Updated: July 20, 2021
A couple of months ago from the time I’m writing this, two of the biggest banks in the country, BPI, and BDO, experienced prolonged downtime.
Their online banking was down, a lot of ATMs were offline, and the only way to withdraw money from your account is to transact over the counter from your home branch.
A lot of people expressed their disappointments, irritation, and anger over these banks on social media. A handful even went as far as blaming the corruption in the government for the incident.
But here’s the thing… Banks will go offline, whether you like it or not.
This may be caused by internal network problems, or worse, due to circumstances beyond their control such as natural calamities.
In fact, as I’m writing this article… personal banking on both websites is currently down while strong gusts of wind and rain are ravaging outside due to a typhoon.
And as expected, complaints about not being able to withdraw money or do online transactions are all over social media. Personally, such rants are unnecessary because the solution is so simple…
Always keep cash at home as your emergency stash. Avoid anxiety, stress, and worry by simply having money in your house for use in such emergencies.
How much should you keep?
Five days’ worth of your household’s daily expenses.
Why? Because that’s enough for you to survive our country’s longest weekends – Maundy Thursday to Easter Sunday, December 24 (on a Thursday) until December 27, December 30 (on a Thursday) until January 2.
“But I have bills to pay!”
This is not a valid excuse because it means you have the habit of waiting for the due date before paying your bills.
Don’t wait for the due date, instead pay your bills as soon as you receive them.
Again, this is a great way to avoid unnecessary stress because when you immediately pay your bills, you’ll have one less obligation to remember and worry about for the rest of the month.
Furthermore, billing statements often come one or two weeks before the due date, so even if banks are offline when you receive them, you will have enough time to pay them.
That’s it for today’s personal finance advice. I’m posting this now before my internet connection goes offline due to the typhoon outside.