Sunday 28 May 2023

I have hit $100,000 in liquid assets! - Cash + Investments + Endowment Plan

Yes, I have finally hit the $100,000 mark! It is not just through my investments although that is my next goal, I am adding up my cash positions, investments (stocks and crypto) and 1 endowment plan value based on surrender value (although it will only be paid out when I am 31 years old). Small milestone checked but DCA-ing continues and life still goes on.

It’s been a very very interesting period as we experience the debt celling discussions, saw Nvidia’s crazy stock price action (thought my eyes saw wrongly when I saw pre-market gains of +75 USD and how AI is slowly taking over the world. With Tesla slowly going up towards $200, QQQ and VOO going up with AI hype increasing tech companies and semiconductor companies gaining, my portfolio has some gains though not as much as Nvidia's gains alone.

How I feel hitting the $100,000 mark

To be honest, I was expecting myself to feel amazing or great hitting $100,000 however I don’t feel that there are any changes. Also because I track my investments separate from cash and endowment plan so the number is not in my face but I don’t feel any huge happiness but I am glad to have achieve it although it may fluctuate especially in this volatile period where my stock and crypto portfolio might drop the next moment depending on how the whole environment is.

Hitting $100,000 is not gonna let me retire but at least I know that my financial habits are leading me in the right way and having build a foundation, I just need to maintain them and if my income increases over time, I can have spare cash to allocate or spend.

My next aim is to build solely my investments (stocks and crypto) to $100,000. I have adopted a lot of automating my purchases and also just sticking to index ETFs as I find individual purchases not efficient considering my small purchases monthly, so I am to be honest feeling a bit lousy as I missed out on the Nvidia gains (my friend did tell me about Nvidia as he knows about the semiconductor industry) but I do hold some AMD shares although not a large amount but still happy to be in it. QQQ and VOO holds some percentage of Nvidia too, so still some gains in the portfolio.

Overall, I think it is great having checked a small milestone although we are unsure of how the stock market will be like in the remaining 2H of 2023.

Thoughts about my portfolio

As I slowly approach my 30s, I do want to build up more cash on hand considering I might get a property when I am 35 (resale HDBs) and HDBs are really not as affordable as ever. Renovation costs are also on the rise including all the miscellaneous cost. So I have to say I have been pretty aggressive in investing but will slowly pivot as I did lose some in crypto and don't want to be allocating so much to volatile assets as I reach 35 years old. When I reach my 30s in about 1 and half years time, I will slowly depending on my income at that time re-allocate my income to holding more cash for spending.

My stocks portfolio is a lot more volatile as about 50% of it is in Tesla stock. That is why I am now adopting a monthly automated buying strategy into index ETFs to balance up the portfolio. The index ETFs proportion was higher in the previous weeks but with Tesla gaining some momentum this week, it’s back to 50/50. Well, I will just keep my monthly index ETFs buys and build it up. But this also means that my portfolio value fluctuates quite a lot but I am all right with it, exciting to be honest.

Well, a great end to the month of May and June will also be an interesting month as we approach the end of Q2. Time really flies but day to day seems long. Take care and excited to see how Q2 portfolio review will look like! I am also happy to have a platform like this blog to document my journey as it feels like I have a place to share my journey and not give up halfway, like a form of accountability, so whoever is reading, thank you too!

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Monday 15 May 2023

Planning for a trip in 2023 | Experiences and how I feel about the prices

I recently just came back from a trip and a pretty long one. I went to Fukuoka, Japan for about 18 days where I travelled around Kyushu visiting Beppu, Kumamoto, Imajuku. It was a nice and relaxing trip as the region of Kyushu is not as hectic and crowded as Tokyo or Osaka.

Fukuoka was recommended by my travel partner since she went there before and enjoyed her time there. It is more of nature and scenic, I also believe a lot of people go to Kyushu for hiking as there are quite a number of hiking trails there.


The prices were definitely one concern considering that I travelled with my family and so we did try to keep costs low for accommodation and plane tickets so that we could optimise it in other areas, food and experiences. When we tried buying air tickets, tickets were crazy high especially for direct flights as Japan is a popular destination, Tokyo and Osaka being the easiest. Fukuoka is one of the 10 biggest cities in Japan, not being in the top 3 means things are still not as crazy as Tokyo but with borders opening, it is still a rather popular destination especially among South Koreans where the flight there from South Korea is just an hour.

We chose a full service airlines but we stopped over in Incheon before reaching Fukuoka so still a little hassle but the stopover was not too long so it’s all right. We managed to get tickets for about $800 plus per pax.


I would say accommodation in Asia is usually more affordable than Europe or USA and even comparing to Singapore, Japan and South Korea have pretty affordable accommodations if you are willing to search.

Rooms were slightly more expensive for the time we travel as it was the cherry blossom month between end March to April so prices were slightly high but I think it is still all right. There are areas that are more expensive and as we move towards the outskirts, the prices do get more affordable. Of course, how can we miss out on ryokans when in Japan so I we splurged a little more for 2 nights to spend it at a ryokan with onsen and breakfast as well as dinner.

Onsen was amazing, you just feel so relaxed after soaking and especially when the weather is cool. The ryokan also provides dinner and breakfast which is great after a good soak.


Within Fukuoka’s city subway, the prices are all right and you can just use an IC card to travel around. Of course, to travel to other areas of Kyushu, you would need to get a JR pass, it is pretty worth it depending on how you plan your days. I managed to visit Beppu, Kumamoto and Nagasaki with it.

Taxi are also available for areas that are further out, we took a taxi for one of the days as it was far and there 3 of us, the tourist recommended us to take a taxi as it was going to be around the same price as a long distance bus ride. Overall, I feel that if you can get a car to drive around, it can be better as the scenic areas are quite out of the way, Parking can be quite expensive especially for overnight but if you have a bigger group then it might be more worth it.

Overall expenditure and experience

I would say overall the total expenditure has been affordable and great value. Even though we spend a bit on accommodation considering it was an 18 days trip and we did book better places for certain nights.

To be honest, after borders have opened up, many Singaporeans have started travelling and I have found it enjoyable, being able to experience another country after some time and I want to be able to travel more in the coming months.

Even though it is more expensive travelling than before the pandemic overall, considering tickets, food and transport is kinda more expensive, the amount of rest and experience is amazing and I think travelling is so amazing in that you put yourself into another environment and try new things.

But I have to admit that after my holiday, I did feel a little overwhelmed by work when I came back as I went to Japan for 18 days and I kinda got used to waking up and wanting to explore rather than working on a laptop after waking up.

I find myself losing motivation to write and record down my thoughts as well, explaining a lack of articles as work and personal life have made me tired and lazy. Also because the market hasn’t been that interesting but I will definitely still be doing my quarterly portfolio updates to see how the portfolios are. Looking forward to my next trip and experience! In the meantime, hustling hard and earning that guap.