Wednesday, 11 November 2009

How I survived financial turmoil

After I let my financial state take a leap off the roof (refer to my previous post), I suddenly realized how stupid I had got. Here I am, so called someone who loves numbers, mathematics, spreadsheet and accounting, but being selfish had caused me to close eyes on my degrading financial state and allowed myself to dump into a very difficult money problem.

During that time, I was $100,000 in debt for credit cards and personal loans. To top that, I still have mortgage to pay and hire purchase for my car too. My salary was not even close enough to maintain the minimum payment especially on the cards and loans.

I knew that I had to do something. Actually, I knew deep in my heart what to do, but for some malevolence reason, I just unable to do it. I heard it all, spend less, do not use credit card, do not eat fast food, etc. But never once I was actually follow those brilliant ideas.

I asked myself why. My mind would drop a million reasons for that but I knew it was just simply excuses. Excuses from admitting that I am not rich. Excuses to admit that I was not entitle to live as lavishing as I am doing back then. Come on, I am in management line and making $60,000 a year. Why I can’t afford all this? Other person seems to afford it.

Then, it hit me. I am not other people. All those things that I have spent were most of the time to show off. To deny or hide myself from the fact that I am not rich. I am showing to others that I can live extravagantly. But why? Why did I worry so much over how others look at me? Will I loose my friends just because I eat at home? Will I loose my friends if I do not keep up with all the electronics gadget technology wave and ever changing all so often? Will people look down on me if I do not dressed in designer style clothing, or drive a local car? Will my friends left me if I do not go shopping with them, or go out every night or lepak at coffee shop or go clubbing every weekend? I asked my friends these questions, and being such a darling friends, they smack me with same answers, “we just like you as who you are”.

If that is what other people look at me, then why did I spend on all those lavishing lifestyle? The answer was simple, it was for me. I am the guilty one. I am the selfish one. I want to look and live the best (even though no one else care how I live my life) and I denied that I was not smart enough to maintain such lifestyle.

That very moment, I made a pledged to lower my expectation in life. I should live as who I am, not as who I want myself to be. But for the last 15 years I have destroyed my life, I need to make some drastic measure to repent that.

Tame My Credit Cards
Mathematically, my credit cards must be the one I need to tackle first. The 18% per annum interest rate is the highest compare to all my other commitments. By that time, I had in total $60,000 of credit cards debt.

I had to stop the 18% interest rate because it was draining my hard earn money fast. So, I went or called to all the banks that hold my account and discussed over term loan.

  1. Citibank – They provided great support for the term loan. After talking to their representative through phone, they promptly faxed me an application form to fill up and signed. I then just have to fax them back the copy. Within 2 weeks, I received through snail mail, an agreement to sign and post to them back that copy. They converted my credit card to term loan with 12% interest rate. Good service, but still not very good loan term with 12% interest rate though.
  2. HSBC – They also very supportive. Just have to call them up and they sent out the agreement through snail mail. Once signed and returned them the copy, within 2 weeks, my HSBC credit cards was converted to term loan at 9% interest rate. Cool.
  3. Hong Leong – I had to visit their branch to asked for term loan. After filling up the form, it takes around 2 weeks before they passed my account to collection center and arrange an agent to work on my account. I received their agreement through snail mail, but they require me to send them backdated check for all the agreed 60 payments. I had to create a current account first for the cheque. After everything settles, they converted my credit cards with 9% interest rate. Fair enough.
  4. MBF – This is not a bank. They are just the card provider. Since they hold their credit to AmBank, they asked to go to AmBank branch for the term loan application.
  5. AmBank – I also had an AmBank credit card. So, I planned to work with them for the term loan on both AmBank and MBF credit cards. But it seems that both account handled by different agents. So, end up, I have to double up the trip made to AmBank to discuss the term loan agreement for AmBank and MBF differently. All discussion and paper work must be done at the branch, so it was quite a trip since it was not a one day things to settle. I have also had to surrender 120 backdated cheques to cover the payment on AmBank and MBF separately. After 1 months of application, they converted my credit card to term loan for AmBank and MBF with both 9.5% interest rate.
  6. Standard Chartered - I went to visit their branch but their customer service told them that they did not provide term loan.
  7. Maybank – They do not have term loan. A talk to their agent through phone was shut off with, they cannot offer anything. They just advise me to pay the 5% until my outstanding balance cleared off…duh.
  8. RHB – They also do not offer any term loan. Same with Maybank, they adviced to pay 5% on both cards (since I have 2 cards with them). Once one of the card clear off, then pay more on the other card. Brilliant ideas. (Pretty obvious is it?)
  9. Aeon – They do not offer term loan to. But…well, that was just that. No but. They just warn me not to miss my next payment and then put down the phone. Quite friendly indeed
  10. EON – Worst one. That is why I kept them at the last. First, I called them. The operator asked me to visit any branch to discuss on this. I visited one of their branches, their agent told me that they do not have term loan. Instead, she called someone on phone, right down something on a piece of paper, and quietly pushes the paper to me. She told me to go to the written address and asked for personal loan which can be use to settle the credit cards debt. I went to the address to an office that do not have any sign, which I assume some kind of loan shark or “along”, which cause me to drop the whole ideas. I then called again their center on phone, greeted by a lady, which end up scream at me saying that they do not have term loan. Before ending the conversion, she told me, which I know I will remember this for the rest of my life, “Lain kali, kalau takde duit, jangan la nak pakai kredit kad", which translate to, “Next time, if you do not have money, do not use credit card”. Thanks to that lady’s brilliant advice, I hate all banks now and understand that, to them we are just customers that generate profit for them and all those sweet talk or promotion is purely selling rubbish. My advice, when dealing with bank, make sure you read the footnote or fine-print.

Handle Personal Loans
Quick information on personal loan. Whenever you applied for personal loan, there were an agreed tenure and per year interest rate. Once you are approved a loan, the total interest throughout the agreed tenure will be sum into your capital and then calculated the monthly payment. So, as soon as your loan approved, you are already been charged by total interest.

Since the interest already been absorbed into your account, it is so unwise to go take other loan to pay personal loan to consolidate your loan. You will be increasing the amount of interest paid. So, never settle your personal loan by taking up other loan.

However, in my case, the 4 personal loans (BSN, Alliance, Citibank and Aeon) are causing my monthly spending too high than I able to cope. What I did, call the bank and ask for their advice:

  1. Alliance – The bank asked me how much I can pay them every month. On the agreed payment, they ease up my payment and allow me to pay the amount I can afford for the next one year. They will review my status again after 1 year. Good enough for me.
  2. Citibank – No further offer from them.
  3. Aeon – No further offer from them too.
  4. BSN – They asked to come to the branch to fill up form. Apparently, being a bank supported by government, they have a scheme to support such financial difficulties. I met with a very friendly lady there to fill up form to apply for a lower monthly payment. After 2 weeks, no update from them, so I called their bank again. They passed me from one agent to another, my call traveled from Melaka branch to KL HQ, when finally it reach an agent that said that they do not offer such service (lowering monthly payment) and they do not have any record for my application. That end of conversion confused me and I do not do anything else after that.

