Sex and the City: Biggest Spenders Revealed

Miranda’s the biggest spender splashing out $1,732,874.99 over the series

Carrie and the girls became a symbol of empowerment and inspiration for a lot of women for the eight years they were on the small screen and their legacy endures. From seemingly daily brunches to infinite designer wardrobes, the ladies of SATC splashed the cash with carefree recklessness. Not to mention how much they were blowing on rent and mortgages. (Notable exception; Charlotte – who snagged her ex-husband’s six-bedroom Park Avenue apartment in season five.)

Throughout the noughties, and even today, young women dream of living the SATC lifestyle, having no idea the debt that it would entail. But how does one say no to those Manolo Blahniks or Jimmy Choos?

2018 marks 20 years since Sex and the City exploded on to our screens, and to celebrate, the team over at giffgaff gameplan have researched the Sex and the City’s main characters’ spending and revealed how much of their lifestyle they would actually be able to afford. This meant totting up their jobs and income across all six seasons and two films. The team then tallied up how much they were spending on rent, eating out, drinking, clothes and all the other items that ended up in their designer totes.

The study, which analysed all six seasons and two films in the franchise, revealed who was best and worst at managing their cash. This was calculated after tracking the income and expenditure of Carrie and the girls.

First huge shocker was that Carrie was not the most financially irresponsible of the gang. She actually comes in third in terms of time she spent in the red. That being said, she still managed to run up some serious credit card bills. Even with a rent-controlled apartment capped at $750 a month until the end of season four, Carrie was living way beyond her means from as early as season two.

Things did start to look better for her in season five, though, when she managed to bag herself a cushty $4.50 a word writing job for Vogue. After that, life became a little easier with cash from her book deals starting to roll in.

Only for it to take a nosedive again after the first film, when a poorly planned life decision to sell her apartment pre-knot-tying left her having to buy it back when Big jilted her at the altar.

The giant chunk of cash she would have needed to put down as a deposit, added to the massive bill she ran up for the wedding that never happened, would have been enough for most of us to go searching down the back of the sofa for loose change. But Carrie is made of sterner stuff and so swanned off with the rest of the girls on an estimated $10,588.14-per-head Mexico vacay.

Altogether, Carrie’s spending across the series left her with a massive financial shortfall of $162,662.97

The characters final bank balances from highest to lowest were:

1. Miranda: -$151,935.85

2. Carrie: -$162,662.97

3. Charlotte: -$448,931.31

4. Samantha: -$773,998.86

Although Samantha runs up the biggest deficit, it’s Charlotte who spends the most time in the red. In fact, Charlotte is in minus money for every single season of the show.

Each of the girls have some extravagant spending habits that help explain why they were living beyond their means:

Miranda bought an expensive two-bed apartment in the Upper West Side, worth almost $1.5 million, and hired a housekeeper to look after it, setting her back $28,210.66 a year by the end of the series.

Carrie had an expensive jewellery habit. One pair of Fred Leighton earrings she wore would have set her back around $52,648.07.

Charlotte was trying to keep up with her friends despite an estimated salary of just $55,382, compared to Miranda’s $252,521.66.

Samantha’s post-tax income of around the $68,812.56 mark didn’t even cover her annual mortgage payments of $84,000.

Samantha might be in the worst financial shape at the end of the series, but she wasn’t the biggest spender. That title goes to Miranda. The full list of total expenditure from highest to lowest is:

1. Miranda: $1,732,874.99

2. Samantha: $1,324,499.34

3. Carrie: $708,937.53

4. Charlotte: $596,490.81

Steve James, Marketing and Proposition Director at giffgaff gameplan, says of the research: “Sex and the City has been an incredibly popular show since its inception, and a lot of that popularity is down to the glamorous lifestyles of the show’s colourful characters. Carrie, Samantha and the gang provided inspiration for a lot of women, showcasing confidence, freedom and independence. But this research is a reminder that the lavish spending on the show isn’t exactly realistic.

“Living within your means is important if you want to be financially secure so it might be best not to follow the example of Carrie and the gang in this instance”.

Diana Simpson

Diana is a passionate journalist and a curious soul who is on the quest of finding what she loves the most; coffee, dogs, books or traveling? Born and bred in London, writing is her healing power.