What $1 Million Buys You

By Daniel Bukszpan, CNBC.com

Who hasn't spent at least a few daydreaming moments fantasizing about spending money? Not just a few hundred bucks either, but huge, irresponsible sums of money, all on completely unnecessary luxury items? Most of us probably have, but sadly, reality tends to intervene. Just as we're settling into a meditation about a chartered plane jetting us off to Aruba, the memory of that unpaid and overdue $250 phone bill intrudes and throws cold water on the fantasy.

If one were to make a completely uneducated guess as to what something like the aforementioned scenario would cost, $1 million would probably be a common conjecture. However, it's 2011 now, and $1 million isn't what it used to be. However, that's in part because a lot of people simply don't know how far $1 million can go, and the amount of time and effort that it would take to spend it. For all the grousing over the rent, doctor's bills and car payments, it would be hard to blow through $1 million just on those average expenses.

More from CNBC:
What You Can Buy for $1 Million
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Billionaire Toys

College Tuition or a Handbag
According to the Harvard College Handbook for Students , the cost of undergraduate tuition for the 2011-2012 academic year is $54,561, including room and board. Based on this figure, it would cost $218,244 for a student to graduate. A family with five brilliant, enterprising children could send their charges to the esteemed bastion of learning for just over $1 million.
If sending one's children to college isn't a priority, perhaps accessorizing is. If that's the case, why not look into Chanel's "Diamond Forever" Classic Bag? At $261,000 a pop , it costs more than an entire undergraduate education at Harvard, so it will only be necessary to buy four of them to exceed $1 million.

Apartment Rental or iPad Case
It's no secret that rental apartments in New York City are among the priciest in the country. Currently, the average monthly rent on a New York City apartment is $3,472 , meaning that it would take a full 22 years to dedicate the amount of $1 million to rent.

Anyone wishing to spend the same money more quickly can retire this bothersome chore in one night by inviting 50 people over for a party and giving each guest a Mervis Diamonds iPad Case. The diamond-studded cover sells for $20,000 , a full 25 times higher than the full retail value of the item it protects.

Wedding or Ice Cream Sundae
Anybody who's sprung for a wedding knows that the costs can quickly spiral out of control. According to TheKnot.com , beaming dads crying tears of joy should expect to pay an average of $27,800 for the event. However, unless he pays for 36 such events, he will not hit the $1 million mark.

Rather than pay for 36 weddings, a quicker and simpler way to spend $1 million is to take 40 friends to Serendipity 3 in New York City and get each one of them the restaurant's intentionally-misspelled "Frrrozen Haute Chocolate" sundae, which is priced at $25,000. This can be done with less planning than preparing for a wedding, and it's not necessary to find a caterer.

Food or Yurabi Melons
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics , the average person spent $6,372 on food in a single year, both at home and elsewhere. At that rate, a family of four would have to eat for over 39 years to have any hope of burning through $1 million.

Those interested in eating and spending $1 million at the same time should consider the Yubari Melons of Japan. These melons are only grown in the city of Yubari, and in 2008 it cost $26,000 to purchase just two of them . A family of four would only have to eat 38 of them, or less than 10 melons each, to spend $1 million.

Click here to find out what else $1 million could buy you.

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