OFW in Hong Kong Changes Lifestyle, Completes ‘Ipon’ Challenge in Just 6 Months

An overseas Filipino worker (OFW) in Hong Kong decided to change her lifestyle and ended up completing the ‘ipon’ (savings) challenge in just 6 months!

A lot of us have many excuses as to why we can’t save money, but sometimes it all comes down to changing one’s lifestyle to really focus on saving first before spending.

Photo credit: Jennifer Palomo Debaja – Facebook / KAMI

That’s what 39-year-old Jalyn Navio did, leading to the OFW being able to complete the 1-year challenge in just 6 months.

A nursing graduate who went to work as OFW in Hong Kong without her parents’ knowledge back in 2002, Navio has found a good home in the foreign country. Although she had been married to a seaman, the marriage did not work out and Navio lives by herself in Hong Kong.

Each month, Navio earns HK$8,200 (Php55,000) from her job. She sends part of the money to her relatives in the Philippines and spends the rest in Hong Kong, going shopping and treating her friends. She lived a happy-go-lucky lifestyle but never really thought about saving any of her hard-earned money at all.

Photo credit: Jennifer Palomo Debaja – Facebook / KAMI

This changed after she attended a Financial Literacy Seminar facilitated by CARD Hong Kong Foundation. Through the seminar, Navio realized she had been spending all her money, without thinking about her future.

Thanks to the seminar’s tips on managing her finances, Navio decided to change her lifestyle. She no longer found joy in spending her entire salary just for shopping and treating her friends. Instead, she loved the challenge of saving up her money!

She joined the ‘ipon’ challenge and began putting all HK$20 bills (Php130) inside a huge plastic bottle she kept in her room. Within 6 months, the bottle was already full!

Upon finally opening the bottle and counting the money, she found out she was able to save HK$21,760 (Php146,250) in those months she changed her lifestyle.

Photo credit: Jennifer Palomo Debaja – Facebook / KAMI

While she clearly can’t turn back the time to save the money she careless spent in the past, Navio is ready to continue challenging herself to save in the future. Her next challenge is to save HK$50 bills (Php330).

The OFW’s ‘ipon’ challenge achievement is proof that many people could really find a way to save money if they change their lifestyle…