AKPK – My lifesaver
After all those tiresome bank deals, my monthly payment is still sky high. Even though some of the term loan manage to tame some of the payment, but those loans that unable to convert to a better offer was really hurting me.

From my tracking, I knew that I had to find ways to lower down my monthly payment on the loan and some of the cards. I thought about going through a financial consultant. But my friend told me they could cost me about $2,000 for the service. If I have the money, I should be paying for my debt, rather than pay some else to “think” about my debt, right?

I was very lucky that during this crucial period, Bank Negara Malaysia was promoting about AKPK (Agen Kuanseling dan Pengurusan Kredit). The promotion was everywhere, billboards, TV ad, footnote on all my bank statement. I browsed their website and noticed that they provided 3 services:

  1. Financial education
  2. Financial counseling
  3. Debt management (Yeay!!)

Best of all, all their services are free of charge. I read through their success stories and was touched. I know now that there were so many people out there, were in financial turmoil worst than mine. With the support of AKPK, they managed to get out of their problems.

I quickly approach this idea. I filled up the application form online and then post to them copy of all my bank statements. After 2 weeks, I received a call from my counselor (they appointed counselor for each client) where we discussed the total monthly payment that I can surrender to the bank. The counselor told me to handle my home loan and hire purchase myself and they will look after other loans. After discussion, I agreed to surrender 50% of my salary to pay monthly for all my other loans including personal loans and credit cards.

The whole process took around 2 months. During this period, all banks’ agent called me up to notify me that they were approached by AKPK and my account is currently under their AKPK bank agent. After the 1st month, I received an official agreement from AKPK underlining the payment that each bank will get to utilize the amount that I agreed to surrender. After signing off the agreement, I received agreement from each bank separately through snail mail on the new term.

During this period, some of the bank took quite a tough action on me. I received lawyer letter from BSN to pay my entire outstanding loan. Those banks that were not yet in term loan, charge high interest and late payments. Red notices through snail mail also keep coming to my mailbox every month threatening me that they will go for legal action if I do not pay them up. But, as soon as AKPK term was effective, here was what happened:

  1. My AKPK counselor told me to ignore the lawyer mail. When the lawyer called me, I told them that I was under AKPK and they apologized, blaming BSN for not updating them according.
  2. Most banks waived their late payment through out the process of AKPK taking effect.
  3. No more red notice or bank collection center calling me to pay them every month.
  4. The monthly payment was paid to AKPK through Maybank online and AKPK agent will distribute the money according to each bank.

Now, after 1 year with AKPK, I am finally feeling most relieve in my finance. Being with AKPK, all my credit cards were blocked and I will be denying for any future loans. I do not see that as a problem, because the actual root cause of this entire problem was that I do not know to correctly handle my loans. They can block me from applying loan for all I care, because I saw that as a blessing in disguise.

During the recession period by end of 2008, I did call my counselor for advice because I am worried that I might lose my job. My friendly counselor told me not to worry and comfort me that if any problem happens in future, they can review back my monthly payment accordingly. Lucky for me that I still manage to keep my job and never have to ask AKPK for a lower monthly payment. Within the next 3 years, my AKPK account should be able to be paid off and I will finally be able live a debt free life.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Types of Insurance That Even a Frugal Person Should Have

When you have barely just enough money to get by after the major expenses of housing, food and other bills, narrowing down the types of insurance you have can be key to keeping you out of debt. When you’re on a limited budget, you unfortunately don’t have the luxury of purchasing all the types of insurance available so you’ll have to choose the most important ones. So before agents start contacting you as part of their round of insurance leads, know the types of insurance that you absolutely need.

Auto Insurance
If you drive a car, auto insurance is not an option. Since it is mandatory, try to focus on getting the lowest premiums by choosing plans with higher deductibles. Deductibles that are $500 or higher can really decrease your monthly premiums and save you money. Drivers with the cleanest and safest records get the best rates so be careful on the road. Driving recklessly will only cost you more money. Check with state laws and see if you must include collision coverage in your plan, which covers damage to your car. For older cars, collision coverage may not be worth it if you sustain damage to it. If you’re a student, some insurance companies may be willing to give you a discount for good grades so inquire about special discounts such as those.

Health Insurance
You may not think you need health insurance now because you don’t feel sick, and especially if you are young, health insurance may seem like a lot of money every month. But just one unexpected hospital stay or even a single visit to the ER for any reason can cost thousands of dollars. Without insurance, an accident or illness can bring your out-of- pocket medical bills to tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars very quickly. Hospitals and providers may even turn you away. Just like with auto insurance, choose higher deductibles for lower premiums.

Renter’s Insurance
If you own a home, then home insurance is required but if you are a renter, protecting your big ticket valuables is smart, especially since renter’s insurance is relatively inexpensive. Depending on location, and other factors, renter’s insurance can run around $100 to $200 a year for about $20,000 worth or more of your personal belongings. In the event such as a fire, you’ll be glad that your pricey purchases such as your TV, computer, stereo, and clothes will be covered. Know the difference between replacement cost coverage and actual value coverage. Replacement cost coverage is a smarter choice since is would give you the amount of money it would take to repurchase new items, such as a computer, instead of actual value coverage, which would give you a smaller amount for the value of the worth of your items now. Consider using the same insurance company that you use for auto insurance, since they may be able to give a discount for having more than one plan with them.

Life Insurance
Life insurance is important if someone else, such as a spouse, child or other family member depend of you financially. If not, then life insurance isn’t necessary.

(Courtesy of  :

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Banking Service Comparison

Recently, I have compiled some of the banking services provided by Malaysia's bank. My interest is to compare their services on Credit Cards, Personal Loan, ASB Financing, OD Facility, Home Loan and Hire Purchase. Basically, these services are the one that I am using, so I am comparing versus each bank to see if there is a better offer.

Look through my basic simple comparison below. Although the information might be limited, but at least you might be able to have some focus on the best services before you approach that bank for more information on your interested service.

