Not everyone gets a holiday bonus, but for those that do it’s definitely a special feeling, especially when that bonus is unexpected. You can treat it as an extension of your salary for all of your hard work, or look at it as “hey, free money!” Found money is the best and what you do with it can be exciting. There are so many ways to blow your holiday bonus.
It’s not only Wall Street (actually Wall Street bonuses are typically not paid during the holidays anyway), but much of corporate America as well as retail and the service industries; that a little something extra around the Holidays is expected. (Note: Don’t feel bad for Wall Street.)
There are so many great ways to spend money, especially extra money. Sure you can invest it and even pay off bills, or both. There is another option – just blow it baby! That’s right, be adventurous and throw caution to the wind and don’t worry about tomorrow. Live for the moment!
Of course this is more feasible if you are financially secure and single, but for those that aren’t it’s a chance to dream of taking time off, buying something you don’t need and most importantly, not having a care in the world. Here are 15 ways to blow your holiday bonus.
15. Exotic Travel
This isn’t your basic Bahamas trip; no, this needs to be somewhere such as Fiji. Obviously warm is good and anyplace where hedonism is used to describe the locals is a positive. Using a travel agent is recommended because money is not going to be an object on this trip, first class all the way and spending money like a crack dealer in the eighties. At your destination throw around even more money and skimp on nothing. Make sure you are surrounded by palm trees when you take your “selfies”, making sure everyone reading your Facebook updates is jealous as hell.
14. Buy a Car or Motorcycle
To truly blow your wad here you are going to want to go sports car or Harley. The size of your bonus will help you decide whether you are going Miata or Mercedes, but regardless of your choice you should also consider a convertible. Have fun at the dealership and let them know you are looking to make a cash sale, which will get them wet and also desperate when you threaten to walk away. Settle for nothing, this is your time and you control the sale. Make sure the top is down when you pull into your office parking lot and don’t worry about that reserved sign in the front – it’s clearly there for you.
13. Bling it Up
Buy yourself a Rolex and the next time you find yourself bored in a status meeting dramatically roll up your sleeves to show off your new watch. An expensive watch is easy to spot and is not only a show of status, but also a conversational piece. Bonus: A nice watch can also be pawned or sold for good value so if you decide blowing your bonus on a watch was a bad idea; you can probably get some of your cash back. If watches aren’t your thing, that’s cool too. Try gold chains and buy lots of them. It worked for Mr. T so it can work for you. In the end what’s important is that you spent your money on something you really didn’t need. It’s a great feeling that keeps giving each time you put on your piece of jewelry.
12. The Swimming Pool
I like the “if it worked for Clark Griswold it can work for you” line of thinking. If you remember National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation you know the plot was Griswold expecting a bonus so he could give his family a pool for Christmas. Don’t skimp on the swimming pool, if you can’t do it right then spend your money elsewhere, that means no above ground, have to go in ground. Also, be sure you have enough cash for a changing room. Keep it stocked with bikinis and ill fitting tops for guests. In addition to providing a place to change these rooms are great for drugs and sexy time, two of the top two reasons to spend your money on a swimming pool.
11. Purchase the Biggest TV in the World
There are three ways you can take this, first go all-in with the largest, best TV you can find. Obviously money is no object so go big and even go tacky if needed. Does a TV need to take up the whole wall? Yes, if you want people to just walk in and understand you are a player. Going high-tech is another option, outfitting your residence with touch pads that control lighting, music and all electronics. If you want to go even bigger you need to create a movie room with theatre seating, real deal projection equipment and a full bar. The popcorn machine is optional, but the Scarface poster on the wall is not!
10. Take a Private Jet Trip
I’ve never been in one, but you can take trips on private jets for 30K and up. This pays for the fuel, time and pilot. Feel like the President or Steve Tyler. Invite that girl that is out of your league, or pay for lots of girls to come along. Just make sure you are going to get laid when in the sky. I suggest bringing someone along to document the whole experience and you will want to bring cigars, lots of cigars. If the history of powerful men has taught us anything it’s that there are great things to do with cigars.
9. Throw an Extravagant Party
Rent out a club and invite all your friends, why? Don’t give a reason, just tell everyone you are celebrating and you will become a legend. Hire a kick-ass DJ or even better, live band to ensure everyone has a good time. Also, drugs, you are going to want to have drugs on hand. Warning: Don’t invite anyone with more money than you, it will only ruin your night to show off. If your bonus isn’t big enough to rent the whole club you can still get a VIP room, just make sure the paparazzi gets a picture of you. You can hang that in your office and tell the story for years.
