Thais cut spending at time of economic hardship: Poll

Thais cut spending at time of economic hardship: Poll

People are finding ways to reduce spending during at time of economic and political uncertainty, says Suan Dusit Poll. (Bangkok Post photo)
People are finding ways to reduce spending during at time of economic and political uncertainty, says Suan Dusit Poll. (Bangkok Post photo)

Thai people have reduced their spending to survive the country's economic difficulties, a belt-tightening exacerbated by political and social fears, according to the result of a survey by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, or Suan Dusit Poll.

The poll was conducted on 1,174 people throughout the country from Nov 19-23.

Asked how they have saved money, 69.38% said they have reduced unnecessary expenditure on items such as travel, shopping, parties and luxury goods; 40.47% are spending more time at home and cooking their own food; 22.85% are making a budget and keeping an account of their expenses; 21.23% are buying goods only during sales promotions; and 19.60% are doing extra jobs to supplement their incomes.

The respondents were also asked how they are reducing the amount they spend on the so-called four requisites -- food, housing, clothing and medical care.

For food, 62.83% said they are cooking their own food and cutting down on eating out; 37.59% said they spend a certain amount of money on each meal; and 23.46% said they eat only the food they need for each meal and keep the rest in boxes.

For housing, 65.63% said they use electricity and water economically; 39.35% keep household appliances well-maintained; and 15.77% rent a cheap house or share a house with friends or relatives.

For clothing, 54.34% said they do less shopping and buy only during sales promotions; 40.16% said they wear old clothes or exchange clothes with friends or siblings; and 16.71% buy second-hand clothes.

To reduce medical costs, 60.12% said they exercise regularly and take an annual health examination; 32.36% use state welfare or social security entitlements for medical care; and 28.07% eat sufficient quantities of all five essential food groups.

Asked what expenses they cannot avoid, 63.52% mentioned transportation costs such as train and bus fares; 50.80% cited medical costs; 24.79% cited various kinds of instalment payments for items such as houses, cars and credit cards; 20.79% mentioned children's tuition fees; and 18.66% cited so-called "social taxes" for events such as weddings, funerals and religious rites.


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