“I saved $40,000 to pay off my student loan”: how a 23-year-old sales manager spends her money

“I saved $40,000 to pay off my student loan”: how a 23-year-old sales manager spends her money

Photograph by Erin Leydon

Who: Jackie Nguyen, 23

What she does: Sales manager at a theatre company

What she makes: $42,000 a year

Where she lives: A two-bedroom apartment at Lansdowne and Bloor that she shares with a roommate

Regular expenses: Rent: $678 a month. “It’s small but practical,” she says. “And laundry is free.” Cellphone: $28 a month, for a no-data plan. Groceries: $70 a month. “I go out a lot, and my mom brings me weekly care packages. Go Mom!” Eating out: $200 a month, at places like Fresh, Seven Lives and Sushi on Bloor. Alcohol: $150 a month, for beer and liquor. “I save money by drinking with friends at their places instead of going out.” Transit: $117 a month, for Metropasses in the winter. In the summer, she bikes. Debt payments: $0. “I worked part-time as a cook, bartender, telemarketer and curator all through university, saved $40,000 to pay off my entire student loan, and all I got was a ‘Congratulations!’ letter from OSAP.”

Recent splurges: Gifts: $138, for CNE tickets and Rodin’s Billie on the Bike lipstick. “They were presents for my girlfriend’s birthday.” Bike: $130, for a fixer-upper. “I repaired it myself at Bikechain to save money.” Home supplies: $60, for wine glasses, bike tape and a water filter for her mom, which she bought on Amazon. Lunch dates: $165, for meals at restaurants like Brock Sandwich, Kinka Izakaya and Bloomer’s. Motorcycle gear: $184, for a helmet and goggles. “My partner drives, I ride.” Swimsuit: $53, for a neon pink one-piece from Nike. “During the summer, I sneaked into my friend’s gym to use the pool.” Music: $490, for a ticket to Osheaga and a Greyhound to Montreal.

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