For many Venezuelans, the choice is between going to work in exchange for a few bolivars a day, or looking for less and less products that are sold at controlled prices to be resold on the black market; taking into account that a bus ticket can be worth a full salary.
In Venezuela, devaluation has made it more expensive to go to work than it is to stay home. Instead of paying for the transportation, clothing, and food they can’t afford, many Venezuelan employees prefer to simply leave their jobs.
The same applies to university students, who see the effort of studying as”uphill” since their income can’t cover the cost of studying.
“Just going outside means a huge expense”
A report by AP shows that many Venezuelans decide to not go to work to in an effort to save money. Quitting, it turns out, allows them to stretch their saving longer towards the end of the month; especially those who earn a minimum wage.
Es tan grave la situación en Venezuela que muchos venezolanos no van a trabajar porque si lo hacen pierden plata. Solamente salir a la calle significa un gasto enorme.
— Hugo Santaromita (@HugoSantaromita) February 21, 2018
“The situation in Venezuela is so serious that many Venezuelans do not go to work because if they do, they lose money. Just going outside means a huge expense” said Hugo Santaromita, a popular radio host, and political analyst, in a tweet.
Taking into account that a bus ticket can cost up as much as a full month’s salary, for many Venezuelans the choice is between going to work in exchange for a few bolivars a day or looking for products that are sold at state-controlled prices.
For many, abandoning their professions and taking up side jobs is more profitable than making use of university degrees. A significant number of Venezuelans choose not engage in any type of productive activity and subsist at the expense of some type of government grant.
The integral daily income, equivalent to 26,583 bolivars (USD $ 0.13), barely covers the purchase of a cup of coffee. In Venezuela, the minimum wage is 248,510 bolivars (USD $ 1,2) and food vouchers are worth 549,000 bolivars (USD $ 2,7); a total of USD $ 4 monthly income. A basket of basic needs for a family exceeds 25 million bolivares (USD $ 125).
“How can I convince them to continue?”
Unsurprisingly, the situation has also decreased university enrollment.