Monday, 21 December 2015

Best Spirit Prices ( Whisky and Cognac ) in Melbourne Australia


Most of us would have seen Dan Murphy's advertisements where they claim that they check their competitor's prices everyday before their stores open. And if they find a lower price somewhere, they will beat it. They even mentioned that I am unlikely to find a lower price, but if I do, they will beat it on the spot.

Well, today I am going to show you that I managed to get lower prices versus Dan Murphy's online price for 2 bottles of Cognac XO and one of them from a Dan Murphy's store in South Melbourne!!!

One would think that buying spirits at the Duty Free Outlets in Melbourne International Airport (First Duty Free) would be cheaper than the liquor stores in Melbourne where we need to pay GST. Well, I am going to show you that this is not the case!


Did you know that both Dan Murphy's and BWS are owned by Woolworths? And since they are owned by the same people and Dan Murphy's guarantees the lowest prices, one would expect to pay less for the same bottle at Dan Murphy's compared to BWS. This is generally the case, for example, in November 2015, BWS was selling the Jack Daniels Gift Pack with Hip Flask for AUD50 and Dan Murphy's cheaper by one cent, i.e. AUD49.99!!!

Generally Dan Murphy's sell their spirits at lower prices compared to BWS and Liquorland. For example, here's the price of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Old No.7 700ml at Dan Murphy's, BWS and Liquorland at AUD39.95, AUD42, and AUD43.00 respectively. 

Having said the above, sometimes you can find a better deal for a particular spirit at BWS and Liquorland when either of them have a promo compared to Dan Murphy's price. It's best to compare online before getting your next bottle and don't assume that Dan Murphy's price is always the lowest. 

The thing with BWS is that you can order online via Woolworths website and sometimes get to earn cash back, too, with Woolworths Reward Card.


I am a Dan Murphy's member and I do visit their outlet in Melbourne CBD very frequently since my apartments is a mere 2 minutes walk away, haha. I have bought many types of wines and spirits from Dan Murphy's and their promotion for cognac can be pretty good. 

For example, their online and Melbourne stores are selling the Martell XO 700ml at AUD224.99. However, prior to Father's Day in 2015, they had a promotion and was selling it for AUD199. That's more than a 10% discount.

And if you are a Dan Murphy's member, until the end of December 2015, you will get to buy the Martell Cordon Bleu 700ml for just AUD165 versus their normal price of AUD199. That's like 20% discount! This is the lowest price I have seen for a bottle of Martell Cordon Bleu 700ml Cognac in Melbourne Australia.

Having said the above, Dan Murphy's online price for a particular spirit may not necessarily be the lowest. And I shall now give you two examples.

Example No.1 - Courvoisier XO Cognac

Dan Murphy's is selling the Courvoisier XO 700ml for AUD128.99 online and in their Melbourne stores. Click here to visit Dan Murphy's Online Store. And if I am not mistaken, they did offer it a few months back for AUD109; BUT only if you purchase it online, which means you may need to pay for shipping.

Monday, 15 December 2014

The Best Savings Account in Australia 2015

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.


Generally, we would think that term deposits (also known as fixed deposits) would pay a higher interest rate compared to savings accounts. However, this is not necessarily the case in Australia!!!

Most banks in Australia, if not all, offer online savings account that pays interest ranging from 2.25% to 2.75% (Standard Variable Rate as of January 2015). And in order to attract you to deposit your money with them, the banks will offer additional Bonus Interest Rates of more than 1% for the first 3 to 4 months only. After the promotion period (3 or 4 months), you will end up earning the lower standard variable rate for life!!! 

For example:

ANZ Bank Online Saver

ANZ Online Saver offers 2.5% Standard Variable Rate plus 1.2% Bonus Interest Rate for the first 3 months. Therefore, the ANZ Online Saver account will earn you 3.7% interest rate for 3 months and then the interest rate for the Online Saver will revert to the Standard Variable Rate of 2.5% - which means you will be stuck at a lower interest rate for life!

