5 Hacks For Ballin' On A Budget In Santiago
Start writing a post
Lifestyle

5 Hacks For Ballin' On A Budget In Santiago

For anyone who's studying abroad but also #broketybroke.

12
5 Hacks For Ballin' On A Budget In Santiago
memes.com

Santiago de Chile is a big city, and with big cities come big MONEY (or having to spend big money, that is). Going from not having to spend barely any money at all in the small, boring town of Williamstown, to having to pay for just about everything possible here in Santiago has been a serious adjustment, and living here for over a month has brought a lot of challenges to light. Especially being someone who is #broketybroke and spent just about all my savings to get here, the cost of living in Santiago came as a shock to me at first, and had me pretty stressed out my first few weeks. It hasn’t been easy, but with some life hacks, the support of my amazing parents, and a lot of prayer, I’ve learned to financially survive in a city where it seems like money disappears as quick as it comes. Here are five tips for balling on a budget in Santiago, but never forget that the experiences you have are #priceless.

  1. Be realistic and reasonable

I feel like this is the most important thing when it comes to finances and spending money in Santiago. Be realistic about how much you need to spend, where you need to spend it, how you need to spend it… Just get real! If you know that you’re responsible for your own dinner every night, factor that into your budget in a realistic and cost-efficient way. Think about what’s going to get you a fulfilling and cost-efficient meal (with actual food, not just alcohol). This goes for transportation too! I have to take the bus and metro multiple times a day, every day, and to multiple locations. I honestly found that getting real about how much I actually have to spend on transportation a week has made me feel so much better, rather than stressing out when my BIP (metro) card will run out next. I also think it's really important to be reasonable about spending money on travelling while abroad. Personally, I would never casually drop $500-600 on a vacation, especially one that was just for a weekend-so why did I feel the impulse to spend that much on a trip to Patagonia? Going to Patagonia was definitely one of my goals when coming to Chile, but being a little more realistic and reasonable helped me realize that Patagonia just isn’t in the cards for me right now, but that just gives me even more reasons to come back here one day!

2. Don’t be stingy about what matters

With all that was said in the first tip, definitely still keep in mind that you need things like food and water and fun to survive, so you don’t have to splurge all the time, but definitely don’t starve yourself! Taking care your body (and staying alive) is literally so important, so if you have to spend a few extra bucks on whatever you need to make that happen, do it.

3. Seek out opportunities for free stuff-especially food

This is something I’m just starting to do now, but is also definitely a great life hack for wherever you’re living. Look up free concerts, events and museums online! Some museums that usually cost money also have particular days that are free and open to the public. Free food is also hard to come by, but whenever it's offered (especially by your host family!) take it! Also make sure to use that student ID to the best of your advantage! Finding out the Starbucks on my university campus has student discounts changed my life, so make sure you’re looking for those student hook-ups wherever you can find them.

4. Don’t give into peer pressure

I’ve definitely felt this when it comes to other students in my program constantly travelling, going out to eat, or spending money in general, but you don’t have to always spend money when everyone else is. There are plenty of times when I’ve passed up going out to dinner or for drinks because I wanted to save money, and I knew I had food at home. This can be difficult, too, when it seems like sometimes the only way you can hang out with people is to spend money, but definitely make an effort to do what’s best for you, and seek out free stuff you guys can do together as well!

5. Don’t let money dictate your entire study abroad experience

With all the spending, converting, and outright confusion, money had me so STRESSED my first few weeks here, but after a while I had to decide that I wouldn’t let it control my life. I felt like it was putting a damper on my study abroad experience, because I was genuinely so happy, but for some reason money was always in the back of my mind, or inhibiting me from just living life. I think that wherever you are, you should be smart and budget how much money you spend, but you can’t let it dictate every single thing you do. You can’t put a price tag on the people you meet and the experiences you have, so you have to just let go and let God, and experience and enjoy as much as you can.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Swoon

5 Couples Get Real About Canceling Their Dream Weddings Because Of COVID-19

"It definitely reinforced that as long as we have each other, we can make it through anything together."

1631
Courtesy of Georgia & Mike Bernstein

There isn't one person the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic hasn't affected. While COVID-19 is risking everyone's physical health, it's also destroying the world's economy and personal finances, weakening mental health, wreaking havoc on education... and, well, the list goes on.

