The Money Diaries: She’s 22, works in advertising and logged EXACTLY how she spends her money in a week.

Mamamia’s Money Diaries asks Australians to record a week in their financial lives. Kind of like a sex diary but with money. So not like a sex diary at all. We still find out the best kept secrets though. We discover what women are really spending their hard-earned cash on. Nothing is too outrageous or too sacred. This week a 22-year-old junior advertising account manager tells all.

Industry: Advertising, boutique agency

Age: 22

Salary: $65,000

Housing: Renting with my boyfriend

Regular expenses: Monthly (my share)

  • Rent – $850
  • Car Insurance – $50
  • Bills (including Netflix, internet, electricity) – $140
  • Mobile phone – $100
  • Myki card – $110
  • Savings – $18,000

Debt: HECS debt, approximately $20,000.

Assets: Uhhhhh. Nada. Wait. Does my beaten up Holden Barina and a wardrobe full of Seed Heritage count?


8:30AM: A coffee (soy latte, please) from my favourite local cafe, which costs an embarrassing $4.50.

8:50AM: I heat up my daily sachet of honey oats at work, which costs about $0.80 total (winning).

1:00PM: Duck out to grab a fancy chicken salad with avocado and cheese, $13.50.

6:00PM: Too lazy to make dinner, decide with my boyfriend we’ll get Subway, costing me $6.50 for a six-inch chicken teriyaki sub with salads. I also shout him his, which was $10.20.

Daily spend: $35.50

A 22-year-old in advertising eats Subways for dinner sometimes. Image: iStock


8:55AM: Regular sachet of honey oats because I’m a creature of habit. Today I also made an instant coffee because #fiscallyconservative and #smart, $0.80.

1:00PM: Avocado on toast for lunch (the toast is provided by work so = free). The avo cost a cool $3.

5:45PM: Buy sneakers from The Iconic’s phone app on my way home from work because I WORK HARD AND DESERVE THEM, $89.00.

7:15PM: Another lazy night, so my partner and I made spinach and ham omelettes with stuff we already had in the fridge. If I had to add everything up, it’d come to about $2.50 each.

Daily spend: $97.80

THURSDAY - Day Three

8:30AM: Another soy latte from the same fancy-pants place, 4.50.


8:50AM: More avocado on toast, this time with the other half of my avo left over from yesterday, $0.

1:30PM: A vegetarian Mexican salad from the joint down the road from work, coming in at $13.50 because, well, I have an addiction and added avocado.

3:15PM: A can of Diet Coke from downstairs, $2.50.

5:45PM: Okay, okay, okay. I screwed up on the way home from work again and bought a playsuit to wear out this weekend from Sabo Skirt’s online store, costing $89.95.

7:00PM: Homemade roast chicken salad. All the ingredients came to $23.40, but we have leftovers for lunch tomorrow.

Daily spend: $133.85

FRIDAY - Day Four

12:30PM: Okay so the day got away from me and I forgot not only to have my daily coffee, but my breakfast too. I chug down an instant coffee from work and a complimentary piece of toast, $0.00.

2:05PM: Leftover chicken salad from last night, $0.

7:15PM: My boyfriend and I go out for dinner at a local restaurant, I ordered the mushroom and bacon risotto ($24.50) with a Pure Blonde beer ($9), but didn’t actually pay a cent on the proviso I pay for the movie tickets to see Lion that night, which were $44 in total.

11:10PM: We took an Uber home on my account but split the fare, coming in at a tidy $6.10 each.

Daily spend: $50.10

Two minutes before online shopping buyer's remorse kicks in. (Image: iStock)


7:15AM: I have a busy day today, so wake up early and grab a coffee from the place around the corner from my house, which I learn only costs $3.50 and is therefore MY NEW LOCAL PLACE. I also pick up a croissant for $4.

9AM-6PM: Am too on-the -go to think about lunch, so naughtily miss it and start to feel my tummy grumble. Pick up a luxuriously priced “sugar free chocolate bar” with serious suspicion from the supermarket for $4. I also grab some fake tan for $20 and a “back applicator” while I’m at it for another $12.00.

7PM: Crash on the couch, make a cup of Maggi noodles to round of the day of very inspirational eating, $1.80.

Daily spend: $45.30


SUNDAY - Day Six

11AM: I sleep and sleep and sleep and, when I finally wake up, decide to surprise my boyfriend with a coffee in bed from the place around the corner, $3.50 for my soy latte, $3.00 for his flat white.

1:30PM: We head to my friend’s house for pre-drinks to celebrate her 24th birthday, picking up some beer as we go, which I pay for, $41.60.

4:30PM: We score a free ride with one of our mates who is the designated driver today.

5PM: We’ve finally made it to the bar, and I drunkenly decide shouting four people “frosé” is a good idea, $48.

9:45PM: It’s okay. It paid off. Because by now they’ve all repaid the favour. My head begins to hurt and I’m so very happy tomorrow is a public holiday.

10:15PM: I buy more drinks, but this time for strangers. No, I don’t know why, $40.

11:30PM: My partner and I get an Uber home, but luckily enough the bar is only a short distance from our apartment, $9 each.

Daily spend: $145.10

"I decided to buy another round of drinks... this time, for strangers." (Image: iStock)

MONDAY - Day Seven

12:30PM: We slept in way, way too long, and drag ourselves to the servo to buy Gatorade for our headaches. They cost $5 each, which now seems ludicrous, but my partner paid anyway.

2:30PM: My grandparents visit, and decide to treat us to lunch. I get avocado and poached eggs (all day breakfast menus are THE BEST), my partner gets a very swish looking variety of pizza.

4-7:30PM: We fell asleep on the couch watching re-runs of Married At First Sight. Oops. I decide to order Thai food for dinner via Deliveroo, and spend $28.30 to get over that godforsaken threshold that doesn’t charge us an extra $5 for delivery.

9:15PM: We crash, feeling very ill about the thought of returning to work the next day.

Daily spend: $28.30

Weekly spend: $535.95


Want to share a week in the life of your bank account with us (anonymously of course, no judgement here)? Send us your Money Diary to