6 Ways to Save Money as a Student
Off to uni this September? Whether you're starting your first year or going into your last, we've got lots of money saving tips for you to help make that student loan go further.
Going to university may be the first time you've had to watch your spending habits but don't worry, we've got your back. So let's get to it and save you some dosh!
Give yourself a budget
Creating a budget once your student loan drops is the best way to make your money stretch over several months. Firstly work out what you have to spend each month then separate that into weekly. This way if you overspend one week, simply under spend the next.
Knowing exactly what you can spend each week will also help you to not eat into your overdraft too much as you will need to pay this back after you've graduated and the interest can rise quite high. Find out more about student banking, savings accounts and credit cards over on moneysavingexpert.
Creating a meal plan can really help when it comes to budgeting as it's a simple way to stop you buying unwanted items in a food shop. You may not always stick to it, but knowing what you're going to have for tea will stop you spending money on take-aways and snacks you didn't really need.
Online shopping will also help as you won't be tempted by things that are on offer plus you won't have to carry it all home.
Check out these great 'fake-away' recipe ideas we found on Save the Student.
Avoid costly mobile phone bills
Heading off to uni may be the time you start paying your own phone bill and ideally you'll want to keep costs down. Contracts can be pretty pricey and monthly expense you may not need.
Instead, take a look at a pay as you go SIM. with VOXI
for example, you get unlimited social media included in your monthly fee which means you can scroll Facebook & Instagram endlessly without it eating into your data usage. So instead of using all your data on social media, you can use it for researching ... the best pubs & bars.
With a VOXI
pay as you go SIM you'll be under no contract so you can cancel any time or change your plan if you need more data. All plans also come with unlimited calls, texts & picture messages to UK numbers which means you can call home as many times as you like - there's no excuse!
plans start from just £10 a month and at the moment that includes 12GB of data & unlimted calls, texts and social media. That's a great amount of data which will see you through the awful 'WiFi hasn't been installed yet' days. But hurry, this offer is for a limited time only and ends 29th October!
With a Pay As You Go SIM you can pop it into the phone you already have and you're good to go - providing you're not on a contract or it's ended. It's also worth noting VOXI is part of Vodafone so you will need to have a phone that's unlocked or previously on Vodafone for it to be able to work.
Find out more about VOXI here.
Take advantages of cashback sites
Use cashback sites like you're favourite OhMyDosh!
to earn a bit of money whilst you're doing your studies. Before you purchase anything online check if you can get cashback first, even small amounts add up.
You can use OhMyDosh!
to earn cashback on your bills & car insurance. We also have lots of free trials and no spend offers that will nab you some extra dosh along side your studies. You could put this money towards your saving goals or weekly budget.
Make the most of your local library and second hand books
Starting a new course can often mean you have a list of books you'll need for reading and studying material. Often after you've finished your course these books won't be touched again and some can be expensive! Find second hand books on eBay
or make use of your university and local library as much as you can.
Have a search and see if you can find an online copy of the book instead, you could print the bits you need off rather than purchasing the whole book.
Shop around for the best broadband and energy deals
A big expense which you'll need to get used to during uni life is paying bills. Nobody likes it but it has to be done. Having a little shop around for the best deal can save you a lot though and always be sure to get cashback when you switch. Little energy saving tips like switching lights off, reducing hot water usage and keeping furniture away from the radiators can help keep your energy bills down.
There are a lot of great broadband deals out there but always look out for the price after your contract ends. If you forget to switch or only have the deal for a certain amount of time, this can become a costly expense. Also look at all the extras your broadband will come with and ask if you really need it. Chances are you won't use a home phone and Virgin Media
now offers broadband packages that you don't need a home line for.
Always have a good shop around and see what deals there are for students too and remember to grab that cashback when you switch/take out a new deal.
Make the most of your student discount
As a student, there's so many discounts to be had. Make sure you sign up to student sites such as UNiDAYS and Student Beans. You can apply online and set up an account easily once you have your student email address. Try to shop at places that offer big discounts to students and look out for special events where you can get even more off.
Take a look at the UCAS website which as lots of places you can grab some good deals.
Lastly and most importantly, have an amazing time! Things will be a little different this year and it will take some getting used to but enjoy the Independence and experience uni life gives you.