Lifestyle inflation: Can it be done responsibly?

Lifestyle inflation gets a bad rap, and understandably so. It's so darn tempting and so many of us seem to have a serious problem controlling it. But inherently, lifestyle inflation isn't a bad thing. Lots of Get Rich Slowly readers have made this point, and I agree: if your finances are in order, what's wrong with treating yourself to a little luxurious lifestyle upgrade?

In fact, I'd like to argue that lifestyle inflation can be done responsibly.

I live below my means, but I'm not eating beans every night, either. As I've gotten older and my finances have evolved, I've admittedly engaged in a little more lifestyle inflation. But I've always been careful and mindful of it. Here's how I feel I've handled my lifestyle inflation responsibly.

I make sure I can afford it

Before I take on a lifestyle upgrade, I ask myself, “Can I afford this?” And then, before I make a final decision, I ask myself, “Really, though. Can I afford this?”

In fact, I also make sure that I could afford the luxury if I were earning significantly less — say, half of my income. There's no formula for calculating the worth of lifestyle inflation, but any luxurious expense should only take up a small percentage of your income. The point is, I err on the side of caution. In a culture notorious for overspending, playing it safe can't hurt.

I consider my finances and goals

And maybe a better question than “Can I afford this” is: “Should I afford this?” After all, just because someone earns a decent income doesn't necessarily mean their finances are in order. Or, maybe you're earning a high income, and your finances are in order, but you're also saving up for a down payment on a home. In that case, you can afford lifestyle inflation, but, if you want to reach your goal, you probably shouldn't give in to it.

When I was in debt, I didn't even consider lifestyle inflation, and that's not a knock on anyone who has made different choices. But I was young, earning a lot, and I really, really wanted to get out of debt. I didn't feel like I could afford many luxuries when I owed thousands. I made debt a priority over lifestyle. Looking back, this was a good financial decision.

Unfortunately, I'm now back on a tight budget. I don't have much room in my life for upgrades. Recently, while checking in to a flight (purchased before my job loss), I came across a great deal on lifestyle inflation — $50 for an upgrade to first class. Despite it being a great deal on luxury, I still had to pass. I asked myself, “Can I afford this?” and I answered, “Technically, I guess. But I don't have steady income right now, so I probably shouldn't.”

I take advantage of opportunities to upgrade for less

Remember my stupid car accident from earlier this year? Well, I planned to simply replace my old Corolla with a similar model, new or newer. I was sure the insurance company would pay me a paltry amount for my total loss. I figured I might have to pay some cash out-of-pocket, too, if I wanted a new car or at least one with better mileage in slightly better condition.

I was surprised. The insurance company offered me $13,000 for my car — the high end of its value. It was actually more than my car originally cost, because we got an awesome deal on it at the time. Anyway, when we got the check, I came across a deal on a 2010 Volkswagen Jetta for $15,000, out the door. It was a nice car, low mileage and in great condition. I've never been much of a car enthusiast, and I planned on driving my Corolla into the ground. But $2,000 was a good deal for a significant lifestyle upgrade. And I was prepared to spend that money anyway.

But there was another option: buy a cheaper car, and put the insurance difference in savings. That would've been a good option, too, and if I were in a different financial position — say, 21 with student loan debt — I would've gone with it. At the time, however, I was earning a lot, I had a large emergency fund and I'd maxed out my retirement. I decided that, if something bad happened, and my income significantly changed, the $2,000 wouldn't be crucial. It wouldn't be the difference between my sinking or swimming. So I decided to take advantage of a “discounted” lifestyle upgrade. And, even though my income did significantly change, I still don't regret my decision.

I consider the long-term costs

With a lot of luxuries, there are long-term or continuing costs that are easy to overlook. In the example of the Jetta, I asked myself how much more I would be paying for fuel, insurance and even depreciation than if I were to buy a Corolla. And this is a somewhat outdated example, but years ago, when I bought a Blu-Ray player, I had to consider that Blu-Ray discs were more expensive.

