‘We used to stretch $10 for three days’

The Samoa of decades ago is not the same today. 

It’s easy enough to see, says 49-year-old Legalo Fetaia’i from the village of Faleula-Uta.

Over the years, he has seen how things have changed.

One of the most noticeable changes is the cost of living.

Compared to the past, the cost of living in Samoa has increased rapidly.

“What we get from shops is getting very expensive today compared to what it was back then,” he said.

“Back in those days, we could stretch $10 for more than three days. Today, you can’t survive with $10 for a day. 

“Today in Samoa nothing comes for free anymore like it used to be back then when people used ‘fa’amolemole’ (please) when they do not have sugar or salt.

Mr. Legalo also shared on how his family survives and copes with the expensive cost of living.

“Our family has two people working and that is basically where money for our family comes from and sometimes from our overseas families.

“Then there’s me, I am the one working behind the scene to provide food from our plantation, but we don’t sell anything.”

Mr. Fetaia’i added youths of today were also an obvious impact of the influence of external factors.

“We have so many issues regarding the youths of today because they have lost the value and culture their parents taught them.

“The influence of technology to them is another major factor that has changed them not going to church on Sundays instead they get drunk.”

Mr. Fetaia’i also added that he was worried that changes happening in Samoa were driving the Samoans overseas.

“The cost of living and all other social-related issues are causing Samoan people to migrate overseas and that is something that scares me.”

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