Legendary investor Warren Buffett is known for his modest lifestyle and frugal habits, despite his immense wealth. In 2007, he revealed in an interview something unique he always keeps in his wallet: a McDonald’s gold card that entitles him to free meals in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, for the rest of his life.
The card exemplifies his simple living while adding an amusing twist to his persona. “So that’s why the Buffett family has Christmas dinner at McDonald’s,” Buffett said.
Buffett’s McDonald’s gold card is just one example of his unpretentious approach to wealth. His breakfast routine further illustrates this. According to the HBO documentary “Becoming Warren Buffett,” he spends no more than $3.17 on breakfast each day, usually opting for a drive-thru at a nearby McDonald’s.
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He chooses among three different breakfast options based on how prosperous he’s feeling. These options range from two sausage patties for $2.61 to a bacon, egg and cheese biscuit for $3.17. Breakfast is now slightly more expensive because of price increases since the documentary was filmed in 2017.
In another instance showcasing his thrifty nature, Buffett once used coupons to treat fellow billionaire Bill Gates to lunch at McDonald’s during a trip to Hong Kong. Recounting the experience, Gates said, “Remember the laugh we had when we traveled together to Hong Kong and decided to get lunch at McDonald’s? You offered to pay, dug into your pocket and pulled out … coupons.” This gesture was notable as Buffett’s McDonald’s card is only valid in Omaha, so he resorted to using coupons elsewhere.
At Allen & Co’s annual “summer camp for billionaires,” Buffett’s wife, Astrid, expressed dissatisfaction over the cost of a cup of coffee at the resort. Despite her husband’s net worth exceeding $115 billion, Astrid Buffett was reportedly frustrated with having to pay $4 for a cup of coffee, remarking that the same amount could buy a pound of coffee at more reasonably priced venues.
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Buffett frowns on the extravagant habits of others, even among his wealthy peers. “I just naturally want to do things that make sense,” he said. “In my personal life, too, I don’t care what other rich people are doing. I don’t want a 405-foot boat just because someone else has a 400-foot boat.”
Saving and investing wisely, as Buffett has done throughout his career, are key to ensuring a comfortable and secure future. Buffett’s choices, from living in a house he bought in 1958 for $31,500 to his practical approach to everyday expenses, reflect a deeper understanding that contentment comes from financial prudence and the peace of mind it brings.
This mindset doesn’t diminish the importance of being financially prepared for the future. Instead, it encourages a balanced approach: enjoying life’s simple pleasures while also making smart financial decisions.
Investing wisely, saving for the future and spending within one’s means are not just paths to financial security but also to a fulfilling life that isn’t dictated by the pursuit of material wealth. Buffett’s life teaches that while money may not buy happiness, being smart with money can contribute to a happier, more stable life.
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This article Billionaire Warren Buffett Has A McDonald’s Gold Card That Gives Him Free Meals For Life — Jokes ‘So That’s Why The Buffett Family Has Christmas Dinner At McDonald’s’ originally appeared on Benzinga.com
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