By considering both the long-term costs and my financial possibilities in the future, I've been able to enjoy some lifestyle upgrades without having to compromise my financial freedom.

Thus, I don't regret my lifestyle upgrade decisions of the past. My income has significantly decreased within the past two months, but my lifestyle decisions aren't coming back to haunt me, and I think it's because I went about my lifestyle inflation responsibly.

What do you think? Can lifestyle inflation be responsible? If so, how do you make your decisions when contemplating lifestyle upgrades?

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FrugalSage
FrugalSage
6 years ago

No-one needs to live the life of a pauper. But everything is a trade off. As long as someone truly understands the value of a dollar. Knowing how much of their life they are giving up in exchange for a certain XYZ. If they are aware of it, and willing to do it, then sure, there are no problems to live a better life. The problem occurs when people don’t even know what their life’s goals are. When they haven’t put any thought at all into whether spending an extra 2k for a car is worthwhile. They just do it… Read more »

Miss Growing Green
Miss Growing Green
6 years ago
Reply to  FrugalSage

Agreed. I think the main problem / reason why people don’t practice responsible lifestyle inflation is that they don’t properly weigh the costs and benefits.
Okay, so you *really* love going to the coffee shop every day. Is that $5.00/day, or $1,825 a year worth the lifestyle upgrade? Or would you rather use it to buy tickets to visit family or travel an extra time during the year?
People so often over-look the “little things” not realizing that they might be competing with the ability to enjoy some really big things.

Bridgett T
Bridgett T
6 years ago

I actually just signed up for a website that will send you snacks every 2 weeks or month, because I realized I was spending the $6 on snacks anyway and I could cancel at any time. I’m going to wait and see if it actually works out and I end up spending less or the same amount on snacks. If that’s the case, I get the illusion of a new, cool convenience without spending any more money, which would be nice.

FI Pilgrim
FI Pilgrim
6 years ago

When I think of lifestyle inflation I think of buying something that has higher long-term costs. Like moving to a nicer neighborhood where everyone drives nicer cars, has well manicured lawns, sends their kids to nicer schools, dresses nicer, etc. Or buying a luxury car instead of a “normal” sedan, which requires more cleaning, more expensive maintenance, premium gasoline, lower fuel efficency, etc. Those are the decisions that are toughest for me, because you often don’t KNOW what the costs are going to be before getting into them. In those cases I want to be more that sure that we… Read more »

Money Saving
Money Saving
6 years ago
Reply to  FI Pilgrim

I agree with FI Pilgrim,

If you’re making a one time purchase with cash, that doesn’t really fit my definition of lifestyle inflation.

Life style inflation to me is if you lock in some type of recurring cost that will be with you for a very long time (expensive house, large car payment, etc.). This is where lifestyle inflation can really hurt you for the long run because it erodes your ability to save for the future and take advantage of compounding interest.

Kevin
Kevin
6 years ago
Reply to  Money Saving

While I agree with both of you that if you can really afford it and the purchase is a real one time thing (instead of a one time thing that becomes common) then yes it is less of a concern than other forms of lifestyle inflation.
However a Jetta typically has a higher Total Cost of Ownership than a Corolla. So its not just the $2000 purchase difference, its the additional cost in tires (tire sizing will get you), maintenance and fuel consumption.

Mike
Mike
6 years ago
Reply to  Kevin

Definitely agree. This example still works because the Jetta will likely have a higher cost to own it down the road. I used to have a great summer job when I was in college and got paid really well. I bought myself a used Audi A4 because I could afford to buy it, but everytime that car broke it seemed like it cost $500.

Learned a great lesson. Being able to afford to buy something and being able to afford to own it are two completely different things.

