15 Tips For Living On Less Than $20 Per Week

Submitted By: Andrea Wilson – University Of South Florida

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If bubblegum pop-chef Rachael Ray can eat on $40 a day in any city, I propose that we college students step it up and attempt to live, eat and date on $20 dollars a week in any college town. We are notorious for being broke, stupid and always up for a challenge, so why the hell not?

All that’s required is a little fine-tuning of our desperation and increase of our innate ability to have virtually no shame… pretty much known as everyday life.

Here are 15 tips that will help you make it on $20 a week.

1. Money should only be spent in dire emergencies (such as finding yourself inappropriately shacked up with the “creepy kid” or a farmhouse animal).

2. Take the bus, hitch a ride or sleep with a taxi driver as means for transportation.

3. Give brotherhood and weird religion a chance. Join the Hare Krishnas and bypass the $3 mandatory “donation.” For a snack, attend any club meetings that advertise free food, fill your plate and then feign illness. You might be known as that guy (and not in a good way), but don’t lie to yourself – you were headed down that path anyway.

4. The mall is another amazing venue to score free samples and add some variety to your diet. Mmm. Chinese buffet.

5. Carrying a Tupperware container or plastic bag with you at all times is essential. Saving extra free food – as leftovers for the following day – will ensure you won’t go hungry. At least not tomorrow.

6. If you decide to go out, only hit bars advertising drink specials and no cover. If you’re not special, make friends or dress up as whichever sex has the monetary advantage.

7. Slapping on the charm or pretending to be mentally challenged will get you something somewhere in this town.

8. Flash the Pizza Hut deliveryman. Repeat at Dominos. (Note: This only works for girls)

9. When at a restaurant, bet someone money to dare you to eat something gross, such as raw, milky oysters or food that has definitely passed the 5-second rule by about 3 hours. Not only will you be that much richer, but the food is free, too.

10. It’s not stealing if no one will find out and you hide it well.

11. Free movies, bowling and video games at the student union are a perfectly acceptable date. How many times can people say they played Pac Man next to freshmen dorks on the Dance Dance Revolution machine?

12. Seduce a restaurant manager… or high school lunch lady.

13. It is not considered “slutty” to flirt or lead someone on for rides home or free breakfast.

14. If all else fails, make a sign reading: Will ______ for ______. Fill in the blanks accordingly. Everyone loves a cute charity case.

15. Remember and live by the rule of 3: You can live 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food. So don’t be a baby. Suck it up.


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