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Greg_Colbourn comments on EA Hotel with free accommodation and board for two years - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: Greg_Colbourn 05 June 2018 10:50:26PM *  1 point [-]

I did factor in a £200 flight home once a year and mid-price phone contracts and laptops (just realised that the budget spreadsheet wasn't visible with the link before; it should be now). Netflix premium (£9.99/month) allows 4 simultaneous streams, so perhaps there could be one or two hotel accounts (I'm hoping to keep the hotel TV-free though, so there are no actual TVs). Doesn't look like Spotify has anything equivalent (but really, there is Soundcloud; and pretty much any music you can think of is on YouTube, and there are ways to play it ad free and in the background from a phone). But yes, I do expect that some people will want some over-budget luxuries, which they will hopefully be able to otherwise pay for.

Although of course it would be somewhat problematic if someone was spending a lot of their own money on extra luxuries (say they were spending an additional £5k/year. As mentioned in the OP with the digital nomad example, the cost-effectiveness of their funding would effectively be halved).

Comment author: Khorton 06 June 2018 12:57:48PM *  1 point [-]

I've just looked over the budget (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1bTwMRAD4TQjvHZ0eRCsN4uFdN5Se4zdcP1ikFOKj6-4/edit?usp=sharing). I really like how thorough and detailed it is. I am concerned that it may be overly optimistic, though - I'm sure other expenses will come up. For example, here are some things I use regularly that I don't see money set aside for:

-Tampons

-Medications (prescription or not)

-Razors

-Moisturizer/lotion

-Sunblock

-Contact lenses and solution

-Stationery

-Haircuts

Comment author: Greg_Colbourn 07 June 2018 02:38:26PM *  3 points [-]

You're right; I have increased the "Misc/Other" category to £200/year, and added an item for "Pharmacy" (£5/month)*. This ups the stipend to £30/week (increasing baseline costs 5% to ~£5700/person/year [EDIT 06 July 2018: have updated the OP to reflect this]). If in practice people are consistently running out of money covering their basic expenses it can be reviewed. I do want to try and keep the baseline costs as low as possible though, rather than have a higher amount to cover things that not everyone will need. However, as mentioned in the OP, it makes sense to have some kind of hardship/emergency fund (as well as a "career progression" fund for attending events). These would probably be means tested to some degree though.

*I have got a stock of basic things like toothpaste, toothbrushes, shower gel, shampoo, conditioner, sunblock, sunglasses, eye masks, ear plugs, combs, nail scissors, pain killers, tampons, hay fever tablets, paper and pens etc.