Money Diaries is the regular R29 series where we tackle what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. And so we ask all different kinds of women to map out their seven days in money for us.
Now, though, Money Diaries is branching out – we’re going to find out exactly what people spend on their holidays!
This week we're with a 22-year-old anthropology student about to graduate from university in London. She lives at home with her parents to save money and reduce the amount of loan and debt. She did save up quite a bit but spent last year studying in Paris, so now has roughly £1,000 in savings, with the pressure of driving lessons and test to fund – and a pet rabbit.
She's taking a six-day break to visit her best friend who lives in Oslo and has saved up £200 for the trip, with an extra £40 kindly gifted to her from Grandma.
She does have a part-time job but her financial future is very uncertain. Her friend assures her that she's on a student budget too and they won't go too crazy. She's most worried about the cost of alcohol and social drinking. She's still got her student card so is optimistic about discounted entry to museums and galleries.
The Basics Hotel: I am staying in my friend's studio. £0 Flights: I paid for them with my family credit card as we get Avios points. £128.80 Total: £128.80
Day One 5.30am: Dress, down half a breakfast smoothie, pack some apples and grapes for the airport. 5.56am: Taxi to Heathrow airport. £17.93 6.30am: Now I've gone through security, I browse for a gift for my host. £17 on a lipstick. 6.47am: Breakfast happens anyway because I'm hungry and ran out of time to finish mine at home. Spend £5.93 on a sausage and egg roll and orange juice at Pret. Slightly gutted when queuing and look up to see there's a Wagamama serving breakfast. Do a cost-benefit on a Starbucks coffee. I am broke. I am broke. I am broke. 6.50am: Remember that Oslo has lots of great coffee houses and resolve to save myself for those. 10.30am: Arrive in Oslo and spend 18NOK (£1.64) on an airport return train journey. Also pick up a 425NOK (£38.83) zone 1 travelcard with student discount, 30-day pass. 12.30pm: After an emotional reunion, we get down to museum business. 80NOK (£7.30) for the National Museum, check out the Munch room. Pick up three postcards for 30NOK (£2.74). 3pm: 50NOK (£4.57) Museum of Contemporary Art on the docks, super-cool. 5pm: Pay 389NOK (£35.53) for dinner at a tourist trap we decide to try anyway – reindeer, deer and moose stew with mashed potatoes and a pint. 7pm: Decide to cycle around. Pay 49NOK (£4.48) for a 24-hour bike pass. Friend buys us snacks and we watch Netflix – free! 11pm: Bed! Are we lame? Total: 1,499NOK (£136.91)
Day Two 10.30am: Wake up, eat homemade breakfast and do some reading. 12pm: Enjoy the amazing (and free!) botanical gardens and the "multicultural" district. 12.30pm: Cycle around and explore the cool opera house roof. Get some amazing cherry and chocolate gelato for 55NOK (£5.02) and watch the water. 1.15pm: Friend takes me to this amazing Thai place in Tøyen where I finally try tom yum soup. Drink a non-alcoholic beer, she pays. Free. 2.30pm: Cycle home. 4pm: Hit up the supermarket to buy alcohol, I pay my friend back for lunch. 100NOK (£9.13) 5.45pm: Skype job interview! Annoying. 7pm: Two Canadian friends come over and we chill out, eat a traditional Norwegian dinner. 11.30pm: Pass out. Am I old? Total: 155NOK (£14.15)