Credit Card
Personal Loan
ASB Loan
OD Facility
Home Loan
Hire Purchase
 Affin Bank Berhad
Annual Fee : RM50
Int 18%
BT 6.88%
0% EPP
FD mortgage
BLR+1% daily rest
MOF 95%
OD BLR-0.5%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 4.00%
 Alliance Bank Malaysia Berhad
Annual Fee : RM68
Int 18%
BT 7.25%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Int 11.99% pa
Up to 60mths
Income >RM2k
MOF 90%
1-5yr : BLR-1%
>5yrs : BLR -1.2%
OD BLR+0.79%
MOF 90%
Max 7yrs
Fixed 3.9%
 AmBank (M) Berhad
Annual Fee : RM75
Int 17.5%
BT 8.99%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
MOF 90%
OD BLR-0.5%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 5.1%
 CIMB Bank Berhad
Free for Life
Int 17.5%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Income >RM800
Max 5yrs

Max RM200,000
OD available
Mortgage FD, CIG, CIMB Deposit, CIMB UT, ASNB
MOF 90%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 3.25%
 Citibank Berhad
Free for Life
Int 17.5%
BT 11.99%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Income >RM2000
Int 8.52% pa
Up to 60mths
Mortgage FD
MOF 89%
 EON Bank Berhad
Annual Fee : RM75
Int 17.5%
BT 5.50%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Int 9.00%
Up to 72months
Existing Current Account
MOF 90%
1-8yrs : BLR-1.6%
>8yrs : BLR-2.3%
OD BLR-0.6%
MOF 85%
Max 7yrs
Fixed 3.75% - 3.9%
 Hong Leong Bank Berhad
Annual Fee : RM80
Int 17.5%
BT 12%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Income >RM2000
Int 12%
Up to 60mths
MOF 95%
1yr : 2.38%
2yr : 3.38%
>2yrs : BLR-0.95%
OD BLR-0.75%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 4.00%
 HSBC Bank Malaysia Berhad
Annual Fee : RM80
Int 18%
BT 12%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Income >RM2000
Int 10%
Up to 60mths
Existing Current Account
BLR+1% - BLR+1.5%
No Info
No Info
 Malayan Banking Berhad
Annual Fee : RM60
Int 18%
BT 12%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Max RM400,000
1-3yrs : BLR-1.65%
>3yrs : BLR-1.5%
MOF 90%
1yr : 3.88%
2-4yr : BLR-1.1%
>4yrs : BLR-1.0%
OD BLR+1.0%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 4.25% - 5.00%
Var BLR+1.00%
 OCBC Bank (Malaysia) Berhad
Annual Fee : RM70
Int 18%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Mortgage Property, FD, UT
MOF 90%
 Public Bank Berhad
Annual Fee : RM68
Int 17.5%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Existing Current Account
MOF 95%
1yr : 3.37%
2yrs : BLR-1.0%
3-5yrs : BLR-0.2%
6-10yrs : BLR-0.3%
11-15yrs : BLR0.5%
>15yrs : BLR-1.0%
OD BLR-0.75%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 4.23% - 4.89%
Var BLF+0.99%
 RHB Bank Berhad
Annual Fee : RM70
Int 17.5%
BT 6%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Max RM200,000
1yr : 3.8%
>1yr : BLR-1.35%
OD available (BLR-1%)
Mortgage FD, ASNB
MOF 90%
OD BLR+0.18%
MOF 90%
Max 9yrs
Fixed 3.75% - 4.00%
 Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia Berhad
Annual Fee : RM90
Int 17.5%
BT 7.99%
0% EPP
Rewards Point
Income >RM2000
Int 17%
Up to 60mths
Mortgage FD, UT
Information Not Clear
 United Overseas Bank (Malaysia) Bhd.
Annual Fee : RM0
Int 17.5%
BT 12%
0% EPP
Income >RM2000
Int 10.75%
Up to 60mths
Mortgage FD, UT
MOF 90%
1-3yrs : 5.9%
4-10yrs : BLR-1.25%
>10yrs : BLR-1.5%

All the information above are gathered from respective bank website. For those column that information "Not Available" or "Not Clear", is because the information on their website is very limited.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Learn how I let my finance commit suicide

Let me share with you my own personal experience that gave me a wake up call to get myself the hack out of debt.

It all started when I was just at my first job, getting $2,000 per month. It felt so good to have $2,000 all to myself. The feeling itself was contributing to the whole problem. Suddenly, I felt that I am richer (thinking that before this, I merely living with $400 per month from my university sponsorship program). Now, I was 5 times richer with my new salary. What that feeling did to me, within just 1 year from starting my new job is:
  1. I thought that I can own a car. So, I buy a 2nd hand Kancil to go work.
  2. I rent a house which was 40 minutes away from my office, so that I can be near to my university friends.
  3. I applied for credit cards from Citibank with $5,000 credit limit.
  4. I started to buy new clothes, new gadgets and things for my well-being.

My 2nd biggest mistake was never track my money flow during this period. My current monthly car payment, house rent and daily spending was actually within my salary budget. But, since I never monitored my luxury spending of shopping, I was actually spending more than I able to cope. Whenever I am out of cash, I started to swipe from my credit card. By end of the month, I only paid back the 5% minimum to my card and continue to use it until it's maxed out its outstanding limit.

My 3rd biggest mistake, was the way I tried to recover from not having enough money. I applied for new debt. I applied for 2nd credit card from MBF with credit limit $4,000. Since my personal finance skill never improved, the new debt soon add up to my problem when the $4,000 limit is maxed out.

After that 1st year, I have been trying to survive monthly trying hard to make it the minimum payment to my cards. It does not stop me from spending, but instead, I kept borrow people money to survive every month to pay for all those loan payment.

3 years after that, my life never got any better. I was transferred from one state to another due to my work, and every change in life was such a drawback since I had no savings at all. I was unable to really say that I managed to enjoy my salary, because every time I got my salary, it was gone to pay for credit cards that seems never actually reduce on its outstanding. This was all because I kept on paying the 5% minimum, then charge again the card every time there was some credit available.

Then, on my 5th years, I happened to stumble across BSN personal loan that offer up to $20,000 loan for tenure of 5 years with interest 6% per annum which was very low compare to the market that time. I applied the loan, in my mind thinking that I want to use the loan to finally get myself out of the credit card problem. To my luck, the loan was approved and suddenly $20,000 flowed to me. That was the first time I saw so many cash in my hands.

