March 2017 Finance Report

Here be all my finances for March. I spent 12 days out of the month traveling around Portugal and Spain with my girlfriend, and the rest of the time living in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.



Total Income€ 2,378
$ 2,534
Total Expenses€ 5,082
$ 5,415
Profit/Loss€ 2,704
$ 2,881
3M1K 1€ 1,126$ 1,200
Freelance web development 2€ 827$ 881
Cheap Flight Checklist 3€ 305$ 325
Sale of bicycle 4€ 85$ 91
Book sales (via Amazon) 5€ 35$ 37
Total Income€ 2,378
$ 2,534
Last Month€ 4,380$ 4,616

I was aiming to pull in $2.5k in March and ended up right at that mark.


Food & Drink

Eating out€ 327$ 348
Groceries€ 206$ 219
6 Total
€ 533
$ 568
Last Month€ 406$ 428

Housing & Utilities

2 nights at Quinta Beira-Mar in Sintra, Portugal 7€ 150$ 160
3 nights at Chic&Cozy apartment in Porto, Portugal 8€ 135$ 144
3 nights at Casa dos Mastros apartment in Lisbon 9€ 130$ 139
1 week at two apartments in Las Palmas€ 110$ 117
Cleaner for Las Palmas apartment 10€ 20$ 21
Total€ 545
$ 581
Last Month€ 165$ 174

Health Care

~7 weeks World Nomads travel insurance 11€ 103$ 110
Symbioram 12€ 11$ 12
Total€ 114
$ 121
Last Month€ 12$ 12

Travel & Transport

Flights: Las Palmas (LPA) to Cork (ORK) one way 13€ 97$ 103
3-day car rental in Portugal 14€ 72$ 77
Fuel for rental cars and scooter 15€ 64$ 68
Train: Barcelona to Girona 16€ 23$ 25
24-hour scooter rental in Barcelona 17€ 20$ 21
Taxis in Porto€ 20$ 21
Bus: Girona to Barcelona Airport (BCN)€ 19$ 20
Buses in Lisbon€ 14$ 15
Taxis in Barcelona€ 7$ 7
Buses in Gran Canaria€ 6$ 6
Tram in Lisbon€ 6$ 6
Buses in Porto€ 5$ 5
Parking in Sintra€ 3$ 3
Total € 356
$ 379
Last Month€ 725$ 764

Business Expenses

30DBC refund 18€ 2,816$ 3,000
Outsourcing 19€ 162$ 173
2 weeks coworking at CoWorkingC in Las Palmas 20€ 120$ 128
Elegant Themes 1-year subscription 21€ 65$ 69
The Cargo Ship Diaries book promo 22€ 24$ 26
Orange Go Europe SIM card 23€ 20$ 21
PayPal fees€ 13$ 14
Book: The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck 24€ 11$ 12
Virtual Post Mail 25€ 9$ 10
Currency exchange fees 26€ 8$ 9
Cheap Flight Checklist expenses 27€ 6$ 6
Postage€ 2$ 2
Google Drive storage (100GB)€ 2$ 2
Amazon Web Services (more storage)€ 1$ 1
Total€ 3,259
$ 3,472
Last Month€ 2,019$ 2,128

Gifts & Donations

Flowers 28€ 70$ 75
Footprints donation 29€ 3$ 3
Busker in Barcelona 30€ 1$ 1
Total€ 74
$ 79
Last Month€ 29$ 30

Books 31

The Right Stuff ***€ 7$ 7
Total€ 7
$ 7
Last Month€ 19$ 20


Costume for Carnaval 32€ 26$ 28
Sunglasses€ 10$ 11
Tailor 33€ 9$ 10
Total€ 45
$ 48
Last Month€ 2$ 2

Miscellaneous Expenses

Entry to La Sagrada Familia in Barcelona 34€ 28$ 30
Toiletries€ 25$ 27
Entry to Lisbon castle 35€ 17$ 18
Sunscreen€ 16$ 17
Fiverr gig: Add Russian Subtitles 36€ 10$ 11
Netflix subscription€ 10$ 11
Laundry€ 5$ 5
Authentic Relating Games night 37€ 5$ 5
Quarterly banking fee (Irish bank)€ 5$ 5
Umbrella€ 5$ 5
Barcelona tourist tax€ 5$ 5
Entry to Livraria Lello in Porto 38€ 5$ 5
Entry to Banys Arabs in Girona 39€ 4$ 4
Entry to Torre dos Clérigos in Porto 40€ 3$ 3
Monthly banking fee (Dutch bank)€ 2$ 2
Entry to top of Elevador de Santa Justa in Lisbon 41€ 2$ 2
Printing€ 2$ 2
Total€ 149
$ 159
Last Month€ 280$ 295

Expense Summary

Business Expenses€ 3,259$ 3,472
Housing & Utilities€ 545$ 581
Food & Drink€ 533$ 568
Travel & Transport€ 356$ 379
Miscellaneous Expenses€ 149$ 159
Health Care€ 114$ 121
Gifts & Donations€ 74$ 79
Clothing€ 45$ 48
Books€ 7$ 7
Total Expenses€ 5,082
$ 5,415
Last Month€ 3,656$ 3,853

I was aiming to keep my expenses under $5k for the month so I went a good bit over.

Biggest Regret?

Nothing significant in March. My biggest regret the previous month was taking on that 30DBC project that I had to refund, and that cost me $3k in March, but aside from that I spent only $2,415 despite spending 12 days doing full-on travel in Portugal and Spain. Not bad.

