I am not going to lie, the money I make here is good, really good, really, really good. This is the number one motivator keeping me in the country. There was one day that I was having such a bad day that I went and opened my payslip and everything was magically better. I make about twice as much as I did at home, don't have to do any extracurricular activities and it is not taxed.
We get paid on the 25th of the month. If the 25th falls on a Friday then we get paid the day before. Our cell phones are linked to our bank accounts (actually your cell phone is linked to everything) and you get a text whenever you use your bank card. This comes in very handy to keep you in check when you are shopping because the amount you spent is displayed as well as your balance. Sometimes it can be a little annoying. The same holds true about deposits. Trust me, on the 25th every teacher is waiting with baited breath for that text and when it come through ( this month it was at 9:15 am) I do a little dance, usually a combination of the running man and the Carleton dance.
I thought you might be interested in what I do when I get paid. First thing is I pay for my car. I am renting a car for 6 months and that is my biggest expense I pay about 600$ Canadian a month for the car and insurance. I am at a remote school (about 100km/63 miles away) so I get a travel allowance of 425$ month so most of my car is covered. Gas is super cheap here running at 0.49$ a liter. Filling up the care doesn't cost. We also have a free van that takes us to school, so most days I do not drive.
Next, I pay my bills. My cell phone runs me about 250$, that is a lot I know. Communication is extremely important to me and I will pay whatever to stay in touch. Everyone has their weakness, some of my friends get their places cleaned by a maid once a month, some people have people to cook their food, others have every channel under the sun so they can watch American shows they love, my weakness is my phone.
I got an iPhone 5s in December on a one year plan that cost includes the cost of the phone as well as 9 gigs of data, 200 text messages and 800 calling minutes. Before you ask, yes I use 9 gigs a month, I told I have a problem. Not only do I have a social media problem, some parts of my apartment do not pick up wireless ( my bedroom) so I have to use my data and not my wireless in these locations. This brings me to TV and internet. I am not a big tv viewer and went with basic cable (it isn't too bad there are at least 4 movie channels that play all kids of movies, last weekend I watched Inception, Hairspray and Men In Black). I also have pretty fast internet. I also have access to a Nerflixs account that I watch on my iPad. That runs me about 150$. Electricity and water is super cheap I paid 35$ for two months!
After that is all said and done. I send about half of what I have left home. That can be anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars depending what I have to do that month (pay for vacation). I am currently working away at my debt and hopefully will have it all paid by September. I send my money home to my Canadian bank account through an institution called Al Ansari. It takes about three days for the money to get into my bank account and it costs about 20$ to send and 15$ on the receiving end taken out by my bank.
I then do all the girly things that women love. I get a manicure and pedicure. I also get my eyebrows threaded.
I also get my hair braided every two months. There is a salon owned by an Ethiopian woman and they do braids, weaves, perms, etc... I pay about 90$ to get my hair braided INCLUDING the hair. If they are not busy, two and even three women will be working on my hair at the same time. I have finished in as few as 3 hours.
Of course I buy groceries and all that jazz. I pay no rent. I know that some of you are coming here so maybe this will help you make a budget.
Have a great weekend!