Revealed: The Spending Habits of the 1%

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The studies have been performed and the results are in, showing that there has never been a better time to be a part of the global super-rich than right now. According to the Credit Suisse’s Global Wealth Report, the richest 1% now own half of the world’s wealth, equivalent to around $140 trillion.

A potent combination of financial deregulation, corporate tax cuts, and rising income inequality has meant that the rich truly are richer than ever, with income disparity in the developed world now reaching levels last seen in the 1920s.

The global 1% constitute around 34 million people worldwide, meaning that a lot of people are currently sitting on seven-figure bank accounts. But how to these well-heeled masters of the universe spend their cash? Read on to find out.

Big, Unflashy Cars

Perhaps surprisingly, the ultra-rich do not have a tendency to splash their cash on hot-rod sports cars and souped-up racers. Rather, the most popular types of vehicle among the rich are SUVs and trucks. A recent survey of the 1% and their spending habits has revealed that the most popular cars could be narrowed down to three different types of four-wheel drives, none of which are particularly flashy.

Bagging the top spot for most popular 1% automobile is the relatively modest Ford F Series Pickup Truck, followed closely by Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Jeep Wrangler. This may be due to the penchant the wealthy have for adventure travel, for which a reliable off-road vehicle is a must. It does seem that good gas mileage doesn’t seem to matter to millionaires.

High-Value Property

One key spending habit of the rich is that the never rent and are very reluctant to buy property in a location where real estate values might decline. Studies conducted by the luxury real estate agency Knight Frank have revealed that the richest in society continue to buy homes in cities where wealthy people congregate and where property values are predicted to continue climbing well into the future.

The most popular destinations for millionaires buying first and second homes are London, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Monaco. Unsurprisingly, all of these places have seen their real estate values skyrocket in the past decade, in part because the rich are pushing up prices.


There is a popular myth that the wealthy never spend their money on things they don’t need and somehow become multi-millionaires due to extreme saving habits. This couldn’t be further from the truth. A report from Money Magazine entitled “The Rich Gamble A Lot” revealed that Americans in the top income brackets spend on average of $25,000 a year on gambling activities, far more than their less well-off counterparts.

While big blowouts in traditional gambling meccas such as Las Vegas and Macau make up a large portion of this, a significant proportion is also spent on sports betting, particularly on major events such as the Super Bowl and the Kentucky Derby.

The rich don’t even need to travel out of their mansions to bet big on their favorite sports teams. Leading digital betting platforms such as Betway allow anyone to wager a stack or two on whichever sporting events they choose, as well as offering unique prize draws worth more than $250,000. Fortunately, we mortals can join for free.

Recreational Travel

It will not come as a shock to most of us that millionaires do, in fact, love to go on vacation. However, the kind of vacations they embark on might come as more of a surprise. These days, the 1% are eschewing relaxing breaks in 5-star beach resorts in favor of extended adventures in the most far-flung corners of the globe.

The rich spend $4 billion globally every year on so-called ‘adventure travel’, often embarking on curated tours that can last anything between two weeks and a whole year. Elite travel companies that can provide these experiences, such as the Denver-based adventure tours vendor Collective Retreats, have been enjoying an unprecedented boom in bookings.

While the rich are opting for vacations that include camping in the African Savannah and trekking the Uzbek Desert, they still desire their creature comforts. A key role of these travel companies is to prepare the logistics of bringing nannies, personal chefs, pets, tutors, and lifestyle gurus along with the family on vacation.

So now you know how the real ballers in life spend their hard-earned cash. Should you ever break into the ranks of the 1%, you now know how to live like them.

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