Stephen Kratcoski
Stephen Kratcoski
6 years ago
Reply to  Money Saving

It is fine to treat yourself to a meal out or coffee but fun and entertainment can slow down savings, investment and retirement goals. It is easy to forget your goals when you are near a restaurant or a shopping center.

Steve K

PayOffMyRentals
PayOffMyRentals
6 years ago
Reply to  FI Pilgrim

“Those are the decisions that are toughest for me, because you often don’t KNOW what the costs are going to be before getting into them.” I think that comment nailed one true issue: Calculating the true, long-term costs. You may be able to afford a larger mortgage and get into a nicer house. Yes, you can handle the larger monthly payment easily enough, but aside from the higher insurance costs, have you calculated the higher heating, air-conditioning, larger repair bills for the new larger roof, more paint, higher taxes, additional time needed for care & maintenance, etc, etc, etc… There… Read more »

Beth
Beth
6 years ago

I agree! I use that “long term costs” argument when people start pressuring me to buy a home. They look at my rent and tell me that my mortgage payment would be less and why am I throwing away my money?

BUT… add up all the costs of home ownership aside from the mortgage and it would cost me much more to buy than to rent. I’m biding my time, saving the difference, and waiting for the market to correct itself.

SAHMama
SAHMama
6 years ago

Sort of. In 2005 and in 2007, I had surgeries to remove a bone from each foot due to avascular necrosis. I was only 26 and 28 at the times of those surgeries. Before that, I’d always bought super cheap shoes. After those surgeries, I now buy quality shoes that protect and support my crazy high arches and the balls of my feet from where the bones were removed. Also for food. I purchase a 1/4 beef once a year from my uncle for $2.50 hanging pound of weight. It actually works out to be a great deal, but I… Read more »

Carla
Carla
6 years ago
Reply to  SAHMama

I don’t think buying quality shoes to protect the health of your feet (and knees, back, etc) or buying healthier, quality food than what you can find at Safeway should be called “lifestyle inflation”.

By the way, $2.50 per pound is an absolute steal for grass fed beef! I pay about $6-8 dollars a pound but I buy less of it.

I think the long-term health benefits for both purchases is work it.

El Nerdo
El Nerdo
6 years ago

I think lifestyle inflation is good and necessary, otherwise we’d all be living in caves. Having said that, the term I think refers more to the consumerist mindset that makes people spend whatever money they have. Here’s an example: I remember years ago calling the credit card company asking for a limit increase because “I got a raise today.” Then I proceeded to max out that limit. Can’t even remember what I bought with it. Haa haaa haaa haaa. Oh, the old stupid me. I wish I could go back in time and knock him on the head. Repeatedly. Anyway,… Read more »

M
M
6 years ago
Reply to  El Nerdo

No need, El Nerdo, to knock yourself on the head. That’s for cavemen, no? And we here need your uncommon sense, with brain intact.

El Nerdo
El Nerdo
6 years ago
Reply to  M

Oh no no– he had it coming! Ha ha ha…

Fehmeen
Fehmeen
6 years ago

I think we all aspire to improve our lifestyle over time but we don’t always do it responsibly. Each time we get a raise, we are eager to try new restaurants, upgrade our tech-accessories or wardrobe, and while all of that is fine, one shouldn’t lose sight of their overall financial wealth. Perhaps if one resolves to increase their savings in proportion to the increase in wages, then any extra spending on lifestyle changes aren’t harmful.

Louisa
Louisa
6 years ago

Why do beans always get such a bad rap? I love beans and could happily live on them most days of the week!

Matt at Your Living Body
Matt at Your Living Body
6 years ago
Reply to  Louisa

Anti-nutrient.

Jane
Jane
6 years ago

Tell that to the rest of the world who relies on various types of legumes for survival. Not everyone in this world can subscribe to fad nutritional theories like the Paleo diet. It is just not environmentally sustainable. Beans are cheap, high caloric, and delicious when prepared properly.

