‘I always haggle. My wife is always mortified shopping with me’

Me and My Money: Gary Rogers, executive chef, Conrad Hotel, Dublin

Gary Rogers: ‘I’m not really interested in shares and don’t think I ever will be’

Gary Rogers: ‘I’m not really interested in shares and don’t think I ever will be’

 

Are you a saver or a spender?
I would consider myself a spender. Money has always burnt a hole in my pocket! I love to spoil my wife and also treat myself. I like having nice clothes, go to nice places on holidays. Most of all, I love spending for my children – last week, we decided to have two Communion parties for my daughter, one on Friday and one on Sunday, just because we wanted to celebrate.

Do you shop around for better value?
I do for work. Not so much in my personal life. I would do so for big items but, for small things, I would always go for the most convenient.

What has been your most extravagant purchase and how much did it cost?
I bought my lovely wife a watch for €5,000. I also got her a crocodile-skin handbag worth €1,000 when we were living in Australia. I also like to buy myself nice clothes; that is where I would spend a good amount of money.

What purchase have you made that you consider the best value for money?
Our Honda car was the best value for money. We brought it back from Australia and got a really great deal on it because my wife used to work for them over there.

How do you prefer to shop – online or local?
I try to shop local as much as possible. I love the interaction; you can always get an exciting story from your local shops. Plus, I prefer to see and touch the produce where possible, so I know that I always get the freshest ingredients from our local Irish producers.

Do you haggle over prices?
Always! My wife is always mortified when shopping with me, but I love it. For food, but also for clothes. If I get a few different items in a shop, I will always try to ask for something. If they say no, it’s fine, but I will always try. I would also haggle for high-end articles because sometimes they expect it.

Did the recession change your spending habits?
Absolutely. I probably don’t buy as much as I used to.

Do you invest in shares?
I’m not really interested in shares and don’t think I ever will be.

Cash or card?
I always have my card on me. It would be rare for me to have money on me – maybe on a night out – but nowadays I feel more comfortable using my card with the contactless option.

What was the last thing you bought and was it good value for money?
Shoes, a pair of pants and shirt for my daughter’s Communion in a lovely local shop in Skerries. Excellent value for money, as I got the socks for free.

Have you ever successfully saved up for a relatively big purchase?
Yes, I did, when we bought our house in Ireland. It nearly broke my heart, though, as I had to sell my BMW for it.

Have you ever lost money?
I tend to be careful. Perhaps a €50 note, but that was years ago.

Are you a gambler and, if so, have you ever had a big win?
I play lotto from time to time and have bet on horses before, but I wouldn’t say I am a gambler.

Is money important to you?
Yes, it is. I believe you do need money as life is expensive; you have to pay your bills, look after your family. Plus I like to have nice things so I need to find a balance. When I was 15 I started working two or three jobs, so I quickly learned to make money, have money and to buy myself what I needed.

How much money do you have on you now?
I have €30 in my pocket, probably left from a night out last weekend.

In conversation with Tony Clayton-Lea

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