Also please note - in order to sign up for the ANZ Bank Online Saver Account, you need an ANZ Everyday Banking Account. The ANZ Everyday Banking Account is NOT TRULY FREE, i.e. it imposes a monthly fee of AUD5 if you do not deposit at least AUD2000 monthly into it! So you may end up paying $60 a year for nothing if you do not deposit $2000 every month.

Commonwealth Bank Netbank Saver

Just like ANZ, Commonwealth Bank also offers a similar online savings account called NetBank which pays 2.5% Variable Interest Rate plus 1.2% Bonus Interest Rate for the first 3 months. So, just like ANZ, your funds will only earn you a miserable 2.5% interest rate starting from the fourth month and for the rest of your life.

And in order to sign up for the Commonwealth Bank NetBank Saver, you also need to sign up for a Commonwealth Bank Everyday Account which is NOT TRULY FREE; because just like in ANZ’s case, you need to deposit AUD2K monthly or else you will be penalized and charged a monthly fee. 

Many people sign up for the account(s) above because ANZ Bank and Commonwealth Bank have branches and ATMs everywhere making it very convenient.

However, from both examples above, it can be concluded for long term savings, you should avoid this type of savings accounts and instead look for savings accounts that give you high interest rate starting from the very first day you sign up for the account and for the rest of your life. By doing so, it will not only earn you more money but save you time and the hassle of moving your funds from bank to bank to earn higher interest rates.


Now, for those of you who are unable to deposit $2000 a month into your Smart Access or Complete Access Commonwealth Bank Everyday Transaction account to avoid being penalized and imposed a fee, here is a tip for you.

Say you have the following amount in your Commonwealth Bank Accounts:

Smart or Complete Access - $33.18
NetBank - $618.00

Transfer $500 from Netbank to your Smart/Complete Access Account

You banking accounts will now show:
Smart or Complete Access - $533.18
NetBank - $118.00

Transfer $500 from your Smart/Complete Access Account back into Netbank Account.

Once the $500 is credited into your Netbank account, immediately repeat Steps 1 and 2 above another 3 times and you would have “deposited” $2000 into your Smart/Complete Access account; thus fulfilling the $2000 monthly deposit requirement into the Everyday Transaction Account to avoid being penalized and imposed the monthly fee.

Repeat the above tip/method every month and you’ll get to enjoy FREE EVERYDAY TRANSACTION account with Commonwealth Bank throughout the year :)  


Before I proceed any further, I would like to touch on National Bank Australia (NAB) banking accounts.

NAB Classic Banking Account is an Everyday Transaction Account which is FREE FOR LIFE, i.e. no minimum deposit and no monthly account fee whatsoever, unlike ANZ Bank Everyday Account and Commonwealth Smart/Complete Access Account where you need to deposit $2000 a month to avoid being penalized.

Once you sign up for NAB Classic Banking Account and have registered for NAB Online Banking, you can then sign up for NAB iSaver Online Savings Account.

NAB iSaver pays 2.5% standard variable rate PLUS 1% Bonus Interest for 4 months. Therefore, the funds in your NAB iSaver will earn you 3.5%. Now, this amount is less than the 3.7% interest rate offered by ANZ Bank and Commonwealth Bank shown in my earlier example. So why the heck am I telling you about NAB iSaver? Read on and you may just learn another thing or two.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Australia Best Everyday Transaction Account And Tips To Earn You More Money

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.


Previously in my article titled FREE Visa and MasterCard Debit Cards From Australia Banks, I mentioned that I have Everyday Transaction Accounts with NAB, Commonwealth Bank, Citibank and HSBC Australia. All these said accounts come with FREE Visa or MasterCard Debit cards. However, all these accounts do not earn me a cent in interest for balances sitting in the account. Worst still, my Commonwealth Complete Access Account, an Everyday Transaction Account, charges me a monthly fee if I do not deposit AUD 2000 monthly into it. NAB, Citibank and HSBC Everyday Transaction Accounts are truly FREE FOR LIFE as there are no monthly fees forever (unless they change their policy) and you do not need to deposit a cent into it after you open the account.