8. Women (or Men)
Is there that special someone you want to impress with gifts or a ridiculously expensive gesture? Shower that person with gifts and see what happens. Just don’t forget the romance! Find out what they like, if into classical music then make sure there is a symphony waiting for them. If this isn’t your strong point, its okay – hire someone to show you the ways, that is what money is for. If you don’t have one person, then there are always escort services where for the right price you can get whatever you need. The good news here is that the transaction will be straight up cash, which is quicker and easier.
7. Go on a Shopping Spree
If you really like clothes and fashion then consider drastically upgrading your wardrobe with only the best suits and accessories money can buy. Don’t stop at just one destination, spread out your spending. I also suggest a glamorous lunch that includes a minimum of three cocktails. Not only will you enjoy your Pretty Woman moment, you can dress for success (and your next bonus). Hire a driver to take you around and bust into each store as if you own the joint. This spree isn’t for browsing, you will demand what you want and make sure several employees are “fetching” items to meet your needs. If business suits aren’t your thing, that’s cool – go with crazy track suits or shoes that cost more than houses in Georgia.
One surefire way to burn through your bonus is by spending your cash on drugs. Not heroin or designer drugs; instead, consider cocaine. Cocaine was made for celebrating bonuses and you can go for days or as long as needed until you are out of money. Be careful of hangers-on and others using your bonus money for their habit, this money was earned by you and should be spent how you choose. Go full Patrick Bateman and live in a fantasy world for a couple days, why not? Regardless of how you spend your money we all eventually have to go back to work. If the window of opportunity is open, seize it. Cocaine can help with this moment.
5. The Cross-Country Bender
Rent a car and go. If you live in the states find major cities as destinations and head in that direction. If you are alone with lots of money adventure will find you. It won’t take long before you find yourself in a dangerous situation and nothing is more exciting than danger. Check out the tourist spots, but also walk into dive bars and strike up a conversation. Even if this is just a two-week trip, act like a drifter and strike up conversations with everyone. Always order a round of drinks for the bar and never say no when invited to an after hours party, three-some or fight in the parking lot. You are a drifter and this is what drifters do – live excitement each day of their lives.
4. Invest in a Wine Cellar
Build yourself a wine cellar and spend all of your money on wine. If your bonus is big, think exotic and only expensive wines. If not, buy a couple of expensive bottles and make up a story (this was given to me by Burt Reynolds when we met on the set of Boogie Nights) and fill the rest with average bottles. Having a story (even if made up) will impress and is a reason to have a wine cellar. Also, for the rest of your life you can invite guests to “come on down to the wine cellar” to pick out wine, make unwanted advances and tell your Burt Reynolds story.
There may not be a more clear definition of blowing your bonus than gambling it away. Casinos and bookies make it easy with so many enticing bets and odds that although seemingly reasonable, are not. Take half of your money and put in on black – one spin of roulette. Remember that feeling when the ball spins around because there is a more than 50 percent chance you will never feel that again. If roulette isn’t your game you can always play no limit Black Jack or bet it all in the sports book. If you want to at least create the illusion of smart bets, blow it all on future bets, hoping next season is the year Jacksonville wins the Super Bowl (Spoiler Alert: It’s not.)
2. Buy a House
Regardless of your bonus size, you can buy a house. Spend millions on a condo in Manhattan or buy a house full of squatters in Detroit for a couple of grand. Either way, it will feel good when you are hanging with your co-workers and they ask how you spent your bonus. Buying a house is the American dream and doing it with a bonus is bad ass and shows (or gives the illusion) that you have money. If you decide to go the Detroit route I suggest you save a couple hundred dollars for a gun, you are going to need it to liquidate the squatters from the boarded up drug haven you just purchased.
1. Pay Cash for an Island
There are thousands of islands in the Caribbean that are available for purchase. Some are more affordable than you think. Yes, they might not be inhabited and it may be near impossible to get to without a large boat (and crew) or private jet, but owning an island sounds fantastic and is the ultimate status symbol among people (type of people who enjoy blowing bonuses anyway). The beach, palm trees and sand are all yours. It’s like buying your own Corona commercial. When someone tells you “I just bought a house” you can politely congratulate them and then let them know you just bought a whole island. Game. Over.