Did I manage to get out of my finance problem? No! This is what happened:

  1. I paid $9,000 for the 2 credit cards. It gave me a sudden improvement on my credit rating. All of a sudden, any credit cards or personal loans application was easily approved.
  2. I started to buy things that I wanted from the last 5 years but never can afford to before.
  3. I started to buy expensive gifts for those people who always let me borrow their money when I am in trouble before.
  4. I started to track my cash flow. But, I failed to track my credit card usage.
Within just 6 months, I was drained out of the $20,000 cash. But, it felt good since I managed to track where the cash have gone too and I did not felt that it went to waste. Because of my good credit rating, all banks seem to treat me well and money seems to never ending flow around me. Here what happen during that period:

  1. My Citibank credit card was converted to Gold Card to give me more privilege but do not increase in $5,000 credit limit.
  2. My MBF credit card now have $4,000 credit limit available to me.
  3. I was approved for HSBC Gold credit card with $10,000 credit limit.
  4. EON bank gave me credit card with $8,000 credit limit.
  5. I got RHB credit cards with Plus One privilege so that I got points buying gadget from SenQ with $4,000 credit limit.
  6. Standard Chartered bank gave me credit card with $6,000 credit limit.
  7. Hong Leong bank approved a $8,000 credit limit card.
  8. Maybank also gave me $5,000 credit limit card.
  9. I got Jusco Aeon credit card too with $4,000 credit limit.
All of a sudden, I got $54,000 in credit cards so-called "available" to my use. I was spending like crazy. Never had a moment of window shopping. Anything in display, I will just swipe my card to buy them. I even use my cards online to buy product from or I kept on tracking my cash flow, but that time, never occur to me to track my credit card flow. Every month, I paid just 5% minimum on the card, but the statement keep on showing that I still have many available credit to spend on.

Another big mistake during this time, I started to feel that it is very convenient for me to apply for personal loan since I was easily approved for one from BSN. So, here I go again:

  1. Applied for personal loan from Alliance Bank of $20,000
  2. Personal loan from Citibank of $10,000
  3. Personal loan from AEON of $2,500
I felt that I was on top of the world. I purchased a 2nd hand Gen2 car during this period. During this period too, I was transferred to another state to follow my work requirement. My company paid me an amount of $15,000 cash for the transferred.

After transferred, I purchased a house at my new location. The purchase supposed to be very light for me, because I got support from my EPF for $18,000 for the down payment and legal fees.

After settled down here, I kept on spending to fill up my house with furniture, gadgets and appliances. Within just 3 years, I maxed out on all my credit cards and used up my entire personal loan. I am now, in total, in debt to bank at $106,500. Monthly, to pay these loans and minimum of my credit cards, it takes me around $7,000. I was stunt by this number since my salary was only $5,000 that time.

After 7 years of working life, now only I felt that my life in trouble. What can I do? How can I manage paying for $106,500 of loans, my hire purchase and my home loan? My salary considers too limited compare to what I owed bank.

Do you had the same financial disaster life story like mine? I will share with readers on my next post of how I finally get out of this problem. If you have you own advice, it would be most appreciated to share them here.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Spend Smart during Hari Raya

For every festive season such as hari raya, I always worries financially. I have a mindset that a lot of money will be spent during hari raya. I guess living in a society and environment where people tend to throw away their money for the sake of celebrating holidays, tend to set my mind to follow.

This year hari raya is particularly special because this is the first hari raya that I am very much embedded with my microfinancing budget practice. Worring that I might overspend during this time, I set up a special budget for hari raya at the start up of Ramadan which 1 month ahead.

I set a budget of $400 for any hari raya expenditure. Looking at my current money flow, this $400 is something that I will be able to manage and will not be burdening me after hari raya.

Extra money for hari raya
My first spending is to join an affiliate that makes money for selling e-book. This is not really within my plan, but the affiliate scheme is so interesting since it is a quick way to make some money within the month of Ramadan. It only take me less than 15% of my hari raya budget, so it is something that I believe to be manageable. Joining the affiliate and proceed to promote the business through my blog and online advertisement was my activity during the 1 month countdown before hari raya.

I do not expect much on this extra money business. But, I managed to get $50 out of the 1 month business. Since I do not expect the money, I end up took the extra money and give it away at the mosque during the raya prayer.

Home make-over
A lot of people would spend buying new furniture, new curtain, new carpet and so on for their home. I think people believe that since they got visitors that come by their house once a year during hari raya, they will noticed that old furniture from last year hari raya. I find it strange that people have high tendency of thinking that people come to visit them to comment about their house and that old furniture they are still keeping.

I do not see why I should be spending hack of money just to impress others. It is my money, so why should I use it to care about other people view of my home. Of course, I like to have a new outlook of my house that look refreshed and clean so that my visitors will feel most comfortable. Arming myself with the idea that I can change the outlook of my home without spending a dime, I start to clean up 2 weeks before hari raya.

Things that I did to have a refreshing outlook in house:
  • Re-arrange furniture to give an impression of something in my house was changed.
  • Shift around the furniture to give more empty space. This will give an impression that my room is larger that it actually is.
  • Wipe up any surface squeaky clean from dust. Since my furniture consists a lot of chrome and glass, having a dust-clean environment give it a very shiny outlook.
  • Wash curtains and cushion cover. I also rotate the curtain between rooms so that each room seems to have a change on the curtain color.
  • Re-arrange all the small ornament on cabinet top.
  • Vacuum all over the house. Not to forget to clean the ceiling fan (the fan tend to attract dust the most) and spider web on the ceiling.
  • Polish all windows.
  • Mop all over my mosaic floor.
  • Change air freshener to the latest aromatherapy one (this is the only thing that I actually have to spend money on)

It took me 1 week to get the whole thing done. I guess that is the period for 1 lazy person to actually have their house clean like mine. Hehe. Then, on the last week of hari raya, I give the floor another quick vacuum and mop, for the final buff. After I am done, fully satisfied with the fresh outlook and the money that I manage to avoid from using to get that fresh look.

Self make-over
Everybody also like to give themselves a new look. I think if we can strip our skin off and change to new one, we might do so during festive seasons. During previous years, preparing for hari raya means spending time in spa and saloon for facial, hair treatment, hair coloring or highlight and hair straightening. Also, I will be going shopping for new clothes, new baju kurung and new shoes. I tend to even shop for 1 set of clothing for 1st day of raya, another set for 2nd day of raya and another whole set for 3rd day of raya. Kinda funny to think that I would spend all those money just to look good when actually during hari raya, everybody tend to look their best but no one cares how others is actually look like.

I like to join the race with everybody else to look their best during hari raya. But I do not want to spend on clothing. So, I took out all my baju melayu from the past years. I tried to combine the outlook of different color on the baju melayu with different set of old samping. Then, I try to find the size that compliments my body size the best. Since my body tends to grow and shrink by years, some of the clothes are too big or too small. I finally chose 2 set of baju melayu with samping that can make me look good for the 1st day and 2nd day of raya.

I also took out my wardbrobe for my casual clothes during hari raya. To give the clothes a new look, I combined them with different pants, top in jackets, combine shirts with sleeveless, body fit clothes and some fresh white color with darker winter color. I tried all combination on myself and determine which style to wear during different day of hari raya. I also prepare some extra clothing just in case I spilled myself with rendang during making myself full with hari raya meal.

