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Old 08-27-2013, 10:45 AM   #61
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Travel is my biggest "concern"
I wonder about this too, but sometimes I think it goes both ways.

Since we both working any travel we do has to be arranged to maximize use of time, from the schedule of the plane tickets to transportation in country. We'll buy the more expensive flight to Vietnam to avoid the cheaper one that has us waiting nine hours between flights in Taiwan, just because those nine hours are precious. If I was retired maybe that would be a tolerable wait to save a couple hundred bucks on a ticket, maybe leave the airport and do some exploring.

Or a lot of those travel deals that come around if you set up alerts are great bargains but I've got no use for them because I can't just easily take a vacation without my work knowing farther ahead and I sure can't take advantage of the ones that are mainly beneficial Monday-Thursday.
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Old 08-27-2013, 11:09 AM   #62
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I guess I was hoping to get some kind of feel for what the relative ratio of small luxuries is (versus NW or income) and what you guys think of it while working/ESR'd vs FIREd.
Not sure I can quantify in this fashion. When working, my emphasis was to get to FI. There were still luxuries, though to some extent that is in the eye of the beholder. Before FI, the "budget" was aimed at FI. Now, it is aimed at maximizing the enjoyment of ER (in the time left). While we don't know how long we will live, we know it's a lot less than before we were FI. SO, I feel no guilt in rewarding myself occasionally for having saved diligently. Also, I have at least SOME feel for how much I CAN spend, now that I know what my "stash" is. If nothing else, I have Firecalc to let me know about what I can reasonably expect to spend. If a few luxuries fit within that, I don't ask as many questions as I used to. I am surprised that we still resist some luxuries that we could probably afford (first or bus-class vs coach for example). Nicer cars, finer dining, etc. But we are happy and do not feel in any way deprived.

Being free from the w*rkplace is such a luxury that other things seem to pale in comparison. I think that's why we rarely think too much about the subject. We are already in the "lap of luxury". It is called FIRE. YMMV
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Old 08-27-2013, 12:19 PM   #63
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I wonder about this too, but sometimes I think it goes both ways.

Since we both working any travel we do has to be arranged to maximize use of time, from the schedule of the plane tickets to transportation in country. We'll buy the more expensive flight to Vietnam to avoid the cheaper one that has us waiting nine hours between flights in Taiwan, just because those nine hours are precious. If I was retired maybe that would be a tolerable wait to save a couple hundred bucks on a ticket, maybe leave the airport and do some exploring.

Or a lot of those travel deals that come around if you set up alerts are great bargains but I've got no use for them because I can't just easily take a vacation without my work knowing farther ahead and I sure can't take advantage of the ones that are mainly beneficial Monday-Thursday.
I can appreciate that... I am going on a trip to Vegas with one of my betting friends soon. He is all happy because he is saving a bunch of money splitting all the airport parking, cab, and hotel fees. Me, not so much. I could go cheaper on my own on another date, but we have to work it around his work schedule.
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Old 08-27-2013, 01:13 PM   #64
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My parents were very frugal and gained much of their enjoyment by buying gifts for my family that we couldn't afford on our own. Years, ago, my brother and I realized that my parents had bought both of us color TV sets as presents but hadn't bought a color tv for themselves. So, we chipped in and bought a color tv for them.

Today, as I transition to the retired life, I feel so lucky that I have always lived under my income. When others traveled 1st class I flew coach. I've had nice cars and homes but always a little less than others having a comparable income.

As a result I can have anything I want within reason. And, we can help others discreetly whenever we see a need for a family member or friend. My wife and I drive non luxury vehicles but we could pay cash for a BMW or Cadillac if we wanted to.

