Every song, movie and drunk aunt tells us we need to let loose and live our best lives in summer. (Okay, Judy, back in your day uni was free and buying a house was realistic. Meanwhile, I’m neck-deep in HECS debt and cackle if someone assumes I’m looking at property.) So, forgive me if I’m reluctant about ‘living it up’ during summer.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m reluctant, but I always waste my fair share of dosh on margaritas and crappy motels up the coast in summer. It’s like the hot weather makes it impossible for me to maintain control. But then, when I do indulge more, I get a big ol’ wave of the guilts for throwing my one sliver of financial security out the window. Good summer fun!
So, how do other young Aussies spend during summer? Does everyone relax their money rules for a little while? Anyone else get bowled over by guilt? We polled ours audience to suss out some stats.
A whopping 71% of you say you did spend a lot this past summer (Judy would be proud). When it comes to your frame of mind, 36% of you had a “who cares?” attitude towards spending in summer while 37% loosened the reigns a little. On the other end of the spectrum, 14% of you had the same spending attitude as always, while 13% tightened the purse strings over the warmer months.
Let’s get into the weeds though.
Where did all our money go?
“I barely saved anything the last two months but it was WORTH IT. After months of lockdown in Melbourne over the last two years, it felt good to be spending time with family and friends, going on weekend trips and splurging when eating out at restaurants. I stayed in a hotel in Sydney twice and ordered $30 Uber Eats to the room; the dream. I knew it was only temporary so I let myself enjoy it guilt-free over summer. Now I’ve put a budget back in place and am keeping tabs on what I’m spending more.” – Jasmine, 25
“Alcohol, presents and li’l gifts for myself to cure isolation blues!” – Anna, 34
“Concert/festival tickets and domestic travel to attend some of them in Melbourne/Brisbane/Tassie. Because live music.” – Asha, 33
“Xmas gifts! The ones I love deserve the most so they got the most, unfortunately, my bank account got the least (money) after it.” – Kairavi, 24
“Valentine’s Day dinner and a long-overdue holiday to Melbourne for a weekend. The rest of the time I have spent almost no money at all because I’ve been repeatedly isolating after being a close contact, again.” – Mateus, 26
“This summer I really got my act together and ticked off the adult purchase I’ve been putting off for about a decade: a new mattress — one that does not poke and prod me all night.” – Emma, 26
“I definitely prioritise socialising in the summer, which means going out with friends for dinner and drinks at bars and restaurants means my spending increases significantly during the summer periods. During the Christmas/NYE period, I often get an extended period off work, so I like to organise travel during the summer periods and add that to buying Christmas presents for friends and family equals a big shock to my bank account!” – Liam, 27
“While I did aim to cut down my shopping habits this year, especially during Christmas (soz friends and fam), I spotted a great deal on a Samsung Galaxy S20 FE. I decided to drop some cash on one as my Chrissy present to me. Whoops. I don’t normally go for budget phone models (it was still $800 outright), but I saved a lot more by going with this year’s latest Samsung. My previous phone was about 3-4 years old anyway, so I feel like it was justified.” – Bella, 25
In this group alone, we can see how a lot of young Aussies splurged guilt-free in summer, while others made big, planned purchases. It goes to show how differently we all think, behave and feel about money (take that Judy).
Please note that this information is general in nature and shouldn’t be construed as financial advice.