Making your money last

Student at an ATM

Third-year student Kate shares her tips on making money go that little bit further!

As students, we are always complaining about how little money we have even when the student loan has just come in. Making our student loans last the year and still being able to enjoy university is important, we don’t want to end up in those dreaded overdrafts! Here are some of my top tips to help you along your way with how to save money and not lose out.

  1. Budget: This seems obvious but work out how much student loan or income you get for a term, and divide this by the number of weeks and you will get a rough division. From this, you have to then work out how you spend your money i.e if you go out every week to Union, and whether you buy food every 2 weeks needs to be taken into consideration. Once you started doing this for a few weeks you will work out what you do and don’t spend money on.
  2. Cook Smart: This includes buying smart. Try to plan your meals, this will not only help you be healthy but save you a lot of money in the long run if your bulk buying food, cooking meals on mass and then freezing them.
  3. Travel: If you’re going home via public transport try and book far enough in advance as you will get better deals.
    – Additionally, try to travel off-peak and avoid Friday and Sunday Evenings. Also, I think the best thing in existence is 16-25 railcard. It gets you 1/3 off and is great for getting home or even day trips to local areas and London.
    – Lastly, if you use the Local Bus System a lot, invest in a yearly pass. If you use it less regularly, it’s always great to get the app to pay!
    Make sure you get the Boost Pass as you are a student!
  4. Discounts: I’d suggest signing up for UNIDAYS which can be accessed as an App on your phone and gives you deals on all the essentials you’d need.
    A Totum card does the same but has a small cost for the year. Discounts, include a discount at COOP which will be great to use at the new one on campus. If in doubt about if somewhere does discount, just ask, there is no harm in asking if it means you save money.
  5. Don’t buy all the textbooks straight away: Quite simply, you won’t read half of them and if you do you’ll read them once and then they will just stare at you for the rest of the year making you feel bad about the amount of money you spend. Go through your reading list for the modules and work out textbooks you need on multiple occasions. Try buying them second hand from Amazon as well or even sharing them with friends.

Lastly, you can also get great money advice from a range of websites and services:

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