How much money can you survive on?

Students never have much success with money. It only takes one unplanned night to find yourself in a field of risotto. But if challenged to go without any unnecessary spending for 24 hours, could you do it? Last Tuesday afternoon, I agreed to take the test.

Honestly, I love nothing more than an experiment, and they don’t get much bigger than this. I am quite careful with my money but everyone has their downfalls. So, shortly after receiving my dare, I decided on a few rules.

The Rules: If I can get by without it, then it’s a no. So that gorgeous gúna I was eyeing up is a no, as is my daily fix of flapjacks.

If an unplanned night happens, I have to get creative rather than splash the cash on a late taxi.

Bare essentials, toilet roll and bread must be found – somehow.

First off, I regret not dragging my arse to the shops on Monday. That aside, I am full of great intentions. I was busy with college for the day so I assumed I would get by fine. But finding no milk in the fridge, I could see Murphy’s Law wanted a bit of a laugh. After much wandering through barren cupboards, I uncovered a kiwi and apple. Some breakfast, I know. However, the morning workload kept me happy and occupied for a while.

Just as I was on the way home I ran into everyone, who were either chewing or sipping on something. Now while I felt a bit envious of them, I held strong and made my way back. Most of my challenge was based around this thinking. At least I was saving money, right?

When people started making plans for dinner and a big night out, I said to myself; Come off it Murphy, why did we have to do this now? After plenty of stomping around like a spoilt toddler, I came up with a plan. Time to call in the pay backs. Even though this took the last of my skimpy fiver credit, it was well worth the hassle.

So did I make it to the finish line or did I cave? I made it. Just. But it was tough. Trying to go out was the worst. Once I put my nagging doubts aside, I was able to barter my way through it. A girl needs a pint on a night out.

The best thing about it was the batch of money saved which I would have otherwise frittered away. This may sound corny, but it’s changed the way I think about money. And now I am more than determined than ever to hang on to every penny. If you have the slightest interest, I’d definitely recommend that you go for it. It really won’t kill you. Probably. And now I have the moolah for that daring gúna.

Carmel Sayers

Image Credit: Carmel Sayers

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