Therefore, in order to earn interest from my money deposited with Citibank Australia, Commonwealth Bank, HSBC Australia and NAB, I have their Online Savings Accounts and transfer my funds into my Everyday Transactions Accounts when required. However, if you do not wish to open an Online Savings Account but want you money sitting in your Everyday Transaction Account to earn you some pocket money, I got good news for you.


Now, today I will share with you three tips on Australia Banks Savings Accounts:

1. COMMONWEALTH BANK COMPLETE ACCESS ACCOUNT - Monthly Fee waived with AUD2000 Deposit.

Like I mentioned earlier, I will be charged a monthly fee should I fail to deposit Aussie 2K into my Commonwealth Complete Access for a particular month. And I also said I have their Online Account called NetBank. So, the easiest way to avoid paying the Complete Access monthly fee without depositing any new funds into Commonwealth Bank is to transfer money between your Complete Access and NetBank accounts. For example, you have AUD100 in your Complete Access and AUD 800 in your NetBank Account. So in order to meet the AUD2K deposit requirement:

Friday, 13 December 2013

Melbourne Best Cafes and Chinese Restaurants

Melbourne is the most livable city on planet earth in 2012 according to The Economist Intelligence Unit's Livable Survey. 

Well, according to Mercer's Cost of Living rankings, Melbourne is also ranked No.15 for The World's Most Expensive Big City in 2012! But that was because the Australia dollar was stronger than the US dollar in 2012. Since 2013, the Australia dollar has been sliding South and I believe Melbourne's ranking in the World's Most Expensive Cities would drop to where it was in 2011 - No.21.
Back to the subject of Most Livable City - one reason why I agree that Melbourne is the Most Livable City on planet earth is because the food that are served in Melbourne's cafes are freaking good. You don't have to travel far to experience mouth watering delicious food as the very best restaurants are located in or near Melbourne Central Business District (CBD).

Previously, I have published three articles relating to food in Melbourne. Please click the links below to read them before proceeding to read this article any further so that you get an idea of the various types of food served around Melbourne and in restaurants mentioned in this article. 

Melbourne Food is Freaking Good - This article was my first article concerning food in Melbourne where I posted many photos of the meals I had in Melbourne. The restaurants I visited then were Stalactites in CBD which serve Greek food, Hungry Jack where you can get a complete meal for AUD5, St. Ali Cafe at South Melbourne where I really liked the dish Mexican Cousin, Auction Room which won the award for the Best Cafe in Melbourne, Seven Seeds at North Melbourne, breakfast at The Hardware Societe in Melbourne CBD, Snag Stand for a quick but messy meal, fine dining at Taxi in Federation Square, Mercadante Italian restaurant at Lygon Street, Red Spice Road for some delicious fusion Thai food, Curry Vault in CBD where they have very good Indian food and Pappa Rich at QV Square for Malaysian Cuisine like mouth watering Nasi Lemak.

Melbourne Food is Freaking Good - Part II  - In this article I highlighted a place called J Cafe which specializes in Sushi Burgers at Exhibition Street. You must try their soft shell crab sushi burger. Taxi Pub and Cafe for some fish and chips (would recommend the Taxi Fine Dining restaurant located above instead where the food is really good but cost more), The Grand Tofu at Newmarket for Malaysia Chinese food where the curry fish head is the best I had in Melbourne and how to get to Richmond by tram for Vietnamese food.

Melbourne Food is Freaking Good - Part III - in this article I posted photos of the lunch meals I had at Hardware Societe which was really good, dinner at Red Hot Wok at South Yarra where the chilli crab and Teochew style steam fish were good, value for money meals at Hanaichi and Don Don in CBD. But Dim Sum at Dragon Boat on Lonsdale Street is a no no after 1pm as their selection is really pathetic and not worth the AUD18 for all you can eat. Once again I visited Red Spice Road when they opened another branch at QV where I would have the pork belly every single time I go there. I also mentioned that I dislike the char-siew at Pacific BBQ on Lonsdale Street.

