Fortunately, with Onelyst, you can compare loan rates easily and quickly across all licensed money lenders in Singapore (over 160 of them), and even apply through their online platform.
Look inside your closets, cabinets, and storage spaces, and you’ll find plenty of things that you own but you rarely use. There are even some items that you probably spent more time acquiring them (deciding, researching, browsing, shopping, buying, setting up, etc.) than you spent actually using them. Such things might include power tools, kitchen appliances, and clothing for special occasions. It may also include hobby, exercise, or sports equipment, (which you may have taken a hiatus from). For whatever reason, we all are guilty of buying and having too much stuff. And this stuff spends our money without us even knowing it. But there’s a way to recoup some of that money. (more…)
In this new digital economy, middlemen are being reduced or completely bypassed, and technology is making it easier for producers/sellers and customers/buyers to deal directly with each other. The property market is no exception. In a previous article, I argued that unless property agents demonstrate value to their clients, their services will be more and more debased as technology makes transactions easier, more transparent, and so “boilerplate” that it’s possible for two parties to DIY the transaction. With Ohmyhome, this DIY route is made more feasible, and is completely free.
Making restaurant reservations via phone is something I try to avoid. I can’t tell you how many times people misspell my name (seriously, who would name their child String?), make errors notating the reservation, answer the phone with “jiang huayu, keyi ma?” (translation: “can you speak Mandarin?”), or don’t even answer the phone at all. With Quandoo, a restaurant booking app and web portal, I can make a reservation online or through their app at any time and I am even rewarded points for each booking I make and attend. These points can be redeemed for cash. (more…)
After flaunting her fabulous $10,000+ holiday in Japan, a colleague once asked me, “So where did you go during Christmas?” I told her that I went to the happiest country in Asia Pacific (ranked #1, by the UN), where the life expectancy is one of the highest in the world (ranked #3) thanks in part to the efficient and advanced healthcare system (ranked #2, by the EIU). There, I visited Asia’s Top Amusement Park (ranked #1, by TripAdvisor) and the World’s Best Zoo (ranked #3, by TripAdvisor), then had the world’s most affordable Michelin-star meal. In addition, finding my way around was easy because of the high-speed and reliable internet and WiFi (ranked #1, by Akamai) and the efficient public transport system. This place had it all – world renown theatres, museums, architecture, cuisine, street food, parks, the world’s best airport, and many other attractions… and you never had to worry about traveling alone or getting kidnapped by a cabby. And do you know what the best part is?... you’re already here.
In addition to getting free ebooks and audiobooks from National Library Board’s Overdrive (which has just increased borrowing limits), you can get tons of free books from Amazon which you can read on your phone using the free Kindle app. All you need is an Amazon account (does not require subscription to Amazon Prime or Kindle Unlimited). And with Amazon arriving in Singapore early next year, you might want to just create an account anyway. (more…)