I also make my own facial. Wearing mask, face treatment, tweaking brows and face whitening well early during Ramadan. Repairing your skin is not something that can be done one night before raya. I started early so that my face look renewed during raya. Best still, everything was done at home, no need to spend on expensive spa care.

I also cut short my hair at Indian barber for only $7. Then, 1 week before raya, I tried to create new hair do at home that I can do anytime during raya. That means, to work it only with wax and gel, no hair dryer or comb. Strangely, after a few try, I managed to do spike hair (something that I never manage to do before from my wavy curly hair), giving me even a new look that never seen before.

Kuih raya
My whole spending of kuih raya was less than $100. I tend to grab a lot of keropok, tits-bits, rempeyek, tumpi, kerepek and kacang which normally cheaper but in bigger volume. Top up with a little variety of color and taste of kuih raya. Once put them into its container, I managed go fill up my tables with variety of kuih raya with a minimum spending.

Car and transportation
Another spending that I put in for hari raya preparation is on my car. Spend only $7 for a full car wash. Normally I tend to wash my cash myself, but since it is only $7, I got a team of cash washer to do it for me.

Luckily that my car maintenance is still not due for 2000km, so I do not have to spend anything on the maintenance. But if it is due, car maintenance is something that I will not think twice to spend money on, since it is for my own safety.

Even though I did not have to send my car for maintenance, the basic checklist still was done. That is including inflating my tire to the correct pressure, check my oil engine and check the coolant level. These simple checks can be done ourselves at home.

I also get myself ready with $50 value of Touch n Go so that during the hectic traffic of hari raya, I do not have wait too long queue to pay the toll. Furthermore, since the Touch n Go value can be use during any other time, the money spend there is not lost after hari raya.

Duit Raya
Duit raya is consider sedekah or charity. But some people tend to purposely put extra money for duit raya because they do not want other to think that they are a cheap person for giving a small amount of duit raya.

Since it is sedekah, any amount is alright. Give away duit raya for charity instead of for showing off. My duit raya give away budget is only around $250. I even calculated up front how much money to give those people I have plan to give duit raya. Having a budget, at least, it helps us not to over spend on duit raya. Even though it is good to give others duit raya, try not to overdo it until it burden your own budget.

So, those are my actual personal experiences during this 2009 hari raya. I started to work during on the 4th of hari raya but I am very much satisfied during the month of Ramadan and the 3 days of hari raya celebration which I manage to celebrate the festive season and at the same time, keep it within my own set budget.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all Muslim a Selamat Hari Raya, Maaf Zahir Batin. Wish that everyone is safe and enjoying themselves during this festive season

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Money Saving Tips

Here is one secret of successful saving: Do it! As long as you do not start today, you will never grow the habit of putting money aside for your future needs.

Put away a small amount each month. Better still, set up a standing instruction for automatic deduction so you don't have to think about it. Put the money into a savings account that rewards you with higher returns – you can check the list that I have put here on savings account.

You may consider these steps, develop the saving habit and you will soon see the pay-off. You'll see the benefit of saving as you watch your bank balance grow.

As your savings grow, you'll soon find that you may not need to use your credit card so often. In long term, you may even be able to achieve more substantial goals, such as having a deposit for your dream house.

Have a small amount deducted from your salary and deposit it directly into another saving account. As time past, your savings will grow automatically without you having to do a thing.

Why save?
In the short-term, having savings will free you from the stress of living from one payday to the next. Having some money set aside helps you deal with large bills or unexpected expenses. If you use your savings rather than borrowing money, you do not have to worry about repaying the sum you borrowed and any additional fees. On top of this your savings account may also earn a return for you. Saving for big expenses instead of using a credit card has dual benefits – you see your savings grow and you don't pay anything on the credit card.

As your savings continue to grow, you’ll be able to think beyond day-to-day expenses and would afford you larger things, like a holiday, a new i-pod or a car, without going into debt.

Set yourself a goal by setting up a standing instruction for an automatic deduction from your salary account, sit back and watch your savings grow.

How to get started? It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3 ....

No. 1 :  Set goals and determine your budget
Use your goals to motivate you. You can save for your next holiday, your wedding, a dream house or even for your retirement.

Break them down to short, medium and long-term goals.

In the medium-term, you can save larger amounts for things like a deposit for a house. As for long term, you may achieve your goal and have better options to retire. If you opt to have an option of early retirement, you may consider allocating a portion of your savings in investments that enable your fund to grow.

You can start saving now even if you haven't had time to work out a budget. Just pick a small amount to set aside from your salary each month. Some people choose a set percentage of their salary - say 5% or 10%. Others save a standard amount such as $30 or $50. It doesn't matter if you start small. The aim is to get into the saving habit now.

Request for your salary to be automatically credited into your savings account each month. This takes the work out of saving as you won't have to remember to put the money away.

A budget can help you to plan for your saving and expenses. Aim for specific goals. In the early days, keep your plan simple. For example, you may plan to have sufficient amount to pay for the big bills you get every quarter. Or you could plan for a longer term which will save you enough over a year to pay for a holiday. Use a budget to help you plan ahead.

No. 2 - Keep track of your spending
Keeping a spending record is the best way to establish your budget. Carry a notebook in which you record all your expenditure – every item, no matter how small. You’ll be surprised to find out where the money goes... cut down on the latte or cappuccino factor! Small amounts of money you spend on posh coffee or cigarettes can add up to thousands of ringgit a year. Cut back and put this money into your savings account and watch your money grow.

Check bills and keep receipts. Studies estimate that, on average, every fifth bill from the supermarket contains inaccuracies. So check every bill you get, from your mobile phone service provider to your electricity bill.

Avoid the “sale” mentality. Buying something for $100 which has a 50% tag doesn’t necessarily save you money if you don’t really need it. The point is, buy only what you need, not what you want or not what you think you can afford.

No. 3 - Where to save?
Typical savings products include savings accounts, special purpose accounts and term deposit accounts.

Savings accounts
  • Allows withdrawals whenever you need to (may be subject to daily limits)
  • Rates may vary
  • May offer benefits (eg higher rates, reduced fees) if the balance stays above a minimum amount
  • Can be useful for day-to-day transactions and short-term saving (eg for utility bills)
Fixed deposit accounts/general investment accounts
  • You can't withdraw the money until the maturity of the term which ranges from 30 days to 5 years
  • Higher rates than transaction accounts and the rate in fixed deposit accounts is fixed for the duration of the term. Profit is a potentially higher rate for the stipulated tenure
  • Can be useful if you've saved a bit of money that you want to keep for a future goal - a term deposit account will prevent you dipping into the money sooner than you had planned and will pay more returns than a savings account

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

TuneTalk Prepaid Lauched

New mobile prepaid service provider was launched in Malaysia recently, TuneTalk. Trying to compete with our current Hotlink, Celcom and DiGi, TuneTalk introduce a low flat rate for call at only 22 sen per minutes and 5 sen per SMS.