Our favorite restaurants are Italian, chinese and Mexican....not expensive although we can afford steak houses if we wanted them. We are very lucky and know it. We couldn't live on 60k a year but we could spend triple that and still not run out of money. My suggestion to all is live on less than you can afford, save like crazy and enjoy gifting to loved ones that may not have been as fortunate in earning a lot of money. All in all I've been very lucky becasue I have my health, a loving family and enough money to enjoy life and help others.
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Old 08-27-2013, 02:21 PM   #65
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In my younger years, when I was earning vey well I did acquired a few luxuries. Although they were expensive, they are for most timeless, durable and practically can last forever. My only basic rule is not to spend much on houses, cars ,boat or anything I cannot afford to pay cash.
My unusual collections consist of the following.
1. mechanical "swiss" watches. I have a few Rolexes, Omega, Zenith.
2. Guns and pistols. I have about 10 of those.
3. Nikon cameras and about 10 Nikon lenses. I need to update the camera body.
I still use the watches, the guns, the camera and lenses, and enjoy them as hobbies, although I'm done buying(except for the camera).
Other than that, I live a pretty frugal, simple, inconspicuous life.
I look plain and the only accoutrement is a fine stainless steel swiss watch.
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Old 08-27-2013, 06:37 PM   #66
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Is the definition of a boat ' a hole in the water into which one throws money', good plan. While I love boats, it's best to let others own them.

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Old 08-27-2013, 06:59 PM   #67
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Is the definition of a boat ' a hole in the water into which one throws money', good plan. While I love boats, it's best to let others own them.

MRG
You left off
- it's like standing in a cold shower tearing up $100 bills, and
- b.o.a.t. = break out another thousand, and
- the two best days in a boat owners life are, the day he/she buys the boat, and the day he/she sells the boat, and
- better than owning a boat, is having a friend who owns a boat (paraphrasing you), and
- ...
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Old 08-27-2013, 07:42 PM   #68
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One of the things that surprised me after I ER'd was how little I missed the luxuries I indulged in while I was w*rking. I realized that some of that spending was to pamper myself to compensate for the stress at w*rk. Like others on this thread I haven't given up on some things but I've reduced the frequency and maybe will save up before spending.

I deliberately cut back on expensive wines and restaurants. However, I still go out to eat a lot but I've found ways to indulge my foodie instincts for less and I love it. I travel less but that is because I no longer have business travel. I used to tack on extra vacation days to business travel and I no longer have that.

I would say that, overall, I spend less or at least get better value than I did when I was w*rking.
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Old 08-27-2013, 08:31 PM   #69
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I guess I've never been affluent enough to really indulge in "luxuries", thus don't really miss them.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:14 PM   #70
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Not sure I can quantify in this fashion. When working, my emphasis was to get to FI. There were still luxuries, though to some extent that is in the eye of the beholder. Before FI, the "budget" was aimed at FI. Now, it is aimed at maximizing the enjoyment of ER (in the time left). While we don't know how long we will live, we know it's a lot less than before we were FI. SO, I feel no guilt in rewarding myself occasionally for having saved diligently. Also, I have at least SOME feel for how much I CAN spend, now that I know what my "stash" is. If nothing else, I have Firecalc to let me know about what I can reasonably expect to spend. If a few luxuries fit within that, I don't ask as many questions as I used to. I am surprised that we still resist some luxuries that we could probably afford (first or bus-class vs coach for example). Nicer cars, finer dining, etc. But we are happy and do not feel in any way deprived.

Being free from the w*rkplace is such a luxury that other things seem to pale in comparison. I think that's why we rarely think too much about the subject. We are already in the "lap of luxury". It is called FIRE. YMMV

+1. As we plod on with purging closets and downsizing, we have little interest in shopping for "stuff." But, "experiences" are a much higher priority, now that we have time to shop for travel at bargain prices. (So, in Sept., I'll spend two weeks in France with an old college friend. She and I have planned the trip over the past year; so, with research and comparison shopping, we will travel at about half the cost of a tour package, and follow our own self-selected itinerary. We will avoid the summer crowds and enjoy the off-season.)

Still, open expanses of time are the greatest luxury for DH and me. I will never tire of spending days pulling out whatever I want from our local library (for FREE), then actually having time to read, watch, or listen to whatever I brought home. The old work week no longer dictates my schedule.

Freedom is a rare gem. (Though it did come with a price tag: 34 years of hard work and LBYM.) But it's WAY better than any of the stuff I "missed out on" because of frugality.

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