What is Your Spending Style and How Does it Affect You?
Author Avatar


When describing how a person spends their money you may be tempted to say “oh they’re quite stingy”, or “she’s quite wasteful”. But in fact there are many more ways to describe somebody’s style of spending than these two extremes.

Knowing the mode of thinking that drives your method of spending can help you figure out the most optimal way to manage your expenses and make your budget work for you. Here are several ways of defining your particular spending style:

What is Your Spending Style and How Does it Affect You?


This describes the kind of people who would bring their own chicken egg to the kuay teow stall, pinch pennies until they bleed, and calculates the GST before even sitting down at a restaurant. You’re very frugal, budget-conscience, and maybe a little bit stingy sometimes.

Tips for Reserved Spenders

While you may rarely have the problem of not enough money, your miserly ways may negatively affect the people around you. Try to be loose with your approach to spending when it involves others and remember to enjoy the cash you earn once in a while. Money is only good when it’s spent anyway, right?


Most RinggitPlus readers would fall under this category. You’re mindful of your spending habits and are realistic about your income and expenses. You do the math when it makes sense to and ask yourself important questions before putting money into something.

Tips for Thoughtful Spenders

Thinking before acting on purchases saves you money and is the best way to go. However, keep in mind that time and money wasted on overthinking is not good either. But if you’re already thoughtful about how you think about money, you probably know this already.


If your spending is often motivated by low prices, good deals, special offers and promotions, then you’re an incentive-based spender. Perhaps you charge almost all your purchases to rewards cards, buy an item because you get another free or you really go crazy during a sale.

Tips for Incentive-Based Spenders

There’s nothing wrong with being an incentive-based spender–as long as you are buying things you actually need and not spending money just because you’ll be saving more. Remember, you save even more during sales if you don’t buy anything at all.


Do you buy the latest gadgets and devices as soon as they hit the store so you can be the first of your friends to own one? If your spending is motivated by status, labels and brand names, your style is “influential”. To you, a luxury brand is an indication of quality and a good investment – even if it is just an “image” thing.

Tips for Influential Spenders

It’s not wrong to buy things to make yourself feel better among your peers, but make sure that you’re getting actual practical use of the things you buy. More importantly, don’t get into debt just to look cool, and do thorough research before you drop half your salary on something shiny.

<a href=”https://ringgitplus.com/en/credit-card/?utm_source=ringgitplus&utm_medium=banner&utm_campaign=my-rpint-crcd-gen&utm_content=blogcta_crcd_bestcreditcardinmalaysia_ringgitplus_mid”title=”Compare credit card”>


Spending money isn’t an issue with you – but man do you hate shopping. Because of this, you’re willing to pay almost any amount rather than look around for comparisons or otherwise search for a better deal. You’re motivated by a combination of laziness and a desire not to waste time. You might pay higher prices just for convenience.

Tips for Passive Spenders

While convenience is a fair thing to pay for, don’t let your laziness take over all your spending decisions. Often it’s really worthwhile to compare prices and find the best value for your money. If that sounds like too much for you still, maybe you can pay someone to do it for you instead?


Sort of the opposite of the thoughtful spender, your spending habits are driven by impulse. You tend to wait until the last minute, have no set plan or list when you go to a store and you have a tendency towards impatience and a need for instant gratification.

Tips for Impulse Spenders

Lack of impulse control often manifests in frequent buyer’s remorse, closets filled with unused items and money wasted on unnecessary purchases. To combat this, pair up with a thoughtful spender when you go out shopping or spend some time making a list and try your best to stick just to the list. It’s really for your own good.


The term “shopaholic” was invented for you. As opposed to the passive spender, you love shopping. It isn’t just a necessity for you, it’s a hobby. A very expensive hobby because you’re not content with just browsing or window shopping. Once in the stores, you feel compelled to buy.

Tips for Obsessive Spenders
For you, shopping can go from being a hobby to being a lifestyle and eventually to being an addiction. In the worst cases, you may need some serious professional help. If you return from shopping too often with way more than you expected to spend, perhaps you should leave the weekly shopping to somebody more responsible.


Stockpiling and buying in bulk are valid money saving strategies in times of need, but this strategy is how you operate all the time. You tend to buy the longest-lasting items, in the largest amounts possible, and you store them in your house forever, because you never know what’s going to happen.

Tips for Surplus-Seeking Spenders

While this method is great for saving money, it’s also important to consider real-life use cases for the items you bought. Sure, 10 boxes of soy sauce can maybe save you hundreds of Ringgit, but what are the chances you’ll be using all of them before they all expire? It’s okay to buy some extra things if it saves you money, but cluttered closets, jam-packed pantries and a glutted store room in preparation for the zombie apocalypse is probably overkill–especially if you have more credit card debt than available space in your house.

Do you recognise any of these spending styles as your own? Maybe you’re a combination of two or three? Or maybe a completely new kind of spender altogether? In any case, remember to check out our promotions page to find the top promos we curated just for you. Don’t forget to share your thoughts and ideas with us in the comments section down below!


0 0 votes
Article Rating


Comments (0)

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Top Budgeting & Saving Articles
Top Budgeting & Saving Articles
Post Image
Best High Interest Savings Accounts In Malaysia (September 2023)
Pang Tun Yau
- 11th September 2023
Make your money work for you by depositing them into the best high-interest savings accounts in Malaysia!
Post Image
4 Things to Know About EPF Withdrawals
Diana Chai
- 11th July 2018
Most people may have heard that it is possible to withdraw their EPF savings before retirement but few realise how helpful this can be in a time of need. Here are 4 things to note about EPF withdrawals.
Post Image
Public Transport vs Private Transport: What’s the Best Way to Get Around?
Ahmad Mudhakkir
- 19th August 2016
We all need to go places, but which one of these two modes of transport is the best for us? Let's find out!
Post Image
A Guide To The Private Retirement Scheme (PRS)
Denise Chan
- 25th January 2019
The PRS was introduced as an additional retirement investment scheme over and above EPF to help Malaysians better prepare for retirement. But is it really the thing for you? Here's a quick guide to help you decide.

Related articles

Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image
Related Posts Image