Oct 2, 2016

When in Tokyo: How I Manage My Finances

I’m back again from Tokyo! It feels soooo surreal to actually fly back to Japan after a month. Never in my life I would have thought to be in Japan twice a year. But I did! I feel so blessed. This time I wasn’t flying to Tokyo for a holiday, but instead to participate in Tokyo Art Book Fair 2016. So many excitements in this blog post opening phrase. Scroll down to read my story.

The first time I knew about Tokyo Art Book Fair (TABF) is around a year ago. I really wanted to join because Diana and I have #88LOVELIFE. So I think why wouldn’t we try our luck, right? By the time TABF announced the registration opening, Diana and I were so ready to submit our application because we have prepared our docs. Then a few days before we flew to Tokyo last July, we received an email from TABF that they accepted our submission and we were listed as one of the exhibitors in TABF 2016. I feel so happy to have this chance of joining TABF with #88LOVELIFE, it’s such a new experience for me to be sharing space with designers, illustrators, photographers, writers, and publishers from around the world. I will tell you more about TABF in a different post because this time I’ll be sharing with you how I manage my finances during this trip. It was such a bit of a challenge, because we took many taxi trips due to our heavy luggage. Uh oh.

While traveling, I like to bring just enough money for meals and transportation. I calculate the budget and add a few extra cash for emergency. I personally feel that bringing many cash while traveling is inconvenient. I rely on my BCA credit card when it comes to shopping. Because it’s simple, no fuss. I also love using my BCA credit card because it gives points that calculated based on my shopping. Then I can use the points for other transactions as discounts. 

I initially didn’t plan to shop during this trip, but as I extended my trip for two days and visited many stationery and art supply stores, so I did a little shopping. I went to Sekaido, Flying Tiger, Tsutsumu Factory, Daiso (they have cute collection of stationeries!), Tokyu Hands, and Loft. Gosh… The stationeries in Japan are so cute! They have so many selections of cute pen, note book, sketch book, yearly agenda, stickersssss, washi tapes, post card, you name it. I’ve seen so many cute things that I wanted to buy, but you know when you see so many things that you like all at once, you become so numb. That’s what happened to me hahaha. So I chose only the best ones and shopped more art supplies for me to work. I did all the transactions using my BCA credit card. As I mentioned earlier, the card saves me :p

Paying the credit card bill is not the one I’m happy about hahahaha. I always try to do full payment and clear out the bill every month, I’m not a fan of instalments. I call it spending responsibly, only buy what you can afford. So speaking about the credit card bill, I do the payment usually on internet banking. I bring my Key BCA everywhere so I can pay the bills even when I’m on the go using Klik BCA. I find Klik BCA is very helpful. I can do transactions on my macbook or simply using my phone. Also I just found out that you can block your BCA debit card from internet banking or mobile banking account. So simple, you no longer have to call the customer service or go to Bank.

So if I may conclude, here are my tips to manage your finances while traveling:
  • Bring enough cash for meals and transportation only. But make sure you have extra for emergencies. 
  • Have a credit card for shopping purposes, use it wisely. Remember that you’ll have to pay for the bills :p
  • If you don’t have a credit card, bring your debit card so you can withdraw some cash
  • Always have Key BCA with you, so you can do internet banking transactions when you’re on the go. Mobile banking can also works abroad, but you’ll have to activate the account in your country
  • Save the important contacts in your phone. Like the embassy, hospitals near you, and your bank's customer service. So when there's an emergency, you only need one sec to make a call. I saved Halo BCA 1500 888 (for international call is +62 21 1500888).
Do you have any tips to manage your finances? If you do, please comment down below! And lastly have fun if you’re about to go traveling soon!

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