Day Three 10am: Another breakfast at home: avocado, potato salad, ham, rolls and cheese. Resolve to buy smoked salmon and trout for rest of week to mix things up. 12pm: Go shopping in a super-trendy district with lots of independent places. Make friends with a shop assistant in Weekday who is moving to London this autumn and offer to hook her up. Buy some very Scandi homewares and clothes. 535NOK (£48.90) 1.30pm: Meet a friend from uni who is also Norwegian, the three of us go to get BBQ supplies at a fancy supermarket. They pay. 2pm: BBQ in Vigeland Park and check out the statues. 4.30pm: Friend has a meeting for a uni project so I read outside in the sun. 5pm: Visit Oslo's oldest church and walk some cute streets and browse a food market. Decide on burgers at Dognvil. I pair mine with a chocolate and beer milkshake. 258NOK (£23.58) 8pm: 158NOK (£14.43) supermarket run for beers and breakfast. Total: 951.5NOK (£86.97)
Day Four 10am: Complete some tests and forms for a graduate scheme. 12pm: Devour smoked salmon and coffee. Wish bagels were a thing here. 12:30pm: Visit the Viking Museum, 80NOK (£7.30) ticket also gives me access to the Historical Museum. 2.24pm: Walk to the nearby Holocaust Centre – great exhibition on the Gulag. 50NOK (£4.56) 3.15pm: Catch bus back to town. Browse Weekday because I'm obsessed, while looking for my friend I end up buying myself some Birkenstocks for a mere 350NOK (£31.97). 4.50pm: Catch a tube, eat Turkish food at Anatolia back in Tøyen 199NOK (£18.17). Buy some groceries (beer) 151NOK (£13.79). 5.30pm: Nap! 7pm: Down a cider. Rent bikes for myself and my friend and head to the bowling alley to meet her boyfriend for the first time! 98NOK (£8.95) 7.39pm: Buy a beer 96NOK (£8.77). Slightly hard to fit in when everyone reverts to Norwegian. 114NOK (£10.41) for a slightly awkward bowling experience. 9.45pm: Some of us get food at Burger King after an unsuccessful attempt to get into a cool (but crowded) café. I don't buy anything. 10.26pm: Go to a super-cool video game bar. Spend 96NOK (£8.77) on an IPA I force myself to nurse for two hours. Learn how to play shuffleboard. 1.38am: Pass out after a quick tram ride home. It's illegal to use our bike passes after drinking. Total: 1,234 NOK (£114.37)
Day Five 12pm: Wake up and have trout and bread for breakfast. We have a chill day reading and doing work. 5pm: Make an incredible watermelon salad. 30NOK (£2.74) on ingredients from the grocery store. Pick up some alcohol. 150NOK (£13.71) 6.30pm: Pre-drink with the girls and take a strong one for the road. 8.30pm: Check out a festival performance. 9pm: At Kulturhaus I spend 89NOK (£8.31) on beer. Feeling drunk, trying to pace myself... 10.30pm: Eat a regretful McDonald's with the girls, with a milkshake and everything... 150NOK (£13.71) 11.21pm: 98NOK (£8.95) pint of Brooklyn IPA in a random sports bar because we can't get into the concert hall. 12.09am: Move around the corner to Norway's longest bar, am caught up in the news about the terror attacks and don't feel like drinking. Go home a short while after. Total: 517 NOK (£47.92)
Day Six 11.17am: Wake up with a groggy head. And tired. And broke. Definitely went over budget. It's a rainy day so we hang out at home and I pack. Feel guilty as hell with all of my new purchases squeezed into hand luggage. We eat liquorice and watch Netflix. 2pm: Go to the Historical Museum – free. 3pm: Hit up Deli de Luca, spend 115NOK (£10.51) on lunch and an iced chai latte. 5.37pm: Go home and grab some sushi for an early dinner, as well as a cola local to my friend's neighbourhood. Both delicious. 122NOK (£11.15) 7pm: Get train to airport, am super-early so window shop and treat myself to some candy and snacks 100NOK (£9.14). Mixed feelings about going home. 9.25pm: Catch my flight, am kept awake by annoying passengers. 11pm: Dad picks me up, so grateful – free. Total: 337NOK (£30.80)
The Breakdown Food/drink: 2,421 (£221.40) Travel: 2,169.91 (£200.63) Accommodation: 0 Shopping: 1,088.14 (£100.61) Other: 600 (£34.14) Total: 6,021NOK (£556.78)