Carla
Carla
6 years ago
Reply to  Jane

For health reasons there are a ton of foods I don’t eat and yes, I do eat a Paleo diet. I noticed that my health is definitely much better sticking with veggies meat, fish, good fat and some nuts/seeds. Its not for everyone but for those of us who heavily rely to diet to help manage chronic illness, its a godsend.

Jane
Jane
6 years ago
Reply to  Jane

Carla, My point was not to say that some people can’t greatly benefit from a Paleo diet. But Matt’s pithy comment gets to the heart of my problem with the movement – the demonization of things that don’t fit into the diet. When people throw around terms like “poison” or “antinutrient” to describe foods that the whole word has eaten for millennia, it gets to be annoying. Plus, it is just not possible for the whole world to eat Paleo. It’s definitely a first world luxury. And Kayla is exactly right – beans have a stigma in our culture precisely… Read more »

Beth
Beth
6 years ago

All foods contain anti-nutrients: http://chemistry.about.com/b/2013/06/08/what-is-an-antinutrient.htm

There’s a LOT of money to be made in the diet industry vilifying certain foods and praising others.

Kayla
Kayla
6 years ago
Reply to  Louisa

Theyre indeed healthy, but meaning that you obviously shouldn’t live on only them to save money. The saying obviously means that poorer people often times need to rely on a processed can of beans (or other cheap foods) because theyre so dirt cheap, with no other options, not that you shouldn’t include any type of beans in your diet.

Meaghan
Meaghan
6 years ago
Reply to  Kayla

Actually, per serving, cans of beans are very expensive – although I’m not sure what’s so “processed” about a can of pre-cooked beans.

Dry legumes, on the other hand, are insanely cheap, not to mention better-tasting. In many parts of the world they’re a staple.

Megan
Megan
6 years ago
Reply to  Louisa

Yes, I love beans! Pintos are my favorite but most are great. I just made a rocking lentil soup the other night which really hits the spot and makes for great leftovers. You’re right that they’re cheap and great nutrition.

Beth
Beth
6 years ago

I agree that lifestyle inflation isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I didn’t want to live in shared student housing and eat ramen forever, for example. I think the problem arises when people spend on things that don’t bring them value, and they increase their spending when they get a raise without also increasing their savings. I like Kristin’s distinction between “can I afford this” versus “should I afford this”? Right now my debate is buying a smart phone. I can afford it, but do I need it — or do I feel I should have one because all my friends… Read more »

Riki
Riki
6 years ago
Reply to  Beth

Pay for the phone out-of-pocket and avoid the contract. If you do the math, it saves significantly over the option of a subsidized phone.

Beth
Beth
6 years ago
Reply to  Riki

I’m definitely considering that option. Wireless plans are expensive in Canada. I had thought government legislation would bring prices down, but it’s not happening fast enough to help me.

Alas, I think I’m outgrowing my $100/year pay-as-you-go cell phone.

Jessica
Jessica
6 years ago
Reply to  Beth

The p[ay as you go market is rapidly changing. I would look into whether Ting is available in Canada. I found them via podcast ads and then a Gizmodo recommendation and For the cost of my phone upfront, I pay significantly less that I would on a plan. They calculate and charge you per month on different tiers for voice, messages and data. As someone who hardly ever uses my phone to actually talk (between google voice and skype)I save a lot just by being in the lowest voice tier.

Beth
Beth
6 years ago
Reply to  Beth

Thanks for the suggestion!

Just in case Canada’s wireless market isn’t bad enough, it turns out Ting can’t operate here — even though it’s based in Toronto!

