I have seen a couple of articles suggesting that Canadians saved a tons of (billions) of money during the pandemic.
Some of the expenses cited as cut, and hence, saved money from, were child care, extracurricular activities, and commute-related expenses.
For those lucky ones, like myself, who kept their work and salary, things might have been better than those families and individuals who struggle with affording daily essential expenses. That is for sure.
I know many people lost their jobs and many businesses had to spend extra money to adapt to pandemic style business. So, hearing that we have overall saved billions of dollars during the pandemic sounds a little bit brutal to me.
I do not have kids or dependents, so the first two factors do not make a difference in my life. I take the bus or walk mostly, so commute, or lack of it, did not help me save a good sum of money. But I still did save money during the pandemic. My income also increased because of my recent promotion.
My most important expense is my annual visit to my family overseas, which used to cost me around 5K each year. I have not traveled in the last two years, so my major savings was the lack of these trips.
While I am not very social and hence do not get together with my friends frequently, I nevertheless had a few lunches or gifts to pick, so while there is some sort of savings in this area, it is not substantial.
My innocent yet kind of expensive interest in thrift store hunts, however, seems to make some sort of difference. I used to visit thrift stores every two weeks or so pre-pandemic, so while the prices are quite affordable, you can imagine the annual expenses.
On the other hand, I think like many, my food and personal care/cleaning products expenses increased. This is mostly because of working from necessitating use of the cleaning products more; starting fostering a cat; and the inflation or increases in the prices just because of the pandemic’s effect.
I am one of the lucky ones who comfortably has gone through this pandemic financially. I am feeling lucky and grateful, but you know, things will not get better anytime soon, the economy will continue to be unstable, and who knows what will happen to our investments or jobs.