I am now going to list my favorite cafes and restaurants where the food is consistently good and everything on the menu taste delicious. Of course being in the No15 World's Most Expensive City, the food is not "cheap" compared to the restaurants in South East Asia; but then again, the quality of  food served in these restaurants are top notch. 

In order for a cafe to be listed as my favorite cafe, besides the food tasting great, it has to have good coffee ( I am a coffee addict besides a chain smoker) and more importantly fast and friendly service.  I would suggest you only visit the cafes mentioned below on weekdays only. They are really busy during weekends and not the place to go if you have kids as you may need to queue and it may take some time (up to 45 minutes) before you are seated.


Here is the list of my favorite cafes near CBD in alphabetical order:

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Citibank CitiGold Debit Card and FREE Platinum Credit Card and Term Deposit Promo

In my previous articles I have shown you guys FREE Debit Cards offered by banks in Australia. The Debit Cards that are issued together with Transaction Accounts offered by Citibank, HSBC and NAB are truly FREE as you do not need to deposit or maintain a single cent in the accounts. As for Commonwealth Bank Debit Card, issued with Complete Access, well, we have to deposit a certain sum monthly or else a monthly fee will be imposed. 

This article will touch on Citibank CitiGold Account where one will be rewarded with CitiGold status if one deposits or invests AUD100K with Citibank.

Well, guess what, sometime last month when I logged on to my Citibank Australia Online Account, I noted the word CitiGold mentioned at the top of every page. So I called Citibank and was informed that I have been upgraded to CitiGold status without even applying for it. I then requested for the Citibank CitiGold Debit Card :) The CitiGold Debit Card was forwarded to me about a week after I requested for it.

I remembered reading that CitiGold members are eligible to Citibank Australia Platinum credit card where the annual fee is waived as long as we have CitiGold status. So I called Citibank again to try and see if I can get their Platinum credit card without having to disclose my income. Unfortunately, the girl on the line said that I have to meet their minimum annual income of AUD35K to be eligible for their Platinum card and she was not really aware if CitiGold customers are entitled to FREE annual fees. I wanted a credit card badly and was kind of disappointed after I hung up the phone.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Prada Handbags are Cheaper in Australia Compared to Singapore

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.

I am sure many of you ladies are well aware that you can get luxury branded handbags cheaper in Europe. No one has ever told me that handbags are cheaper in Australia compared to Singapore or Malaysia. In August my wife told me she wanted a Prada Saffiano Leather Double Zip Tote with Strap while I was in Melbourne, so we walked into a Prada Store located at Collins Street and to my surprise I found that the bag she wanted was not that costly. So early last month while I was back in Malaysia I went to the Prada Store in KLCC and noted that the price of the bag my wife wanted cost more than RM2K extra here.
Then I was down in Singapore, and was surprised that the Prada Saffiano Leather Double Zip Shopping Handbag with Strap was priced about the same as in Malaysia. However in Singapore, like in Australia, if you were to take purchase the handbag and then take it out of the country, you will be reimbursed the GST at the airport. However, even considering the fact that you can be reimbursed for the GST at Changi Airport, the Prada handbag in Singapore still cost more than in Australia with GST!!!

I did published an article on my wife's new Prada Cameo Saffiano Leather Twin Zip Shopping Tote with Strap and my daughter's Prada Royal Blue Saffiano Leather Wallet that comes with Metal Strap at my Money For Luxury Blog. Click link below to read it and see photos of the Prada bags:

In the above said article I listed the price of both the Prada Saffiano Leather Twin Zip Shopping Tote in Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. As for Louis Vuitton handbags, in the article you will note that the LV Favorite PM cost about the same in Australia, Singapore and Malaysia.

In the article I mentioned that I initially bought the Louis Vuitton Favorite PM for my eldest daughter as a birthday gift, and then after that walked into the Prada Store where I saw the Prada Wallet with Strap which looks nicer. So I went and return the LV Favorite, hahaha.