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/the-canadian-mobile-phone-service-you-can-t-get-here-1.1337824

Yeeeeesh!

hannah
hannah
6 years ago
Reply to  Beth

Do the next best thing. Get a phone and use Page Plus Cellular. They run on the verizon network so reception is excellent, but they are not Verizon, so they’re dirt cheap. No constantly increasing fees and taxes. Then buy yourself a used smartphone from a reputable seller on Ebay, such as an HTC Evo or Rezound. Use the smartphone on wifi at home, work, shopping and everywhere else that has wifi these days. Download apps and games at will. The ones that don’t require internet, will be useful with or without wifi, those that do – well you’ll be… Read more »

Beth
Beth
6 years ago
Reply to  hannah

Alas, we don’t have Verizon here either. Our options in Canada are very limited and expensive. But thanks for the suggestion!

Betsy @ ConsumerFu.com
Betsy @ ConsumerFu.com
6 years ago

When I hear a term like ‘lifestyle inflation,’ my first thought is that it refers to living beyond your means. If you are simply referring to making a decision between a cheaper item and a more expensive item while living within your means, then it looks like your decision making process is sound.

Megan
Megan
6 years ago

I think of lifestyle inflation as the often natural process that occurs when your income goes up over time. The way I lived my life a year after starting my career was definitely better than when I was a student in undergrad. The way I live now is nicer than when I first started working (though you might not notice it at first). As income and net worth go up you can afford to drive a nicer car, shop for higher quality clothes, go out to eat more, treat others when going out more, and so forth. Perhaps for me… Read more »

Jon
Jon
6 years ago

Like some others who have commented, I tend to think of lifestyle inflation more in terms of long term changes, rather than occasional splurges, e.g., always flying first class rather than taking advantage of a one time special upgrade fee. Often this is tied to a “keeping up with the Jones” attitude, having to have a bigger house, nicer cars, and more toys, or getting locked into a long term contract for the best cell phone data plan, hiring a gardener, etc. I think you have to strike a balance between living and saving for your future goals, and experiencing… Read more »

Chuckie G.
Chuckie G.
6 years ago
Reply to  Jon

This definitely underscores how health and wealth are so closely related. Does not do you any good to be nearing retirement age, sitting on a pile of hard earned wealth and looking the grim reaper in the eye.

Mrs PoP
Mrs PoP
6 years ago

Like some of the other commenters, I tend to look at lifestyle inflation as increases in costs that aren’t really thought about going in. Mindless spending, or not understanding the true long term costs.
Lifestyle expansion, on the other hand, feels more mindful and deliberate and what I like to incorporate into our lives. This kind of expansion feels like it retains an attitude of gratitude that helps to maximize the joy out of all the dollars we spend in our lives.

Kathy
Kathy
6 years ago

One can live like a pauper in order to secure one’s future or one can live like a pauper because it becomes a habit. If you have your future pretty well secured, why continue to deny yourself things just to add to the bottom line of an already sufficient stockpile of money? I guess no one can ever be certain they have enough but why have money if you never enjoy it? Have a meal out once in a while, rent a movie, buy a book. Enjoy the money, you’ve earned it.

Brian@ Debt Discipline
[email protected] Debt Discipline
6 years ago

Lifestyle inflation really depends on your situation. Currently we are in debt repayment mode so we not looking for any of these opportunities. Once we are done we will look to loosen the belt a little and spend a little more on ourselves.

Golfing Girl
Golfing Girl
6 years ago

I have wondered this a lot lately. I have always been on the frugal (okay maybe cheap) side, but over the last few years I have been able to justify spending on things that make my life less stressful and I find true enjoyment in them. For instance, when we were trying to sell our house, I hired a cleaning service because I was about to lose my mind trying to keep it clean with all three kids and a dog. It saved my sanity and I decided to keep them on at our new home (another lifestyle inflation). But… Read more »

mike
mike
6 years ago

The spousal lifestyle ying-yang conundrum: I think a lot of people might have this issue where one spouse is more likely to want the inflation than the other. I don’t like it all for the most part and my wife was full swing when I met her. Over the years we have come to meet in the middle on things. Private school for our only child, her first luxury car this year (although I think I added a few grays there) and dinners out which we both like. On the other hand, retirement contributions, savings always come first, we try… Read more »

