Andrea Dickson from Wise Bread wrote about some frugal mistakes people do. Did you ever get something but paying nothing for it, which you are supposed to pay? I would like to add my opinion to the wrong frugal habits stated.

1. Sneak into a movie – Frankly, I’ve done it before few years back at One Utama cineplex. After watching the paid movie, we are supposed to walk out through the side door beside the big screen. That day, the door was not opened and there is no usher around. So everybody walked out through the corridor they came in. On my way out, I went into another cinema room and watched another movie with 60 minutes left. Do I felt guilty about it? Not actually. I was not going to spend another RM10 for that movie anyway. It was a loophole that the management should watch out. Please make sure the ushers do their job.

2. Download music online for free? – I’ve done this many times. I do it for several reasons and I think it is not stealing. I am an artist myself, just in case you don’t know about my music, I posted frequently at
Firstly, I won’t buy the CD which is some sort of boycott to the expensive CD retail price in Malaysia. I will launch my third album this year selling RM10 per CD, which I think is the reasonable price. I provide some of my songs for free download too.
Secondly, I do buy the CD I like from China or Taiwan which is selling original CD for cheaper price. Download the music and give it an audition. These will ensure your money is well spent on the music you love.
Thirdly, I never buy pirated CD. If you buy pirated CD, it means there are people making money from the artist’s creation without paying loyalty. That is really stealing!

3. Siphon your neighbour’s wireless internet – if you don’t want other people to use up your bandwidth, set security WEP and password. If you are using it too often, I suggest that you pay for your share. Talk to the kind neighbour and offer to pay partially for the service. You might get a surprising counter offer – he might not care about you using it.

4. Take the money that your bank accidentally deposited in your account I got a friend who encountered this fortune before. She got a few hundred ringgit banked into her Maybank account. Anyway, the bank officers found out the mistake a few days later. It is not a pleasant experience. I suggest that you inform the bank about it.

5. Accept freebies for listening to a timeshare spiel – I will definitely use the free paid trip. If you had attended a timeshare session before, you will know how torture it is to listen to all the sales talk.

6. Read all your magazines at Borders – For me, I would buy a Starbucks coffee and sit down comfortably before I take the time to read those magazine and books. I like books. So I will read the first chapter of my potential purchase just so that I will make the right choice. Do you feel guilty reading them for free? You shouldn’t feel bad ๐Ÿ™‚ I hate it when the book stores are displaying only wrapped books and none is unwrapped. That’s why I prefer Borders rather than Popular, or MPH.

Please share your experience about this ethical questions. Do you feel obligated when you get something for free?

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Personal finance author and trainer

    8 replies to "Frugal… do it with Dignity"

    • kclau

      I guess anything free is ok. Just don’t waste those stuff ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Relax

      Aaarrgghhh… paiseh paiseh. soli

      Well, I heard in business class section there are personal kits with good quality toothbrush, cloth, or whatever items and they are thrown away after the flight so maybe it is alright to get those if you have the chance.

      I am not sure if MAS has those but I am very sure Qatar airlines give very excellent goodie bags in economy class seats. SIA gives cheap toothbrush and toothpaste. Really cheap skate. ๐Ÿ˜›

      anyways, I think taking free car rides is a win-win solution ๐Ÿ˜›

    • kclau

      I’ve done on the MAS before, and also SIA few years ago. But make sure those stuff are not thrown away. The blankets and utensils are still in used at my mom’s house.

    • Relax

      That is nice.
      I think there is a difference between using something for free openly, with face shining and lifted, AND stealing in a cheap way.

      I think taking utensils and blankets from MAS airplane is kinda cheap (just my personal opinion)

    • kclau

      Thanks Andrea, I love your Wise Bread!

    • Andrea D (Dong AiJun)

      Thanks for the link and for the toughts, KC. Much appreciated.

    • kclau

      Chee Kui, looks like we are satu bangsa

    • Chee Kui

      Now, that sounds like me too. lol! Nice one ๐Ÿ˜‰

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