Among the many things being impacted is love.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

A Couple's Wedding In Peru Was Postponed By COVID-19, But A Lifetime Of Love Is Worth The Wait

"We'd prefer to wait and have the wedding that both of us have always thought of."

1093
Courtesy of Rory Semple

During their first semester at Instituto de Empresa (IE Business School) while working on graduate degrees in Madrid, Spain, soon-to-be-newlyweds Rory and Gigi met when they were placed in a workgroup together — and the rest was history. Now, four years after their relationship began, the couple's fall plans to get married in Perú, where Gigi is originally from, have since been postponed by COVID-19.

Though things haven't always been easy for the pair because of immigration, starting a skincare business together, and now, canceling their dream wedding because of the pandemic, they have always worked together as a team (maybe we should all be in a workgroup with our future spouses).

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

A Bumble Couple's Wedding Was Canceled By COVID-19, But Nothing Could Come Between This Perfect Match

"The whole purpose of all the stress and time and tears was that we love each other and that was all that mattered."

1090
Courtesy of Shanna and Kaihla

Shortly after Kaihla's sister made her a dating profile on Bumble (despite her fear of being catfished), she matched with Shanna, and their chemistry was quickly undeniable. So much so that only a month and a half into dating, Shanna told her best friend "I think I'm going to marry her," and eventually, the nonprofit worker and elementary PE teacher duo proved this to be true.

In the fourth episode of a new docuseries called "Pandemic Weddings" by SoulPancake, the couple opens up about how they met, the difficulties of canceling a non-refundable wedding of their dreams (that took a year and a half to plan), as well as the pain of having family members who didn't support their marriage use the pandemic as a convenient excuse not to come.

Keep Reading... Show less
Bobbie Hall

This fall was my boyfriend and I's two-year anniversary! In the past for special occasions, we've typically gone out for a movie and dinner or just did something fun in general. However, in the year of COVID, we didn't really feel safe doing something like that.

Instead, we wanted to try something new that kept us significantly more socially distanced. Luckily, I found a TikTok trend a few months ago that gave me the perfect idea! The Target TikTok trend blew up all over for couples and friends alike. It seemed like a fun activity for us but also a good way to get each other gifts that we might not have thought about.

Keep Reading... Show less

If there's one thing everyone's talking about right now, it's voting — in real life, on social media, and yes, even on dating apps.

And rightfully so! Because is there really anything sexier than someone who cares about using their voice to be the change they want to see? In my opinion, no... not much, honestly.

Keep Reading... Show less
Tai Adaya

Any medium- to dark-skinned woman knows how difficult it can be to find the right SPF. Most mass-market SPF products are catered to lighter skin tones, and the potent UV-blocking titanium dioxide and zinc oxide have a way of leaving an unflattering white or grey cast on the skin.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

10 Fall Fashion Trends Every Stylish Closet Needs This 2020 — Here Are Options For EVERY Budget

Whether you're on a budget or willing to splurge, you can attain the perfect fall wardrobe with these pieces!

627

Even if the only time you're leaving the house is to go to the grocery store, I'm a firm believer in getting dressed up to make yourself feel better. With these trends, your Insta feed (and followers) will be thanking you.

Keep Reading... Show less

We finally got a more in-depth look into the upcoming Disney+ Marvel series 'WandaVision' during the 2020 Emmy Awards. Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany revive their roles as Wanda Maximoff and Vision from the Marvel Cinematic Universe in this brand new trailer.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Talked To Nikki Pebbles About PCOS-Friendly Workouts, And Low-Impact Is The Key

Hormone health impacts everything, including the workouts that are best for you.

13109

Women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) deal with a lot of uncertainty in their life. Between hormonal ups and downs, unpredictable weight gain, painful cyst ruptures, and infertility worries, their bodies are often under a lot of stress! A common symptom of PCOS is having a hard time losing weight — many women find themselves frustrated (or in pain) from traditional workout plans.

I sat down with Nikki Pebbles, a certified personal trainer and group fitness coach, to talk about the kind of workouts that are best for women who are dealing with PCOS.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments