Sneaky Tricks Restaurants Use to Increase Your Bill

Dining out in Singapore is an experience that blends a diverse culinary scene with sophisticated ambiance. However, have you ever wondered why you sometimes end up spending more than you planned? Well, restaurants are masters of subtle psychological and environmental techniques designed to encourage you to indulge.

Here are some clever tricks they use to make you open your wallet wider.


Menus in Singaporean restaurants are often carefully crafted to guide your choices and increase spending. High-margin items are highlighted with pictures, bold fonts, or boxes around them to grab your attention. Expensive items are strategically placed next to moderately priced ones to make the latter seem more reasonable.

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Fewer choices can actually increase your likelihood of ordering high-profit items. When overwhelmed with too many options, diners tend to choose the familiar or highlighted options.


The environment in which you dine significantly impacts how much you spend. Soft lighting and mellow music create a relaxing atmosphere, making diners more likely to order additional courses or drinks. Larger tables and comfortable seating can encourage longer stays and more orders. Conversely, smaller tables can make you feel cramped, potentially leading you to leave sooner and spend less.


Restaurants often employ portion control tricks to maximize profit. Waitstaff are trained to suggest larger portions or additional sides, often making these suggestions sound like deals you can’t refuse. Smaller portions on larger plates can make the dish seem more luxurious and justify a higher price.


Prices are rarely rounded off, and there’s a reason for that! A dish priced at S$9.99 instead of S$10.00 makes it appear cheaper, even though the difference is negligible. This tactic, known as charm pricing, is widely used because it effectively tricks your brain into perceiving a better deal.


Where you sit can also influence your spending. Window seats and central locations are prime spots often reserved for larger groups or those ordering more, subtly encouraging you to spend more to “earn” the better view. Positioning the bar where it’s highly visible and accessible encourages diners to start with drinks, increasing the overall bill.


Creating a sense of urgency can drive spending. Limited-time offers and seasonal dishes create a FOMO, prompting you to order these items before they disappear. Moreover, bundling items together at a slight discount encourages you to spend more than you might have planned. Not to mention, happy hour specials and exclusive deals also contribute significantly to this effect.


The power of suggestion is another subtle but effective strategy. Highlighting “chef’s specials” or “most popular” dishes can guide your choices, leading you to order higher-margin items. Personal recommendations from friendly waitstaff can be hard to resist, especially if they are trained to suggest higher-profit items.

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Understanding how restaurants influence your spending can help you make more mindful choices while still enjoying the rich culinary experiences the country has to offer. Remember, being aware of these tricks doesn’t mean you can’t indulge; it just means you’re doing so on your own terms!


How to Profit with Friends in Singapore: Connections to Cash

In Singapore, opportunities to earn money are abundant. One often overlooked avenue is leveraging your network of friends. Turning friendships into financial opportunities can be both rewarding and fun, as long as you approach it with integrity and creativity. Here’s how you can start earning money through your friends in Singapore.


The first step is to identify your strengths and interests. What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing? Whether it’s baking, tutoring, photography, or digital marketing, knowing your skills will help you determine the services or products you can offer. For instance, if you’re a whiz at math, you could offer tutoring services to your friends’ children.

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Once you’ve identified your strengths, let your friends know about them. Use social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to share your services. Word of mouth is powerful, especially in a tight-knit community like Singapore. Don’t hesitate to ask your friends to spread the word. A simple post highlighting your skills and how they can benefit others can go a long way.


Another way to earn money through your friends is by collaborating on projects. If you have a friend who’s great at design and you’re good at writing, why not team up to offer a comprehensive digital marketing service? By combining your skills, you can create a more attractive package for potential clients. This collaborative approach not only enhances your offerings but also strengthens your relationships.


Many businesses offer referral programs that reward you for bringing in new customers. Check with companies in Singapore that provide services or products your friends might need. For example, banks, insurance companies, and telecommunications firms often have referral schemes. Share these opportunities with your friends and earn a commission for each successful referral.


If you have a skill that others want to learn, consider hosting workshops or classes. This can be done online or in person. For instance, if you’re a fitness enthusiast, you could conduct workout sessions in a local park or via Zoom. Charge a reasonable fee for attendance and encourage your friends to invite their friends. This not only helps you earn money but also expands your network.


People love discounts, especially when they come with the added benefit of spending time with friends. If you’re offering a service, provide group discounts to encourage friends to sign up together. For example, if you’re running a language class, offer a discounted rate for groups of three or more. This strategy not only attracts more clients but also ensures that your friends feel they are getting a good deal.