There are 3 Prada stores in Melbourne and they are located at Collins Street in Mebourne CBD, Crown Casino and Chadstone Shopping Mall. And if you are a tourist or leaving Australia in a month's time, make sure you get the Tax Invoice when you purchase stuff costing more than AUD300 in a single receipt so that you can claim back the GST at Melbourne Airport after Immigration. For example, if you are at Myers, you can go to the Customer Service counter and request that all your shopping at Myers on the same day be combined into a single receipt.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Melbourne Food Is Freaking Good Part III

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.

I was in Melbourne once again in early December 2012 for more than a week and I have more restaurants to recommend to you :)

I did drop by once again at Mercadante, Lygon Street for pasta (and then for dessert we crossed the road to Freddo for some ice-cream) and Hardware Societe for lunch. Both these restaurants were mentioned in my very first article on Melbourne's Food Outlets titled Melbourne Food and Coffee Is Freaking Good - click here to read it.

In my previous trips to Melbourne, I had dropped by Hardware Societe for Breakfast. However, this time around, my wife and I would sleep till pass 9am since this trip we did not have any specific programs for our trip down-under and was more like free and easy holiday. And if you want to have breakfast at Hardware Societe, you better be there before 10am or else most of the breakfast delicacies would be sold out and you are only left with pies to choose from.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

Space Hotel Melbourne Queen Ensuite Room Review

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.

I revisited Melbourne in early December 2012 and once again stayed at Space Hotel, Russell Street, Melbourne. I took a cab from the airport to Space Hotel and it cost me AUD54 for the ride. It was after 1am when I reached Space Hotel and my room key card was given to me upon me presenting my Agoda voucher. The guy on duty did ask for my credit card and charged AUD1 to confirm that my card was valid.

The last time I stayed at Space Hotel was back in May 2012 where I shared a twin room with my son for a couple of nights and then moved to a single room by myself after he flew back to USA to start his summer internship job. That time we had to use the shared common bathroom. This time around, I went with my wife and therefore I booked the Queen Ensuite Bedroom.

Previously I booked my rooms directly via Space Hotel website because I found their weekly rates to be lower than rate per night; but this time around, I only stayed 2 nights at Space Hotel and found that Agoda daily rate was better than Space Hotel website rates. Click here to read my article on Agoda versus HotelClub for Online Room Reservations.

Without further ado, here are some photos taken of the Queen Ensuite Room I stayed in at Space Hotel. Fresh towels were provided daily and toiletries included bath gel, shampoo and conditioner. 

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Australia 7 & 8 Seats Family Car and MPV - Introducing the New Toyota Prius V and Nissan Dualist+2

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.

If one is looking for a 7 or 8 seat family car in Australia, there are not many choices from the same car manufacturer. For example, Toyota has 7 seater cars like Wish and Vellfire, and Mazda has Mazda 8 which are not available in Australia.

Some of the current 7 or 8 passenger cars (which are mostly SUVs) available at car dealers throughout Australia are:

Ford Territory - SUV.
Honda Odyssey - Car like people mover.
Mitsubishi Challenger and Pajero - SUV
Nissan  Patrol and Pathfinder - SUV
Toyota Kluger, Prado and LandCruiser - all three are considered SUVs.
Toyota Tarago - 7 or 8 seater Van
Volvo XC90 - a 7 seater SUV which is due for a new model since it has been close to 10 years since it was first launched.

The good news is, we now get the latest Toyota Prius V which is a hybrid 7 seater car and Nissan has also launched a compact SUV which has 7 seats named Dualis+2.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Melbourne Food Is Freaking Good Part II

An article by GenX published 
at Melbourne Victoria Australia
Please do not reprint or republish in part or in any form.

Back in June 2012, I published my article Melbourne Coffee and Food is Freaking Good. This article will be a continuation where I will post more photos of food that we can get in Melbourne - The World's Most Livable City.

Sushi Burger- Exhibition Street between Bourke St and Little Bourke Street

I highly recommend this place where you must try their Sushi Soft Shell Crab Burger which is really good. However, in order to dine in, you need to purchase minimum AUD12 per person; so, you need to order at least 2 sushi burgers or just take away if you can only eat one.