Monthly items draining my bank account

Aug 18, 2019 | Self development

I remember a time when ordering something on the internet seemed like just a way to lose money and probably never see the thing I ordered. Times have changed. Years later, not only can you order clothes online, both from your own country and across the oceans, but you can invest monthly in your comfort or development.

Nowadays, monthly payment for access to a particular app or web page is common. I thought I’d share with you for what I open my wallet, or for which I’ve done it before and for some reason quit.


A great place for self-development in virtually any field. I once joined it as part of an offer to sign up for the first time with them and get two months free access (still valid in here). Try it and if it doesn’t work for you, you can cancel your subscription before the start of the third month and pay nothing. Through Skillshare, I have enhanced my knowledge of nature photography (who would have thought that having a prime lens doesn’t mean you should be shooting at maximum aperture all the time?), how to pose for clients, stock photography, marketing: blog, social media and Google Analytics. Also, the premium account gives you an opportunity to download some content and watch it offline as well. There are many free courses (the very purpose of which is to get you to subscribe later because they are really good). Lastly, I took a free course on watercoloring for beginners and which tools to buy. Monthly subscription is 14€ or annually 8€/month. 


Who of us would love ads? Spotify Premium does not play any ads between you music, but that was not the main reason I subscribed to Spotify at first (and have consistently done so for the last two years). Namely, the paid version of Spotify gives you the ability to listen to music/podcasts on your list (downloaded to your account) without an Internet connection. Namely, while living in Cyprus, EU-wide roaming charges were not as reasonable as they are now and the cost of some GB was over 30€. At the same time, as I walked a lot, I would like to listen to something. The biggest argument is traveling and those hours on the plane when there is no wifi and you just want to relax listening to music or a podcast so the time would pass quicker. Who else hates being on a plane, raise your hands? If you are a student, you get 50% off the monthly price, but for others it’s 7€ or 11€ for family package with up to 6 individual accounts. 


Although LR Mobile is also available in the free version, I like the ability to process RAW files and use the ability to adjust a certain aspect of a photo and add gradual filters to attract attention to the subject. Monthly subscription is 5€.

Ordering Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop for your computer cannot be done without being a photographer. Yes, there are free programs that do the same or a similar job, but why start inventing the wheel when it cost 12€/month and if necessary, the whole internet is full of tutorials on how to do one thing or another. As of half a year ago I started playing with Photoshop for the first time, and let’s just say that without Youtube tutorials, I probably wouldn’t be able to do anything there today.


Audible is the world’s largest producer of audiobooks and is a subsidiary of Amazon. The selection includes fiction novels, autobiographies and much more. This is the perfect way for me to spend long hours while traveling or listening when doing some activities that don’t require much thinking – like drawing, cleaning, etc. How many of us find the time to either buy a book or go to the library to rent it. Audible gives you the opportunity to keep up with the publications that interest you without taking any extra effort. During the month long trial period, you can choose one book to listen for free. Last year I chose ‘Earth is hiring’. Every month you can choose to read one book (I listen to Michelle Obama’s autobiography at the moment) and buy more if you wish, and they will remain in your account forever, even if you no longer have a paid subscription. Amazon Prime members have a solid selection of (50+) books that are always free for them. The monthly subscription is 8€ after the trial period and given that audio books are generally over 20€, this means that if you listen to at least one book each month, you are solid.


You may have noticed through my Instagram that sometimes the images in my stories move. For example, I ordered the MoStory app because its annual subscription was only a few euros and I wanted to give it a try. I like to use it, for example, to share my photography posts, or if I want the information to come in gradually without having to take separate pictures and mechanically add a new line each time.

Many other apps also have basic themes for free + new and extra paid. If I really liked any of these, I wouldn’t see the problem of paying a few euros to differentiate myself from others and use one specific theme to keep a consistent line. There are free alternatives for many of these apps, but honestly, often your time and nerves are more important than the few euros you spend on downloading and then deleting them, because it wasn’t quite what you expected.


You’re there reading this post and as you notice, the page has my name on it. As I had my low moment couple months ago, I did consider close the blog and realised I would miss it. So, I decided to take a break and just no post and see if the enthusiasm is coming back. It evidently has done so. 

Last year I chose the monthly subscription in, so I pay 7.50€ every month to keep my webpage and its contents up and running (+ annual domain bill). It’s an Estonian provider and even though you could get it cheaper through some international one, my needs regarding the hosting are minimal and in case I get stuck somewhere (as bringing my blog from WIX to WordPress), I can get the help in my own language by calling them, without waiting days for an email reply.


There is another company to whom I would also be willing to give away my money every month. I’ve tried their trial period and I just don’t feel that at the moment I would use it enough for it be worth the monthly payment. I believe that if I had a certain amount of time every day when I can’t watch the screen, but I’m on the move (walking to and from work, for example) and generally lacking time to read, I would definitely try to implement it in my routine.

Blinkist gives you a 15-minute summary of non-fiction books, so you’re able to ‘read’ a new book every day. This seems to me an ideal way to broaden my horizons, and at the same time gives me an idea of which books I really want to spend time reading, and which ones are quite enough to listen to or read such succinct summaries. You pay less than 9€ per month for an annual contract or € 16/each month.


So, which are your monthly subscriptions and do we have any same ones?


1 Comment

  1. Maarja

    Skillshare! Love that I can download lessons an watch anywhere!

    Planning to use Google Drive this year. Maybe smaller package first after I’ve sorted out all my files.

    Been thinking to use Spotify but as I find it unnecessary I just avoid thinking about using it.


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