They coupled their service with some basic Value-added services including Call Waiting, CLIP (Caller Line Identification Presentation), Multi Party Conferencing, Voicemail and International Direct Dial and SMS.

However, in the midst of other service providers fighting for EDGE and 3G coverage, sadly TuneTalk do not provide any service for data (not even GPRS) and thus, no MMS available too.

To cover up these disadvantages, TuneTalk offers something different from others by providing a chance to win RM200 Air-asia e-gift voucher to daily top ten spenders, free RM100,000 Personal Accident Insurance coverage and service to change your TuneTalk number anytime without having to change your SIM card.

I have updated my Simulation for Mobile Service Provider excel file with TuneTalk rate. Go ahead and simulate your current call and SMS style and see if TuneTalk is a better option for you.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

KWSP Online

Perancangan persaraan amat penting untuk kita semua. Kita perlu prihatin bahawa dalam tempoh bersara, kita perlu mempunyai simpanan yang cukup untuk belanja bulanan dan juga menanggung kos perubatan kita.

Di Malaysia, kita banyak bergantung kepada Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja (KWSP) untuk menjamin simpanan hari tua kita. Terutamanya bagi pekerja swasta yang biasanya tiada sumbangan pencen dari majikan, KWSP mungkin satu-satunya harapan untuk menjamin tempoh persaraan kita.

Oleh sebab ini, penting juga untuk kita memantau aktiviti akaun KWSP kita. Pastikan sumbangan bulanan kita dan juga sumbangan dari majikan dimasukkan dengan betul ke dalam akaun kita. Kita juga perlu prihatin sama ada baki akaun KWSP kita cukup atau tidak untuk menampung hidup selepas bersara.

Cara paling mudah untuk memeriksa aktiviti akaun KWSP kita ialah dengan memeriksa secara online melalui i-Account. Melalui i-Account, kita dapat:
  1. Melihat penyata tahun lepas
  2. Melihat penyata terkini – dikemaskinikan pada aktiviti yang terbaru
  3. Mencetak penyata KWSP – Hasil cetakan berformat sama seperti penyata dari majikan atau dari kaunter KWSP, jadi boleh digunakan sebagai dokumen rasmi
  4. Mengemaskini profil termasuk alamat surat-menyurat, nombor telefon dan alamat e-mail.
  5. Memaparkan jumlah kelayakan pengeluaran mengikut situasi-situasi yang berkenaan.

Untuk memohon i-Akaun KWSP, ikutilah langkah-langkah berikut.

Memohon i-Akaun di website KWSP
  1. Lawati website rasmi KWSP di
  2. Klik pada menu “i-Akaun”

  3. Klik pada “Register Your Member i-Akaun”

  4. Klik pada “Register as Member”

  5. Masukkan nombor ahli KWSP dan nombor kad pengenalan anda.

  6. Masukkan kod seperti yang terpapar dan klik pada “Daftar”

  7. Selesai

Selepas mendaftar i-Akaun, anda perlu mendapatkan “kod pengaktifan” untuk mengaktifkan i-Akaun anda. Walau bagaimanapun, ini tidak dapat dilakukan secara online. Terpaksa melawat kaunter KWSP atau kiosk KWSP yang berhampiran.

Dapatkan “kod pengaktifan” i-Akaun
Untuk mendapatkan kod pengaktifan, lawati pejabat KWSP berhampiran dan minta kod pengaktifan di kaunter. Tapi, jika anda tidak mahu menunggu lama menunggu giliran ke kaunter, dapatkan sahaja kod pengaktifan di kiosk KWSP.

Mesin Kiosk KWSP
1) Kenalpasti kedudukan mesin kiosk KWSP yang berhampiran anda di Kiosk List.
2) Di kiosk, tekan pada “dapatkan kod pengaktifan”.
3) Masukkan MyKad anda
4) Apabila diarahkan, letakkan ibu jari kanan pada sensor untuk proses kenalpasti.
5) Masukkan 6 digit kod pengaktifan.
6) Selesai

Anda juga boleh melihat tutorial asal dari KWSP di sini.

Langkah terakhir ialah untuk mengaktifkan i-Akaun anda menggunakan kos pengaktifan.

Aktifkan i-Akaun dengan kod pengaktifan
  1. Lawati website KWSP dan klik pada “first time login”

  2. Klik pada “I agree to activate i-Akaun only” check box.
  3. Masukkan nombor kad pengenalan.
  4. Masukkan 6 digit kod pengaktifan anda.

  5. Klik pada butang “Activate” untuk diproses.
  6. Masukkan maklumat anda seperti yang diperlukan dalam borang yang dipaparkan.

  7. Klik “Submit”
  8. Selesai
Untuk login ke i-Akaun anda, klik pada “Login ke i-Akaun” dari laman utama, masukkan User ID dan password. Kini anda boleh memantau akaun KWSP anda pada bila-bila masa sahaja.

Online your EPF

Retirement planning is crucial for everyone. Having a secure retirement plan is important to ensure our golden age will be well managed, not only to handle monthly expenses but also to maintain our medical expenses during old age.

If in United States, 401(K) plan and IRA is one of the important pension plan. Here in Malaysia, we rely a lot on Employees Provident Fund (EPF) or Kumpulan Wang Simpanan Pekerja (KWSP). For employee in private sector, not having any pension plan from employer, EPF become very crucial to support our retirement age.

It is good to also pay attention to our EPF account. It is to ensure that our monthly contribution and employer contribution is correctly deposit to our account. Having to know the account balance, we can also understand if the EPF balance alone would be enough to support our retirement period or not.

The easiest and hassle-free way to maintain your EPF account is by signing up for the i-Account to view your EPF account online. Some of the features that you can do through your i-Account are:

  1. View last year statement
  2. View current statement – updated to the latest activity
  3. Print EPF statement – The printout is exactly as the statement we got from our employer or through EPF counter, so the printout is valid to be use as official document.
  4. Update profile including address, phone number and email address.
  5. Automatic calculate the amount that your able to request for withdrawal depends on the allowed situation.

To apply for EPF i-Account, just follow these simple steps below.

