The best way for your friend is -- the way that they will actually use consistently and stick with! I personally use the Mint app to track my spending for me and keep tabs on spending within my various budget categories that way. It combines transactions across my various accounts and automatically categorizes most things for me, I just need to pop in periodically to code any cash/ATM/check spending that it has no idea how I spent. If your friend has a good handle on most of their fixed expenses, one alternate approach I recommend to people I coach is to track spending and budget for the 2-3 areas that are the biggest problem areas. For your friend that could be spending on food, shopping costs, going out with friends, or perhaps something else entirely. For people just getting started with budgeting, limiting focus on a few known problem areas can sometimes be easier to hone in on (especially if tracking manually like in a spending journal with pen and paper) and feel less overwhelming than tracking everything.