Where That Leaves Me

I had €10,169/$10,716 to my name at the end of February.

Taking into account all my March income and expenditure, and the most recent exchange rates – I have accounts in EUR, HKD and USD – my total bank and cash balances now work out to €7,266/$7,742. 42

Outlook For April

I’ll be home in Ireland for a couple of weeks visiting family, so won’t have any housing costs there (I’m spoiled, so I am). I will be applying for a Russian visa however, and I’ll also need to book a flight to Moscow and pay for a month of accommodation there.

Aside from that, expenses should be pretty normal. I’ll aim to keep everything under $2.5k.

As for income, I’m going to get back into the swing of some freelance work, and 3M1K has been looking up lately so hopefully I can pull in $1.5k or more from that. I’ll aim for at least $3k total income.

Feedback Welcome

Thoughts? Questions? Speak up in the comments below.

Archived Finance Reports

I’ve been posting these monthly finance reports since January, 2011. You can view all my old reports via this page.

Curious as to how I track everything I earn and spend? Check this video…



  1. This is my premium course that teaches people how to start an online freelancing business.
  2. Haven’t spent a lot of time on freelance projects the past two months. You can find links and details for my latest web dev projects here.
  3. This is a short guide I released at the end of January. So far it’s sold about 100 copies total. I produced it with a partner I only receive part of the profits.
  4. Bought this for €130 (including a lock) back in December, so I got three months of use out of it for €45, or €15/month. Not bad! Oh, and if you want to see the Facebook post I used to find two buyers for the bike, click here for a screenshot :-)
  5. I currently have two books for sale on Amazon:

  6. Under €400 is what I usually aim for, so I was way over in March. That was largely because of the 12-day trip around Portugal and Spain, during which we ate out quite often.
  7. Found on Use this link to find accommodation there and you’ll get a €15 discount.
  8. Found on Use this link to find accommodation there and you’ll get a €15 discount.
  9. Found this on Airbnb. Use this link to sign up and you’ll get $37 off your first Airbnb booking.
  10. €10 per week, but I only stayed at that apartment for two weeks, and paid rent for that in February.
  11. Two different policies here. One for ~3 weeks in Portugal and Spain, and a month for a trip I’ll be taking to Russia in April/May.
  12. Some immune booster stuff to help ensure I stayed healthy while traveling.
  13. That’s including a 20kg suitcase. Use my Cheap Flight Checklist to find cheap flights for yourself.
  14. Booked through
  15. €15 of this was from a car I rented in Tenerife in February.
  16. Two tickets
  17. Split the cost of this with my girlfriend
  18. As mentioned last month, this was a client project that I bailed on due to being overloaded with other commitments. Ultimately I didn’t deliver any value to them, so so it was only right to refund everything they’d paid me. Put a bit of a dent in my finances, but it was definitely the right call for me.
  19. I have an assistant helping me with 3M1K and I also hire some other freelancers every now and then to help me out with various projects.
  20. Needed this so I could continue getting updates for the Divi WordPress theme that powers this website and
  21. I’m running a free promo of my book on Amazon from April 3-7, and decided to pay a little bit to get the book mentioned in a few big mailing lists. These are the promo services I bought:

    • Awesome Gang
    • Bknights Fiverr
    • The Fussy Librarian
    • Decided to ditch my Vodafone SIM and use this instead, as I can use it in pretty much every European country.
    • Bought this for a winner of the giveaway I ran a few months back.
    • This service allows me to receive old-fashioned mail in the USA without having a physical address there. They scan any mail received and email it to me, and can also forward along any important documents to another address I specify.
    • Some freelance clients pay me via TransferWise and I lose a bit in the transfer. Still way better than PayPal though.
    • As mentioned above, we have some expenses from selling this guide, such as Gumroad fees.
    • I gets real romantic sometimes.
    • This is an automatic donation via World Nomads travel insurance.
    • We passed this Romanian guy playing the flute one night in the Gothic Quarter. Magic!
    • You can see all my book recommendations and what I’m currently reading over on Goodreads. I sometimes buy books via Amazon affiliate credit and gift cards so you won’t always see my book purchases listed here.
    • You can see what that costume looked like in the video here.
    • Had to get my jacket patched up.
    • Two tickets. Totally worth it. Spectacular building, inside and out.
    • Two tickets. Not so worth it, but still nice.
    • This was for a little private video I made for my girlfriend’s mom, who doesn’t speak English.
    • Google this. And go to one. It’s amazing.
    • This is the place with the Harry Potter staircase in Porto, Portugal. See here for pics.
    • Didn’t spend long there as there’s not all that much to see, but pretty cool nonetheless.
    • Went up to watch the sunset one evening in Porto. Twas beautiful.
    • Taking the actual lift is a bit pricey and there’s a big line, so we walked up the back way and paid a tiny bit to go out on the viewpoint. Spectacular views up there.
    • Note that these totals are never quite right and don’t really align with my profit/loss numbers each month. That’s because of the different currencies and money constantly moving around between my accounts, plus I have some investments that can make or lose money in any given month. But I couldn’t be arsed figuring it all out perfectly and the above figures are close enough so let’s roll with them.


  1. Madi

    what app do you use for your budget management?

  2. Scott

    You’re the King of Transparency, Niall! I love the easy footnotes. Regular digital books should have different levels of this to suit both the skimmers and the meticulous. Btw, #20 might need a repair.


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