Anne
Anne
6 years ago

Today’s post speaks to me. After a lifetime of mediocre wages, but frugal living my husband and I are doing so well in retirement that we have yet to touch any savings. We use all excess monthly income to travel. Here is how we have inflated our lifestyle. We no longer stay in Motel Cheapo. Nothing lower than Marriott partners for us. That can’t be very much inflation, can it? Anyway, no more motels that look like it should have a chalk outline on the floor from the last victim. Also, we occasionally pay to get the car washed. (gasp)… Read more »

Lucille
Lucille
6 years ago
Reply to  Anne

Anne, your post gave me a chuckle. It was sweet. You get that car washed—you lived frugally all your life to afford little “luxuries” now.

I hope you and your husband have many years of healthy happy retirement!

kathyglo
kathyglo
6 years ago
Reply to  Anne

We have had many great vacations using vrbo.com or homeaway.com, or other similar sites. Never had a problem yet (knock on wood!!) Prices are great, you may want to check it out!

Marsha
Marsha
6 years ago
Reply to  Anne

Your remark about “Hotel Cheapo” brought back memories from the cheap vacation we had when our sons were about 6 and 8. We stayed in a somewhat run-down motel on the outskirts of a small city. It was reasonably clean and reasonably quiet–at least until midnight. Then we discovered that we had inadvertently chosen a “hot sheet” motel! Much thumping and cries of orgasmic pleasure from the rooms on either side of the paper-thin walls. Try to explain to a 6 yo that “No, that lady’s not in pain….ummm…they’re just watching a football game on tv and she’s REALLY happy… Read more »

Anne
Anne
6 years ago
Reply to  Marsha

We have some close friends who have been married for 60 years. In the early days of their marriage they went cross country staying at really cheap places because they had so little money. Wife would wait in the car while husband went and checked them in.

After pulling into a crummy looking place husband came out and said, ” I checked us in but for some reason they asked me how many hours I needed.” Really sweet guy, but a tad naïve in those days.

But the story keeps on giving.

Rich Spaulding
Rich Spaulding
6 years ago

Upgrading for less is a terrific idea. I need to start applying that mindset when upgrading my lifestyle. Your car example was a good one.

Edward
Edward
6 years ago

“Lifestyle inflation”, I think, is supposed to mean a general unawareness that you are slowly spending more. (Most often because you are making more money.) Daily, weekly, and annual costs start slowly creeping up. (In the same way as regular monetary inflation does.) You may eat out once a month and have a few drinks with friends as a student because it’s all you can really afford. When you land a decent job it may be dining out twice a month, lunches with your coworkers, and drinks with your buddies on the weekend. When you start dating steady it may… Read more »

getagrip
getagrip
6 years ago

To me the point of frugality is to stop spending money on things you don’t value so you can spend it on things you do. Additionally your frugal is both someone elses cheap as well as someone elses wastefully expensive. Saving time or effort having someone else clean your home or maintain your property may be the height of wastefullness to someone else. Paying for a teenage child’s car and insurance may be important to you but spoiling the kid rotten to another. I find it sad reading about an 80 year old with ~$7M in assets no longer doing… Read more »

Kayla
Kayla
6 years ago

I’m the same way, where I’m still in a ton of student debt, so I’m ‘sacrificing’ lifestyle inflation now to be debt free in 5 or so years. I know so many others in similar situations that live in nicer places, buy new cars, and still go out to eat or out on the weekend regularly — not for me! I’d rather pay every last penny towards loans and be rid of the stress of debt forever. The only thing I’d say I’ve chosen to inflate a bit is my grocery budget. I love having more freedom to buy fresh… Read more »

