What would you do if you had $500 and could travel to any era to spend it? In a recent online discussion, this scenario was the topic of conversation, where men and women racked their brains to figure out the best way to use their $500. From savvy investment opportunities to some genuinely out-of-the-box ideas — and everything in between — here's how people would spend $500.
1. Buy Apple Stock in 1984
Anyone could purchase Apple stock for less than a dollar in 1984. Obviously, going back in time and buying up 500 shares and then returning to the present day would yield an impressive investment! While the plan itself is boring, you can't deny the results. Cashing in that many shares of Apple in 2023 would make you a small fortune!
2. Purchase a Van Gogh Painting From the Man Himself
I must hand it to the person behind this ingenious idea: Time-traveling back to the late 1800s and buying an original painting directly from Vincent Van Gogh himself! “I like this idea because you'll get a painting that'll be worth millions, and you'll get to make Van Gogh happy at the same time,” explains one man. “It's a win-win situation.”
3. Be the First in Line for Bitcoin
Everybody has an opinion on Bitcoin. It doesn't matter if you believe it to be a scam or the future of the financial world; most people would love to go back in time and get in on the ground floor. Imagine the look on people's faces as you travel to 2010 and tell them you just bought $500 worth of imaginary internet money.
4. Go Back a Few Days and Win the Lottery
When it comes to maximizing the return on a $500 investment, the most efficient way is to go back in time just a few days — and play the lottery! “That's the best bet: Just go back to the biggest payout and show up the week before so you don't have to split it with anyone and boom,” explains one woman. “I think a year or two ago, it hit $600M. That should do the trick.” It doesn't get easier than that.
5. A Late '90s Fast Food Splurge
I wholly endorse this idea: Travel back to 1999 and buy 500 double cheeseburgers from McDonald's. Back then, McDonald's boasted a proper dollar menu, and to a broke teenager, the double cheeseburger was far and away the best bang for your buck in the world! I can't say whether I'd choose to spend my $500 this way, but I certainly can't deny that the 16-year-old in me would be thrilled.
6. See Classic Bands Live
Not every person wants to turn their $500 into a small fortune. Some would spend the money on a handful of timeless rock and roll bands popular in the '70s! “Take your shares of Apple or Bitcoin and do whatever you want because I know what I'd do,” begins one music fan. “I'll go to 1970 and see some of the greatest bands of all time play: Led Zeppelin, The Who, The Doors, Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, and countless others. That's $500 well spent.”
7. California Beachside Property
I'll forever envy property owners who live on the coast of California. There's a lot to love, from the views to the weather to their now-insane property value! Suppose I had $500 and access to a time machine. In that case, I'd travel approximately 100 years into the past, invest in a lovely undeveloped coastline property, and leave it to my family for future generations to enjoy. How nice does that sound?
8. A Pre-American Real Estate Play
The allure of real estate is intriguing to many men and women. One person in particular wants to go back four centuries and make a savvy business deal with the indigenous people of the United States. “I would go back to the 1600s and buy what would become New York and Manhattan from the Native Americans,” expresses one woman. “Sure, I'd have to fight off the British eventually, but I think we could do it again in this alternate universe.”
9. A Piece of Automotive History
According to many men and women, they'd take their $500 and travel to 1908-era Detroit, Michigan, for one specific purpose: To buy a brand-new, fresh-off-the-assembly-line Ford Model T automobile. Owning a piece of automotive history is too good of a proposition to pass up in car lovers' eyes. Imagine driving a Model T in 2023; you'd be the most popular person in town!
10. Never a Bad Investment
I cannot find fault in this man's argument: He would go back 15 years and spend all his money on Subway sandwiches. “I'd go back to 2008, right before the market crash, and buy 100 five-dollar footlongs from Subway,” reveals one man. “Everyone here is looking for a short-term gain, but the conservative sandwich-heavy portfolio will win out in the end!” What a clever take on the whole scenario!
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