How Much Does It Cost To Live Abroad – Income Report May 2016

Honestly, I can’t believe how fast these months are flying by. It’s already June people!

Time flies when you’re having fun, I guess.

Welcome to my income and expense report for May 2016. This will be the last one I do simply because they are no longer any fun to write and I think the value that these posts were intended to offer is diminishing.

Showing you what I make every month isn’t going to change the world; however, giving you a couple months worth of expenses could, at the very least, give you an idea of what it takes to make a living here in China.

Let’s get to it then!


Rent: $292.31 – Landlords raised rent on us! Not by much though.

Utilities: $22.46 – Includes water, air conditioning, WiFi, etc…

Groceries: $76.60 – I’ve been eating avocados like a boss and avocados are not cheap. So this shit went up…But I feel great!

Lunch: $55.31 – Looks like I got a little spendy on lunches compared to April. But still that’s less than $2 a day on lunch. I remember this being close to $200 per month when I lived in NYC. Overall, win!

Dinner: $101.92 – This went up quite a bit. Ahh, I think it’s because I started eating at this soup place that has like real chicken breasts. I’ve been trying to consume more lean protein (which is VERY hard to do here) and now it’s obviously reflected in this portion of my expenses.

Water: $5.92 – I drank some water…

Snacks/Drinks: $33.85 – Not sure how this went up so much. This category is always tough because I often throw a bunch of stuff into this one category. Could be from more peanuts or Procari Sweats or whatever. (BTW Procari Sweat is a sports drink here that BLOWS Gatorade out of the water. Shit is addicting!)

Coffee: $37.97 – Ok, I can explain. This went way up but only because I decided to splurge on a coffee machine so that in the long run, I will actually save some cheese!

Cell phone data: $7.69 – Not bad not bad.

Gym: $61.08 – Gotta get that swole on. Naaa mean?

Transportation: $15.38 – This went down quite a bit. I think mainly because I stopped teaching this little girl who lives out in a bumble f*ck part of the city. It would usually take me an hour to get there. I am SO happy I don’t go there anymore.

Drinking/Entertainment: $196.00 – Clearly some indulgence going on here. The other weekend I had a burger for the first time since I left the states and it was a glorious moment. I miss eating some normal food every once in awhile so we’ve been going out more to try different food spots in the city. And it’s not always as cheap as your gutter oil specialty.

Chinese lessons: $131.54 – Yep, still going HAM on the Chinese. I still sound like shit but I’m trudging along.

Other/miscellaneous: $10.00 – Okay, now I think I see why some other categories went way up. Because this went way down and it’s possible that some items got stacked into different categories. No biggie. Except Biggie Smalls.

May 2016 Cost of Living Abroad Total: $1,048.03

This was a decrease of $1,048.03 – $1,317.22 = $269.19compared to the month of April. However, this decrease can be attributed to the fact that I stayed in China and wasn’t partying it up Taiwan like last month. Damn, won’t that be fun though? When I can actually just hop on a plane to one of these countries and actually not worry about what’s in my bank account… How about this, I bet you by January 1st, 2017 I will be in a spot, financially, where I can do that. Deal? Deal.


Like last month, here is a breakout of what I earned during May:

Teaching: $1,323.08 – This went up a good amount compared to April because, as I mentioned above, I was here the whole month of May and didn’t take two weekends off to travel. Pretty self explanatory.

Copywriting/Marketing/Freelance work: $522.83 – This went down quite a bit! Why? Well, if you recall from this post here, I talked about how I decided to stay in Guangzhou because some opportunities have come up. Due to that, I stopped working with one of my clients as I was no longer getting any value out of the work that I was providing (writing Amazon product descriptions), and so that I could focus more on the opportunities that I will be discussing in the next few months.

May 2016 Total Income: $1,845.91

That makes for a PROFIT of: $797.88

Actually this is almost exactly what it was for April. So not bad.

I hope that these three months of income and expense reports have been somewhat helpful. As I’ve said before, you can always find work if you’re willing to take the risk and move abroad. It’s not always fantastic work and you’re not going to be rich overnight but if you stay patient and continue to work hard, you can meet some good people and you might just run into a few good opportunities to make real money.

I’m hoping that I can actually prove this to you by the end of this year.

So please, stay tuned. Keep reading my blog and please comment because I LOVE to interact with my readers!

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