Money is on everyone’s mind these days.*
But the topic of personal finances is a subject that people don’t seem to discuss very openly. It’s a touchy subject, and seems to come up less in conversation than hot button topics such as sexuality.
Which doesn’t make much sense. We could learn a lot from each other by sharing our personal financial trials and errors.
And no, this isn’t suggesting that talking openly about personal finances to complete strangers is a good thing. Nor am I implying that we should give each-other access to our bank accounts for the sake of financial openness.
So here goes.
As you’ve already picked up on, I’ve been extremely frustrated with my finances lately. Even with minimal possessions it’s difficult to hold on to paychecks. Medical, dental, insurance, car maintenance and rent have all sucked the most recent paycheck dry.
Even with the abundance of freed-out food I take home and sustain myself off of I find it difficult to hold on to spending money.
But what worries me the most is how little I’ll have in Argentina. Even though the exchange rate is pretty good, I’m worried about the little fees and charges that come with spending money internationally.
Wells Fargo will charge me a $5 fee every time I withdraw from an ATM there. In addition to that I will be charged the ATM’s withdrawal fee.
So let’s say for convinces’ sake that I withdraw my money in increments of $100 US dollars while I’m travelling, and I have a total of $2,000 to spend.
At $5 per withdrawal, that’s $100 in ATM fees. So in reality, I only have about $1,900 dollars to spend down there.
This isn’t counting the ATM’s fee.
I’ve budgeted $15 US dollars a day, which will have me scraping by day to day.
The lesson: it costs money to have money, and it costs money to spend money.
Any suggestions from experienced travelers out there?
*And if it isn’t a worry of yours then please spend it here.