The 3 Most Affordable Ways to Live Like the 1%

Alright, sure, the only real way to “live like the 1%” is to, you know, be the 1%. They honestly have more money than most of us can even comprehend, living lives we couldn’t even imagine. (If you’ve ever worried about paying rent, you’ve living in a different world than the people who own entire towns.)

But there are certain things we associate with the super wealthy, traits of their lifestyles, that we could — and even sometimes should — actually incorporate into our own lives (albeit on smaller scales). Here are a few affordable ways you could live a richer life.

1. Luxury: Save upgrades for when they really pay off

One thing we immediately associate with the extremely wealthy is the high quality of their, well, everything. It’s all hand-crafted, tailored, custom-made, and from the finest materials, often imported or hyper-local.

Personally, I have more of a some-assembly-required budget. But that doesn’t mean I have to skip out on things that add a touch of luxury to my life. I simply splurge where it’ll give me the best quality of life boost. (Our trash can is downright fancy. As are my kettle, my electric mug, and the imported tea I put in them.)

Focus on the items that you use every day, upgrading them over time. You can get literal lifetimes of use out of well-made goods, so it’s actually a smart personal finance move to upgrade certain products.

2. Risk-taking: Have a healthy savings account

One thing I know I associated with the excessively wealthy is their ability to do basically whatever they want. I mean, you hear all the time about billionaires buying up businesses on a whim that they then just run into the ground.

These folks can take chances because they have plenty of money to fall back on when things go south. I’m not going to say you can live that lifestyle (and really, you probably shouldn’t even if you could). However, we can definitely set ourselves up to allow room for a little risk in our lives.

Everyone should have, at minimum, a basic emergency fund that’ll get you by for about three months. Put it in a high-yield savings account and let it grow. Once that’s in place, though, start working on your “Stuff Happens” fund.

This is the money that gets you by for a few months when you suddenly realize you can’t stand your job. Or the money that pays for the truck when you decide to move across the country. This is the money that lets you do what you want (within reason) and take risks for a better quality of life.

3. World travel: Use rewards and plan with purpose

The jet-setting elite can breakfast in Paris and watch the sunset in Peru — all without dealing with TSA. Who wouldn’t want to travel like that?!

Well, you could. Alright, no, not quite. But you can certainly up your travel game with some awesome vacations around the world, without breaking the bank. How? Travel rewards. Specifically, travel rewards credit cards.

It’s not quite a private plane, but I’ve had a few long-distance flights in business class that were truly spectacular. They also didn’t cost much, since I used airline miles to pay for them. The same way I used hotel rewards to book a heart-of-downtown room (free minibar included!).

Adding richness to your life

It’s easy to see the lifestyles of the excessively wealthy and want it for yourself. Sadly, it’s probably just not going to happen for, you know, 99% of us.

You don’t need billions in the bank to live a rich life. You can enjoy many of the same lifestyle elements of the 1%, like embracing luxury and taking risks — even if there are double digits in your percentile.

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