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The Money Diaries: A dentistry student with a lot of catching-up to do

Although money remains one of the biggest concerns we as students have, we are not good enough to talk about it. Budgets and managing personal finance is still too much of a struggle for the average student while talking about money can be a taboo. This is why Roar News, inspired by media outlet Refinery29, is aiming to start the discussion about money on campus.

How are we going to do this? By asking King’s students to write a diary detailing their income and expenses over the course of a week. Do you want to write a money diary? Email [email protected]

Detailing her first week back in London is third-year Dentistry student J. Her week has consisted of a lot of catching up with friends and acquaintances and ends on a weekend-trip away with her parents. Over the course of the week, J has realised she needs to stop her habit of going to Tescos every day, as “you inevitably end up buying something you do not need.”


Student loan: £14 000

Income from my part-time job: Really depends on how much I work but approximately £500 a month if I work one day a week. However, as I just got back to London, I haven’t started yet. To be fair, I am a bit worried about finding a work-school balance as I was struggling with that last year, but hopefully, I handle time management better this year.

Approximately half of my student loan goes to student fees, almost half goes to rent. I was working for almost three months this summer, and that is how I finance my not-very-extravagant lifestyle. Additionally, I spend some of the returns from my hybrid fund, which sounds very grown-up but I promise it is not. My parents buy some of my plane tickets, but I try my best not to ask for financial support even though I sometimes have to.


School fees: £9 397.

Rent: £5430 each term.

Savings: Nope, Yolo is still a thing, right?

Bills: To be honest, I just pay them when they arrive.

Gym: £23.


The Money Diary


£22.37 at Tesco: Big start of the week shopping. Pasta, vegetables, and other grocery necessities.

£6 at Tesco: A small thank-you-gift to my roomie. We have lived together for only two days and I am already using all of her stuff, so I am compensating with candy, hehe.

Total: £28,37


£12 for lunch: Catch—up with friends over coffee and daal. At the time, £12 seemed like nothing, and I was soo happy to see my friends again.

£ 6 at Kiko: A really unnecessary purchase of a bad lipstick and concealer.

£10 at Elan Café: For coffee and a very instagrammable cake at Elan café.

£ 30 at Primark: For candles and general decorations for my room. I have just moved in and I want it to look a bit nice and homey.

£3 for transport: Public transport in this city is expensive!

Total: £61 (nooo)


Walked to and from campus to save money and for the sake of exercise.

£22 for Brunch: Another catch-up with friends. After all, it is the first week back at uni!

£5 at Boots: For soap and hairspray.

£2.50 at Pret: Thirsty on my way home from campus. Let us call it a reallocation of the money I saved on walking rather than taking the bus/tube.

£5 at Tesco: Bought bread and cheese.

Total: £34,5


Walked to campus again!

£3 for transport: To and from a bar, I went out with some friends.

£25 for drinks: A great night out, lovely to see all my friends again. To be fair, I was very happy with my relatively moderate alcohol consumption.

Total: £28


£5 for transport.

£3 at Tesco: Chocolate, I was extraordinarily hungover.

£10 for dinner before the party I went to: Ended up buying frozen pizza rather than ordering one so that we could spend more money on wine. #priorities

 £25 for drinks: Maybe? I’m afraid it was more.

£7 uber to Party: Great party, had way too much to drink and thus have no idea how much I spent on alcohol…

Total: £50


£15 Tesco: Stayed home most of the day. Cannot remember what I was buying, probably dinner and soda.

Total £15


£32 Gatwick Express: I’m going to meet my parents abroad, so got the Gatwick express to get to the airport.

£5 for breakfast at Airport Pret: I have to start bringing food to the airport, it is such a waste of money and calories to buy food there.

Total: £37



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