What Do People Do to Afford Such Life?

Wife wanted to go get a $2,000 watch.

I don't usually get her anything so I thought yeah I will get her something special this Valentines. Drove to the CBD and saw a long queue outside Hermes, LV, Chanel. My wife told me there was a even longer queue outside Rolex. And my wife told me the purse and bags etc would easily cost $5k and above.

I thought everyone would be cutting back on expenses given the uncertainty but where are all these people getting money to spend on discretionary luxury goods? Not saying it is bad but where do these people do to be able to afford such luxurious lifestyle. To put it in perspective, I wear a Hush Puppies t-shirt (was a gift) and a brand-less short pants, I have been using iPhone 8 with shattered screen for 1.5yrs now. Been living frugally since entering workforce and I still feel I am very poor. When I step outside my home, my personal belongings on me might be worth $100-$200 max.

Any idea anyone?


  • +220

    Most like living outside their means. Stupid really. Harsh but true.

    • -20

      Why not? You only live once

      • +107

        You only live once

        Proof ?

        • +31

          Would you care to regale us with tales from your previous lives?

          • +54

            @cheeseburger: Not being able to recall a previous life does not mean it didn't happen.

            • +6

              @jv: We live on, through our children.

            • @jv: Can you please take this to a religion forum or something?

            • @jv: Well then if you're not aware of what happened in your previous life, how do you know you have more than one?

          • +3

            @cheeseburger: There's a strong sense that everything in the universe gets recycled. Stars, planets, air, even the water we drink is billions/millions of years old and recycled countless times, so too perhaps our soul gets recycled. Don't want to sound new age, but science is still quite dumbfounded about the topic of soul/consciousness because it can't be measured, just as how science can't measure how much love you have for say, your parents. It's un-measurable but we all know it's there, inside.

            • +5

              @ashopper: New Age rubbish - but whatever it takes to help you sleep at night.

            • +8

              @ashopper: I hate to say it but there is no afterlife once your dead you are dead once the last electrical spark in your brain dies you are dead there is no soul no heaven no hell this is it now what you are living.
              religion is a security blanket for fools.
              Why are the churches adorned in gold, jewels, art, crowns, bank accounts worth billions and people still dying of starvation when their religion forbids its own hoarding of wealth?


              • +3

                @Loot N Plunder: A theory spoken as fact…
                Then this:

                Why are the churches adorned in…

                Correction: Why are some churches adorned in…

                Because of the greed of men (even those proclaiming the be religious men).

              • @Loot N Plunder: Don't suppose you have any evidence for your claims?

                I'm particularly interested in the part about churches hoarding wealth. Do you have access to their financial statements to ascertain where their money is going? Eg it's quite easy to measure that the Catholic Church has the largest network of charities in the world.

                • @SlavOz: Don't suppose you have any evidence for your claims?

                  Maybe you know something i don't and can point me in the direction to a poor religion?

                  Some of the wealthiest organizations are religion based

                  The pope sitting on a gold throne holding a golden staff encrusted in jewels admiring his art collection and silk clothes eating the finest of foods all for doing gods work

                  • @Loot N Plunder: I didn't say that there were poor religions. What I'm saying is that you don't have access to the financial statement of these institutions so you're in no position to claim how greedy they are. It's objectively known that the Catholic Church is by far the most charitable organisation worldwide.

                    Do they have significant wealth? Sure, I'd wager that most of it is in assets, which is just smart financial planning. Nothing wrong with storing away funds for a rainy day, year, or century. The church has a lot of obligations and powerful opponents so they are looking out for their own.

                    • +1

                      @SlavOz: The church has a lot of obligations and powerful opponents so they are looking out for their own.

                      They have god on their side and they shouldn't be in need of anything of material value so obviously there isn't a god looking out for them.
                      What opponents do they face? apparently there is only one the devil who else is there.

                      the hoarding of wealth and people dying of starvation makes no sense its hypocrisy
                      Justify the jewelry when people drink filthy water justify the gold when people starve justify their grand cathedrals when people sleep in the streets justify the money when someone hasn't got a wheelchair


                      • +1

                        @Loot N Plunder: So needing material things means there's no God?

                        That's like saying the existence of crime proves there's no such thing as police.

                        Opponents? The catholic Church is a political powerhouse. Think of the United States but even bigger over thousands of years and revolutions. They did have a 600 year war with the Ottoman Empire so there's that too.

