A Week In New York On A $99,000 Salary

Welcome to Money Diaries, where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking millennials how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we're tracking every last dollar. (Thanks, New York mag, for the inspiration.)

Today, a woman working in design, planning a trip to Paris.

Age: 28
Location: Brooklyn, NY (work in Manhattan)
Salary: $89,000 + bonus and ~$10,000 commissioned side work
Paycheck Amount (bi-weekly): $2,180.21 (after 401k and health insurance deducted)
# of roommates: 1

Monthly Expenses
Rent: $1,350
Loan Payments: $1,250 (I recently refinanced my student loans, and I’m taking a very aggressive stance in paying them off)
Utilities: ~$60
Transportation: $116.50 (30-day MTA pass, but it actually costs less since it’s deducted from my paycheck pre-taxes)
Savings: $500 to $600, excluding 401k
Gym: $26.13 (Though I get a rebate from my health insurance every six months that results in this being FREE)
Entertainment Subscriptions (Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, Moviepass): $70.97
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Day One

8 a.m. — Picked up a green juice from the cart across the street from my office on my way into work. Feeling a little rough after going out last night and can’t stomach a real breakfast. I drink that and some cold brew my office keeps stocked. $5 (with tip)

1 p.m. — Leftover catering from a client meeting means free lunch (the lunch I packed from home can wait until tomorrow). I have some salad and half a sandwich.

3:30 p.m. — I buy two tickets for a performance at the Joyce later this month. My friend and I take turns inviting each other to events a few times a year, and it’s my turn to pony up. $132

8:00 p.m. — I pick up a bottle of wine to bring to my friend's place. We made plans to catch up over dinner (she cooks). $12.29

Daily Total: $149.29
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Day Two

8 a.m. — I stopped making coffee at home since my office has cold brew on tap (!) and it’s so good. I have some with a green smoothie I made and froze earlier this week at home. An hour later, we get fresh bagels delivered to the office (a Friday treat I rarely pass up) and I devour a half.

12:30 p.m. — For lunch I eat a veggie burger patty I brought from home yesterday. I also have a green apple with some almond butter that my office provides.

2 p.m. — Walk over to the Seaport with some coworkers for a drink (it’s been a long week). I've already had lunch, so I come out pretty unscathed. $6

6 p.m. — I go uptown to run some errands (to avoid coming into the city tomorrow). Before I head back home, I pop into Eataly and get some fig focaccia and prosciutto to eat before going out. $11.19

8:30 p.m. — I meet up with a few friends for drinks. My friend treats in exchange for a favor I helped her out with last week.

Daily Total: $17.19
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Day Three

9:30 a.m. — Coffee at home, followed by another green smoothie I made earlier in the week from the freezer.

11 a.m. — I head to the hardware shop a few blocks away, to get supplies to hang up shelves and artwork (I recently moved), including two different drill bits and screws. $25.01

2:30 p.m. — After finishing work at home, I eat a frozen veggie burger and half an avocado. I’m officially out of food at this point, so I walk over to Key Food to stock up on weekly groceries. I get spring mix and kale, avocado, mango, blueberries, quinoa, muesli, eggs, chicken, and toilet paper. — $42.86

7 p.m. — I fry two eggs and eat them over greens and rice before getting ready to go out for the night. I use better judgement and come home at a decent hour, splitting a cab with a friend who lives nearby since it’s pouring outside. $8

Daily Total: $75.87
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Day Four

9 a.m. — Coffee at home, followed by muesli with blueberries and almond milk while tidying up and watching TV.

11 a.m. — I travel internationally often for work, and have learned to take advantage of it by tagging on long weekends to otherwise short work trips. I don’t do this for every trip, but it’s been a few months since the last time. I book an Airbnb for three nights in Paris. — $297

3 p.m. — I head over to a friend’s place to watch the game (my weekends are not usually filled with watching sports). I pick up some chips from the bodega on the way. $3

6 p.m. — After hanging out after the game, we decide to go see a movie. The cost of the ticket is covered with my MoviePass card ($45/month). The subscription price recently went up, but it’s still worth it since I go to the movies so often.

8 p.m. — I have two fried eggs and make a salad at home before crashing while watching TV.

Daily Total: $300
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Day Five

8:30 a.m. — Cold brew at work, shortly followed by muesli with blueberries (brought from home) and almond milk.

1 p.m. — Feeling sluggish, so I pick up a salad from an organic juice shop around the corner. It’s pricey for a packaged salad, but I know it’s healthy, and I can spread it out over two meals. $13

4 p.m. — Afternoon slump: I have a small cold brew and dried mangoes from the office.

8 p.m. — A coworker brings in greens and vegetables from his garden into the office Monday mornings. I take home a giant zucchini that I cook for dinner with some tomato sauce and top with a poached egg.

9:30 p.m. — I stock up on a few things from Sephora (Clarisonic brushes, toner, sunscreen) and buy a hair mask I’ve heard good reviews about. I have a "beauty" budget of $100/month, but all of these are more like quarterly purchases — $124.13

Daily Total: $137.13
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Day Six

8:30 a.m. — Coffee and breakfast at work. Muesli I brought in from home, with almond milk and a peach from the office.

12 p.m. — I have the second half of the salad I purchased yesterday.

3 p.m. — So hungry. The salad was definitely not enough. Walk a few blocks to this Japanese market and pick up sushi, hijiki salad, and a seltzer. $12.50

8 p.m. — I pick up some pasta from the bodega on my corner before heading home. I cook that with some tomato sauce and chicken. $2

Daily Total: $14.50
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Day Seven

8:30 a.m. — Coffee and breakfast at work. I brought in some blueberries to add into oatmeal, and nuts from the office pantry.

1:30 p.m. — I have leftover chicken from last night for lunch, with the hijiki salad I bought yesterday.

2:30 p.m. — More coffee at work. I don’t really need it, but I love the cold brew so much.

7:30 p.m — Make a salad at home with the lettuce, chicken, quinoa, and zucchini I have in stock.

8:30 p.m. — Do two loads of laundry at home (there are machines in the basement of my building) last-minute before I leave town tomorrow morning ($5). While waiting, I also buy a few books for my Kindle to read on the plane/beach this weekend and next. ($37.96). $42.96

Daily Total: $42.96
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