Apply an online i-Account on KWSP website
  1. Visit KWSP website
  2. Click the “I-Account" image

  3. Click “Register Your Member i-Akaun”

  4. Click “Register as Member”

  5. Key in EPF number and IC number

  6. Key in the code show in image and click “Register” button

  7. Done

Once you have register for i-Account, now you have to generate the “activation code” to activate your account. However, this cannot be done online. You have to make a quick visit to any nearby EPF counter or EPF kiosk.

Generate i-Account “activation code”

To generate the activation code, visit the EPF counter and ask for the activation code. You will be asked for your identification card. But if you do not like the hassle of waiting for your queue to go to the counter, you can collect the code from the EPF kiosk.

EPF Kiosks machine
  1. Locate all available KWSP Kiosks machine at Kiosk list.
  2. Access the system and click the “collect activation code”.
  3. Insert our identity card
  4. When instructed by the system, place your right thumb thumbprint on the sensor for validation process.
  5. Press 6 digits as our activation code.
  6. Done.
You can also access further tutorial on how to use the kiosk through EPF official website here.

The final step will be activate our Online EPF account with our activation code.

Activate the i-Account with the activation code
  1. Visit EPF website, click the “first time login”

  2. Click “I agree to activate i-Akaun only” check box.
  3. Fill in your IC Number
  4. Fill in the Activation code Text box with the 6 digits “activation code” that you have generated.

  5. Click Activate button to process.
  6. Fill in all you user’s profile in the form.

  7. Click Submit.
  8. Done
To login into your i-Account, click “Login Into i-Account” from the main page, key in your User ID and password. Now you can view your EPF account online anytime.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Buffet Ramadan di Malaysia

Sudah masuk minggu kedua kita menjalani ibadah puasa di bulan Ramadan 1430 bersamaan September 2009. Mungkin ramai dah puas menyerbu bazaar-bazaar Ramadan di sekitar kawasan perumahan masing-masing. Tidak kurang juga yang puas mencuba pelbagai resepi masakan berbuka di rumah.

Saya terfikir untuk mengajak beberapa rakan untuk pergi berbuka puasa secara buffet di hotel. Sesekali bertukar selera, mencuba makanan di hotel pula. Tetapi ini bukan bermaksud kita boros ye. Dengan melakukan sedikit survey, tentunya ada hidangan buffet di hotel-hotel berhampiran yang bersesuaian dengan budget masing-masing.

Hasil survey untuk buffet Ramadan, rujukan dari, saya paparkan di bawah senarai buffet berbuka puasa di hotel-hotel di Malaysia.

