One of the hardest things about being an unpaid intern for 3 months is managing expenses. Living in a big city with so many people and so many things to do, it is difficult to not go spend all of my money on nightlife, food, and shopping. Now that I am seven weeks into my internship, I think I have finally gotten the hang of this whole money-management idea.
- I spend entirely too much money on food. Since my kitchen isn’t the most ideal area for cooking gourmet meals and I live 12 blocks any form of a real grocery store, fresh produce and home-cooked meals are few and far between. I have been eating out for virtually every meal and spending at least 3 dollars/day on coffee on my way to work. To remedy these expenses, I am going to suck it up and go to the grocery store more often, and I am going to take advantage of the free coffee in the kitchen of my floor instead of buying fancy lattes.
- Whenever someone in my apartment decides they want to go out at night, I feel the need to join them. I would hate to miss out on any opportunity for excitement when I am only in this city for the summer. However, these outings are hurting my wallet. Maybe it’s just the fact of being 21 that hurts my wallet, not the DC nightlife. But, either way – I need to either go to happy hours instead of going out at night, or learn to stay in and read a book on occasion rather than going out on the town.
- I always wish I had more clothes to go to work in. The irony of this is that I want more clothes because laundry is expensive and a nuisance. But, buying new clothes is clearly more expensive. So, I could either not wash my clothes and be dirty all the time, or I could waste all of my money on unnecessary clothes from over priced retailers in the city. Or, my last and final option, would be to stop being such a lazy girl and to do my laundry. I need to remember to get my change in quarters whenever I go out, too, because that is also a reason I hate doing laundry – I never have change.
If you’re an unpaid intern, how do you manage your expenses? Tips are always welcome via the comment box!