Part 1: Budgeting (💸)
Don’t want to go broke? Exercise caution and live within your means
By Andrew Peng
- You need to exercise extreme caution and discipline for how you budget, especially if your internship is unpaid.
- Why? Your university probably told you that your internship would provide you with invaluable work “experience” — but this summer journey will cost you roughly $3,000–6,000 total. Washington, D.C. is a very expensive city, and you’ll likely spend more money than you anticipate on transportation and meals.
- Locate your nearest ATM: Seek out ATMs within a building ASAP in case you need cash. Make sure to complete any transactions as quickly as possible.
- Find some quarters: Because most schools like the George Washington University (GWU) convert their laundry machines to only accept these coins for the summer, you need to find a bank or individual who can give you quarters.
- Document your costs: Start a spreadsheet and save your receipts. Calculate how much you’re spending per week on transportation costs, then add on housing and meals
- Note: Interns in the federal government are usually eligible for metro benefits. More in the transportation section.
- Takeaways: There’s a lot in this guide on what you can do, but costs add up quickly. Don’t be afraid to spend time on your own or feel pressured to see/do everything.