Challenge: 5 Days with 50 dollars Part 2


Two weeks ago I wrote about a  video I came across on Youtube which documented one woman’s attempt to get by with 50 dollars for 5 days. I thought it was an interesting idea and was motivated to take on the challenge. Well friends, I am sad to report that I did not successfully complete the challenge as I spent WELL over $50 dollars. So, let’s break down the 5 days and find out where it all went wrong… 

Day 1

I went grocery shopping on the weekend so I didn’t have to worry about using part of my allowance at the supermarket but I was lazy last night and failed to make my lunch for today so I ended up grabbing a meal at the McDonald’s near my office. On the upside, I had a coupon for the meal so it only cost me $5.47. It’s still too cold to walk home after work and I ran out of tokens so I buy five more which cost me $14.50.

Total amount spent: $ 19.97 (Yikes! I don’t think i’m off to the best start)

Day 2

I learned my lesson and brought lunch today which makes me feel a lot better. Unfortunately, I didn’t think about the fact that I have my continuing education class tonight and probably won’t get home until well after 9 pm so I grab a grilled cheese panini sandwich, a bottle of juice and a donut from Tim Horton’s after work to avoid a rumbling stomach during class. This costs me $7 and the worst part is the sandwich isn’t very good. Since it’s the last class we all end up going to a nearby bar for some drinks afterwards. I try to be good and just grab one pint which sets me back $7.80.

Total amount spent: $14.80

Day 3

I bring my leftover panini for lunch today. It’s still not that great but at least I didn’t spend any money today.

Total amount spent: $0

Day 4

Sigh. I bought my lunch again. What is wrong with me?!? I am realizing that food is my weakness. I am also not treating my body very well as I devour a slice from Pizza Pizza. I spend $6.26 but my food craving is satisfied. I also have to buy 5 more tokens which cost $14.50 and I pick up a card for a friend’s upcoming bridal shower at Hallmark, which adds up to $4.50 after taxes.

Total amount spent: $25.26  (umm… i’m pretty certain I’ve flown by the $50 dollar mark with today’s total)

Day 5

I brought a salad for lunch but know that I won’t be full from that so I pick up a croissant at a grocery store nearby during lunch, which is $1.89. I also come to the conclusion that 80% of my salary most likely goes to food related expenses.

Total amount spent: $1.89


Wow. There are many things to take away from this challenge.

a) Toronto is pricey!

b) I spend A LOT on food

c) It is not easy to get by on $50 over 5 days especially if you have to commute.

Although I wound up spending $61.92 ($11.92 over my budget) I think I could have been successful if I planned out my days better and walked or biked to work instead of taking the TTC. Food was definitely one of the things where I went crazy with my spending but I’m glad I was able to restrain myself in other areas like shopping.

Let me know if you have any tips when it comes to saving!











1 thought on “Challenge: 5 Days with 50 dollars Part 2

  1. Great challenge – my wife and I recently took a “hard look” at our expenses and were shocked just how much cash was being spend on food, cabs and the conveniences of things on the go. We’re trying to turn the tide with a little more planning, but it’s tough! Good luck!


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