Sam
Sam
6 years ago

To me lifestyle inflation is committing to regular and recurrent expenses or increases in expenses not so much the 5 star hotel on vacation. Meaning the cost of your actual lifestyle has increased b/c you have upgraded. Our goal is to keep our recurring expenses, think utilities, cell phone, DirecTv, internet, insurance, mortgage, car expenses, etc. flat. That doesn’t mean we don’t splurge on eating out or splurge on travel or art, no the fact that we keep our recurring expenses flat means we can afford to splurge on stuff or experiences that mean more to us. So one of… Read more »

cathleen
cathleen
6 years ago
Reply to  Sam

I have found, personally, that having someone come in once a week or once every two weeks and do the cleaning (wash floors, windows, cupboards, dust bunnies, etc.) has improved our lives 1000%! And for a small amount of money in our budget. We entertain friends and family more, have more dinner parties, have people over at the drop of a hat and we both pick up after ourselves immediately since the house is so darn neat. My husband calls it “Hotel Ready” and before the housecleaner it was much harder to attain. A bonus is both my husband and… Read more »

Megan
Megan
6 years ago
Reply to  cathleen

Clearly this is personal and people value different things. For us personally though, I am in completely agreement with you. My time is worth more to me than the cost of paying someone else to clean the house. I used to spend all Saturday each weekend cleaning, doing laundry, grocery shopping and then house was never quite as clean as I wanted it to be. After a while I realized that I was spending half of my precious free time each week on a bunch of stuff that I didn’t like. Life is too short! We got house cleaners who… Read more »

Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life
Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life
6 years ago

I admit I enjoy a little luxury, but even if I can easily afford it, I won’t buy it if I don’t think it’s a good value. For instance, in the case of the first class flight, unless it’s international or to Hawaii, is it REALLY worth 50 additional dollars? It might be to some people. But not me. I can’t drink THAT much wine between NYC and Chicago 😉

Anne
Anne
6 years ago

You can fly first class for $50 more than coach?

I’m begging you to tell me what airlines you fly.

Jane
Jane
6 years ago
Reply to  Anne

Yeah, really. I was just looking at a relatively short domestic flight on Delta, and the first class price was $400 more than coach. I would pay $50 more in a heartbeat for first class domestic, and up to $500 more international. But first class international flights are thousands of dollars more.

Noah
Noah
6 years ago

I fly AA frequently for work and I see kiosk upgrade offers in the $50-100 range all the time. The only thing is, they are wildly unpredictable, and based on how full the aircraft is. If first is empty and coach is oversold they will try to entice people to upgrade for a fee before they have to upgrade them for free. There is also the possibility that they will sell a $50 first class upgrade to open up a coach seat for the person who just spent $1100 on a last minute ticket. Airline revenue games are crazy because… Read more »

lmoot
lmoot
6 years ago

To me, responsible lifestyle inflation is when the inflations are part of a predetermined goal. When I reach x financial goal, I will allow myself to get a massage every month, or eat out every few weeks, or have someone deep clean the house and maintain the yard several times/ year, etc etc. Also it is important taht when there is a decrese in earnings, that ones lifestyle is proportionately decreased, if necessary.

Suresh @ Best Investments
Suresh @ Best Investments
6 years ago

Good tips. I remember the famous quote that Expenses = Income minus savings. If you can plan it well, I am sure you can cope up and upgrade your life style and live happier life.

Marie
Marie
6 years ago

This concept is so relative, it’s funny. One person above said they upgraded by only staying at a certain level of hotel. I, on the other hand, think staying at a hotel at all is a luxury! I’m used to camping and sleeping in the car at rest stops.

Joe
Joe
6 years ago

This is a great topic and I thank you for sharing your story. Lifestyle inflation. What’s exactly that, I ask. I have lived all my life in the same neighborhood and I honestly love it and have no any intention of leaving it. I know past neighbors that have upgraded and gone to classy neighborhoods. Prestige, class, elegance, you picture. They have bought sports cars, luxury cars. They only wear high brand clothes and eat in classy restaurants. For me that’s what I call lifestyle inflation as its all about style, a life style, a style of living and spending.… Read more »

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