You might be recalling your 2017 New Year’s Eve celebrations and thinking to yourself “did I really spend that much?” but when the good times are flowing, it’s easy to forget to be financially savvy. However, you can avoid feeling the financial after effects of those spur of the moment decisions. Are you guilty of any of these?
You made long distance calls to friends on New Year’s Eve
When the clock chimes midnight it’s hard not to get in touch with your international friends to wish them a happy New Year (even if they are probably on a different time zone). However, doing this could result in a shockingly high mobile phone bill in January.
Next time, instead of making international calls that could cost you extra, if you have the data included on your plan or you’re logged into WiFi, why not use free instant messenger apps to make calls?
You shared sensitive information on social media
Cyber-attacks are becoming more frequent, which means it’s even more important to lock-down the information you share on social media, as this can be used by criminals to commit fraud. On New Year’s Eve alone, you might have let slip your location, your University, your favourite drink or food, all of which can be used to identify you through a process called social engineering.
Social engineering is a type of cyber-attack made through social media. Instead of manipulating code, these cyber-attacks are more personal and take advantage of people’s good nature. Fraudsters can get access to your personal data through social engineering, which will allow them to use your identity to open bank accounts – something that could affect your credit score.
You took your passport as a form of ID
If you don’t have a driving license you may have brought your passport out with you as a form of ID on New Year’s Eve. While any form of ID can be used against you in the wrong hands, the chance of your passport going missing is arguably higher than other identification. This is because it’s usually loose in your bag, trousers or coat, whereas a driving license will likely sit in your purse or wallet and you’re probably going to realise quickly if these go missing. What’s more, passports are expensive to replace, costing £72.50 if they’re lost or stolen.
Plus, you don’t want the added worry of your passport going missing and ruining your night so it’s best to just leave it at home.
If you have lost your ID you could contact Cifas and for £20 for two years they will place a Protective Registration against your name. This is a warning flag that tells organisations to take extra care if your details are used anywhere.
You didn’t set a budget for your spending on New Year’s Eve
Going out with all of your credit cards and not setting a budget means you’re much more likely to spend lots of money without realising it. Taking your budget out of the bank and paying with cash can help you stay out of the red, and be on track to save in the New Year.
You spent your money on expensive travel for you and your friends.
It’s always implied that New Year’s Eve celebrations should be spontaneous, but you could have saved cash if you just planned your transport in advance. Instead of waiting to signal a taxi, which always has higher fares for the New Year, most cities will have public transport services running over the holiday period.
If you’re still set on using a taxi, you can match your budget to a taxi company by using a taxi price comparison website, then there’s no nasty surprises.
Follow these tips in future and you’ll be more likely to start the New Year with a bang.