State City Restaurant Pricing
Johor Johor Bahru Good Hope Hotel Skudai-Johor Bahru RM 29++ per adult, RM 14++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru Tropical Inn Bookings made between now to 22nd August: RM 30++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Bookings made after 22 August: RM 35++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru The Embassy Hotel & Service Apartment RM 30++ per adult, half price for children
Johor Johor Bahru Hotel Katerina RM 35++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru Grand Continental Hotel RM 40++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru Dorsett Johor Hotel RM 45++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru M Suites Hotel Johor Bahru RM 60++ per adult, RM 28++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru The Zon Regency Hotel By The Sea RM 60++ per adult, RM 30++ per child
Johor Johor Bahru Mutiara Johor Bahru RM 60++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
Kedah Sungai Petani Harvard Suasana Hotel RM 25++ per adult, RM 15++ per child
Kedah Pulau Langkawi Grand Continental Pulau Langkawi RM 30++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Kedah Sungai Petani Swiss Inn Sungai Petani RM 38++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Kedah Pulau Langkawi The City Bayview Hotel RM 48++ per adult, half price for children
Kedah Pulau Langkawi Awana Porto Malai Resort Pulau Langkawi RM 48++ per adult, RM 34++ per child
Kedah Pulau Langkawi Sheraton Pulau Langkawi Beach Resort RM 108.90++ per adult, half price for children
Kelantan Kota Bharu Renaissance Kota Bharu Palm Terrace RM 58++ per adult, half price for children
Kelantan Kota Bharu Renaissance Kota Bharu Dynasty RM 299 per table (10 pax)
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Kampung Attap Midah Hotel RM 38++ per adult, RM 28++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock Ancasa Hotel & Spa Kuala Lumpur Bookings made online prior to 15 Aug 09: Special rate of RM 39++ per adult, RM 32++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Bukit Bintang Hotel Capitol RM 48++ per adult, RM 24++ per child Room service Sahur (23 August 09 - 19 September 09 from 3.30am - 5.30am): RM 18++ per pax
Kuala Lumpur The Curve, Mutiara Damansara The Apartment @ The Curve RM 49++ per adult, RM 19++ per child
10+1: 1 complimentary buffet every 10 pax
Kuala Lumpur Taman Maluri Hotel Maluri RM53++ per adult, RM37++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Klang Lama Pearl International Hotel RM 58 ++ per adult, RM 30++ per childSpecial Early Bird discount: 30% during 21 August 09 - 31 August 09 (except 25 August 09 - 27 August 09)
Early Bird Promotion vouchers: RM 500nett per booklet of 10
Special discounts up to 60% for selected credit cards
Book online and be eligible for up to 30% discount
Kuala Lumpur Starhill Gallery Enak KL RM 60++ per pax
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Binjai PNB Darby Park Executive Suites
PNB Darby Café
RM 65++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Mid Valley City Cititel Mid Valley RM 65++ per adult, RM 32.50++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Mid Valley City Boulevard Hotel RM 75++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Imbi Berjaya Times Square Hotel RM 78++ per adult, RM 42++ per child
5+1 Promotion: For every 5 pax, get 1 pax free
Private functions: Min 50 pax
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Ampang Corus Hotel RM 79++ per adult, RM 50++ per child
Early Bird Special: Bookings made for 22nd to 31st August will enjoy a special rate of RM 50++ per adult
Kuala Lumpur Bangi Equatorial Hotel RM 82++ per adult, RM 38 ++ per child
1Malaysia Merdeka Special (22 August 09 - 31 August 09): 20% off buffet price
10% off for pre-payments (1 September 09 - 17 September 09): min 24hours prior to dining
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Conlay Prince Hotel & Residences RM 88++per pax
Kuala Lumpur Jalan Binjai PNB Darby Park Executive Suites
39 Restaurant
RM 89++ per adult, RM 59++ per child
Kuala Lumpur KL Sentral Hilton Kuala Lumpur Weekdays: RM 98++ per adult, half price for children
Weekends: RM 88++ per person, half price for children
Kuala Lumpur Bangsar Baru Bangsar Seafood Garden Restaurant RM 498 - RM 898 (10 pax)
Free 1 kg of Bangsar Seafood Garden's Signature Crabs
Melaka Air Keroh Air Keroh D Village Resort RM 29++ per adult, RM 19++ per child
Melaka Jalan Tun Sri Lanang Hotel Grand Continental Early bird special (bookings made prior to start of Ramadan): RM 30++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
During Ramadan: RM 35++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Melaka Plaza Mahkota Seri Costa Hotel & Resort RM 35++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Melaka Bukit Baru Straits Meridian Hotel RM 36++ per adult, half price for children
Melaka Jalan Hang Tuah The Golden Legacy RM 38++ per adult, RM 25++ per child
Melaka Jalan Tun Cheng Lock Hotel Puri Melaka RM 40++ per adult, half price for children
Melaka Jalan Bendahara The City Bayview Hotel RM 48++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
5+1 Promotion: Complimentary buffet for 1 pax for every 5 pax
Melaka Jalan Merdeka Mahkota Hotel RM 50++ per adult, RM 32++ per child
Melaka Alor Gajah A Famosa Resort RM 55++ per adult, RM 38++ per child
Melaka Jalan Bendahara Renaissance Melaka Hotel RM 60++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
5+1 Promotion: Buy 5 buffet vouchers and get 1 free (Purchases prior to 15 July are entitled to an additional 15% discount)
Negeri Sembilan Seremban Klana Resort Seremban RM 48++ per adult, RM 26++ per child
10+ 1 Promotion: 1 complimentary buffet per 10 pax
Purchase limited Special Buka Puasa vouchers for 15% discount on normal rates
Negeri Sembilan Port Dickson Avillion 22 August to end of school holidays: Mongolian BBQ buffet for RM 78++ per adult, RM 30++ per child
After school holidays: Ramadhan Set (min 2 pax) RM 45++ per pax
Pahang Cameron Highlands Hotel Casa de la Rosa Cameron Highlands RM 30++ per pax
Pahang Cherating Holiday Villa Cherating RM 45++ per adult, RM 22++ per child
Pahang Kuantan Swiss-Garden Resort RM 52++ per adult, RM 30++ per child
Pahang Cherating The Legend Resort RM 58++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
Petaling Jaya Lorong Utara Hotel Armada RM 42++ per adult, RM 21++ per child
Petaling Jaya Jalan Kelab Tropicana Tropicana Golf Resort RM 48++ per adult, RM 30++ per child
Petaling Jaya Section 16 Eastin Hotel RM 78++ per adult, RM 48++ per child
Petaling Jaya Bandar Utama One World Hotel RM 98++ per adult, RM 49++ per child (inclusive of special door gift)
Pulau Pinang Jalan Gurdwara Hotel Grand Continental RM 28++ per adult, RM 14++ per child
Pulau Pinang Gurney Drive The Gurney Resort Hotel RM 33++ per adult, RM 16.50++ per child
Pulau Pinang Seberang Perai The Summit Hotel Bukit Mertajam RM 35 nett per adult, RM 20 nett per child
Pulau Pinang Georgetown Berjaya Georgetown Hotel RM 38++ per adult, RM 23++ per child
Pulau Pinang Bukit Jambul Vistana Hotel Pulau Pinang RM 39++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Pulau Pinang Gurney Drive G Hotel RM 45++ per adult, half price for children
Pulau Pinang Jalan Penang Cititel Penang RM 45++ per adult, RM 22++ per child
Pulau Pinang Seberang Jaya Sunway Hotel Seberang Jaya RM 48 nett, half price for children
Putrajaya Presint 1 Cruise Tasik Putrajaya RM 65++ per adult, RM 33++ per child
10+1: 1 complimentary set per 10 pax
Advance booking promotion: RM 198 per pax for Cruise Buffet 1, RM 128 per pax for Cruise Buffet 2 (min 30 pax, 3 days advance booking)
Sabah Sandakan Renaissance Sandakan Hotel RM 38++ per adult, RM 20++ per child
Sabah Kota Kinabalu Hotel Shangri-La 1 Aug - 14 Aug: A 35% discount will be entitled upon purchase of voucher
15 Aug - 19Aug: RM 50 per pax, buy 8 vouchers get 1 free
20 Aug - 20 Sep RM 50++ per pax, half price for children. Discounts eligible for members only.
Sabah Kota Kinabalu Sutera Harbour, Golf and Spa Resort RM 120++ per adult, RM 60++ per child
Sarawak Kuching Hotel Grand Continental RM 38++ per adult, RM 19++ per child
Sarawak Kuching Merdeka Palace RM 49++ per adult, half price for children
Sarawak Kuching Crowne Plaza Riverside Kuching RM 60++ per adult, half price for children
Sarawak Kuching Hilton Kuching RM 79++ per adult, half price for children
Selangor Sepang Eden @ KLIA RM 38++ (1 pax), RM 88++ (2 pax), RM 118++ (2-4 pax), RM 218++ (5-7 pax)
Selangor Sepang Concorde Inn Kuala Lumpur RM 43.50++ per adult, RM 30.50++ per child
Selangor Cyberjaya Cyberview Lodge Resort & Spa RM 70++ per adult, RM 35++ per child
10+1: 1 complimentary buffet dinner for every 10 pax
Private functions: Min 30 pax (RM 70++ per pax)
Terengganu Kuala Terengganu Hotel Grand Continental Kuala Terengganu RM 45++ per adult, RM 28++ per child

Buffet di Mahkota Hotel, Melaka

Saya telah memilih untuk berbuka puasa di Mahkota Hotel, Melaka. Setibanya di sana, kawasan bufet “Selera Kampung” yang begitu hampir dengan lobi hotel, memudahkan pengunjung bersantai di perkarangan lobi sementara menunggu waktu berbuka. Kawasan buffet yang diperuntukan juga besar, merangkumi 2 kawasan restoran di hotel berkenaan.

Jarak antara meja di restoran amat selesa. Jadi, tak terganggu antara satu kumpulan pengunjung dengan yang bersebelahan. Ada juga pentas kecil untuk mempersembahkan alunan ghazal sebagai halua telinga.

Menu yang disediakan amat menarik. Antara jenis hidangan termasuk makanan kampung seperti nasi putih, nasi goreng, ikan masin, ikan masak halia, sotong masak lemak, udang bakar; ulam-ulaman; nasi ayam; mee soto; satay; roti jala; steamboat; ikan bakar; pizza; ais krim; air batu campur dan pelbagai jenis minuman. Makan berdua pun penuh satu meja.

Harga yang dikenakan juga amat berpatutan. Jumlah bersih untuk seorang dewasa ialah RM57.50 sahaja.

Jika anda berkesempatan mengunjungi tempat-tempat buffet berbuka puasa, tinggalkan lah comment ye. Boleh berkongsi pengalamanan masing-masing sepanjang menjamu selera di bulan Ramadan.