Direct selling programs, also known as multi-level marketing (MLM), can be a way to earn extra income through your friends. Companies like Avon and Tupperware operate in Singapore and offer opportunities to sell products to your network. However, it’s essential to approach this carefully to avoid straining your friendships. Be transparent about your intentions and ensure that the products are genuinely beneficial to your friends.


Personal services such as pet sitting, house cleaning, or grocery shopping can also be monetized. If you have friends who are too busy to handle these tasks, offer your help for a fee. This can be particularly useful in a fast-paced city like Singapore, where many people have demanding schedules. Personal services are often in high demand and can provide a steady stream of income.


The key to successfully earning money through your friends is to be genuine and respectful. Always prioritize your friendships over financial gain. Ensure that your offers are valuable and that you’re not being overly pushy. Transparency and honesty will help maintain trust and ensure that your friends feel comfortable supporting your endeavors.

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Earning money through your friends in Singapore can be a win-win situation if done correctly. By leveraging your skills, collaborating on projects, utilizing referral programs, and offering genuine value, you can create financial opportunities while strengthening your relationships. Remember, the goal is to enhance your network and provide mutual benefits, not to exploit your friendships. With the right approach, you can turn your social connections into a source of income and personal growth.


Rising Career Opportunities in Singapore: In-Demand Industries for 2023

According to LinkedIn, Singapore is experiencing a growing demand for jobs that assist companies in digitizing and expanding during economic volatility. The latest data from LinkedIn’s Jobs on the Rise highlights a significant increase in hiring for growth specialists, technical positions, and healthcare professionals in Asia, indicating that these jobs are expected to continue growing throughout 2023.

It’s important to note that employers and clients have diverse needs, which can influence the demand for different types of jobs. Occupations in high demand offer excellent potential for career growth, better income, and job security compared to less popular jobs. Therefore, staying informed about these in-demand jobs can help you effectively plan your career and develop the necessary skill set to succeed in your desired field.


Despite the challenging macroeconomic conditions that led to waves of tech layoffs in Southeast Asia last year, such as those experienced by GoTo Group in Indonesia, Sea Group and Carousell in Singapore, the demand for tech workers remains strong. Experts predict that this year will serve as a transitional period for the tech industry, with a potential return to more normal hiring levels. Anchal Chhabria, a representative from LinkedIn, remains optimistic and states that the overall demand for tech workers remains robust, with individuals transitioning to new positions both within and across the industry.

User Experience (UX) Designer

National average salary: $5,194 per month

Primary duties: UX designers focus on improving the usability of systems, which may involve enhancing aesthetics and website navigation. They work in collaboration with UI designers to develop digital products that fulfill user needs while providing a pleasant and engaging experience.


National average salary: $2,569 per month

Primary duties: Customer service representatives play a crucial role in building and maintaining positive customer relationships. They achieve this by answering inquiries and providing guidance on various aspects of a company’s products or services. Many organizations prioritize hiring customer service representatives as they typically serve as the initial point of contact between the business and the customer. Responsibilities may include generating sales leads, answering phone calls, maintaining records of customer interactions, and adhering to communication guidelines and policies.


National average salary: $3,083 per month

Primary duties: Human resources specialists are experts in managing the human resources functions of a company. They may be responsible for maintaining employee records for performance reviews and can recruit, train, and provide support to employees.

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National average salary: $3,720 per month

Primary duties: Copywriters are skilled writing professionals who create content for various purposes, such as marketing or educational materials. They collaborate with marketing and public relations departments to develop effective marketing materials, and they meet with clients to understand and convey their brand voice and message to the target audience.


National average salary: $7,406 per month

Primary duties: Data scientists possess expertise in statistical programming and analytical skills to collect, analyze, and interpret large datasets. They utilize various data visualization techniques to present information and offer suggestions or develop solutions based on data analysis.

By keeping yourself informed about these in-demand industries and their associated jobs, you can strategically plan your career path and cultivate the necessary skills to excel in your chosen field.

Sources: 1 & 2


7 Simple Ways to Stay Positive at Work

Psychology defines attitude as a set of emotions, beliefs, and behaviors toward a particular object, person, or event. It involves a person’s perspective or mindset.

What does it mean to have a positive attitude at work?

There are times when it is crucial to have a positive mindset at work. Whether you are meeting with difficult clients or giving an important presentation to your supervisors, you need to solve problems with zestiness to arrive at a beneficial outcome.

Having and practicing a positive attitude is not about being blindly optimistic or avoiding negative scenarios. Instead, it means being realistic about people and situations at work, while acknowledging both failures and successes. With a positive attitude, setbacks are not interpreted as a sign to give up because they motivate the person to begin improvement and problem solving.

When you feel exhausted or disappointed because of constant work-related failures, it is harder to keep a positive attitude. Thus, you have to learn strategies to maintain a positive attitude at work. Maintaining this will enable you to stay productive, motivate others, and achieve your organization’s goals.


