24.10.10

Letting Funds Slip Away

Finally! A finance post for all you out there still wondering if you can make study abroad happen in your lifetime.

Did I mention that the Gilman Scholarship is one of the best ways out there to make it work? Really. Two application options (Spring or Fall), super scholarship funds ($5000 anyone) and you have plenty of time to get your application ready before it's due for the next round of submissions. Get more information on that here, but don't forget to check your campus study abroad office too. I owe San Francisco State's IP office so much for helping me make Germany happen.

Back to the goods. Finances. Tricky little thing. I have always been a big supporter of budgeting and making sure a purchase, whether food, clothes or anything, is really worth your dollar. or Euro. But, that being said, study abroad is a big process and gets overwhelming to keep the same system of checks and balances that you one did. Example being, while in San Francisco, I would do 2x monthly shopping trips, carefully finding deals or coupons that would save me the most. I would average 40-50$ for one month. Seriously, it was a task but worth it to save so much money. But Germany, we have a problem....
yes, I do keep every receipt for the month and recycle afterward
 Alright. You see that? I even left one out the photo. Those receipts are calculating the trips to grocery stores I made in just this month. And I can tell you that only 2 were important and the rest were completely supplementary and also unnecessary. Money is going down the drain here. Granted no trip was more than 19 euro and many amounted to only 6 euro or less, this is no way to shop. Lengths between trips were 5 days or even once I went again the next day for a equally big amount of purchases. That will just not do. And so here we begin a challenge: MEAL PLANNING


For the month of November I will plan out all of my meals. This does not mean they can not be altered, but that I will make only 2 grocery trips next month based on my plans. The first shopping trip will be on Wed next week, and here on PM will be the receipt, meal plans for two weeks, and actual meals will be documented here. Besides that, the best thing that can be said is to always keep your receipts or write down costs in a notebook. That way, if you slip up on your budget like above, you can look at what was bought and think about why and see how much you actually spent.edit to add: I am considering making 2 full grocery shops for the month and two supplementary ones just do to the sheer weight of what I may be carrying, and the Kaufland is quite far from my home. We shall see how that plays out.

How do you think you will conquer this challenge while studying abroad? What are your grocery habits as of now?

P.S. The SF GIANTS are headed to the World Series!!!!!!! Yes!

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