5 Financial Management Tips for Long-Distance Married Couples

JAKARTA, 15 May, 2024 – Marriage marks the beginning of a new life and a lifelong commitment. For many young couples, it's a moment of particular joy. However, newly married couples often face various challenges in their married life, especially regarding finances.

Young married couples are typically still working toward financial stability. Not only that but they may also find themselves squeezed into the “sandwich generation”. Around 20% of Gen Z and Millennial Indonesians claim to be supporting their parents financially, according to a 2023 research by market research firm Jakpat. 

Hence it may not be surprising when, for the welfare and future of the family, one partner needs to make sacrifices by pursuing further education or working abroad as an Indonesian Migrant Worker (PMI), thus entering into a Long Distance Marriage (LDM).

Long Distance Marriage is undoubtedly challenging. When couples decide to live apart for the family's benefit, they often face financial challenges. This is especially true if one of them lives abroad, where they encounter differences in living costs, tax systems, as well as cross-border payment challenges like fluctuating currency exchange rates, and high international money transfer fees, and slow transfer speeds.

Therefore, effective financial management is essential to maintain a healthy and enduring long-distance marital relationship. Wise, the global technology company building the best way to move and manage money around the world, offers the following tips:

  • Open and regular communication about finances is key to maintaining a healthy relationship, particularly in a long-distance marriage. Discussing each partner’s living standards and needs based on their respective locations helps prevent misunderstanding.

  • Remember to track both individual and joint expenses. Creating a transparent budget accessible to both spouses can help in ensuring that expenses are within the family’s income. This transparency also helps married couples understand the different financial obligations each is facing, which can be challenging to communicate when living separately. 

  • Setting joint financial goals is fundamental to the success of long-distance marriages. These goals can range from saving for a house to investing in retirement funds. When both partners share the same objectives and realistic timelines, managing household finances becomes more controlled and secure.

  • Establishing a joint account for emergency funds is a wise decision in a long-distance marriage. These funds can be lifesaving in critical situations, such as job loss or uninsured medical expenses. It’s also crucial to save these funds in separate accounts to ensure they do not get mixed up with daily expenses.

  • Choosing the right financial remittance tool is also crucial. Married couples in a long-distance relationship need to frequently send money across borders, whether it’s from abroad to their family in Indonesia or vice versa.  They  should carefully select their digital remittance platform. Traditional remittance services often involve various transaction fees, administrative costs, and undisclosed exchange rate markups, which can significantly accumulate over time with frequent transactions. In fact, recent research by Wise revealed that in 2022, Indonesians lost Rp15,08 trillion to foreign exchange fees.  

For long distance married couples looking to manage their finances more efficiently, Wise allows users to seamlessly transfer money to their partner’s local bank account in over 70 countries. By offering mid-market exchange rates, the rate that you’ll usually see on Google, with an average transaction fee of 0.67%, and more than 60% of transactions completed instantly, Wise ensures that couples can save on unnecessary costs and put more into the things that matter in their relationship. 

Managing money more openly and with understanding can help prevent finances from getting in the way of relationships, helping married couples keep their marriage strong and affectionate, even when separated by distance. 

About Wise

Wise is a global technology company, building the best way to move and manage the world’s money.

With Wise Account and Wise Business, people and businesses can hold over 40 currencies, move money between countries and spend money abroad. Large companies and banks use Wise technology too; an entirely new network for the world’s money. Co-founded by Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus, Wise launched in 2011 under its original name TransferWise. It is one of the world’s fastest growing, profitable tech companies and is listed on the London Stock Exchange under the ticker, WISE.

10 million people and businesses use Wise. In fiscal year 2023, Wise processed approximately £105 billion in cross-border transactions, saving customers around £1.5 billion.

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