                        As for hoarding wealth, you seem to keep ignoring that they give ridiculous amounts of it away. Can you name another institution that runs hospitals, shelters, food aid, at no cost in almost every country in the world?

                        • @SlavOz: That's like saying the existence of crime proves there's no such thing as police.

                          I can see feel hear smell taste the police/religion crickets

                          Which one do i choose because they all cant be right i wouldn't want to choose the wrong one would you?
                          I heard thor is the god of thunder i might choose him but i could be making a mistake. I never thought it was this hard in choosing a god

                          Don't worry about it i found the perfect one

                          Who did you choose?

                          • +2

                            @Loot N Plunder: Personally, I chose one that has survived thousands of years and has a long history of social, cultural and moral contributions.

                            But good luck with your blog there.

                            • @SlavOz: Sorry, tagged the wrong person, mate.

              • @Loot N Plunder: Capitalism and socialism are yet to address any of these issues.

            • @ashopper: Objectively prove that some are more conscious than others 😂 but yeah Crazy shit.

            • -1

              @ashopper: All scientists know the weight of the soul is 21 grams.
              Now back to my duties in made up Australialand and spread the lies about this "spherical" earth.

            • @ashopper: There is a lot that's unknown to science but that doesn't mean you can fill the gaps with fluent bullshit, most of which is totally counter to the bits that science does know.

          • @cheeseburger:

            Would you care to regale us with tales from your previous lives?

            Is that a serious question, mate? Because if it is, then I would be more than happy to respond…

        • YOLO ! - now, hold my beer … !

          • @Hangryuman: Expecting to read some comments about managing money, frugal living etc.. finds philosophical discussion instead..

      • +16

        This is just a stupid way to counter an argument. Would you be drinking poison and say “Why not? You only live once. I wanna know how it taste”.

        • Depends if it tastes / smells like Almonds or not.

          No, don't drink Cyanide because it tastes or smells like Almonds. Just don't.

          • +1

            @AuSlade: Why not, you only live once LOL

            • @TimApple: Actually, plenty of people do that already.

              Alcohol, cigarette, drugs, you name it.

              Puffer fish is said to be highly poisonous if not treated properly before cooking, yet people still eat it because it's supposedly very nice. Some literally die for it.

    • Keeps the economy going… so they say.

    • +5

      That, or tradies who take mostly cash payments with no invoices…

    • +35

      Luxury goods are a scam created by rich people to make money off poor people by making them feel rich.

      • +4

        Truer words were never said… however the flip side is Luxury goods are a scam for poor resourceful people [or anyone really] to take money from rich people and then become rich themselves.

      • +1

        Yes and no. I agree with you to a certain extent but many things are significantly better quality when made to the standards expected by luxury companies… my wallet has lasted me 5 years, my shoes some 6 years and counting both with virtually daily use
        Has actually saved me money on the long run

        • +2

          Vimes? What are you doing here?

        • +2

          Agree — I'm not knocking the quality of luxury goods, but that the prices charged are a scam. Sure, high quality costs more, but not THAT much more.


      • It's a bit like drinking wine and scotch.

    • +10

      This thread got too existential too quickly

    • Jobkeeper is propping up a lot of people that don't need it

      • Not sure why you were negged. I know someone with three jobs that received job keeper from a job they only earned $200 per fortnight for. Totally ridiculous. They were pocketing the whole $1500 while getting extra shifts from the other two jobs.

        • +4

          For every person taking unfair advantage of Job Keeper there are hundreds that need it to survive. I'm happy with that level of wastage if it means those that need it get it.

    • +3

      Not me. Years of selling jousting sticks in the Trading Post has really paid off.

      • +1

        you really showed that one customer who said you were dreaming :)

    • living life on credit cards and maybe on ozbargain deals

    • +2

      Can't believe there are so many discussion here missing something fundamental here. The queue are full of Chinese who does DaiGou for a living. They purchase the goods and send back to China for profit. pretty much the same as the baby formulas Luxury goods are symbol of social status in China. I am not making this up. every time I pass through this queues. most of them speak Mandarin. (I am a Chinese)

      I think many Australian doesn't know there are one million plus Chinese living here now, most of them don't socialize with the.. locals. With internet they just physically here. everything else is bridged to China through internet.