It only takes a few rotten apples to spoil the barrel. Surrounding yourself with co-workers who complain about everything can make you see the world in a different light. You might think that radiating your positivity can help change them, but that is not always the case. It is best to surround yourself with positive people.

Connect with people who ignite innovative ideas, enjoy their tasks, and who are interested in many things outside of work.


Your overall work attitude can improve by adjusting your vocabulary. Consider replacing negative words with positive words in conversations and performance appraisals. Let your team members know what they are doing right and how they can improve in other areas rather than only focusing on what they are doing incorrectly.


Focusing on the solutions will enable you to think of the best ways to address an issue. If you feel that a co-worker is not contributing to the team, consider assigning the person to a new task or offering one-on-one coaching.


Smiling more often may improve your mood, according to studies. It can also help clients and co-workers feel more comfortable when interacting with you. Make an effort to smile several times throughout your workday.


Appreciating others and extending your gratitude are priceless gestures that can impact a person. Selfless acts of kindness most often result in appreciation from your co-workers or your boss, which can make you both feel good. For instance, you can give a card or a simple gift to your co-worker who recently got married.


As much as you appreciate others, you must also reward yourself. Improve your attitude while at work by rewarding yourself when you attain milestones or small wins. For instance, you can take yourself out to your favorite restaurant after accomplishing a certain number of tasks throughout the week. Doing something you love can help motivate you to continue working.


Taking breaks during the day can help lessen stress and negativity. Go for a short walk during your lunch break or do some light stretches when you have time. To ensure that you have more time to slow down at the end of your shift, consider completing your complex tasks earlier in the day.

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If you are feeling immensely stressed, it may be beneficial to your mental health to take a day off work.

Sources: 1 & 2


6 Times When Bigger Isn’t Always Better

Not everything in life needs to be big. Sometimes, reaching a certain level of height can drain your savings and become destructive to your lifestyle. Society may market the statement “bigger is better”. We seem to be obsessed with having tall buildings, busy airports, or large homes. This obsession with growth applies to businesses too.

Growth is not always good for an entrepreneurial venture. To survive and thrive as a growing business, entrepreneurs must change their business strategies and improve the way they run their business. If they do not change the way they run things, the odds of the business surviving the trials of growth are not very good.

Let this article illustrate the times when bigger is not always better.


If you grow your business solely based on your aspirations, you can create a business that is an intentional reflection of the lifestyle you desire. Remember that success in life should be so much more than simply growing a company and making money. Creating redundancies and having unnecessary complexities are just some of the consequences of growth.

When traditional large companies have a problem, they have to hire more people and build complex infrastructures to support more employees and processes. Thanks to the opinions and demands from board members, investors, and other departments, growth makes it increasingly challenging to get simple things done efficiently.


Since you aim to be the biggest firm in Singapore, you tend to accept all the projects that come your way. One advantage of being small is having more freedom and flexibility in your work. As a small company, you are not enveloped with expectations and overhead. In contrast, bigger companies need to hustle to thrive and survive.


When it comes to fund size, bigger is not always better. Higher fees put more money in the managers’ pockets, but that does not guarantee that investors share in the upside. Expectations for larger returns increase as investors pay more in fees. However, larger funds do not necessarily bring in larger returns.


A bigger home means you must spend more time and money on renovating and maintaining it. By revamping the existing space, you will be responsible for the cost of changing the structure to suit your needs. You will also be responsible for upgrading the existing home to follow the current health and safety codes. Your budget will depend on how extensive the renovations are. Generally, the older the building, the more it will cost you to renovate.


Putting a large amount of money in your savings account may seem like the most practical thing to do. However, money held in savings accounts has not grown much in the previous years due to historically low interest rates. With inflation running high, your savings are at risk of losing value in “real” terms as you will be able to purchase less with your money.

For instance, inflation averages 3% over the next 5 years. What costs you S$1,000 today would cost you S$1,159.27 in the year 2026. Putting S$1,000 in your savings account today with 0.5% interest will earn you S$25.25 over the same period. Thus, you will inevitably lose about S$134.02.


“The big question about how people behave, is whether they’ve got an inner scorecard or an outer scorecard. It helps if you can be satisfied with an inner scorecard.” – Warren Buffett

Aiming for greater things just to keep up with the success of others is harmful to your wellbeing and your wallet. You can be anything, but you cannot be everything. When we compare ourselves to others, we often compare their best features against our average ones. The unconscious realization that we are not better than others can become self-destructive.

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Instead of aiming to have the biggest funds, grandest home, and largest projects, you can realistically push for what works for you best!

Sources: 1,2,3 & 4