      • +2

        On the flip side as someone who on occasion shops at luxury stores, many of the mandarin speakers (I also speak the language) seem to be buying for themselves with their partners with them.
        Not saying that the daigou market isn’t real etc but the Chinese government has been taxing everything worth >$200… learnt this the hard way by sending a $500 item., which has quickly eradicated most of the market

  • +108

    Buy now, regret later

  • +23

    How many of them are just browsing though?

    • +28

      my wife didnt end up buying
      she said the shopkeeper gave her the look
      i guess you wouldnt really queue and go in just to browse through if you get such treatment in store

      • +98

        Great outcome then .. did not have to spend and it was not your fault.

      • +51

        she said the shopkeeper gave her the look

        Could've slipped him a fiver; he just saved you $2,000!

      • +18

        The shopkeeper only gave her the look after he noticed that you gave him the look. I would do the same too if my wife wants to buy a $2,000 watch!

      • +2

        you were 'obviously in the wrong place' - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nu3x5SZrMHo

      • +3

        She needs to go back and Pretty Woman that place!

        • What, go down on the rich guy with the expensive suit?

  • +44

    Some of those people actually buy those high designer stuff here and ship them off to China or other countries with plenty wealthy people demand to flip for considerable profit. I'm convinced a large portion of the Asian youth in the CBD does this as primary source of income. They are constantly camping outside shoe stores, designer brands etc.

    Plenty people have a lot more disposable income over past year as have been working and getting paid as per normal yet have had significantly reduced costs sitting at home (no commute costs, no going out expenses, no events/parties/concerts/shows, no restaurant dinners/drinking, no holidays, no work clothing etc). So on a special occasion like today, they don't mind spending a bit more. This was also evident by the crazy demand for the new console releases.

    Some have ridden the current stock/share/cryptocurrency fluctuations and done quite well thus using those profits/gains to splurge.

    Also don't forget there's a large population of skilled expats here earning very high salaries that are happy to spend money.

    Not everyone saves for a rainy day but equally not everyone is super frugal.

    • +9

      I used to see lots of Asians queuing up - yes that was years ago
      I can tell you its now more balanced - not dominated by Asians anymore

      • +34

        I can tell you its now more balanced - not dominated by Asians anymore

        Maybe because no tourists are allowed in the country….

        • +9

          or 'students'..

      • +2

        For shoes? We saw them like a year-ish ago, certain they all know each other as they had matching chairs with tags (likely to clean and return after event).

      • +1

        idk which part of Australia ur from but speaking for Sydney DFO area near Olympic park, and sometimes when i go city, its majority Chinese Asian groups lining up on those expensive stores.

        • +4

          Lol. Nothing in that DFO is “those expensive stores”… the stuff at Burberry all look appalling - my opinion but I do honestly think there’s a difference between luxury brands and the stuff sorted to outlets in terms of style etc

      • +1

        Most of them have become Australian Citizen

        • +1

          He was talking about Rolex, not Citizen

    • +3

      It's not necessarily cheaper to buy in Australia to ship overseas especially if you can't get your GST back. I found buying those items either in Dubai or Europe (Spain) was often cheaper, and you could often get your VAT back as well. The other possibility was they are buying items not in stock overseas. Australian market is quite small in comparison, so sometimes has more stock available, especially limited edition items.

    • +2

      that was sort of true but greatly exagerrated around 2010, nowadays those students are going to be cooking the bag for food before they'll sell it off

  • +7

    My wife has dreams too.

    • +3


      • +2

        I thought you asked Herpes?

        • +40

          My wife wanted Hermes, I gave her herpes

          • +2

            @bloom: And you'll get divorced with 50% wealth gone too

          • @bloom: A gift she will have for the rest of her life!

          • +14

            @bloom: 'My wife wanted Hermes, I gave her herpes'

            the difference between M and P is the word NO … ;-)

    • +4

      same, that's what I get my wife's boyfriend to buy her expensive stuff

  • +6

    Buy now think later. It is also OzBargain's slogan.

    • +1

      Wouldn't that be BNTL?

      • +2

        Ugh.. so close. BnL

    • just ran out of eneloops

      • no true ozbargainer ever
  • +18

    Perhaps they too lived fragaly once upon a time, paid their debts off and now have plenty of disposable income.

    • I think the tiny amount of thoughtfulness required to do that is more than enough to inoculate you for life from doing something as stupid as buying a $1000+ watch or handbag.

  • +18

    A life buying material things? The majority of the 6 odd billion people in the world probably think you are rich. It's all relative.

    • +9

      7.8 Billion now.

      • +16

        That was quick.

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